Hitting the Sweet Spot


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There is only one MEASURE of success of any marketing programme or an advertising campaign – the extent to which it CONNECTS with a real human being – the consumer. Since time immemorial, good marketing involved only one mantra – seeing things through the eyes of the consumer. When that happened, the result was a more insightful marketing programme that dramatically improved its effectiveness.

Finding the right consumer insight is key to success in marketing and advertising. Once you have found the right insight and connected it to your brand’s uniqueness, you hit the sweet spot. In sports, a sweet spot is that one place in a cricket bat, a golf club or a tennis racket that drives the ball farther, faster and with less effort than when it’s hit anywhere else.

I would like to give an example of finding the right consumer insight and hitting the sweet spot:
In the early 1980s, Cherry was virtually the only shoe polish available in India. It was a very respected brand and consumers would buy it for polishing their shoes. Unfortunately, the incidence of polishing shoes was declining – it was too boring a chore for consumers to do often. And they were willing to go around with unpolished shoes rather than take the trouble of polishing shoes regularly. The result was a monopoly brand that was stagnating. For years, Reckitt’s, the makers of Cherry, tried all sorts of campaigns, mainly rational communication, urging consumers to polish their shoes to a) protect them and b) appear smart. Things just didn’t work out.

There was a lot of consumer research floating around but the new Marketing Head at Reckitt’s came out with the following insightful analysis:
1. Shoe polishing was Cherry and Cherry was shoe polishing.
2. Shoe polishing was boring so Cherry was boring.
3. How to make Cherry more interesting?
4. Make the act of polishing shoes interesting and fun!

Based on this insight, the agency – Lintas, I believe – developed the concept of the lovable tramp – Charlie Chaplin – polishing his shoes with enthusiasm. The campaign broke in the mid-1980s and immediately resonated with consumers. A brand that had stagnated for over 10 years suddenly saw a spurt in sales.

Do look for the right insight for your brand; it could make a really big difference.

Visual courtesy : https://www.flickr.com/photos/royalchallengers/

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This article was written by Joy

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