When customers can see themselves in the advertising, they have reason to pay attention...
And sometimes, they do the advertising for you.
This missive is born of surprise. When confronted with a spontaneous marketing juggernaut, it’s best to roll with it.
The Fabulous Honey Parker and I have a new and untested product. And customers are lining up on social media to share photos and talk about it.
They’ve also never been asked to promote the product, nor have they been incentivized to do so.
These customers have nothing obvious to gain.
And they’re helping compensate for marketing that’s been handled upside down and backwards.
As mentioned a couple of weeks ago, Honey has released her debut novel.
When marketing a book, you’re supposed to start six months before you release it.
But six months ago, this book wasn’t even an idea. It was a spontaneous conception resulting from current circumstances.
A book publishing veteran we know said, “Great idea. But it has to be on the market by October. No traditional publisher can do that. You have to self-publish.”
So it was written at lightspeed and put onto the market.
And, go figure, the fans are promoting it.
Why are people around the country sharing photos of themselves with this book?
I have a theory. But then, you already knew that.
The Honey Parker brand is very strong. The woman likes to make friends and is happy to be social.
Moreover, she has created a fiction brand that the customer wants to be a part of.
People want to be in this club.
The club is rallying around a book called, Carefulish: A Ridiculous Romp Through COVID-Living As Seen Through The Eyes Of Ridiculous People.
The customer needs a laugh--and gets much more.
The book is a comedy, but goes deeper than just cheap laughs.
The book is also topical, touching the zeitgeist without ever getting political.
And the book’s cover is very graphic, designed to pop from the page when it’s seen on Amazon.
The cover image is a black COVID mask with a martini glass on it.
The brand is Careful-ish and people want to play.
Would this have happened if the book had been called, Laugh, It’s A Pandemic?
Would it have worked if the cover image were a bland photo of a discarded disposable mask?
Would people be flocking to it and sharing it if it was unremarkable?
We can’t say for sure.
But a safe guess is: No.
What my wife has done is brought clarity of thought to the ONE way she wants her CORE CUSTOMER to FEEL about this brand.
Her core customer is Smart, Sassy Woman.
What's the one way she wants Smart, Sassy Woman to feel?
That it's OK to laugh about living through a pandemic.
And it’s working.
Smart Sassy Woman is jumping onboard the Careful-ish train and going for the ride. She’s enjoying it. And she’s telling her friends.
Honey Parker has entered into a conversation her customer is already having. And she’s done it using masks and martinis.
This is where we turn back to the broken ads I solicited a couple of weeks ago.
(No, I haven’t forgotten about y’all.)
What’s happening in the broken ads is a lot of writing that’s caught up in selling.
Not much of it is caught up in joining the customer. (Some of it is trying, of course. It's all born of honest effort.)
And yes, it IS harder to create a club around something that seems mundane, like floor covering.
But that’s our job as marketers.
We must take the mundane fruit we’ve been handed and squeeze out the sweetest possible juice.
Does your advertising make the customer feel like joining the club is a good thing?
As proposed last week, if you can’t see the customer in your advertising, it isn’t advertising yet.
When the customer sees themselves in the advertising, they have reason to pay attention.
When the customer feels the right way about the brand, they can care about the sell, and care about joining the club.
Are you feeling the customer’s pain?
Are you feeling good about the relief you’re providing?
Not every advertiser seems remarkable. But inside, when you dig deep enough, something remarkable will be there--even if it’s just an obsession with something mundane and very necessary.
Find the remarkable, and you’re on your way to finding gold.
To find out more about Careful-ish, you can click here to be taken to Amazon.
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Blaine Parker is prone to ranting about any and all things related to brand. In many ways, he is a professional curmudgeon. While there is no known vaccine for this, the condition is also not contagious. Unless you choose it to be so.