Suppose that warnings of danger on tobacco packaging make you smoke more?
(No need to put your grey cells into motion: this has already been studied and has been confirmed - danger sells. Big Tobacco celebrates and governments can save face... everyone happy).
Suppose that warnings that you can die of cigarettes make it more likely that you will die?
No need to think too much about this question either, it's the material of psychologists who have been banging their head against mahogany desks for a decade, did not find the answer yet, but there are scientists (from the shady to reputable level) who do think so: your thoughts, worries and predictions have a way to slam back to the body.
|A brand of PepsiCo, battling the Coca Cola |
company on the tea front.
Suppose that extensive research has indicated that women prefer horizontal objects and men vertical objects?
There's no proof to be found online, but given the fact that manufacturers have poured fortunes into horizontal tea packaging and vertical coffee packaging, hints that somewhere, someone, sometime DID pop this question and investigated it.
Now, suppose that the very first one to discover this, worked in a business with a market of tens of millions of people - just how big would his or her advantage over competitors be?
If it can result in an extra income of millions, it will have been researched.
Multinationals do not have the budget for a full-time neuro-psychologist on the payroll. They have the budget for a team of top experts in the domain, with assistants, with volunteers, working in laboratories and eye-tracking equipment and a budget to invite thousands of people for further behavioral tests.
So what about the free spirits, who have no brand loyalty whatsoever. Are they a 'nightmare for marketing departments''?
Marketing departments don't have nightmares (they would be fired). They have challenges. For any scientist on the way to a discovery, there's a top-knotch marketer with a child-like enthusiasm to unearth a new strategy.
If it is been monitored how many cents extra you are willing to pay for the parking lot if it saves you 68 metres of walking - why wouldn't free spirits be monitored?
The most famous example is the proud statement of the person in a Spanish shopping mall: "I don't fall into the trap of any Brand. Sometimes I buy something at Zarah, then at Bershka, the next day at Pull and Bear, Massimo Duti, Bershka..."
That's how Inditex ensures they catch everyone, anytime.
|Bath products for men. Vertical. Showers rather than bath. |
Standing up, ready to jump out in case of danger.
'Suppose that my aunt smoked and had wheels, she would be a steam train'.
Supposing is the very first job of a (very good) marketer. For it all starts with the question: what has no other company discovered before? What are the black holes? What's the missing link?
It's not the marketing tool that gets you far. It's being the first to discover and use it. All the rest is just hopping on the bus, until they have to do so in order not to loose out too much, instead of actually gaining something.
(Example of a few years back: "you have to be on YouTube"! No, you don't. It was advantageous for the first ones, and for the best ones).
(At this very moment it's Google+, but more about that later).