Archive for the ‘Routes To Market’ Category
In this Thursday night insight Paul Hague looks at the phenomenon of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and argues that “product” isn’t everything.
Have you read The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo? It’s a great story, there’s no doubt about it, but the story of how the book became a bestseller is even more incredible. Written in his spare time as a hard-working journalist, Stieg Larsson first called it Men Who Hate Women. Having finished his whopping manuscript and without publishing it, he began his second book. When this was finished he wrote his third. And then he had a heart attack and died. Only after his death were the books published.
The publishing of his books is another incredible story. The rights to the books in the UK, where it began its huge success, were bought by Quercus, a small and unknown backstreet publisher. The owner of Quercus became so desperate to shift copies he gave them away to people in parks and he planted dozens on the back seats of taxis and on tube trains. Today Quercus has moved to luxurious offices in Bloomsbury Square, and its revenues trebled to £15m in the first six months of 2010 on the back of the Larsson phenomenon.
So what can we learn from this? It seems to me there are at least five lessons:
My insight today is that we should always take care to put as much emphasis on the other parts of the marketing mix as the product itself. Ralph Waldo Emerson once said that, If a man can write a better book, preach a better sermon, or make a better mousetrap, than his neighbour, though he build his house in the woods, the world will make a beaten path to his door. I am not so sure that The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo would have had such a large path beaten to its door without a little bit of marketing help.
It was with interest that we recently read a case study about a small, local, new business doing well in these difficult times.
Based just down the road from our own office in White Plains, New York, and launched little more than a year ago, Carrillo’s Fire-Roasted Salsa is now looking to build on its initial success and become a more recognized household name.
One of the key factors in the success of this brand so far has been that it meets the growing market trend for healthier products. With all-natural ingredients, low in sodium, and made with no sugar, artificial preservatives or concentrates, it is being snapped up by Greater New York’s growing army of health-conscious consumers.
Another string to the brand’s bow is that it is promoted not just as a ‘dipping’ salsa for chips, but also as a useful cooking ingredient, thanks to its flavourful and thick consistency.
Channels of distribution is next on the agenda, with the brand looking to increase its reach from mainly local tri-state (New York, New Jersey, Connecticut) areas to a much larger national presence. Thanks to deals struck with a number of nationwide specialist gourmet stores, the product should soon be flying off shelves in selected markets in the Northeast, northern California, Miami, Chicago, Denver and New Orleans.
As a relatively new start-up with limited budgets, there has been minimal advertising of this brand, but a concentrated focus on in-store sampling, encouraging consumers to try out the new salsa. The product is also marketed and sold through the company website, where individual jars or "CarrilloCases" of any six, eight or 12 jar combination can be ordered.
Already looking to change and improve its logo, Carrillo is not neglecting its branding either.
All of these points serve to remind us that although all companies start small, all the different elements of the marketing mix can be used in different ways to grow a business and help it thrive, even in a tough economy. This certainly is food for thought…