Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Monday, April 25, 2011
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Tickets for the tournament days are nearly impossible to obtain unless you know someone. Practice round tickets are only available through a lottery system. It's all highly controlled by the tournament because they can do it. And that's how they like it.
Why? Because the demand is there. Plus, they like the prestige and tradition that are synonymous with the Masters.
For an operation that is only 'public' a few days out of the year, the tournament can turn a buck. It's done strategically and very effectively. Food and beverage options are very inexpensive considering the venue and the process for obtaining a quick meal is simple and easy. That's all by design.
But, rather than mark up food and beverage items beyond reason, it is the merchandise that sells like crazy. Nowhere else can you buy authentic Masters merchandise but at Augusta National (of course, there are those who resell on eBay). Lines of patrons file into the pro shops to grab whatever gear they can with the coveted Masters logo on it. You name it and they have it - golf shirts and tee-shirts to ball caps and ball markers. There are towels, flags, playing cards, belts and more.
Just as quickly as the merchandise flies off the shelf, it is restocked by fast moving clerks. It's an amazing process as the clerks know that everyone in the shop is there to buy something. They don't have to persuade anyone. It's a dream come true for retail selling. Imagine the margins on these products. Tee-shirts are $26, ball caps are $24 and golf shirts are $68. With the buying power that the Masters undoubtedly wields, the profits must be extremely favorable.
Even though this entire operation is an extraordinary one, it doesn't happen automatically. The Masters tournament understands their market. They understand demand and they know how to sell right into it - without really having to sell.
That's where some businesses miss it. They think a product will sell itself or that demand will somehow be there. That's not always the case. Sometimes you have to create it. And, oftentimes, you have to sell it. However, when everything is aligned (strategy, marketing, sales and service), you will reap the rewards.
Wouldn't it be great to be the 'Masters' of your market!
Thursday, July 30, 2009
In the case of Seth Godin's posting, look at the reverse situation. It's a sad reality that there are employees out there working for supposedly reputable brands, yet taking no responsibility to uphold the integrity of the company, business, product or services because...drum roll...it's just a job...all I do is work here!
Seth nails it: when you are employed by the company, then you represent EVERYTHING about that business and thus, the brand. And, that means the good, the bad and sometimes the ugly (thank you Mr. Eastwood).
Thankfully, there are companies out there who have instilled a culture within their organizations where employees 'get it'. Go to a Chik-fil-A sometime and you'll see it from every single employee. You'll never hear one of them proclaim 'I just work here'.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Pitchman Billy Mays revolutionized direct response advertising via his unmistakable commercial presence that always opened with “Hi, Billy Mays here…” He became the icon of direct response television commercials and infomercials. What’s interesting is the effectiveness of his pitches that resulted in the sales of millions of dollars of product.
This brings up the question: was Billy Mays really the brand or was it the product he was selling? His products certainly have become household brand names – OxiClean, Orange Glo, Awesome Auger, Mighty Putty, etc. But, without Billy Mays these arguably would be unknown. However, having a strong pitch for a product is just one aspect to building an effective brand – it has to work and be well received by the consumer. If these products didn’t deliver on their brand promises as Billy demonstrated in his commercials, additional sales would likely have never happened. Still, with a guy like Mays and his notoriety representing the products, one could make a strong case that he is more of the brand than anything else. He is the voice, the image, the seller, the convincer – the guy who compels the sale. That’s more than just a sales guy.
It is very difficult to think about any of these brand names without the name and image of Billy Mays coming to mind at the same time. What happens now? His commercials continue to be aired since his death and unquestionably the products are selling. Over time, will they sustain without Billy Mays? Have the brands built a strong enough following to succeed without their pitchman? Only time will tell us how these products will perform sales-wise in the future and whether or not they can live on without their beloved spokesperson.
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Some may be asking why they would bother with another free offer. In marketing, there is no more powerful word than 'free'. And, it works. It's obviously working for Denny's because they wouldn't bother investing in another promotion of this type if the first had been unsuccessful. Plus, they understand the importance of consistency. The Super Bowl promo could have easily been a one-off, one-time deal that we soon forgot about. But, no, the marketing pros at Denny's recognize that and are ready to pull the trigger again. When this ad hits, there will be many consumers who recall the Super Bowl promotion and thousands upon thousands who will recall excellent service and quality food when they partook of the free Grand Slam meal back in February.
This is likely to create a lot of additional buzz for Denny's. That's only part of what they're after. It is the buzz that translates into revenue dollars that will be the real measure. I'm betting they'll please a lot of hungry patrons while bringing a smile to the company's bottom line.
Monday, March 30, 2009
As this scene unfolded, it reminded me of how many companies approach their marketing. The intentions are normally good, but sometimes the strategy and execution are lacking. Simply casting your marketing dollars into the blue abyss hoping for a big bite is a high risk and expensive venture. It's essentially the same as mass communication with the intention of reeling in perhaps only a select few keepers. The bait and rod may be right and even the blue waters where those prospects are looming, but tossing a 'hook' for anyone to snag probably isn't the best approach.
Wouldn't you have a much better opportunity of success by identifying who you want to send your message to, tailoring it to their needs and then executing a plan that properly connects with them? Such an approach is targeted and strategic to maximize your marketing investment and efforts.
Think about that the next time you're tempted to bait your hook before tossing it to the masses.