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Lemonade Stand Marketing – Traffic, Traffic, Traffic!

Lemonade Stand MarketingDo you remember the basic business lessons learned as a kid? How can something as simple as a lemonade stand teach the business essentials to grow a large and profitable business? Let’s find out…

This past weekend was the annual Colorado Dragon Boat Festival which takes place in the park across from my house. It’s two days of racing dragon boats down a course, with hundreds of teams participating. It has also turned into the largest Asian culture festival in Colorado. Over 100,000 people attend the 2-day event.

Why is this information important to a child’s lemonade stand you ask? You could say Location, Location, Location; but I call it Traffic, Traffic, Traffic! The business location is important, but the key characteristic of the location is the amount of traffic of targeted customers that location brings. In our case, with 90 degree heat and 100,000 potential thirsty customers we put up the lemonade stand and invited some friends over to help run the store. So what happened?

Timing! Business success is all about timing. Do people drink lemonade in the morning? Not really. Do they drink it while they are on their way to the festival? No, because they just left home and are still refreshed from the air-conditioned car. When do they drink lemonade? On the way home from the overcrowded, sizzling hot, sunny festival.

Get in front of the customer when they are ready to buy!

So what time do you think the kids reaped the most reward for their efforts? That’s right, from 2-5pm; the hottest time of the day. When the girls put up the stand at 2pm, there were people standing in line while they were setting up! How’s that for a booming business!

Now, the girls took this one step further. They actually noticed that their were a lot of people with dogs passing by. One girl said, “We need free water for the dogs!” And so it was. The dog water was put out and then when the girls saw someone with a dog they enticed them over with the promise of free dog water. Now how can you pass up seven super cute 5, 7 & 9 years old girls with ice-cold lemonade and fresh water for your dog? That’s what I call knowing your customer and targeting their needs!

Are you applying these principles in your business? Have you identified the best traffic-getting location, timing and needs of your customer? Do you know how to get in front of them when they are ready to buy? How have you made timing, location and customer segmentation work for you?

Next up, Lessons from the Lemonade Stand: The 5Ps of Marketing.

The Purple Cow is a Dog!

Why the “Purple Cow” is a Dog!

Challenging Seth Godin’s Book, Purple Cow, and the power of REMARKABLE.

How a book on this topic could sell a quarter of a million copies is beyond me. First of all, claiming that there is a “6th P” and calling it “Remarkable” is ludicrous. I do believe in REMARKABLE and all it entails. However, just because you have a remarkable purple cow doesn’t mean you have a good product or good marketing.

Every good marketer knows that “REMARKABLE” starts at your marketing strategy. It is defined by solving a customer’s need and positioning you in the marketplace. Then the remarkable strategy should transcend your entire marketing mix. If it doesn’t, than you probably won’t have a lot of success.

As an example, let’s look at Seth’s own marketing of the book, “The Purple Cow” and how he used “REMARKABLE” and the 5P’s (NOT 6). You will see that he used REMARKABLE in many ways.

The Product:

The Purple Cow” is a book about the marketing mix and making it remarkable. Seth added controversy by pulling out a characteristic of good marketing and re-introducing the concept as a new element of the marketing mix, calling it the 6th P. This really isn’t a new concept, nor a new element of the marketing mix. It’s an old concept, just reintroduced in a new and controversial, if not REMARKABLE, way.

The author offered a return policy, which was REMARKABLE at the time.

Pricing:

The price was average price for this type of product. It was NOT remarkable.

Placement (or distribution):

He originally self published the book. This was not an unusual way to distribute the book. However, he primarily used the internet and direct sales to find customers (this was a bit remarkable at the time.)

Promotion:

He got written up in Fast Company, not remarkable, but not so easy either.

His packaging was quite REMARKABLE. He packaged each book in a cardboard milk carton with a purple cow print on it. The box itself attracted attention. He used the purple cow box to attract attention. People would open the box, take the book out and leave the box on their desk, thereby attracting more attention. The box created a viral marketing component. The packaging was consistent with the brand and message and remarkably attention grabbing.

People:

How would you say the people involved were REMARKABLE? What makes Seth Godin REMARKABLE to you?

Not every aspect of the marketing mix needs to be remarkable. You just need to pick one way to be remarkable and carry it through your whole marketing mix. You’ll notice that the Purple Cow’s REMARKABLE-ness started with the strategy: Make something remarkable to prove the concept of remarkable. Seth chose the Purple Cow and then leveraged that theme and created a brand, The Purple Cow, around the premise of being remarkable.

So, while the Purple Cow is not a 6th P, I do think it is an excellent example of remarkable-ness and how to permeate remarkable-ness through your marketing mix.

If interested, you can order the redux of “The Purple Cow” on Amazon…

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