By: Tony McLain
Not every product can be an iPhone. For every genius invention, there are a million rolls of toilet paper, bars of soap, and pieces of plastic called “credit cards.” If you have what you would consider a “boring” product, you probably think that your place is on Google Adwords – bidding for the highest click and trying to sell your product on the back-end for the lowest possible price. But bidding wars can get nasty. Here’s how to leave that rat race:
Have a Personality
Start a blog and develop and online personality surrounding your niche. Credit cards are kind of boring, but a blog about credit cards doesn’t have to be. Sure, if all you talk about are rates and brands, it’s going to be a real snooze-fest. However, if you start telling personal stories about your experiences with credit cards, that could get interesting.
Have you ever been in debt up to your eyeballs? Do you have a good, and cool, credit card strategy for earning massive amounts of reward points? Why not write about that stuff? When you sit down to “pen” a personal story, you’ll be surprised at how many people will tune in. People love personal stories. The more you can connect with your readers, the better.
Look at Dollar Shave Club. That company was built around a simple idea: sell razors to guys. It’s a little unsophisticated, but they make a great product. They also make it appealing to men. They make it simple to order, change orders, and cancel.
They’ve even got a sense of humor – and that’s important. The razor industry is impossibly competitive. There are brands already dominating that space and have done so for years. How did a startup like Dollar Shave Club eat into the likes of Proctor and Gamble? By having a better personality. It’s not like Dollar Shave Club has a patented razor technology. They just have a good product and a better marketing plan.
Use Lumpy Mail
You don’t have to use online marketing, or even conventional offline marketing, to sell your products. If you’ve never tried lumpy mail, you’re in for a treat. What is lumpy mail? It’s exactly what it sounds like. It’s mail that’s lumpy. Why would you use this? Because it’s intriguing to the person who receives it.
It sounds strange, but if you received an envelope that was hand-addressed, with a lump in it, would you want to open it to see what’s inside? You probably would – curiosity. It’s more expensive than traditional direct mail, but response rates reach upwards of 20 percent – excellent if you have a high-margin commodity product.
Fast, Reliable Service
Another way to turn some heads with boring products could lie in the way the products are sold. Selling online, next day or same day delivery and reliable customer service are the hallmarks of a new breed of online companies. The companies may seem faceless at first, but once someone has done business with them and experienced their near flawless services, they can easily become a customer’s trusted choice for future purchases.
There is a company out there that sells industrial fans. They call themselves “Big Ass Fans” – no kidding. That’s the name of the company. They’re wildly successful in an otherwise boring market. Their brand is a strong selling point and a little bit edgy. If you sell a boring product like pens and office equipment, maybe what you need is a better brand – a new name.
Tony McLain is a marketing consultant. He loves to help small businesses get more out of their product line by sharing marketing tips on business blogs. Visit the www.lenstore.co.uk, and see how they have become leaders in their niche.