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If You Can’t Fix it, Feature it

September 2, 2011

Sometimes, the best you can do is fess up.  Many companies use this strategy. The one that tells you how hard  their store is to find.  Or Avis admitted running behind and having to try harder.

You can make positives out of many negatives. Think of tv personalities who have made brands out of being short. or cheap. Like Jack Benny.

Gary Halbert, the late copywriter, told the story of the Denver mattress company that said it had to sell  mattresses at such a bargain because the labels were sewn on backwards.  And the first mattresses were an accident.  But according to Halbert, the idea worked so well that the company later had labels sewn on backwards on purpose.

What can’t YOU fix but CAN feature?  Being the little guy?  Let’s say you head a one branch bank up against the Bank Of America’s of the world.  Play that up but that you know the name of every customer and they get better, faster service. Or that you can process a home loan faster.

Or the new guy in town.  Or the short guy.   Let’s not forget the athlete who made size part of his name: Ed “Too Tall” Jones.

Wendy’s makes a positive out of a tomato shortage. They posted signs about the shortage but that customers could have tomato on their burger if they asked for it.

There are many ways to play up disadvantages.   What would work for you?


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