Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Stealth Marketing…my version part 3

What I said next almost won me a spot in the Marketers Hall of Shame, most unimaginative category. The second item I wanted was notepads.

I’d collected a number of notepads from seminars and shows. My biggest complaint was that they were not useful. They were too small and 50% of the surface was covered with text and a logo. I may as well use the margin of a handout or a scrap of paper.

What I wanted was a notepad large enough to be useful but small enough that people would take them. I settled on a notepad which was about half the size of a standard piece of paper.

Rather than cover the face of the page with promotional blah blah blah, I kept it short. Company name, logo, and a three word positioning statement “1394 Silicon Leaders.” You knew who we were, what we sold, and why you should be talking to us.

But what about all the other things people needed to know? My theory was that if you get people interested and make it easy for them to get more information, they will get it themselves. I did not want to clutter the message with too much information. This was an item that should be a useful thing that goes back to the office. Once it is used in the office it spreads your short, to the point, message around the office. If I filled 50% of the page with product information, the look of the pad was unattractive and the usefulness of the pad was cut in half. It would go in the trash before it made it to the office. My pad had lots of white space, good quality paper, stiff back and would get used after the seminar was over. As a matter of fact, I had customers ask me if I had more. They liked them so much they wanted me to bring more with me when I visited them.

As far as getting more information, well, there was this thing called the Internet that was starting to show promise. My company was one of the first in the world to have a web page. I banked on the hunch that people would start going to company web pages for all their information. I simply added a URL that took the prospect directly to the 1394 information on the company web page.

Step three in the process, how to get the pen and notepad in the hands of people? No one standing in your booth wants another pen and they certainly do not want more paper to carry around. And, even more perplexing, this was a seminar. We had no booth. We had no way of getting these items distributed.

The solution was simple. It involved partnering our distribution method with the habits of the average person. We used what people do subconsciously to get our items in their pockets and brief cases.

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