You’re the Marketing Manager of InkyDinks Inc. and the market has decided that your $20 Dinks are $4 too expensive. And let’s face it, your Dinks aren’t the only Dinks on the market. What would you do to move the market in your favor?
Marketing is riddled with challenges. Daily, we’re forced to solve them or succumb to them. And when it’s your own product or brand on the line, you don’t want a short-sited fix — you want a real solution that will raise expectation, shape the market and create momentum.
Reprogramming What’s Familiar
From the time we’re young, we’re taught to think linearly and to solve problems sequentially. We’re trained to go step by step. So, if our costs are too high, then we clearly just need to find a way to lower them and — POOF — problem solved.
Possibly. Probably not.
If, in our example, you simply cut the price of your Dinks, you’re cutting into your profit margin, hurting your bottom line and potentially limiting future growth. You could cut the cost of raw materials but then you’re also changing your product substantially, perhaps in a way that customers dislike more than they dislike the price tag. And because InkyDinks Inc. strives to pay a good wage to retain good workers, cutting wages is off the table. You could consider changing locations to limit overhead, but it’s such a negligible part of the final cost … What else can you do?
It’s like finding a solution that doesn’t go through the maze, but around it.
Innovate Using Lateral Thinking
When it comes to achieving a breakthrough solution, there isn’t always a linear “right” way to go about it. Lateral thinking is a way of approaching problems from an indirect, creative perspective so you can view them from a new angle, generating new ideas. It’s like looking at a complex maze with an infinite number of possible paths and finding a solution that doesn’t involve going through it, but around it.
The tenants of lateral thinking are essential to the way we work, inviting new perspectives and even top-down shakeups at every point in a project. It’s a concept that makes up the very heart of our brand development process. Not because it’s easy but because the best answers, we know, are rarely the most obvious ones.
Putting it all together
So, have you decided what you’d do to help InkyDinks Inc. break through?
Do you consider doing market research to understand your customers perceptions and find a position you can own and build momentum around?
Do you re-evaluate your brand and find out if there are creative solutions that can pivot the discussion away from price and instead forges a new perception?
Do you need to commit resources to market and advertise this gem? And not just creating some jaw-dropping creative solutions, but back it up with a media plan that is solution-oriented and accountable.
Do you take an advertising and marketing approach that positions your Dinks as premium, top-quality Dinks? A move that would justify the price and position your company as a leader in the Dink supply game. Lateral thinking says that just because they’re talking about price doesn’t mean you have to.
There are many ways to solve a problem. But at 1408 Locust, we believe the best way to start is always with a new perspective.