Tel Aviv marketing campaign for tourists from Europe (photo: Ir Olam, director: Yossi Yarom)
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"For starters, don't talk about your product. This will leave prospects guessing what the product is. Instead, talk about what's on their mind, which is their frustration," writes entrepreneur and strategic consultant Matt Lerner on LinkedIn.
For example, although in fact Google is a database that allows you to find information from the Internet using keywords, if they had described it to us twenty years ago, before the Internet gained momentum and became such a central factor in our lives, there probably wouldn't have been much response.
Instead, they marketed it to us as a personal assistant who is there for us for every question and concern, and until recently, this was certainly enough for Google to dominate the search engine market and even significantly advance the Internet industry.
Basically, when developing a new product, the main challenge is to find the real need of the consumers.
There is a difference between a need that consumers recognize, and a situation where they do not know they need the product, simply because they have never encountered it.
For example, who thought, before the era of smartphones, that he would need this device, and today, how many of us can imagine life without it?
"New categories in the market do not appear out of nowhere. They always replace something"
Matt backs up this claim with some real-world examples:
• We enjoyed music before Spotify - but it was cumbersome because we used dedicated devices and the media was constantly changing, from records to tapes to discs to MP3 players and from there to digital files in the cloud.
• We found holiday apartments even before AirBnB - but for that we had to use travel agents who know the place, or explore the possibilities ourselves by remote control.
• We corresponded with people before Whatsapp - but communication by email and SMS was limited and did not allow sharing media, creating groups, and the other capabilities that WhatsApp brought.
The conclusion is that even if the product category is new, the need probably exists.
It is difficult to convince people to change behavior or habits.
Instead, we would like to trace the consumer's pain and the value points that are important to him.
One quick way to grab people's attention is to find the current alternative and oppose it.
Here are some examples:
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The intriguing process of recycling metal packaging
In cooperation with the Tamir Recycling Corporation
TransferWise has campaigned against heavy fees on bank transfers
Dollar Shave Club challenged the expensive razors
Uber came out against waiting for taxis (and the industry, fighting back, provided Uber with plenty of free publicity)
To avoid drawing fire, choose your enemy carefully.
The thing you're opposing should be something people won't feel bad opposing, and you should avoid using specific company names.
Instead, consider one of the following options:
1. David vs. Goliath
When small brands succeed in challenging entire industries that are already hated by the public, such as large banks or insurance companies.
For example, one of the reasons for the popularity of OpenAI is that it was a small and unknown company that managed to get all the tech corporations on their feet, when it presented impressive technological progress.
Another example is Spotify's campaign, which went against Apple for anti-competitive policies and succeeded in dragging entire communities of application developers and their customers, who also suffer from the same policy.
A less successful example is the campaigns that call on restaurants to give up their kosher certificate as an act of protest against the religious establishment.
Although the logic is understandable, it contradicts a long-standing tradition that Israelis, even the secular ones, will not give up so easily.
2. Straw man
The deception tactic designed to misrepresent the opponent and then attack him.
For example: quoting an opponent's words and taking them out of context, oversimplifying or exaggerating the opponent's argument, and attacking the new version as if it were the opponent's official position.
Another example of creating a straw man is taking care of the opponent's weak link, for example, choosing someone who defends his position poorly, and presenting him as an official representative of the body he represents.
A classic example of this happened recently when the prime minister accused of crimes quoted an email from a junior official from the investment bank JP Morgan, and presented his position as if it was the bank's official position when in fact, it was the opposite.
Sometimes it's safer to challenge an abstract concept with sarcastic humor.
For example, JustEat jokingly tried to 'ban cooking', even though its real enemy was pizza delivery, and Salesforce staged a protest against 'software', despite being a software company themselves.
3. Achilles heel
If your competitor has an annoying feature, such as hidden fees, long contracts, or unused credit points that have expired, you can talk about it openly, and focus your anger there.
According to Matt, it works best if you have "a product that's ranked high in an industry that's ranked low."
In other words, if the industry you work in is not well received by the public, you can bring those feelings to the surface.
For example, a car garage that wants to overcome the dirty stigma that garages have in Israel, will talk about the injustice and frustration of the customers when they are required to make repeated repairs that only worsen the car's condition.
Talking about problems shows that you are aware and that you strive to be better than the norm in your industry.
The Pepper digital bank's campaign is an excellent example because instead of talking about the bank's advantages, it focuses on the customers' real pain:
The next time you want to challenge the market with a resistance campaign, ask yourself the following questions:
• What does your product help people achieve?
• What is wrong with your competitor's current approach?
• Is there a way to stand up against him and be a little scandalous?
To implement these strategies, you need to feel comfortable being negative, to reach a positive goal of course.
Either way, it's a breakthrough that can bring a burst of attention in the short term, but eventually you'll want to shift to a positive position.
Marketing and digital
The knowledge bank