Bob, as you may know, is a car broker based in Rancho Bernardo, CA. He’s spent years providing new and used vehicles for less money or hassle than if you purchased it from your local dealer.
I admire his business model; unlimited inventory, extensive product knowledge, great customer service, fair pricing, and a well-deserved reputation for quality.
He delivered my new car recently without license plates. The California DMV has 90 days to send those plates to me, so Bob installed promotional license plate frames and paper license plates promoting his company.
It was a perfect marketing opportunity. True, I could’ve removed Bob’s promotional materials when I got home, but distractions and inertia combined into my failure to act.
So for eight weeks I’ve been a mobile billboard for Bob, and even paid him for the privilege without getting anything further in return.
Many businesses and non-profits give away a range of advertising specialties with their name on it. The hope is the consumer will remember the organization’s name the next time they need a particular product or service.
But the smartest folks in the crowd have a brand that’s SUCH a must to own that customers happily pay for the right to sport the name and/or logo.
Before dismissing my theory, see if your wardrobe includes at least one item with a sports team’s name on it. How about that shirt from the last rock concert or beer event you attended?
Then there are buttons and bumper stickers from political campaigns you’ve donated to.
And on Pomerado Road I saw license plate holders announcing SDSU and UCSD Alumnae.
Non-profits organizing fundraisers put paying sponsors’ names on T-shirts, then sell those shirts or give them to paying event participants.
One might even argue that cup of Starbucks on your desk qualifies.
Branding your organization so strongly and positively that everyone wants to be associated with your success results from a combination of quality, fair pricing, hard work, consistent messaging, and commitment of time and money.
And making those investments with an eye on long-term benefits can earn you rabid fans happily buying from you just so they can say they did.
With that said, I wish you a week of profitable marketing, and a happy new year.
Get better marketing ideas at www.marketbuilding.com.