After reading a quick piece titled, “The Best Marketing in the World” written by Mike Rudd on his blog, Marketing Fun with Mike; I was reminded of a very important step in marketing. That step being, the product.
As Mike clearly pointed out, you can have the best marketing team in the world with one of the greatest marketing plans in the world, but if the product you are trying to sell is crap, no marketing plan will be able to sell it. The main reason being, that people need to be included as the fifth P in the marketing plan (read 5th P of Marketing by Mike Rudd). The other four being Product, Place, Price and Promotion.
People are the most important step in the marketing process and people as consumers don’t want to waste their hard earned money on crap, no matter how good the marketing may be. A true example of this theory is the infamous “new Coke” marketing scandal.
In 1985 Coca Cola decided to take a leap of faith and change their formula for making Coca Cola. They used a distinct marketing campaign to advertise the “new coke” by giving the can a new look with a young, catchy tagline “Catch the Wave”. The marketing campaign was a good one, however the product was not. People hated the “new Coke” and their was an outcry for the classic coke to return. In just a few short months the classic coke returned and eventually new coke vanished (at least in the United States).
The upside to this story is that Coca Cola ended up creating a new found love between consumers and the classic coke, which heightened sales. But this may have been due to simple luck and the fact that the company had been around for 99 years with a pretty good consumer following. The downside to this story is the proof that people will not buy crap, even if it has the best marketing in the world. Simply put if people don’t want it or need it than they aren’t going to buy it.