By Deborah Wroe
I don’t like supermarket shopping at the best of times but I am slightly worried as summer approaches that I am going to struggle to find my ginger nuts. Yep we are hosting the Olympics, and it’s the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, and brand Britain is out in full force. Under no circumstances could you have failed to notice this. Supermarkets are a sea of red, white and blue. ‘Love it or hate it’ Marmite has a new special Jubilee edition out Ma-amite (geddit?) featuring the Union flag around its clever name. McVities Digestives – that hearty British tea dunker has a new patriotic pack. There are also Mr Kiplings Great British Fancies and the Cadbury Dairy Milk Jubilee Treasure Box, and that’s just the food section of the supermarket. There is also Lanson special edition Champagne, picnic items, soft furnishings, accessories, underwear; literally if you can stick a union flag on it, it has been done. So how will I find my ginger nuts when everything looks the same?
I am not saying all these products should not have made these special editions, not at all, the Marmite one, even though I am not a fan, is great; clever and quirky and memorable. I am saying that if you want to achieve cut through and make your product stand out you need to make it different and not a ‘me too’. There is a tipping point when all brands using a gimmick or theme become the same. You need to put your own twist on things to achieve market share.
So what is your niche? What makes your product or service special and different? Do you focus on that when marketing your product?
Do you offer good food in a great location or great food in a good location? Do you have highly trained staff or loyal staff? Are you cheaper than your competitors or on a par for price but offering better quality? Are you longer lasting? Are you blue where your competitors are red? Or square where they are round? You are unlikely to be ‘the premier, or the best’ in fact what does this mean to your customers? Nothing, to no one!
Your differences are what you should be marketing your company on to make you stand out. Your differences are key to telling and to selling your story. And I hope to god my favourite ginger nut brand is reading this and sticks to its ginger roots!