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Acts Of Differentiation

filed in Brand Strategy, Marketing

One reason we market to customers, beyond our desire to create brand awareness, is to communicate how and why our products are different and better than those of the competition. Of course, how products are created and experiences are designed can be differentiators. But we sometimes overlook opportunities to differentiate and add value—especially when it comes to our marketing tactics.

At the food market, fruit vendors vie for the attention of passers-by. The tactic adopted by most is to discount and holler. The people who use this tactic change their pitch according to the time of day or how much stock is left, so that it appeals to whatever the bargain hunter seems to be looking for. The result feels like an inconsistent, erratic, emergency (which no doubt it often is).

Contrast that with the trader who shows up with a small range of quality, seasonal produce. There is no discounting, shouting or touting at his stall. His patient, predictable, consistent approach means the same people return each week. Some send their friends, and so his loyal customer base grows over time—no hollering required. His marketing strategy is an intentional act of differentiation.

Our marketing can be as deliberate, differentiated and aligned with our values as the products we choose to make, serve and sell.

Image by CIAT.