Wednesday, January 15, 2014

To Market, To Market

I was scrolling through my email this morning, trying to find something that wasn't an ad I really should unsubscribe from when I paused. My finger lingered over the delete button, taking in the photo that had  captured my attention long enough to make me stop and step out of auto-delete mode.

Bright blue flip flops dropped casually onto a yellow life ring, both sitting on a warm bed of sand. White letters -- not the company's name -- gently invited me into a season that seems so far away. 


Now that's good marketing.

Do I know the sand is warm? I do not. Do I need another pair of flip flops in January? Definitely not. Would brighter letters have attracted my attention? Not in this case. The color contrast of the product against the prop pulled me in, and the soft lettering on softer sand invited me to relax. 

The product spoke for itself, but it was secondary to the feeling it created in me -- a feeling only intensified by the tag line, presented gently in all lower case letters: "think flips and warmer days will follow."

If only. 

Here in Pennsylvania, we're in the January doldrums. This morning dawned cold and foggy, with weather forecasters warning us to be on the lookout for black ice. Flip flop season seems far, far away.

Granted, this ad might not have had the same impact on a reader in California, but my guess is that the company's warm weather campaign is different. 

Am I going to sign off right now and buy a pair of flip flops I don't need? Nope.

But will I keep this ad -- and the promise it offers -- for the day when I'm ready to shop for summer?

Just as shore -- oops -- sure as I posted it here. 

Today, this picture was worth not only a thousand words, but perhaps a thousand customers as well. The picture in this ad saved it from my early morning auto purge, and the carefully crafted text sealed the deal.

Now that's good marketing.

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