Marketing ”Exclusiveness”

2 Jul

I have a confession to make and I am also going to drop a big ”oh wow” on the marketing profession.

Confession – NO CLUE WHAT A DOLE WHIP IS. No honestly – I spent 22 years in the USA but on the Northeastern Seaboard and I don’t think I have even ever eaten a DQ. So recent posts about some Dole Whip something now being at Disney World just means wha? So why am I telling you this? Because I have noticed over the years of travelling back and forth the upsurge of homogenous branding. When we were growing up outside of Philadelphia WaWa, Tastykake, Guernsey Cow these were local and regional brands and if you went on vacation to even Ohio they didn’t know them. To which we thought – poor you. You treasured local treats – like Salt Water Taffy you could only get in Atlantic City.

But then brands decided to trick you – here comes the ”oh wow”. See in order to expand your market you have to make sure the consumer wants to buy your product. So, what do brands do, they create a demand. In the age of the selfie it’s actually easy. You simply create ”exclusiveness”. You tell John Q that even though he has never ever had a Krispy Kreme in his life and these are technically only available below the Mason Dixon line that they are way better than any other doughnut ever. You John Q are not part of the club unless you are enjoying our product. And joy of joys we are opening a franchise cookie-cutter establishment near you soon. Move over KrispyKreme we kids from the block know that nothing will ever beat Felix’s fresh on Sunday Morning with the exception of the doughnut shop in Hershey (which I hear has closed).

Funny thing is – exclusiveness is just an extension to the concept of ”demand’. Way back in the dark ages a company called Cabbage Patch had pretty most the ugliest dolls you have ever seen. These things were not moving off of the shelves. So, what did they do? Ingenious. They removed them from the shelves. They made them scarce. They said ”get them now they’re going quick”. And bam everyone wanted one next gift buying season. The reason I feel this is wrong is that whilst there are some genuinely fabulous global brands – there are a lot of things you should be asking yourself if it is really an improvement? Is it really fabulous that the local farmer’s market is closing down to be replaced by a strip mall of homogeneous brands you can get anywhere?

It’s not only ruining palettes (IMHO) but we also no longer have a decent control of ingredients. How can we protest Monsanto and then get same as everyone else food? If you buy corporate solutions you become a part of the product yourself. Not completely wrong but thinking first is warranted.

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