Thursday, December 18, 2008

Value in the eye

Repeating something does not make it so. Millions of words must now have been written telling us that brands are in a value race and that those who win will be those who can shave cents best. Wrong call! Focusing on just one end of the value equation drags you right into the nightmares of the vanishing margin. It’s like those Olympic records that have to be measured by more and more sophisticated equipment because they have become vanishingly small. The margin game can be played the same way: cut them so finely until counting profits becomes like adding up angels on the head of a pin.

What’s to be done? Simple. Create products and services consumers find more irresistible than anything your competitors are putting to market. As someone wisely said, only a fool confuses price with value. Of course, that’s where Lovemarks can come to the rescue. We’re not talking a rulebook but an inspiration to creativity shaped by Mystery, Sensuality, and Intimacy. Tough times test our mettle. They give us the opportunity to show who we truly are. Are you truly committed to making the world a better place, or are you about tactics you think will capture the elusive green consumer? Do you believe that stories and mystery attract human beings at a profound level, or do you really think that all they are interested in is price? Are you convinced that people will fall back on the tried and true, or do you know they want to be surprised and delighted?

If you opt for delight, check out this terrific site that pushes the sense of sight to extraordinary heights. The Web Urbanist has put together a range of visual effects designed to delight. Gathered from around the world, they are in turn funny, charming, awesome, and unbelievable. They spark curiosity, humor, and surprise at every click. They are true attractors in the Attraction Economy. With artists and designers capable of presenting us with such wondrous gifts, and the human desire for delight, I believe the power of price is only one factor in the complex, living connections Lovemarks make with the people who love them.

1 comment:

Alex Davis said...

I'm so glad to hear you say this! At www.insidetheaisle.com we've been screaming for retailers to create greater value over initiating price wars ever since the decline hit.

This week, ABC News ran an awesome cartoon to explain why the how-low-can-we-go game will only make matters worse.

View it here: http://insidetheaisle.com/2008/12/abc-news-explains-why-lower-retail-prices-hurt-the-economy/