A 'Real Simple' Marketing Tip

by Guest Expert

I read an article recently on Real Simple www.realsimple.com about different ways to use lemons.

For instance you can use a lemon to…

Whiten fingernails:

Rub a wedge of lemon on the surface of your nails.

Shine the interior of copper cookware: 

Sprinkle a lemon wedge with salt, then scrub.

Brighten laundry whites: 

Add 1/2 cup lemon juice to the wash cycle of a normal-size load.

Remove soft cheese or other sticky foods from a grater:

Rub both sides of the grater with the pulp side of a cut lemon

There were a lot of uses for a lemon that I didn’t know about.

And that brings me to the point of my marketing column today...

Many of your customers may be using your product or service to help them do things that you have never thought of. 

When you ask customers ‘how’ they actually use your product or service you can occasionally come up with brand new revenue streams based on the feedback that they give you. 

Here’s a simple product example:

Kleenex started out life in 1924 as a disposable towel used to take off make-up. 

By 1926 the manufacturer received a huge amount of customer feedback indicating that most people were using Kleenex to blow their noses.

They starting advertising Kleenex as a way to do this and promptly doubled their sales.

Here’s a service example:

Many years ago I was selling motivational seminars. 

I used to think that most people attended to improve their performance and productivity and get more motivated.

However one day, a client told me something quite startling:

He explained that the real reason he had sent two of his staff to the motivational seminar was to reward and thank them for doing great work for him. 

In other words, the people he sent were already his most productive people.

But by giving them two days to attend a seminar that would leave them feeling even more positive and motivated, he was saying thank you to them for all their great efforts in his business.

 He had told these people that this was why he was giving them two days off at his expense to attend the seminar.  He was delighted with their efforts and wanted to reward them.

It worked out just as he hoped. His people attended the seminar and come out feeling even more positive and motivated. They were thrilled he had rewarded them in this way.

A light bulb went off in my head.

I understood immediately that this client had used the seminar to reward and thank some of his top performers for doing such a great job. 

He was not looking for improved performance or productivity; he wanted to use the seminar to thank his people.

I then wondered how many other potential clients might want to reward and thank key people in their organisation for doing great work. 

So I then began asking all of my prospects if they had someone really special in their organisation that they wanted to thank and give a memorable gift to.

If they said yes, I explained how this seminar would make a fantastic gift that the person receiving would always treasure and would be a wonderful way to reward great performance.

Many of my clients decided to take my recommendation and invested in this motivational seminar for some of the top performers in their organisation.

This opened up a whole new avenue of revenues for me.  

There is an important lesson from these examples.

We don’t always know ‘why’ a customer purchases our product or service and ‘how’ they might be using it.

When we take some time to get feedback from our customers on why they bought our product or service and how they use it can lead to brand new revenue streams.

Action Exercise:

Chat to a number of your clients this month.

Find out ‘how’ they use your product or service.

If some of them have interesting uses for your product or service that you have not considered it might lead to brand new sales opportunities for your business.

Kind regards

Graham McGregor

 “You are surrounded by simple, obvious solutions that can dramatically  increase your income, power, influence and success. The problem is, you just don't see them.”  

Jay Abraham


You may also like:

Creativity Technique Kits 1 & 2
By No Author
$25.00 USD
Find Out More

Or read some more free business tips:

Filed under Sales & Marketing. Posted by The Corporate Toolbox on