Once again drawing from the excellent marketing book The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing we come to law #3; “The Law Of The Mind.” I know that in law #1 we talked about “The Law Of Leadership” which basically says that if you are first to market you win. With every rule there are exceptions so let’s break one out now.
Being first into the market is HUGE so long as you can also be the first in mind. There are products that were first to market but couldn’t hang on like Hurley the first washing machine, or Duryea the first automobile. You can’t just beat people to market and expect the world to be delivered to your doorstep, you have to get the other laws of marketing right at the same time. If you can be first AND be remembered for something important that establishes you as the leader then you win. If your message and marketing approach isn’t right, the top spot is going to be elusive.
There is this big mis-conception out there that you have to have hundreds of millions of dollars to build a brand to stand out, and that is a bunch of hooey as my grandmother used to say. Hundreds of millions of dollars has been wasted in the mattress industry on marketing campaigns that didn’t work. I won’t call them out but I am sure you can think of a few. If throwing money at the issue would work then anyone could be the leader. The other side of that coin says you can also make a big impact with limited funds IF you have a unique product, story, or approach for the intended audience. Finding the sweet spot is the trick!
My last comment on the subject has to do with awareness vs. preference. Should you want people to be aware of your products? Of course. But you should be more interested in making sure that they prefer your products over all others. There is a MASSIVE difference there and one is much more difficult to attain but once you do, you can back up the money truck. Being the perceived/preferred leader in the mind of the consumer is the goal!
Can you think of a leader in the mattress category that is losing their current leadership position? How about brands in the past that once held that top spot but let it slip away because they became irrelevant? You know your thinking of someone, tell it to me in the comments section!
Who Mark? Besides Sealy who isn’t losing it, they flat out lost it!
Who Mark? Besides Sealy who isn’t losing it. They already flat out lost it!
There is a lot of movement in the industry right now Pete there is no doubt. So many opportunities out there!
Well Mark we have got Spring air, Sealy,and someday most the major mass producers may lose market share to more personal, small and mid-size “craft mattress makers”
Example; the beer market is bursting with local brewery craft beers and taking away, I presume healthy market share from the majors. This is happening in many other market segments, music making and distribution, soaps, leather goods, clothing, and some food categories (many imitations of “craft” foods by big players. (see snack and health segments) Consumers want folksiness, small, local and intimate. Or at least the perception that they are getting that. This especially true in the quality minded consumer, but in some segments the less affluant will pay more if its a impotant want in their life
Very interesting comments Mike and I think there is evidence in what you say if you look at the rapid rise of Caper and Tuft and Needle. If they story/product is right, the consumer will be happy to spend their money with you. We are talking about a much more educated consumer today as well. Thanks for reading and for the comment!