Sound Advice – Your Natural Ace

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Your Natural Ace

Wayne Ens, a marketing consultant we work with to help our advertisers achieve higher returns on their advertising investment, often tells this classic story about marketing.

           Wayne had accepted an assignment to help a Canadian motorcycle helmet manufacturer to expand into the United States. His consulting firm recommended the helmets be promoted to U.S. retailers at a huge sporting goods trade show in Chicago….but none of the attending retailers were placing orders for the helmets which were displayed at the show.

           During a stroll through the show, Wayne overheard two American retailers laughing about the Canadian helmets exhibit. One said “Did you see those Canadians trying to sell bike helmets? What do people who live in igloos know about motorcycle helmets?” he joked.

           Wayne returned to Canada and recommended the manufacturer capture what he calls “your natural ace.” In this case, the natural ace for the manufacturer was that some people believed Canada to be “the frozen North.”

           He persuaded the manufacturer to make some minor modifications to their helmets and return to the same sporting goods trade show the following year to market them as snowmobile helmets. Sales of the new ‘snowmobile’ helmets were so successful the manufacturer had to expand their production facilities.

           Do you know how your prospects perceive you? Have you been able to promote that “natural ace” to increase your sales? It is often easier, and cheaper, to turn a negative perception into a positive one than it is to try to change that perception.

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