Wednesday, October 22, 2008

marketing outside of the box

If you are an artist that seeks to sell your work, how would you describe your marketing strategy? Is your approach fresh and innovative or are you doing the same things everyone else does? Or yikes, maybe you don't have a marketing strategy. Perhaps you have business cards and media cards...and you're thinking "isn't that enough"? Well today I have a really great example of marketing outside the box. I hope you will be amused and inspired...

Sometimes great business ideas come as easily as observing the best practices of other companies. I have recently been inspired by a tea company. Yes a tea company...not just any tea company though, as you shall see...this is Tazo tea!

I was given a couple of boxes of Tazo tea for Christmas last year. From my first encounter with their product, I have admired their creative approach to marketing. They have done an excellent job in defining their brand. Once you encounter this company, you won't forget it, nor will you confuse it with other tea companies. Basic marketing 101, find a way to set yourself apart from the crowd.

So how does this company set itself apart? Well, primarily they have very creative packaging and text. Think Peterman catalogue from Seinfeld. :-) Their tagline is "Tazo, The Reincarnation of Tea". From here they build on this mystical, new age theme. For example on their website you can return to the "OM Page". You can get a newsletter or as they say "Be Enlightened, Sign Up For Free Tazo Wisdom", or you can contact them, "Enlighten Us Via Email or with Thought Waves". On their package they say that you can write to them but "Allow two weeks of this lifetime for a written response." Their box defines Tazo as "a calming herbal portion able to carry the drinker to a transcendent state of peace", and it also says that "Tazo has surfaced among the more advanced cultures of the day as a solution to the angst of daily life".

Here are two examples of text from the individual tea packets - On the Tazo Chai packet the text reads: "Throughout India, chai wallahs can be found serving up steaming cups of sweetly spiced chai to wandering souls. You're with them now." On the Tazo Calm package it states "A single cup of Tazo Calm has been known to have the same effect as sitting for 45 minutes in a mountain meadow on a sunny day with your shoes off." I confess this is the marketing statement that I like the most. Wow, this is just a chamomile blend and it does all this?! :-) When talking about the ingredients of the Calm blend, the final statement is "There's also a bit of magic involved, but it's really nothing we can talk about."

Whew...are we really just selling tea here? This is a very innovative approach to selling a rather ordinary product. Black tea, green tea, herbal teas, these are not new products and they are available everywhere. So if you were attempting to break into the tea market and you wanted to stand out, how would you do it? You might be interested to know that the company that is selling "reincarnated" tea is not located in Egypt but in Portland Oregon!

So what does this have to do with you? First of all, why not have a look at Tazo's website. What do you think of their approach to selling tea? In tomorrow's post I will share with you some of my thoughts on how you might set yourself apart from the crowd as an artist.

For now, I shall get back to my drafting table but first I think I shall pour myself a cup of Tazo Calm so I can experience that 'sunny mountain meadow with my shoes off' effect.

1 comment:

Rebekka said...

Thanks for breaking it down. You are so motivational! When I am having a hard time focusing, I just start reading your stuff. Thanks! Rebekka Lim