I was headed to work one hot afternoon this summer and came across this sign in my neighborhood…”Thirsty?” There were a few little girls down the street set up and ready for thirsty customers with the perfect solution for their thirst…lemonade. I wasn’t thirsty, was running behind, and didn’t stop to buy some but I had to take a picture of the sign. These girls could have put anything on this sign…lemonade. fresh squeezed lemonade. ice cold lemonade. homemade lemonade….but they decided to go with the question “Thirsty?” See, they weren’t in the lemonade business, they were in the thirst quenching business. They had a solution to a problem and marketed it as such. Pretty smart for a couple of elementary school girls.
One of the most important jobs we have as marketers is to know exactly what problems we solve for people. If we don’t know that, how on earth can we effectively communicate it then? I think this is the start to developing a core message and set of principles by which we operate our businesses and market our services.
As a caterer, I solve many problems. Deciding which solutions I want to market is a topic for another day. Today, I just want to talk about the problems that we solve.
Here are some of the things I could post on a stop sign at the end of my street.
– Overwhelmed figuring out how your going to feed 200 people at once?
– Worried about the expense of a wedding?
– Concerned about buying enough alcohol?
– Worried about sourcing the right types and quantities of rentals?
– Nervous about hacking your cake apart at the reception?
– Not sure how you can ensure your guests have a great experience at your reception?
– Looking to blow everyone away with awesome food?
These are just a few problems I solve in the offerings I have available to my brides. If I were a photographer, I may make a sign that says “Worried about being able to remember every detail of your wedding day?” If I were a designer my sign may say “Scared you can’t truly personalize ‘the look’ of your wedding?” Understanding the problem gives you a basis for creating unique answers for your brides. These unique solutions are what set you apart from your competitors.
You’ll also notice that many of the “problems” I listed are emotional problems…feelings of doubt, worry, and concern. The way a vendor makes a bride feel is just as important as the actual service offered in the decision making process. Creating solutions that ease their mind and provide relief, security, and/or peace of mind is what they want.
So what problems do you solve for your brides?