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The Willy Wonka Guide to Marketing: Part 1

His methods are nontraditional. He doesn’t attend conferences, symposiums, or lectures at universities. He has probably never worn a fleece in his life. Yet Willy Wonka is a successful businessman with slick marketing savvy.

What Does Willy Wonka Teach Us About Marketing?

#1 Dream Big: How is Wonka able to have a chocolate river and all sorts of experimentation rooms? He built underground! His great glass elevator goes up, down, left, right, diagonal and “Up and Out.” He creates candies and concoctions other candymakers can’t even dream about. He gives the public amazing confections that contrast with their daily lives of drudgery.

Wonka’s Lesson:Wonka doesn’t accept limitations and neither should you.

#2 Know Your Customers: Wonka knows his best selling product is chocolate, so he puts the Golden Tickets in chocolate bars. He also knows his customers have an insatiable desire for his chocolates and candy, so the advertised grand prize is a lifetime supply of chocolates and candies. This prize is so coveted that a starving child will use his Grandpa’s last ten pence to buy a chocolate in the hopes of winning a golden ticket.

Wonka’s Lesson: Constantly ask yourself: What do your customers LOVE about you? How can you WOW your customers?

#3 Know Your Brand Evangelists: Candy shop owners have no problem selling Wonka chocolates. Because Wonka makes a fine product that they themselves love, they recommend Wonka bars to their customers, gladly advertise Wonka products all over their stores, tell their customers stories about the mystique of the factory and happily participate in the Golden Ticket contest.

Wonka’s Lesson: Give your evangelists the tools they need so they can effectively promote your brand.

#4 Embrace New Technologies: In a span of 100 years, we’ve moved from telephone, radio, TV, to the digital marketing age. When Wonka held his contest, he knew TV advertising was going to revolutionize how he sold chocolate. He invented Wonka TV so it would transport actual candy bars to viewers so children could sample his chocolate.

Figuring out how to utilize new technologies to give your company a competitive advantage is marketing gold. It’s an investment which at first may not yield much, but over time will help you hit the mother lode and find a service that takes your marketing campaigns to places you had never thought of.

Wonka’s lesson: Fear of new technology limits you and your reach with customers. Experiment, experiment, experiment, but make sure you’ve got it right before you share it with the public

READ MORE: The Willy Wonka Guide to Marketing: Part 2

Lori Johnson (@BPLoriJ) is Branding Personality’s Customer Experience Manager. She wants an Oompa Loompa. NOW.

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One Response to “The Willy Wonka Guide to Marketing: Part 1”

  1. Your article sums up my thoughts about Willy Wonka perfectly. The other day, I was thinking I should write an article the next time I would watch the movie. It’s like you read my mind! 🙂

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