One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish… White Fish?
“If your content isn’t driving conversation, you’re doing it wrong.” –Dan Roth
The CEO’s large tuna business was facing hard times.
His crews hadn’t had any large scores in their usual territory and their business was on the brink of failure.
Growing more desperate by the day, he sent his crews out to try different fishing locations.
Finally, he got the call he had been dreaming of.
“Boss, we hit a jackpot,” said his captain.
The CEO’s heart leapt in his chest. Yes! This is just what we needed, he thought.
“But…” the captain continued, “I’m not sure you are going to love what we caught.”
He and his crew found themselves with a huge haul of white-fleshed tuna.
The problem: The American consumer was only accustomed to pink tuna…
(Scroll to the bottom to read the rest of The Story!)
Matthew Trifiro is the CMO of Vapor IO. As a multi-time CMO and CEO, Matt has a long track record of helping companies achieve exponential growth.
In this episode of Marketing Trends, Matt discusses the “dirty secret” of launch products, the best advice for a new CMO, and the right way to do PR.
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→ The robo future is here and Postmates is putting their own robot on the road. Meet Serve, a delivery bot.
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The Story (continued)
…The CEO didn’t know what to do. His crew had secured a huge haul of high-quality tuna, but consumers would never buy it.
His team went ahead with canning it and within a few weeks, the tuna hit the grocery store shelves… and stayed there.
The company offered deals, sales, and all kinds of promotions, but nothing helped get that tuna off the shelf and into the home.
So the CEO picked up the phone and called a marketing consultant. This consultant was known to be able to sell anything, and he was the company’s last hope.
The CEO called the consultant and explained his predicament. The man nodded while he listened.
“So, can you help us?” the CEO asked.
“I can, but I’ll have to think on it,” responded the marketer. With that, he thanked the CEO for reaching out and hung up without another word.
Weeks passed. The CEO was prepared to give up.
One morning, just as the CEO was about to admit a final defeat to his team, he received a call from the marketer.
“I know what you need to do and you will have to do it quickly to every single can of tuna you sell…”
The CEO waited in anticipation.
“…Print, ‘Guaranteed not to turn pink’ in big letters on every can.”
It was brilliant! The CEO acted immediately and it was a commercial success. His company was soon selling more tuna than all of their competitors.
The company went from the verge of failure to a booming business with the help of a simple marketing campaign.
So who was the company and who were the people in this story?
No one knows!
This is a marketing tale whose true facts have been lost over decades of retelling.
But even though we don’t know who the people in the story were (or the truth of the story, for that matter) the lesson remains:
Marketing and branding matter. They change how consumers perceive your product and can make or break your business.
In the words of Joe Chernov:
“Good marketing makes the company look smart. Great marketing makes the customer feel smart.”
To learn more about great marketing, we spoke with Matthew Trifiro, a startup marketing master. Learn how your company can position your product and do PR right.
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