March 17, 2008

Cookie that fails to crumble

It is a true incident about, how a cookie shop messed up its sales!

CookieMan is a fast growing cookie brand in India. They have a small outlet at Chennai airport. Till recently, before boarding the flight, I used to buy some delicious cookies from that outlet to keep myself indulged for the evening.

Now, the real shocker! On my recent visit to Chennai, the store guy told me – "that the minimum you can purchase is 250 grams!"

I could not help, but smile at this "strategic" move of the company!

This is how they are messing up their own marketing:

  • They are losing an opportunity to connect with their consumers and wow them! An airport lounge can be the best place to get into their minds.
  • They are missing an opportunity to identify which product has high shelf-appeal. In fact, they can utilize this opportunity to implement interesting means to do market survey among the middle and upper-middle class of consumers who will be the most frequent buyers of such confectionaries.
  • Above all, they are losing sales.

I fail to understand the reason. The only obvious reason that come to my mind:

  • They were trying to reduce the work load of their sales guy (Who was sitting idle!)
  • They were not interested in consumers who buy less than 250 grams. (Unfortunately, trust is won one step at a time. In fact some of the biggest customers of Indus Net Technologies initially signed up for a simple logo design service and then they kept increasing their exposure with us. Targeting for large sale does work, but nothing works like small experiences that builds relationship one step at a time.)

Besides fixing the obvious issue, this is what they could have done (some random ideas):

  • Put a mail-order form and hand it over with every money receipt they give out. Most travelers who experience the cookies might like to mail-order the cookie (in fact on a subscription basis – every month). This can give them an opportunity to sell in decent quantities every month.
  • Put a "self help" literature on "history of cookies" & "interesting combos". Indians like to eat in combination (mostly). When people have leisure time at an airport lounge, it is best to make them interested in the product (if not the brand).

And I hope you never repeat this mistake in your business. Give your prospects to try yourself out, one step at a time. Give them great experiences and build relationship one step at a time. They last longer.

BTW, if you have more ideas for them, do contribute. I will update my post with your input.

 

Filed under Business Tips, Lighter Moments, Reviews, Travel by

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