Marketers, We Sell Hope and Lots of Hopes

Marketers, We Sell Hope and Lots of Hopes

In the factory we make cosmetics; in the drugstore we sell hope.
~ Charles Revson

Yet many marketers failed to understand that it is hope that we are selling, not the features of the products.

I couldn’t said it better than Seth Godin‘s

The magical thing about selling hope is that it makes everything else work better, every day get better, every project work better, every relationship feel better. If you can actually deliver on the hope you sell, there will be a line out the door.

Hope cures cynicism. Hope increases productivity. Hope needs no justification.

Having that said, selling hope can be tricky, like walking on thin ice.

While Charles Revson has succeeded, President Obama has not lived up to his promise.

Charles Revson’s Charlie fragrance was the first perfume to feature a woman wearing pants in it’s advertising campaign. What is Revson’s selling actually here? That Charlie can make a woman looks better and feels even greater? And, even dressing up like a man will not discount her femininity ans sensuality at all? Some women buy cosmetics and fragrance to look better, however, I would dare say ALL women are hoping that these creams, lotions, paints and pleasantly smelling water will actually make them look better. Hope needs no justification. Hope certainly increases productivity as  Charlie raised Revlon’s net sales figures to $506 million for 1973 and almost $606 million in 1974.

In a keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in Boston in 2004, presidential candidate Obama rallied the party with the challenge: “Do we participate in a politics of cynicism, or do we participate in a politics of hope?” With economy still faltering, there is an increasingly feeling that the change that USA has experienced since 2008 is a downhill trend. Does that mean the President has to talk less about change and more about hope to secure a 2nd term?

Marketers, when you write your advertisement copy, don’t bother to list the features of your TV set using big 14-point font size. Save for the fanatics, the average Mr Smith and Ms Jones are not going to catch your technical jargons easily.  You are much better off painting  a vivid future picture of the outcome, benefit or results of buying and enjoying your product. Tell them their ROI, “You can really feel that you are in a movie theatre even when you didn’t install any surround sound system.” Share this with everyone in your team especially those sales consultants on the ground. Too often, I heard many well-rehearsed speech that might as well be Latin to me. Give me benefits, outcome and results anytime. If not, at least sell me the hope of being nearer to them.

One Reply to “Marketers, We Sell Hope and Lots of Hopes”

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