I love the World of the water marketing (please don’t stop reading the post categorizing this to be another display of my obsession with water…I have a point here). We can adopt the principles of water marketing successfully in many diverse industries. Also, correlating the water industry with other industries might justify some buying decisions made by the customers, and some pricing decisions made by the sellers.
One of the uniqueness of water marketing is that marketers are trying to sell something that is otherwise freely available. So they make the product attractive enough for customers to pay for it. This draws great parallels with the software industry. There is tons of open source software out there, from operating system to a word processor, which are freely available. But still people pay for proprietary software. I think just like bottled water, software companies are better able to present their software to the customers and win their faith that makes them buy their products rather than going for the free ones out there.
Customers find themselves more secure while consuming a product that has an owner selling it to them. This puts spotlight on another characteristic of the water marketing. Water marketing is one of the best examples to prove that security sells. One of the primary reasons anyone buys bottled water instead of consuming tap water is their belief that bottled water is more pure and safe to consume. In the same way, any company can increase the value of their product by adding the security dimension to it. Every industry from automobile to housing to mutual funds has a security feature that adds to the value of the product. So security sells better than any add-on and should be leveraged with proper planning.
Time and again we have seen that localization is the key to marketing on the global platform. Marketers selling the same product in different geographies need to take into account what appeals to people in those geographies in order to market the product effectively. Water marketing adds more weight to this. Just like water is sold in different parts of the World with different messages and taglines, varying from beauty to safety, in order to market any product in different geographies, the message associated with it needs to be customized.
The diverse World of water marketing also shows the importance of market placement. Companies like Evian and Fiji water end up at one end of the spectrum charging multiple times the price charged by any other company. They have placed themselves in the market with great precision making their brand and product elite while competing with the cola giants and the local brands. This draws great parallel with iPod placement in the personal music player industry or BMW placement in the auto industry. This kind of market placement shows how a company can charge premium by a distinctive placement of its brand and products.
Creativity has no limits. If you think that you are in a dull industry with not enough space for applying creativity, take a look here. There cannot be anything that can be more dull than water. It’s not the product that is dull or exciting, it’s the marketing efforts put behind it that makes it dull or exciting. Don’t sell just the product; bundle it with a promise and see the wonders.