Our neighborhood photo studio seems to be crowded always. Even in this age of digital photography.
I went there for some lamination work; while I was waiting, two young people walked in. One of them wanted a passport size photo for some job application.
‘Sure sir’, the studio staff showed a sheet on the wall, ‘Which package you want?’
They looked at the sheet. It announced various packages for passport size photo prints, cheapest of them was ’12 prints for 70 rupees.’
‘But, I just want one print.’
‘I understand Sir, but we can’t make a single print. The special sheet we use can be used to print a minimum of 12 photos at one go. So you need to buy at least 12 prints’ the staff explained, ‘may be, you can use it for other applications?’
‘I am not sure. I can use 3 or 4 may be. All other prints will be wasted for sure. Can you please give me just 6 prints for 35 Rupees?’
‘Sorry sir, In that case, I will have to use only half of the expensive printing sheet, wasting the other half.’
Those two friends were clearly disappointed. They were discussing if they should spend extra and go for twelve prints knowing very well that most of them will be wasted. They even debated if they should search their room for some older pictures.’
At this point, the studio person intervened and suggested, ‘Sir, I will change the same package slightly. I will click both your pictures and give 6 prints each. That way you can just pay 35 rupees each and make best use of your prints; I also won’t be wasting half of the printing paper.’
‘Excellent!’ Both of them readily agreed and went ahead with the click. I could see that they really appreciated the studio person understanding their pain points and creating a customized package.
It may sound like a sudden thought that flashed in that studio staff’s brain. But in reality, he might have thought of such creative, unusual packages to handle unique scenarios. He just targeted the right customized product to the right customer.
This is a very simple and effective example of one slice marketing. It means, targeting a very slim market: one customer!
Previous generation marketing focused on a group of customers with similar characteristics. This aligned very well with the standard products and services.
But this won’t be very effective today, where each customer is different. Each one wants to customize the product their way, as we discussed in previous part of this article.
What if you save them the time and energy in customization? Why not pre-customize your product as per the customer’s unique needs and surprise them? This will automatically increase your chances of winning that customer!
But this can only be done by knowing more about your customer, their likes, dislikes, pain points, what excites them and more… In short, understanding them well.
This is called enriching your customer database. We will discuss it in the next part of this article.