I don’t mean to frighten you, but I’ve got $45 worth of fresh peaches in the back seat of my car.
Is it because I love peaches? Not especially. I’m not even sure they’d make it onto my top three “All-Time Fruit” list.
Rather, it’s because the “Georgia Peach Truck” arrived today at our nearby garden center and my wife, Linda, asked me to go over and pick some up.
And, since the Georgia Peach Truck only sells peaches in increments of “crate,” I had little choice but to hand over $45 in exchange for what I’ve been told is approximately five dozen of these tasty treats.
And are they tasty? I really don’t know. The Georgia Peach Truck Man says they won’t ripen for another two days.
Let’s review what just happened…
I gave $45 to a man I’ve never seen before, for more peaches than I typically buy in a year, for a product that I don’t particularly love.
A product whose tastiness I can’t even verify for another two days, at which point Georgia Peach Truck Man will be halfway across the country should I have any objections.
And (very important), despite all that, I’m quite happy with the transaction.
Marketing is Not About Empirical Truth
In technical terms, my peach purchasing experience is what we highly-compensated marketing experts refer to as “good.”
Also known as, “Things you do to make you and what you sell more valuable than objective reality might otherwise suggest.”
Georgia Peach Truck Man put the following things into play, all of which made the transaction more satisfying and raised my willingness to participate:
- Novelty. Anybody can buy peaches at the local supermarket. This guy is selling them out of the back of a 16-foot truck stacked floor to ceiling with crates. It was fun being a part of it.
- Scarcity. There’s no second truck and there’s no back room with more peaches coming. When the truck is empty, that’s it. As you stand there in line in front of the steadily dwindling supply, you are literally watching the opportunity slip away.
- Simple Specialization. He’s the Georgia Peach Truck Man. He’s not the “Southern States Fruit Vehicle Person” or, were he an employee of a typical professional services company, the “Organic Solution-Enabling Vitamin-Onboarder.”
He sells one product from one state.
But what if you don’t want to buy peaches from Georgia? That’s fine, walk away.
But if you do, can you imagine trying to compete with him? He moved into “Georgia Peach” first place the day he launched his business.
- Word of Mouth. There were at least 15 people in line with me, all of us standing in a hot parking lot, waiting for our chance to make a purchase. I overheard the two women in front of me talking about how they mark their calendars and meet the truck every year.
When what you offer is novel, scarce and specialized, people tend to talk about it.
So what’s all this peach talk mean to you? Maybe nothing.
Maybe your prospective clients are rational, objective, price-is-all-that-matters shoppers.
Maybe emotion and anticipation and urgency have nothing to do with how the people who hire you make decisions.
If so, you have my sympathies – I prefer to work with humans.
You know, the kind of creatures who happily pay $45 for a crate of who knows what, from who knows who, just because it feels right.
- What’s on your top three “All-Time Fruit” list?
- What’s in the back seat of your car?
- What do you do to leverage novelty, scarcity and/or specialization in your business?