One buzzword that has grown in use over the last 15 years is “disruptive.” The term was originally coined by marketers who recognize that products must be unique and to be unique and memorable, one must disrupt the status quo. POP marketers must ask themselves about their work: “What’s disruptive about this?”
An agency representing Burger King created the Whopper Sacrifice app that allowed Facebook users to unfriend people. The disruptive app actually helps users choose friends to be deleted and then notifies them that they were being unfriended in exchange for a burger from Burger King. Burger King offered a free whopper burger for anyone who unfriended 10 people. 82,000 Facebook users deleted over 230,000 friendships before Facebook had the app shut down, because it prefers the unfriended are not notified.Doing the opposite of what’s expected is disruptive.
Leadership in point of purchase marketing and advertising means finding new ways of capturing the eyes, hearts and minds of shoppers. Whether those shoppers are autoshopper zombies or distracted bargain hunters aware of everything in the store they frequent, one way of getting their attention and affecting purchase decisions is to create a display and POP collateral that disrupts their usual perceptual and thinking processes. If we don’t, they just walk on by with the same attitudes about our product.
Although television and print ad branding efforts may get the value proposition across, it just isn’t enough to get the shopper to pick up the product and buy it. We need to disrupt consumers – to stop them and get them thinking about the product in a new way — and putting it in their shopping cart.
Such disruptive thinking may not fit within some corporate cultures where process-breaking and risk taking are curtailed. Here’s an exerpt from a post from Ted Minini writing for the Brand Channel:
So what about disruptive packaging?
Here’s the thing: companies with cultures and strategies that employ disruptive thinking to position unique, game-changing products and services can have a decided edge. For those that don’t, this might just be the optimal time to step back and reassess. If sales are ailing, mightn’t the company benefit from a fresh new point of view? Tweaking products, packaging and/or the marketing approach might be exactly what the doctor ordered.
Products in every category are becoming commoditized at a faster rate than ever before. That brings us all back to the true role of marketing: that of providing clear differentiation and memorable experiences for the customer as job #1.
Packaging continues to grow in importance in the marketing mix. It brings branded products to consumers in a tangible manner, so it’s time to take a fresh, new and yes—disruptive—approach to it. Consider this: in a commodity category like snacks, Pringle’s dared put potato chips in a canister instead of a bag. POM Wonderful dared put its flagship pomegranate juice in a double-curved bottle rather than a typical juice bottle.
Disrupt in Location
An example of disruptive retail merchandising is the tactic of moving the product to a whole new area of the store. At that location it will compete against related or associated products, rather than staying in the usual shelving spots with your direct competitors. The new location is disruptive and the new associations with the local products there is also disruptive. It catches consumers at an unguarded moment. Such opportunities or tactics beg for unique POP packaging. Out of this, customers will see your product in a new way.
If you can’t buy your way into a new section of the store, then perhaps you can use new POP displays with unique graphics, taglines, imagery and calls to action. There’s plenty you could do with permanent or fixed display structures, however that can get pricey. Consumers aren’t looking for gimmicks, they just want to know they’re getting good value. Your innovation is a persuasion tactic to make them feel good and make a purchase.
Brand inflexibility makes it tough for point of purchase displays to reach out to consumers in disruptive, unique ways. Yet if you want your promotional campaign to reach and move targeted consumers, you need a value added proposition or disruptive activity that makes it visible and relevant to them. Brand managers may agree to a unusual promotion or positioning if it makes sense. Do some test runs and see if it flies.
Focus your POP innovation on graphic design, copywriting, and some unique display construction. These are the simplest areas to be disruptive without taking your entire budget.
Have you seen any disruptive advertising and promotion techniques lately? Let us know. We want to hear about disruptive strategies that work!
You’ll find Ravenshoe Packaging in Markham Ontario, Canada. Find out more about how their packaging can help your business thrive in 2013.