A Marketing Fairy Tale - Part 5: Knowledge
The woodman, in just a few short days, had already begun to think much more like an entrepreneur, and a small business owner. He awoke excited about the prospects for selling his furniture, and was excited about what he would learn next about how to market his products. He was eager to find out what the day’s magical being had in store for him, and mused about what he had experienced so far, as he walked back to the appointed meeting place.
At the standard time, his eyes were met with a cloud of khaki-colored smoke. Out of the cloud stepped another being that looked quite a bit like the others. “Do you know who I am?” she asked. The woodman replied that he thought he did. “Do you know why I am here?” was her next question. The woodman admitted that he did not. The magical being then asked, “Would you like to know?”
The woodman’s reply was an emphatic “Very much!”
The individual from the kiwi cloud said, “My name is Karen, and I have come today to speak to you about knowing - or really, about knowledge. Do you know the best way to get one of the townspeople to be an interested prospect - someone who may then become a customer?” The woodman replied, “I do not yet know, but I would like to.”
“The best way to create an interested prospect is by providing something of value in advance," said Karen. “Can you think of something of value that you could provide, up front, through the posters that you have displayed in the shops in town?”
The woodman thought for a while, and then ventured a guess: “Knowledge?”
Karen said, “You are a quick study for someone who spends all of his time in the woods! That’s it!”
“But what kind of knowledge should I provide?” was the woodman’s next question.
“What do you want the people to buy?” asked Karen.
“My furniture,” was the woodman's reply.
“Then would you not provide the people of the town knowledge related to furniture?”, Karen asked. “I am not the one who makes furniture, but I can imagine that you might tell them about what the furniture is made of, how it is made, what it can be used for, how to care for it. You could even hang a piece of paper next to your posters, for people to write questions that you could answer in the next posters.”
“I think I am getting the idea,” said the woodman. “As the townspeople learn about furniture, they are learning about me and my furniture!”
“Exactly!” Karen exclaimed. “You are, indeed, an astute pupil.”
The woodman said, “I already have some ideas of what knowledge I can include in my next posters. This is not nearly as difficult as I thought it would be!”
“That’s right.” Karen continued, “All of this becomes much easier when you think first about your prospects - your potential customers - and then about your products and your business. By the way, your next visitor might have some ideas about how you can provide valuable knowledge to your prospects in ways and places other than your posters.”
The woodman said, “You have no idea how glad I am that I found you folks!”
Karen replied, “Actually, I think we found you, but we are always happy to help!” She then disappeared in another cloud of kiwi colored smoke.
The woodman slowly walked away from that special place in the forest, thinking to himself, “I think that I have just learned the ‘Golden Rule of Marketing’”.