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  • McCord Cargile

A Marketing Fairy Tale - Part 6: Events

The woodman had made a profound shift in his thinking about how to sell his furniture.  His magical visitors had gotten him to start thinking about the people who might buy his products, and not just what he had to sell.  He had also learned, indirectly, what he now called ‘The Golden Rule of Marketing’: “Give unto others something of value, before you would have them give unto you their business.”  

He had stayed up late thinking of all kinds of information about furniture that he could share with his prospects.  He had some ideas about how to do that on his posters, but Karen had mentioned that there may be other opportunities to share his knowledge with potential customers.  The next day, he waited with anticipation to learn more about the ‘magic’ of getting his products to market.

Right on time, he was presented with a cloud of emerald green smoke.  The magical being who stepped out of the cloud asked, “Am I on time?” The woodman replied that she was.  

He said, “I have been looking forward to your visit.”  

“Have you?”, the magical being asked.  “Are you saying, then, that my visit is an event that you have been eagerly anticipating?”  The woodman agreed that it was, indeed. “Well, then, would you not provide the same kind of experience to your prospects?”  The woodman nodded in agreement, but still had a puzzled look on his face.

The visitor from the emerald green cloud said, “My name is Edith.  I know that my sisters have spoken to you mostly about getting in touch with your prospects through what they can see - such as your posters.  That can be a powerful way to get their attention. Do you know what can be even more powerful, when you are trying to get the townspeople to be interested in you and your products?”  

The woodman replied, “I guess the only thing more powerful than seeing is doing.”  

Edith said, “So you want to provide your prospects opportunities to participate in some kind of activity or gathering?”  When the woodman nodded in agreement, she continued, “We call those events.”     

The woodman asked, “But what kind of event could I do with my furniture?”  

Edith replied, “First of all, let’s say that anything you plan, and then actually do, with your prospects, or for your prospects, can be called an event.  One type of event could be some kind of show or demonstration. That would be a way to share knowledge, which is more tangible than what they can see on your posters.  What could you show the townspeople that would get their attention?”

“I could bring Ralph into the town square, and have him demonstrate carving a statue of a bear with his teeth.”, the woodman said.  

“That would surely draw a crowd,” Edith said.  “The best kind of event is one where your prospects actually participate in some way.  Can you think of something like that?”

“Wow!”, said the woodman, as new ideas came to him quickly.  “I could hold a rocking chair marathon, with prizes to the people who rock the longest, and I provide the rocking chairs!  I could bring in blocks of wood, and have an amateur wood-carving contest, with local merchants serving as judges.”

Edith exclaimed, “You are getting to be a regular marketing marvel!  Also understand that if you run a special on a certain type of furniture, for a specific time-frame, that would be a sales event.  By the way, do you know what you are talking about creating?”  

“A ruckus?” the woodman asked.  

“That too.” was Edith’s reply.  “You will be creating relationships.  That is what leads to customers. After all, ‘customer and seller’ is one type of relationship.”  

The woodman was deep in thought when Edith concluded, “One last thing.  Leave a copy of the notice you post for your next event, right here on this tree-stump, so I know when it will be.  I just might appear (in disguise, of course).” Having said that, she disappeared in another cloud of emerald green smoke.  

The woodman continued to think of many things he could plan for the townspeople.  It occurred to him that this strange series of visits was the most eye-opening event that he had ever experienced.

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