There’s nothing like trying to get concert tickets to an in-demand show to remind you of what really matters in ‘marketing’.

When I work with clients, I sit through countless hours of meetings looking at all sorts of things in the marketing mix. We look at everything from the advertising right through to things like how long it takes for the website to load. Which is why it was so interesting to me that some idiot I know spent 97 minutes on a jammed website in order to buy Katy Perry concert tickets. 

Forget fancy advertising. And so much for fast website load times. This silly bugger spent 97 minutes of his life, digitally fighting with about a billion other KatyCats, (yep, that’s what Katy Perry fans are called), repeatedly hitting refresh on three separate browsers, an iPhone and the iPad app in a quest to get those damn tickets.

And OK, yes, I confess, that idiot was me.

But it reminded me of one really basic fact: Along with things like Price and Promotion, Product is one of the other P’s in marketing’s set of Ps. That’s right, Product! That thing you’re trying to sell.

As marketers, we’re constantly asked to try and generate interest in shit products. To convince consumers they want something they don’t really want or need. Something that is most likely pretty much exactly the same as about 500 other copycat products.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m cool with that, it keeps me in a job. But for crying out loud, when are companies going to remember that coming up with a decent product is a massive part of the success equation? And if they do remember it, when are they going to act like it? I know R&D is expensive and time consuming. And I know coming up with a new and/or good idea isn’t easy – which is why more people don’t do it. Hell, Katy Perry wasn’t exactly an overnight success herself. But seriously, trying to prop up a crap product with good marketing really isn’t the smartest strategy going around.

Develop a great product, with all the boxes ticked, and you won’t have to convince people to buy it. You’ll get to sit there and watch your website crash while they fight each other to try and buy it. Not every product can be Katy Perry, or the Rolling Stones, or whoever else happens to be a hot product at any given time. But someone has to be, and with a bit of effort it could be you and your brand.

Sputnik

(Originally posted on MADtown.)