Go to Portland, Oregon, and you’ll find everyone there talking about Voodoo Doughnut. They talk about the caffeinated doughnut. The chocolate-glazed chocolate doughnut rolled in Cocoa Puffs cereal. Or the voodoo-doll-shaped doughnut that bleeds raspberry filling when impaled with a pretzel pin.
Then there’s Innocent. The UK company launched a campaign called “Supergran,” in which English grannies knit little woolly hats for its seasonal winter smoothies (so the bottles don’t catch a cold).
I’m not talking a couple of grannies, either. Because of the demand for the hats (and the smoothies), Innocent lined up enough grannies to knit 230,000 of them in 2006. Even better, it donated a portion of sales revenues, 50 pence per hat-wearing smoothie, £115,000 ($225,000) total, to Age Concern, a charity dedicated to keeping older people warm in the winter.
And you never thought a bottle of juice could be a conversation piece.
The point is that people talk about the exceptions or the unexpected. In B2B technology, either services or products, it’s a little hard to wrap your technologists in woolly hats or roll them in Cocoa Puffs. So we asked the expert, Lois Kelly, for her opinion on how to give your sales team more tools to create conversations. So for some tips, check out our podcast …
Lois Kelly is the founder of Foghound, a communications consulting firm that helps companies more easily talk about their business or products in interesting ways. Clients have included Sun Microsystems, FedEx, and others. Previously, Lois was senior vice president of The Weber Group, one of the largest PR firms in the world. Her articles have appeared in USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, Brand Week, Advertising Age and other publications. Don’t miss Lois’s new book: Beyond Buzz: The Next Generation of Word of Mouth Marketing