Last week was quite interesting as I spent most of my time fiddling around with testing and installation of Drupal on local network. I would give an overview of it in the near future.
I also spoke with Sam from xtees.com which is an online hub for t-shirt selling. When I first took a look at xtees.com, I told myself here is another competitor to the likes of Myntra’s, Gnome’s (now Inkfruit), Pringoo’s and others. But as Sam told me there’s a subtle difference in what xtees.com is and in what it is trying to achieve! Operating from Tirupur (India’s t-shirt junction), Xtees.com has been active in the t-shirt selling space for about 5 years now (older than any of the current startups in this space).
Primarily it is serving Indian customers and till date has managed a base of roughly 200,000 customers. The key differentiators are that Xtees.com is into ‘screen printing’ and has it own t-shirt brands. So there isn’t any tie-up that has happened. Primarily they stock a lot of plain and professional printing t-shirts. However, Xtees.com has also partnered with rediff, storeguru and futurebazaar for its sales.
The team@Xtees is quite small and consists of only 4 people. Despite a small team special emphasis is given to efficient customer-servicing. The CEO acts as the customer-interface and politely responds to all the customer interfaces. Most importantly if you don’t get a t-shirt of your choice you can always return it back to Xtees.com
Xtees.com gets a lot of repeat customers and its marketing efforts are essentially restricted to offline tactics. For e.g. they always send special post-cards to their customer pool after every six months or so. Going by Sam’s words ‘Xtees.com is a unique example of a successful online-brand which is continuing to do well without any online marketing efforts’. What are your thoughts on such models? Do you think that brands like Xtees.com do not require special marketing efforts (online/offline) primarily because of the reputation that they’ve established in the industry?
CNG Auto – Delhi’s lifeline after Buses…
There is still an opportunity for makemytrip and portals to advertise on the Auto
Long ago, somewhere in the streets of Nigeria, there used to live a young guy. This guy had passion in his soul, had dreams to achieve and ambition to fulfill. He decided to do something out of his normal course of life. He decided to leave his home country and move to a bubbling city. City of dreams, city with fast life. The pride of Europe, – the city of London.
He was crazy about technology, he knew that technology was one area he could do something. He was new to the city, people didn’t recognize him, people didn’t care to listen to him. He struggled, struggled to carve a niche for himself. He believed in god and his mentor.
He was disappointed and discussed his misery with his mentor. His mentor encouraged and enlightened him by his words of wisdom. He gave him the “mantra” for success. This guy realized the value of a new concept. Wise men refer/referred to this concept as marketing . The world had moved and so had technology. He had reached a point where he could use “internet” as an evolutionary and emerging concept to tell the world about himself. He could tell the whole world know about his skills and he started gauging with this audience through blogs. People discovered this guy, started valuing his opinions and discovered that this guy could actually make their world a much better place to live. People came to his small world and started doing different things and created web directory and online shopping paradises.
This guy is a geek now, a geek who is on his quest to make lives of individuals like me better. He’s the guy who has been generous enough to gift me a domain. This chap from Nigeria who has made a name for himself in London is Temi.
( Image source http://www.theodora.com/wfb/photos/kenya/KENYA2.jpg )
Enterprises understand that essentially Creativity & Innovation are two key components in the transition cycle Creativity > Ideas > Innovation > New Products.
Almost everyone wants to be “too creative” and we see sky is the limit for creativity.
Consider Floyd Hayes for example. He’s come up with something referred to as “Voicevertising “. Floyd Hayes put his voice up for sale on eBay and promises to shout out a brand name as loud as possible every fifteen minutes for an entire week.
Click here to read more
Now that’s what you call innovative way of promoting your brand.
“Spiritual Marketing”, that’s the title of the book written by Joe Vitale. Although, as a tech-mba I’ve never studied marketing, I most certainly think that an average marketer should try to connect with the thoughts expressed in this book.
The foreword of the book highlights the trio of paradigms that have the
power to paralyze people. They are doubt, fear and anxiety. Doubt leads you to fear which is the cause for anxiety. These factors are critical not just for an individual but also for that “simple marketer” out there.
Why should marketers/enterprise watch out for these three -
Doubt- Is that small element which always resides in your mind leading you
to unsurity. For e.g. You’re unsure about the single most important thing for
your product/service i.e. your goal.What exactly do you want achieve from it.
Fear- There’s always a fear in your mind that your competitor would step faster than you. Fear can create unhealthy competition and that’s when you tend to grow wrong.
Anxiety- Could be for absolutely anything e.g. performance anxiety,as a sales guy it could the anxiety of talking to people, anxiety of achieving quaretly results.
Sometimes the above factors create a positive frame of mind, but only sometimes. More often than not they tend to paralyze you.
So, where does “Spiritual marketing” come over here? Well to be honest it doesn’t really come anywhere. Its always easy to take the conventional path, but in-order to be different, enterprises should negate these factors a
nd do things write from heart and generate positive energy from it. A positive energy which ultimately helps you to win more customers.
(Image credits : SocialTechnologies.com)
The other day I had an interesting discussion with a buddy on .. the saying “Content is the king”. Excerpts.. from that interesting conversation !!
The easiest way to connect with your target audience is by speaking their language. The problem with a lot of marketers is that in-order to differentiate their brand they use words which customers don’t understand. They tend to use too flashy and cosmetic content which generally creates a problem for an average customer as it’s something difficult to connect with. At the end of the day you might earn the reputation of being “amazingly different” but does that help you to win your customer’s heart?
A possible solution to this problem is the concept borrowed from Software Engineering “KISS” works well with marketing too. You have to keep it simple and straight, so that your customers can relate with what you’re talking about.
However, its vital to draw the thin-line between simplicity and differentiation. If you’re just one of those many body-shops doing exactly what everybody else is doing then you perhaps you won’t get any takers.
Confused ? Can’t be different ? Can’t be too simple? What’s the mantra then ? Follow the good old man’s thought “So simple yet so different”
More thoughts on this are welcome!!