The Marketing Wisdom Of Extraordinary Fried Chicken

Jeff, please introduce yourself.

My name is Jeff and I am a chicken-aholic. Hello Jeff.

Beasley's Honey & Chicken in Raleigh, North Carolina
I don’t mean to rustle anyone’s feathers but I will admit to loving all things chicken. Saute, broiled, baked, roasted, grilled, barbecued or fried. It makes me want to cluck for joy.

This past week I got to sample some beautifully prepared fried chicken at Beasley’s Honey & Chicken in Raleigh, North Carolina. I had heard (from my daughter Fanny) that it was worth the trip as she had once eaten there and spent about an hour discussing their coleslaw. This nugget of information shouldn’t be a surprise- we are an odd family when it comes to food.

Staying abreast of a great product
But as in most things, the lesson was about marketing. Specifically the importance of having a product as good as your marketing.

So often, marketing will over sell, over hype and over promote a product or service. Your expectations soar until you have personal experience where it leaves you cold, dried out and disappointed. Marketing can only go so far to lift a product but your product must over deliver and meet your customer’s expectations. You may think- well, duh- of course that is the case. But how often are you disappointed when you open up a product and find that it doesn’t meet expectations.

These are missed opportunities for the power of marketing to spread the news like gravy over a biscuit. No one brags about an average experience. We do talk about products and services that disappoint us or don't live up to the hype. Spreading the word about a bad product or its average quality does not help your cause. 

I remember an ad campaign several years ago for a bank who had as part of their tag line, "we aim to make you happy." When I went to the bank and they informed me that they couldn't do something rather simple for me, I asked to have the phone number of their head of marketing since he may not have known that their aim was off. 

I also remember my experience buying a Dyson vacuum. Did you know James Dyson spent eleven years perfecting the design of his vacuum. Eleven years! He wanted a product better than anyone would expect. When I first saw their advertising, I worried that the product would be disappointing. Guess what: this is one vacuum cleaner that didn't suck. Wow. 

The biggest problem in making sure the marketing and the product are at the same level is that as owner or manager, you aren’t in the best position to judge. You are too close to your business. The audience (customer) has the only vote and voice that counts. So if sales are weak or trending south, pointing blame at the marketing effort may be the wrong problem to fix. Is your product as good as your marketing effort? 
Louder isn't better

"Marketing is like an amplifier. If the music sucks, louder is not going to help things."

Hmmm. Biscuits.
Fix your product. Make it so much better than anyone expects it to be and get word of mouth working in your favor.

Word of mouth marketing. Makes me think of fried chicken. Fried chicken that is dipped in buttermilk and expertly breaded and fried within a moment of perfection while it gets a lazy drizzle of honey to finish it off. 

And did I mention Beasley's crisp, flaky and buttery biscuits? 

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