Let Harry Potter teach you some marketing tips. (Part Two)
If you already read Part 1, welcome back! If you're just joining us, this is Part 2 of this series.
At the beginning of the book Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, we find that the wizarding world is in turmoil and going through a terrible economic time. Stores are boarded up, shopkeepers are either getting killed or are finding it difficult to get customers in their doors. Even places like The Leaky Cauldron, a tavern that has a seedy nightlife, is finding it hard to get even three people to spend their galleons on butter beer.
That being said, there is at least one business that is still bringing in the customers in Diagon Alley. Weasley's Wizarding Wheezes, a joke shop that sells love potions, extendable ears and other gag type spells is thriving. What is the secret to their success? It certainly isn't because the owners are well educated in business and sales, and it isn't because they sell things that people can't live without. Fred and George Weasley were lucky enough to find an Angel Investor and are completely committed to their success.
Here are the last 3 of the 7 Marketing Tips you can learn from Harry Potter:
- Look ahead and be prepared for change – Nothing is static, and that goes for businesses and their customers as well. Things always change and often the changes aren't ones that you can control. The social and political climate has a lot to do with what customers want and what they are willing to buy. For now, the Weasley's have been making huge amounts of money with the Defense Against the Dark Arts line, but that may change. In the meantime, they are developing other products that will sustain them when the political climate changes.
- Find a need and fill it – Even though Fred and George specialize in joke and gag spells and charms, they are always looking for an untapped need to fill. By looking for problems to solve, they can stay ahead of the competition. A great example is the “Patented Daydream Charms” that offer the user 30 minutes of entertainment in a fully involved daydream with just a simple incantation. Seeing how the wizarding world seems to lack things like televisions, video games and computers, or other entertainment makes a full immersion escape very appealing.
- Develop a clear brand and a corporate culture – The twins launched their store with a very different sort of promotion. They flew out of the school with a flurry of fireworks that announced their new venture. Additionally, they offered a discount to any students of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry “who swear they are going to use our products to get rid of this old bat” (refering to then Headmaster, Delores Umbridge). The promotion was a clear statement that the company was devoted to the cause of mischief and it made a strong statement about the owners' politics. Creating a clear culture and brand identity is key to making your business or products personal to your target group.
Who knows what the future will hold for this simple Joke Shop, but in a short time they have experienced a great deal of success. They landed a government contract for the Shield helmets and expanded to shield cloaks and gloves but still managed to keep their focus on mischief making and creating applications of magic. Their careful planning and strategic business plan have given them the keys to marketing success.
What do you think about these tips? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
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By Melissa Kennedy- Melissa is a 9 year blog veteran and a freelance writer for SalesHeadsBlog, along with helping others find the job of their dreams, she enjoys computer geekery, raising a teenager, supporting her local library, writing about herself in the third person and working on her next novel.