(Putting aside using Pokémon GO to market a local retail business, if that attracts your target market…)
Some people say that if your product is good enough, you don’t need to advertise.
You’ve never seen a Pokemon Go advertisement, right?
Pokémon GO is a huge phenomenon and making them a ton of money, right? So, you probably don’t need ads?
You’re right that Pokémon GO is winning- BUT the problem is that 99% of companies don’t have something awesome enough to drive that kind of word of mouth.
Pokémon GO piggybacked on a media franchise that had already sold 200 million video games, and had already grossed $46 billion.
What kind of cloud computing service would drive Pokemon Go level word-of-mouth? I mean sure, if you can come up with an augmented reality game for your cloud computing service that piggybacks on an already successful multi-billion dollar global media game franchise, go for it!
When companies market, they fall into four basic groups:
1. VIRAL PRODUCT: Have a genius product that doesn’t need marketing (like Pokemon Go)
2. VIRAL MARKETING: Have a good product and genius marketing content that goes viral every time and doesn’t require advertising
3. ADVERTISING: Have a good product and good marketing but have to advertise.
4. LIPSTICK ON A PIG: Have a bad product and try advertising…
Most companies fall into #3… they have to advertise.
A lot of companies want to be in category #2… they want to go viral. They want their agency to have brilliant ideas that go viral. The reality is, most companies don’t have anyone who can do that.
How many of you have someone who creates organic content that goes viral 100% of the time?
I’m guessing nobody, based on what I’ve seen.
For the best creatives online… the best YouTubers, for example… maybe 20% of their creations go viral. And these are freaks of nature… there aren’t many of them.
There are geniuses out there like Aaron Sorkin or JJ Abrams or Spielberg- these are the rare few who almost always win. But there are only a handful of these humans per generation. You can’t hire them.
So you have to advertise.
A few companies are #4 and all their ads and marketing are just lipstick on a pig… nobody wants their offering, no matter what you do.
In summary, it doesn’t help a company with a good product (someone who’s not at level #1) to tell them they should have thought of an awesome outlier product.
Only outliers have outlier-level-awesome products, and by definition that means only 1% of companies.
Most companies have to advertise.
Brian Carter is a popular business expert and keynote speaker with Fortune 500 clients like NBC, Microsoft and Humana as well as small businesses. He delivers motivational keynotes with practical takeaways with the comedic flair of his stand up comedy background. His agency, The Brian Carter Group, creates marketing that excites customers and increases brand visibility, sales and loyalty. Brian is a bestselling author you’ve probably seen on Bloomberg TV or in Inc, Entrepreneur, The Wall Street Journal or The New York Times. He has over 250,000 online fans and reaches over 3 million people per year.