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August 30, 2011 / straymoon

How much would you like to pay?

I’m very old-fashioned when it comes to doing dishes.  I wear a pair of kitchen gloves.  Yes, those ugly kitchen gloves.  I started this ritual a long time ago when I had nicely manicured long nails.

I used to buy cheap yellow gloves for around $1.00 on sale at the local drugstore and have them in stock because they didn’t last long.  It seemed like every time I poked them with a tip of a fork or scratched them with a nail, they tore.  They usually lasted 2 weeks to 1 month.

A friend of mine recommended these hot pink kitchen gloves sold at Whole Foods Market.  I buy vegetables, fruits, bread and meat at Whole Foods Market but I never pay any attentions to these kitchen gadgets there.  I had to look for it but found it with other gloves.  However, it was almost $8.00, EXPENSIVE!  Should I buy it or not?  I was contemplating hard with a box (not a plastic bag for cheap ones) of pink kitchen gloves in my hand in the middle of the busy aisle of Whole Foods Market for a while.  Oh, well, I decided to buy it because my friend says it is good.  Now, I’ve been using it for about a month and I’m loving it.  The glove is thicker than cheap ones but still comfortable to wear it.  I can grab dishes, silverware, pots and pans easily.

Word of mouth is powerful.

While I was deciding to purchase the gloves, I read the box saying: Contoured for a perfect fit, Durable, 100% latex allows hands to breathe, Special pattern for safe grip of even the most delicate and fragile items, and on and on.  However, what made me decide to purchase is my friend’s words.  Actually my friend didn’t even use it but her friend used it and loved it.  I always trust her judgement on kitchen goods.  Word of mouth is much more powerful than those words on the box which the manufacture would pay so much money to copywriters to write.

Consumer decides value, not manufacturer.

I used to pay only $1.00 for a pair of kitchen gloves but now I will pay $8.00 for a pair with the same function but better quality.  I don’t mind paying 8 times more because what I get is of much greater value than the actual cost.  Manufacturers can come up with suggested retail price but consumers are the one who decide how much they want to spend in exchange for the value of the product.

Consumer is well educated and will pay more, based on the trusted word of a friend.

August 1, 2011 / straymoon

Aroma luring customers: Gyukaku

During these times of economic strife, many businesses have tightened their belts to cut expenses in order to sustain operation.  Often times, one of the first areas to be cut is the marketing and advertising budget.  It’s ironic that this is one of the first things to go since people need to be notified about a product or service before they will actually go out and buy it.  But understandably there is a high price tag when it comes to advertising through traditional mediums, so with smaller marketing budgets many companies are forced to get creative with their approach to advertising.

One such company that has taken matters into their own hands is Gyukaku.  Gyukaku is a popular Yakiniku (Japanese style indoor BBQ) restaurant.  There are over 600 locations in 5 countries including Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong and the United States.

A few months ago in Hawaii, Gyukaku renovated the front entrance to their Waikiki branch.  They constructed a large window where flavorful Yakiniku aroma would vent and entice passerbyers.  Even those who have never heard of Gyukaku let alone exposed to their advertisements, could not help notice the enticing fragrance that the cooking food gave off.

Gyukaku could have spent their money on a print ad that may have had a shelf life of 3-4 weeks…but instead they got creative with their budget and built a large window where people could actually smell the aroma of the product.  The scent is something that no advertisement could convey and as long as there is food cooking in the restaurant, there is no “shelf life.”  People often pick up a menu at a restaurant and see pictures of food and think “wow that looks good,” but in this case…it is the sense of smell that lures customers and tickles their hunger.