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196 Marketing The Problem, Not Your Solution

Monday 22nd April 2024
LOM_Episodes-196 Marketing the Problem

On this episode of Lochhead on Marketing, we talk about why marketing the user’s problem works, but marketing only your brand/product/solutions doesn’t.

Welcome to Lochhead on Marketing. The number one charting marketing podcast for marketers, category designers, and entrepreneurs with a different mind.

The Importance of Understanding Consumer Problems in Marketing

Market your brand/product/solution, and I think you want my money. Market my problem, and I think you want to help me. This is one of the biggest unlocks in category design for marketers. And it comes from a very simple, powerful notion: people do not buy solutions unless they have problems.

Yet a lot of companies do not get this simple concept. For them, it’s always brand awareness this, or advertise this product to the “market”. They play the attention game and call it frequency and reach. But most of the users in that market only see it as a cash grab for said company.

Marketing the Problem Done Right

So here we present a good example of how to market a user problem, and it’s in the form of the American jeans we all know and love.

Over the years, Jeans have come a long way from being those stiff dark blue pants to now being very soft and somewhat comfortable to wear. But therein lies the problem: the thing that makes it soft and pliable is very polluting and very resource-intensive. After which, they present their fix, a “remaking” of the American jeans as we know it.

Framing the Problem to Create Urgency

After naming the problem with the jeans, the article continues to explain that multiple companies have tried working together for years to develop jeans that are soft but not as punishing to the environment and our remaining resources. This serves as a way to intensify the problem by framing it as something that has not been solved. But now, they’ve found a solution. A solution to a problem they themselves proposed.

If you follow that flow, they first introduced a problem that a user can relate to, being that the jeans they wear harms the environment. They then mention that other companies have tried but not yet succeeded in finding a solution. Only after that do they supply the solution, so you can continue to enjoy those comfortable jeans without the previous repercussions and guilt on them. Prompting users to buy new jeans and ditching the old.

And that’s how you market with Category Design.

Link to the article on The Remaking of American Jeans 

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We hope you enjoyed this episode of Lochhead on Marketing™! Christopher loves hearing from his listeners. Feel free to email him, connect on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and subscribe on iTunes!