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Kangaroo: When marketing works

Oftentimes we learn the most from the simplest interactions that directly impact our own lives. We can then tell others of our experiences more clearly because the experience we had was quick, concise, to the point and not cluttered with much of what we see in today’s world. Here is how I experienced something from a marketer when I needed it, when I was in position to receive it and it was about a problem I needed to solve (at least it was a problem to me).

A picture of a kangaroo sign at stuart higway.
Image via Wikipedia

The Background

I want to share an experience I had where I, the Internet marketer, was totally marketed to and bought in to what was being sold to me. It was one of those rare moments where I could see just how marketing can be an influence for answering questions, fulfilling needs, and simply making one’s life a little better.

Now, this was not me being sold on something flashy like a new sports car or the latest in technology. I am not in the market for those right now so any messages sent my way are on auto-filter which is the same as saying I completely ignore them.

Today, we as consumers are learning how to auto-filter all of the messages we get on a daily basis. If we didn’t, we would never get anything done because almost every interaction that we have in the world has the potential for a commercial aspect to it.

The Mission

It’s for that very reason that I was completely ready to receive a message about coffee that has made my life a little easier. Coffee, Frank? Really? Yup, coffee. You see coffee is pretty important to me for a few reasons. First, I tend to overindulge, so when I finally broke my coffee pot to my home coffee maker I decided that was it. No more “easy access” coffee.

The Message

Of course, that didn’t stop my quest for coffee. Now, I had to go out to find it, and in the process find out just how expensive my new technique for feeding my habit could be. It was during this time while I was in the car driving to the closest Dunkin’ Donuts (I am not a Starbucks kind of guy by any stretch of the imagination) that I heard an ad on the radio. That’s right, the radio. That old-fashioned thing that I still listen to in the car. I don’t do satellite radio so my options are limited but in the morning I am listening to ESPN Radio. Mike and Mike followed by Colin Cowherd. I like it and I listen.

So in my listening an ad comes on for Kangaroo (a part of  The Pantry Inc.) which is a convenience store/gas station chain that is popular in my region. I have one in my local town and it’s close to my house, but I rarely if ever went there. Why? I just didn’t. No good reason. But now I was hearing about something that would make me spend more money there than they ever imagined. They were talking about coffee.

I listened and learned about their Bean Street Coffee brand. I heard about their cheap refills if you buy a mug. I also heard that they offered special deals via text. I was ready to hear this message and I was intrigued.

The Result

So let’s cut to the chase. It is now about two weeks after I heard this marketing message via the old school radio. In the meantime, I had gone to the Bean Street Coffee site and learned about the brew. I have purchased more than just coffee at the Kangaroo store and I have only filled up with gas there since making this discovery via the wonderful world of marketing.

I now even check my phone for text messages, which I loathe (I think texting is intrusive and annoying which puts me squarely in the minority I know but it’s how I do things). Today, I received a text, which gave me 16 oz of pretty good coffee (honestly it’s not the greatest but it’s very good and the whole package works for me) for just $.49. That’s usually the same you pay in tax at some coffee places for a concoction that no one needs to ever indulge in.

The Moral

So what is the moral of the story here? It’s simple. Marketing works. But if Kangaroo had not had a good Web site to point me to, then used the integration of texting deals to me with all that, combined with the nice girl Tasha who now greets me every day I go there, this story wouldn’t have happened. And, more importantly to Kangaroo, they wouldn’t be getting my money.

Marketing is so much more than just the message. It’s even more than just the tools. It’s a lot about timing (I was in need of a solution for my coffee fix), it’s about a clean message that comes in formats both online and offline (from radio to Web to text in this case) and it’s about the whole thing being finished off with a smile (thanks, Tasha).

All I can say is that I learned something from Kangaroo. Nice job. Now that’s marketing!

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