A few years ago, in the face of the obesity epidemic, Sesame Street tried to give Cookie Monster a new slogan: “Cookie is a sometimes food.” Cookie Monster bravely faced this new challenge, giving up his favorite phrase, “C is for cookie. That’s good enough for me.” Fans were not so kind. Petitions, blogs and forums sprang up protesting the change to fans’ beloved furry muppet.
I’m pleased to see Sesame Street has finally listened to the fans who miss Cookie Monster’s favorite line. In this new music video parody, Cookie Monster sings “Share It Maybe,” and follows up with an interview assuring us he’s not giving up cookies:
So what does this story have to do with small business marketing? Cleverly hidden among the muppets is a marketing lesson. When you have something customers absolutely love, don’t change it. Marketing and product improvements are essential when customers simply like them (or don’t like them at all), but when customers love something about your brand, it takes discipline to protect it from changing fads and trends.
Also, I just loved having a reason to share an awesome music video featuring Cookie Monster. Happy Friday!
Just as the phone camera became good enough to replace small point-and-shoot models, and that industry appeared close to being obsolete, Nikon fought back with two new models that showed consumers needs they didn’t know they had.
The Nikon 1 is a simple-to-use, compact camera with expandable options like lenses or a flash. Nikon’s goal is to help people take pictures and videos that look good without the added weight and bulk of an SLR camera.
The Coolpix AW100 is geared for action photography where one wouldn’t want to risk damaging his phone or SLR, promoted as being “waterproof, shockproof, freezeproof.” As my wedding photographer friend explained, “Nikon has shown me a need for a third kind of camera!” And, indeed, who wouldn’t want a camera to bring when they go kayaking/biking/snowboarding?
Compare Nikon’s attitude with the music industry ten years ago (or even today…)– embroiled in legal battles and legislative efforts trying to preserve an old-fashioned business model that anyone outside the business could see was going to die anyway.
Instead of trying to stop phone companies from including cameras, Nikon simply became even more awesome.
So when you’re faced with competition that seemed to come out of nowhere, take Nikon’s path. Stop griping, and start being awesome. It’s the only way to survive.