I’ve been doing a lot of research and thinking about selling premium value and premium experiences lately.
And, what is surprising is that most of what passes for marketing or selling premium isn’t close to being premium or high value.
I’m not inclined to try and put together a complete list of creating and showing premium value to a market because the lesson that I’ve learned is that as soon as something works, everyone else runs in and what worked starts becoming less effective immediately.
Instead, here are a few ideas that I think are working right now:
- Focus on elevating the experience: Why did Apple’s stores succeed for so long? Because they made you feel special when you went inside. You felt like you were part of a select group of people that were insiders. As the Apple Store has become to feel more mundane, it is because the experience doesn’t elevate you any longer. Now you are part of an assembly line.
- Create an emotional connection: When I look at what passes as “marketing” for a lot of premium event spaces or entertainment spaces, I’m usually appalled that the first thing that comes across is the specifications, the features. Where are the benefits? Where is the emotional punch to the gut that helps tell your buyer that partnering with you is going to change their life? Make them money?
- Scarcity has to be a part of the equation: I was looking at some sports ticket sales sites for premium seating the other day and one of the teams said something to the effect of “this is one of our most exclusive premium areas.” And, I thought to myself that you’ve lost the sale to the most premium people prospects right away because they aren’t telling themselves a story built on being “one of the most exclusive” but they are telling themselves a story about being in the “most exclusive” or one of a dozen or one of 6. Scarcity is a real motivator of buying habits, especially when you are asking for a bigger commitment.
There are a lot more ways to approach premium value, but I think these three are as good a place as any to start.