Monday, April 26, 2010


In the world of marketing, the single most difficult thing you can ask your target consumer to do is change one of their behavioral patterns. Consumers have hundreds of behavioral patterns and keeping them exactly as they are makes consumers feel comfortable and consumers love feeling comfortable.

There are two sides to this issue. The first being, to not attempt to change behavioral patterns, the second, to enhance a behavioral pattern by adding comfort to your selling proposition, consumers in general are more likely to respond to the later.

If life is indeed a series of choices and it is, then “choosing” is an accepted human behavioral pattern. In fact my experience is that simply having the choice is often more important than the choices that are being offered.

You see, it is easier to make a purchase decision if you have a choice, rather than if you do not have a choice.

I’ve written a book. It is a singularity. There is only one book. At the point of purchase the choice is to purchase a book or not to purchase a book. That decision is fundamental and requires the decision to spend money. The title of the book is “PULL.”  Had I written two books, “PUSH” and “PULL,” the target consumer is then faced with a very different selling proposition at the point of sale. “PUSH” or “PULL,” the choice is there to be made. The process of evaluating “PUSH” or “PULL” is after having already made the decision to purchase. This phenomenon does not of course always play out as I have shared it, but you can count on it far more often than not.

The learning here is to offer choices, but there is more. Consider the possibility that the choices you offer can further distance you from your competition. It’s smart to offer the obvious choices but look for choices that do not currently exist in your category. I would suggest looking to other categories to see if you can leverage from those into yours. For example, in the world of laundering shirts, offering levels of starch is well known. How about offering something beyond that? How about offering fragrance? Or offering odor free conditioning?

When’s the last time you sniffed your suit when you picked it up from your dry cleaners?


Keith Chambers

Keynote Marketing Speaker
Creative Marketing Consultant
(310) 473-0010

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  1. Keith,
    I think you zeroed in on offering a choice.
    We now offer 2 shirt services. French Hand Finish, or regular machine finish. Along with the regular choices, box hanger starch etc.
    Dry Cleaners loose 25% of thier customers due to dissatisfaction with their shirt service, not the dry cleaning. Don't loose the customer to a competitor just offer them an alternitive choice. Thanks again Keith.

  2. My pleasure Steve. Keep in touch.