Field of Drinks, deviation

marketing22
I deviated from the creation of ‘Pink Ladies’ and the dissemination of pretty plates over to a new passion of marketing and sales.  I toted my grassroots customer service knowledge towards a long-time, loyal customer and business owner who had my affinity for MGD and salami.  This customer was a unique business owner/marketing guru who was never ‘textbook taught’ and was definitely all-knowing when it came to his products.  He was ‘self-taught’ since the age of 4, following in his family’s footsteps, and I was intrigued.  I metaphorically drank up his marketing wisdom, especially after I tried a sopressata calabrese, and hit the mall corridor to market and sell such unconventional mall products-meat. The irony, I would gleam listening to my marketing guru usually before attending my college marketing class.  This is the dichotomy of ‘self-taught’ versus ‘textbook taught’ and as I navigate through life I am grateful I can represent both.

He used to tell his team, “people know they want jeans and go to the mall towards a jean store; not many go to the mall for meat.”   We had to hustle to lure people in with our friendly disposition and negotiate a deal that did not exceed a discount of a certain percentage.  He coined his own catch phrases, varied his price points, sampled out a certain percentage and set a small and large bonus for us to attain.  He broke every marketing/sales fundamental down to its core from eye-contact, product placement (holding the product and negotiating a deal directly over the original price sign), visual merchandising and incentives.  My college teachings of the ‘product mix’ were not that dissimilar to his teachings but he did articulate it differently.  He evoked his family traditions, recipes and generations of similar business’ that to this day entices me to challenge a lot of literature-for more.  We used to laugh because he was such a great storyteller which added to his sales techniques “in the past, everyone thought my family was crazy to sample out this much product but we always knew you had to spend money to make money.”  Of course, this was way before Costco started sampling product, his family were the innovators.  This could be a meat myth but hey everything else was non-perishable.

Today, my marketing role has grown and I do accredit this business for my marketing birth.  I never want to be conventional with my marketing initiatives and I always tell a story to ensure my product is relatable.  My eye-contact has noticed how his business has expanded tremendously and I give off a ‘self-taught’ smile as I pay for gas or shop.

Cheers,

Jana S.

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