I hate it when people beat me at my own game but I have to give them props when they do. Got this from my buddy Chris Howard, who writes SF (he just got a novel accepted for publication!!) and the very good blog Theophrastus:
I’m hoping you can explain Glad’s use of the phrase “For the protection you need to get things done” on a box of 13-gallon kitchen trash bags, and then there’s the prompt to check out the Glad.com Website for “recipes” and other info.
Two things struck me odd this morning as I was taking out the trash and then putting a new bag in the can. First, I don’t think I have ever thought about “protection” while taking out the trash, and only occasionally when I’m getting “things done.”
Second, recipes aren’t high on the list at that time either–especially with the box clearly marked, “NOT RECOMMENDED FOR FOOD STORAGE” in English and Spanish.
This is a result of a problem facing all marketers: We think customers spend as much time thinking about our products as we do. I wrote a story about Glad and the success it has had for Brandweek. One of the people I interviewed there said something to the effect of “If the consumer spends more than a few seconds thinking about trash bags then it’s because it’s broken and you’ve screwed up.” Words to live by.