My Marketing Strategy Can Kick Your Marketing Strategy’s Ass
When it comes to diet and fitness, there is nothing new under the sun. And yet, the marketing strategies used by the diet and fitness industry have changed significantly over the last decade or so. Why?
The Original Greek God
Ever since Charles Atlas printed his famous ads -back in 1940s- on the back of every comic book, the diet and fitness industry mostly used Aspirational marketing strategy.
They figured that if they put the kind of guy (or girl) we all aspire to be like, they can sell a ton of …whatever they’re selling.
This strategy is still used and hugely popular amongst less-than-creative marketing execs everywhere. Case in point, the recent Body by Jake ad featuring my favorite UFC fighter, Randy Coutore. I mean, who doesn’t want to be this guy?
Some Things Never Change
But some do.
Outside of few isolated incidents of this tried and true marketing stand-by, diet and fitness industry has largely abandoned the Aspirational strategy. Instead they have been using the Identification strategy.
- Kirstie Alley, the zaftig, used-to-be-famous actress best known to me from the ’80s sitcom Cheers is a spokesperson for something called Organic Liaison diet program
- Dr? Phill, the chubby TV show host, has “designed” an entire wight loss management system for those who identify with him, called The Ultimate Weight Loss Solution
- Valerie Bertinelli, the (former?) wife of Edie van Halen and a TV actress in One Day at a Time soap opera, is a spokesperson for Jenny Craig. And let’s face. While Valerie used to be one hot tamale, she is now mostly known for being short and chunky.
More and more, advertising strategy is moving from Aspiration to Identification.
Aspirational strategy has the benefit of appeal to all. We all want to be fit, healthy looking, strong, etc. However, as the old marketing idiom goes “when you market to everyone, you market to no one”.
Identification strategy is effectively a niche strategy. Kirstie Alley has a very limited appeal amongst young males. But what she lacks in appeal to young males demographic, she more than makes up for in appeal to mid aged house wives demographic.
And why now?
I think it’s the ease of delivery. I think this Identification strategy is working now because if Charles Atlas tried his Aspirational strategy today, it would be the equivalent of the Blunderbus shotgun. And what’s needed today is a sniper.
Blogging in real time
I just saw a commercial for dog food. It featured a homely looking mid-aged lady feeding her dog some dog treats. Clearly an Identification strategy.
This Identification strategy is everywhere.
- Can you think of any other industry that has changed its strategy en-mass?
- Do you think Identification strategy is easier to deliver to target audience?
- What strategy are you using?