Marketing Lesson - Thanks to Bali

One of my favorite places to be in is Bali, Indonesia.  Most of Bali's economy thrives on tourism as people from all over the world come to take in the goodness of Bali.  And I understand the rush of coming to Bali as I have visited the island twice in 2 years.  The food, the culture, the people, the climate (sometimes) makes me feel at home. 

This place has many subtle lessons that one can learn and one such lesson pertaining to marketing is what I learned recently.  As mentioned above, tourists flood Bali and that means local restaurants and transportation services start competing for business from tourists.  In my experience, transportation service is the most competitive business and that's where I relearned a basic lesson in marketing.

We were walking around in Ubud (market area) and there were motor bikes and car taxis to shuttle foreigners (tourists) around.  There was same message of drivers asking if we wanted taxi service.  We kept walking while politely denying the taxi services.  Then to our surprise someone asked if he could help us find anything we were looking for.  Well, that was something new to our ears so we dished it out - we were looking for a great place to for Balenese food.  He navigated that for us and we hired him to shuttle us back to the house we were renting.  From that day on, we called him to take us where ever we wanted to go.  So the lessons learned was: change your messaging and offer something more.

When the market place is cluttered with same messages, "free shipping" "take __% off" "seasonal savings" etc., consumers start ignoring the messages.  They find no value in the messages they receive.  But if a company can take on switching the way it gets consumers attention then that adds value to the consumer.  The consumer will most definitely hear the different message and take action especially when a company is offering something more.  One of the best examples of the advise I'm offering is Zappos.  The company sells daily wear just like many other companies but it sells it at a higher price and consumers are willing to pay for it.  It's the something else the company offers; excellent customer service. 

What I know is that I will pay attention to what others companies are doing and saying and I will do something different and offer something more to add value to my customers' lives.