Segmentation Turned Upside Down?

Upside Down Christmas Tree_1.jpgThis is a real Christmas Tree, real people do buy it, and they eagerly pay a premium for it, too! You can be the first on your block to have one of these babies for an investment of anywhere from $150 to over $700 bucks.  Some even come pre-lit!

The “benefit” of this tree is that, because it’s narrow at the bottom instead of the top, there’s more room for presents underneath! That’s the supposed value proposition. At some level, that actually has a fair amount of practicality and suggests that this should be how all Christmas trees should be designed.

I think we all know this kind of tree will never become the “standard,” but that’s not to say that there isn’t a decent, if not respectable-sized market, for it! There are consumers who think this is a neat idea and one worth paying a premium for. And what they’re buying isn’t the utility of being able to put more presents under the tree, but the bragging rights associated with having something different from their neighbors. The real value they’re buying is the “buzz” of beating the Joneses not by keeping up, but by being different!

A very important marketing lesson we need to remember is that when seeking a target market for our product, we don’t necessarily have to seek the biggest market segment to have a very lucrative business. What we need is a profitable market segment. If you have even one customer you can serve profitably with your offering, you have everything you need to be successful.

Sometimes there’s great value in taking so-called “conventional wisdom” and turning it upside down!

   I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas…I’m frightened of the old ones.” – John Cage