Monday, June 30, 2008

Let's bring a smile to their little faces :)

We have an ongoing project to bring in a cutting edge product to the Japanese market and to support that product a new division has been created inside the company and a very knowledgable guy has been recruited as director of that unit. He's a very relaxed and pleasant guy to be around and not as stiff and boring as many Japanese people his age and position can be, so that's good.

Recently I'm trying to help him in straightening out his marketing plan for the product since that's not really his strong side. That's not something I mind at all and I do my best to make sure his ideas come out in an understandable way that European marketers can relate to and straighten out the message, the flow of the presentation as well as make sure the language is suitable.

So I'm working on this and get to a slide where the product positioning statement is and it goes something like this; "To bring a smile to patients through our superior product with (various features)". Well, this might be a bit corny, but still workable you might think, but considering that the patients that gets treated with our products are balancing between life and death, suffering from terrible injuries from a car crash, organs giving up one at a time and our product can save their lives.

Trust me when I say that these patients are not very prone to smiling... Here in Japan Mac Donalds has "smile" on their menu for 0 JPY so if it's smiles we want to have we'd be better off going to MacD...

I revised the positioning quite extensively, so now we're happy if the patients can recover, the smiles can come later...

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