A commodity is a raw material, product or service indistinguishable from other things like it–– water, oil, air, rocks, agricultural products and money, for example.

If these commodities were your business, your challenge would be to stand out from the crowd. You could differentiate on price or overall value. The value can be developed and defined by how the product is positioned, and by the brand promise that stands behind the offer.

In the case of drinking water, Voss® focused on packaging with purity positioning. Perrier® positioned as mineral rich, infused with gas and created added value with sparkling water. And in the tropical fruit commodity world, Chiquita® focused on building brand awareness of its bananas based on the quality and consistency of the product. If you choose their fruit and their mark isn’t on it, you won’t know what you’re buying. It’s as much about creating impulse to buy your product as it is in creating doubt in purchasing someone else’s.

Converting sedimentary rock into shale oil, is a commodity turned big industry. The underlying point (if your product exists in an intensely competitive category) is that you must elevate your offer and create reasons to buy. Do this by creating brand distinctions, comparative advantages, price differences, location or shelf advantage, enhancements, top-ups and other points of difference. In the end, you’re looking to decommoditize your brand, product and offer.

To best form strategies to create differentiation, a good starting point is to take inventory of your existing product(s) and identity barriers of entry within the competitive landscape. The lower the barriers, whether physical, psychological, regulatory or otherwise, the higher the commodity index. 

Marketing, advertising, packaging, design and product development all play important roles in making the ordinary extraordinary. It’s about conveying the sum-total of doing business with a company or product through what a brand stands for and what it stands behind.

Convergence Group has helped many clients take what may be perceived as a commodity by consumers and turned them into pedigree products and brands. See how we can help your business:  Email us or call 302.234.4901 to schedule a free consultation.


Payment systems – a marketing opportunity

by admin on February 2, 2021

A payment system is any system used to settle financial transactions through the transfer of monetary value. This includes institutions, people, instruments, procedures and technologies used to make its transfer possible.

So, what does this have to do with marketing? Information and insights is what feeds the marketing engine and payment processing data can be the fuel.

Your payment system can play a major role in growing your business. Not only because of its convenience to your customers, but for the marketing opportunities it provides.

“Remember when you actually had to go into your purse or wallet and pull out a $20 to pay for something?” is what we’ll say someday when reflecting on the “good ole days.” Electronic payments like credit cards have been around for some time. But with the advance of technology, ewallets have become increasingly popular. According to Urban Airship, 54% of consumers have used the mobile wallets embedded in apps such as Apple Wallet or Samsung Pay.1

Although a cash business has its advantages, it doesn’t provide the marketing opportunity that electronic payment systems provide. For example, partnerships with complimentary merchants/products can push notices after a purchase is made. A restaurant might send a coupon to someone who just bought admission to the museum around the corner, encouraging them to enjoy dinner after the museum. Or a loyalty card could be combined with the ewallet so to send reminders about an upcoming sale, or perhaps encourage point usage.

Let’s not forget about all the data that can be collected to learn about spending habits and purchasing combinations that can influence future marketing to that customer.

Ewallets are here to stay, use them to your advantage. Learn how Convergence Group can help: Email us or call 302.234.4901 to schedule a free consultation.

1“New Survey Finds Mobile Wallets at Tipping Point for Consumer Adoption,” Urban Airship, airship.com.

“Mobile Wallets: The future of Loyalty & Marketing” by Maeve McKenna Duska, forbes.com

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