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One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish… White Fish?

“If your content isn’t driving conversation, you’re doing it wrong.” –Dan Roth

The Story

The CEO’s large tuna business was facing hard times.

His crews hadn’t had any large scores in their usual territory and their business was on the brink of failure.

Growing more desperate by the day, he sent his crews out to try different fishing locations.

Finally, he got the call he had been dreaming of.

“Boss, we hit a jackpot,” said his captain.

The CEO’s heart leapt in his chest. Yes! This is just what we needed, he thought.

“But…” the captain continued, “I’m not sure you are going to love what we caught.”

He and his crew found themselves with a huge haul of white-fleshed tuna.

The problem: The American consumer was only accustomed to pink tuna…

(Scroll to the bottom to read the rest of The Story!)

Positioning Your Product and How to do PR

Matthew Trifiro is the CMO of Vapor IO. As a multi-time CMO and CEO, Matt has a long track record of helping companies achieve exponential growth.

In this episode of Marketing Trends, Matt discusses the “dirty secret” of launch products, the best advice for a new CMO, and the right way to do PR.

Listen to the Episode!

The #1 Way to Manage Your Apple Devices

Today’s The Mission newsletter is brought to you by Jamf Now, the #1 device management solution for all of your company’s Apple devices.

To learn more about how Jamf Now can secure your workplace’s Macs, iPhones, and iPads, head here and set up your first 3 devices for free!

News That Matters:

Team Update: Chad Grills, CEO of The Mission, will be recording a Marketing Trends episode Live at the Salesforce World Tour in New York!

“Edge computing will unleash a tsunami of applications, especially as tools improve and offerings get more sophisticated and lower in cost.” –Edge: The End of Cloud as we Know It?

The *Annotated* Case For Account-Based Marketing by Joe Chernov

Nieman Lab’s predictions for the future of journalism: The Year Of The Culturally Relevant Curator

This exciting episode jumps into the unknown backstories of someone famous that everyone THINKS they know: 10 Elon Musk Backstories You Need to Know. (Teaser: He was so shy that when he was applying for a job, he stopped in the lobby, didn’t talk to anyone… and just walked out.)

“Nothing has sunk more creative projects than this silly, entitled notion that ‘I’m just the ideas guy.’ Or how McEwan put it, that there is a difference between being an artist and a salesman. In fact — they are the same job.” -Ryan Holiday in Note to All Creatives: Marketing is Your Job

The robo future is here and Postmates is putting their own robot on the road. Meet Serve, a delivery bot.

“I just watched my kid grasp basic marketing truths that took me years in the professional world to get.” –My Kid Learned More from Mario Maker than I Did from a Marketing Major

Ever wonder what happened to the red-headed bully from A Christmas Story? Me neither. But turns out he’s making waves in the sports gambling industry.

→ In Board Game News: Any Scrabble (or Words With Friends) enthusiast knows that a certain amount of luck drives the game. But exactly how much of Scrabble is luck?

The Story (continued)

…The CEO didn’t know what to do. His crew had secured a huge haul of high-quality tuna, but consumers would never buy it.

His team went ahead with canning it and within a few weeks, the tuna hit the grocery store shelves… and stayed there.

The company offered deals, sales, and all kinds of promotions, but nothing helped get that tuna off the shelf and into the home.

So the CEO picked up the phone and called a marketing consultant. This consultant was known to be able to sell anything, and he was the company’s last hope.

The CEO called the consultant and explained his predicament. The man nodded while he listened.

“So, can you help us?” the CEO asked.

“I can, but I’ll have to think on it,” responded the marketer. With that, he thanked the CEO for reaching out and hung up without another word.

Weeks passed. The CEO was prepared to give up.

One morning, just as the CEO was about to admit a final defeat to his team, he received a call from the marketer.

“I know what you need to do and you will have to do it quickly to every single can of tuna you sell…”

The CEO waited in anticipation.

“…Print, ‘Guaranteed not to turn pink’ in big letters on every can.”

It was brilliant! The CEO acted immediately and it was a commercial success. His company was soon selling more tuna than all of their competitors.

The company went from the verge of failure to a booming business with the help of a simple marketing campaign.

So who was the company and who were the people in this story?

No one knows!

This is a marketing tale whose true facts have been lost over decades of retelling.

But even though we don’t know who the people in the story were (or the truth of the story, for that matter) the lesson remains:

Marketing and branding matter. They change how consumers perceive your product and can make or break your business.

In the words of Joe Chernov:

“Good marketing makes the company look smart. Great marketing makes the customer feel smart.”

To learn more about great marketing, we spoke with Matthew Trifiro, a startup marketing master. Learn how your company can position your product and do PR right.

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One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish… White Fish? was originally published in The Mission on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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