When life gives you lemons, sell lemonade

When I was a kid, I had this great lemonade stand. Built by my dad, it was wooden, with a counter, shelves and an area for storage. The most important part to my 8-year-old self was it was painted yellow with orange flowers and had “Lemonade 10¢” scrawled in my mom’s pristine handwriting on a built-in sign across the top. My friend and I spent many a summer afternoon working that lemonade stand. At 10 cents a pop, we knew it was going to take awhile to save the money to see “Annie.” But if the mail carrier had to buy a glass every day, we were determined to make it happen.

Recently, my dance team started selling bracelets to raise money to perform at Disneyland. The goal: $300 per child. The bracelets: $2 each – a lofty goal similar to my lemonade stand gig. Upon getting her bag of 10 bracelets to sell, one of my dancers immediately put one on her wrist and said, “Advertising!”

Even kids understand that if you want to sell something, and make people aware of your product, advertising is a key ingredient. The most important part of getting your word out there is to tailor your message, your branding specifically to your business. My mother taught me this when she painted the perfect letters and orange flowers onto my lemonade stand. And my teenage dancer knew the only way to sell those black and red silicone bracelets with stars and “Shut up and dance” written on them to her friends was to wear one and show them how cool it would look once they put it on.

Albeit little campaigns, each was tailored to fit the business at hand. I wouldn’t have sold much lemonade walking around with a glass in my hand, and it would be just as difficult trying to sell bracelets sitting on the sidewalk in front of my parent’s house on a quiet residential street. Each campaign worked for the product and the “business” that was trying to sell it.

At the end of the day, my friend and I got to see “Annie” in the movie theater as promised, and so far, the bracelets are selling well. Anyone have a need for a black and red bracelet? They have stars on them.

Tiffannie Bond is the media relations specialist at Imagine Marketing.
Contact Tiffannie at tbond@imnv.com

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