Do you deliver emotional value? How the little guy beat Coca Cola!

Imagine a powerful brand like Coca Cola entering into a market like Peru and losing to a local drink like Inca Kola!

Why would Coca Cola, one of the worlds most powerful brands, not win market share from “the Golden Kola”  (a sweet fruity lemon verbena-flaored soda)?

Here’s the answer  in two words?  EMOTIONAL VALUE

Inca Kola, a longstanding Peruvian brand, became a national drink over decades of association with significant Peruvian events.  Birthday, anniversaries, soccer victories and even soccer losses were incomplete without an Inca Kola.  Inca Kola was no longer a beverage – it was a part of the cultural landscape.  Inca Koala was an experience!  From the wisdom of “if you can’t beat them join them”, Coca Cola bought a controlling interest in Inca Koala translating the brand from “emotional value” into huge financial gain.

Here’s one more quick example of a link to emotional value.  It is provided through a tweet from Caroline Smyth which reads:

@CazSmyth Had my first Starbucks red cup experience of the year… Christmas has officially started wooo hooo

As you probably know, every year Starbucks changes it’s traditional green and white cup to a red one in the winter quarter.  Starbucks has produced annual “red cup” advertising campaigns that have associated the cup with “joy”, “warmth”, and all the best of the season.  For many people, like Caroline and me, the Starbucks red cup is more than red dye.

So what about your products or services…

What opportunities do you have to genuinely link to emotional value?

Is there a social cause that matters to you and that fits with your offering?

Does an event of patriotic significance or a seasonal aspect connect to your business?

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Joseph A. Michelli, Ph.D. is a professional speaker and chief experience officer at The Michelli Experience. A New York Times #1 bestselling author, Dr. Michelli and his team consult with some of the world’s best customer experience companies.

Follow on Twitter: @josephmichelli

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