I came home from my softball game last Thursday to a nice surprise. And the best marketing execution you’ll see all month.
A few months ago, I pre-ordered the new J.K. Rowling book, “The Tales of Beedle the Bard.” Amazon was offering an exclusive collectors edition, so that sounded like fun.
On Thursday it was waiting for me. And what a complete mastery level course in marketing it provides…
Basically I had no idea what it was going to be, but ordered it because I had read and loved all of the Harry Potter series. And as you know, that series took Rowling from welfare to someone wealthier than anyone you know.
Of course the book is topping the bestsellers lists worldwide, proof that building a brand among consumers will keep them in the fold for a long time.
The pre-sell idea is always a hot one. Making a limited edition collectors version is another brilliant stroke. But then when it arrives, the brilliance just magnifies…
It comes in a special printed shipping box, advertising the book to every UPS employee, mailroom person and anyone that saw it. (Unless you send it as a gif, when it then is offered in a plain one.) Once you open the box, the book is enclosed in its own case disguised as a wizarding textbook found in the Hogwarts library.
Opening the case reveals a velvet bag embroidered with Rowling’s signature, in which sits the book itself, which has a metal skull, corners, and clasp; replica gemstones; and emerald ribbon. It also comes with a set of 10 ready-for-framing prints of J.K. Rowling's illustrations from the book, enclosed in a velvet-lined pocket in the lid of the outer case.
The book itself is a collection of five fairy tales, prefaced by a copy of Rowlings original handwritten introduction. Even better, you discover that the tales were translated by runes by Hermione Granger, and include commentary of each by none other than Professor Albus Dumbledore, which were “discovered among the many papers which Dumbledore left in his will to the Hogwarts Archives." So even though the Potter sage has ended, Rowling still milks the coattails of it, bringing yet more delight to her legions of followers.
The whole package probably costs less than ten bucks to make, yet it sells for $100 and people are snapping them up like hotcakes. Even better, the net proceeds are all being donated to the charity Rowling started for vulnerable children.
Why not order one as a special holiday present for someone you know? Then ask yourself how many of these marketing lessons you can apply in your own business!
Speaking of legions of loyal followers, I see the Facebook fan page my publisher set up cracked the 100 fan mark. Only need another 4 million or so to catch up to Rafael Nadal! Check it out here.
Have a prosperous day,