This week brought the unfortunate news that film legend Gene Wilder had passed away at age 82. He was famous across the globe for roles in Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, The Producers, and many more; but perhaps his most iconic role was that of Willy Wonka. No matter what year you were born in, the story of Charlie and his march through the Chocolate Factory has likely been a part of your life in some way.
At its core, Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory is a story about love, honesty, and in the case of the titular character, taking the road less traveled. However, it also served another purpose, perhaps unintentionally. Throughout the film (and of course the book) Willy Wonka provides us with valuable business lessons. Some are better than others, with a couple serving as “what not to do” examples, but nonetheless, there is real advice within the film that can be utilized today.
1. Be creative with your marketing promotions
The initial catalyst for the story was the creation of a promotion. By initiating the “golden ticket” program, Wonka immediately created a frenzy for his products. With the promise of free chocolate for life, who wouldn’t run over to their closest corner store in order to secure as many Wonka products as possible? He created his own lottery, and his company undoubtedly saw a spike in revenue as a result.
McDonald’s has experienced similar success with their Monopoly promotion. Every October, their products come with tear off Monopoly pieces that carry prizes of different values. Some properties offer free food, while the more valuable pieces offer vacation packages, cars, and cold hard cash. While they’ve been running this promotion for nearly 30 years, they still experience a significant sales spike every October.
In 2011, sales increased by “6.1% in the Asia and Pacific region, 5.2% in the U.S. and 4.8% in Europe,” during the month of the promotion. More recently, in 2013, “the Monopoly Promotion increased its third quarter profit of that year by 5%” across the board.
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Author: Digital Dealer
Digital Dealer exists to help dealers and their managers sell more vehicles more profitably by creating the best live events and media in the industry.