What is your Happy Meal?

I have 6 children and in their younger years, I think I spent about $4.8 billion dollars on happy meals!  And I never looked at the price.

Sounds crazy but I know a lot of you will agree and have experienced buying millions of McDonalds Happy Meals for their children without looking at the price.

Many years ago, when I was consulting for the Greater Building Society, I entered the boardroom with the Greater’s senior management and I threw a happy meal box from McDonalds on the middle of the table.  And all the guys around the table said, “We’re trying to sell home loans.  What’s this got to do with it?  Are you saying we’re going to give away a plastic toy to sell home loans?” And I said, “No. But the same principle applies.”

I asked, “Who has children and who has bought Happy Meals for them?”

Nearly 75% of the guys put their hand up.

I said, “Look, I’ll give $100 to anyone around the table who can tell me what the price of a happy meal is?”

Not one of the Greater Building Society’s senior management got close to what a Happy Meal cost. But all of them had bought a million happy meals for their own children.

So that’s what Happy Meals did for McDonalds. It was a huge “wow factor”, but it also delivered the benefit of taking the consumer’s eye off the price.

For the Greater Building Society, I introduced an offer that was “Get a home loan and get a free holiday”.  You got points relevant to your loan amount.

So if you borrowed $100,000, you got enough points that might take you to the Gold Coast for a holiday.  If you borrowed $400,000, you could go to Hawaii.

We launched this promotion with the objective of running it for 3 or 4 months and seeing how it worked. It tripled the Society’s home loans over the first 18 months and ran for more than 10 years.

During that time, not once did the Building Society ever advertise a price!

It was their Happy Meal.

Click the link below to have a look at one of the Greater’s TV ads.

http://www.theinstituteofwow.com/bloggs/Greatersummerholiday.wmv

Another Happy Meal concept was a Gold Coast turf farm – the owner wanted to get more “landscapers” as clients, as they were his primary target audience.

So I got a mail list of all of the landscapers in Brisbane and the Gold Coast - there were about 500 of them.

We sent out a brochure inviting them to get their turf from this particular turf farm, which was called ALC Turf.

For every home’s worth of turf that they bought, they got a box of Crown Lager beer.

It’s not hard to work out what a thirsty landscaper would like as a bonus. Beer!

And normally they’d probably drink Tooheys or XXXX, this was Crown Lager!  This was beer that they probably wouldn’t buy normally.

Guess what happened? I had a call from the turf farm about 2 weeks after the first mailing went out.  And I said to him, “How did it go?”

He said, “We’ve got no more turf! We’re sourcing turf from other turf farms to keep up with demand for the beer!”

The offer took their eyes off the price – it was a Happy Meal for adults!

Whatever business you are in, a building society, a turf farm, a hairdresser, a butcher, etc – you can have your own Happy Meal to offer and take the people’s eyes off the price.

Think about what your Happy Meal might be and use such “wow factors” to take your prospects’ eyes OFF the price!

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