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How to turn a problem into a benefit

When they started mass producing yogurt, it was difficult to blend the flavor with the plain yogurt. So they just squirted in the flavor first. Then some marketing genius declared “Fruit on the Bottom!” was a better kind of yogurt. The problem became the main selling feature.

Another example: It’s hard to store and deliver furniture — it’s the biggest thing people buy other than houses, appliances, and cars. Ikea became the biggest furniture store in the world by letting us assemble our own purchases. The benefit: It’s easier to get home.

What’s your leftover/weird/complex problem that you could turn into a selling benefit?

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  1. Mike Raia October 28, 2013 at 1:58 pm #

    All those “build your own” food places (salad bars, fondue, build a burger, etc.) give you the ability to customize your own meal experience. And save money on cooks.

  2. John Cameron October 31, 2013 at 1:51 am #

    I have a client who was and still is in the waste disposal business. He specialized in hauling away demolished houses. The dumps stopped accepting gypsum drywall wallboard. Problem

    He developed a machine that reclaims the gypsum and he is now owns a multinational company that is the largest recycler of gypsum in the world.

    If I had a buck for every time he’s told me: “John, I’m just a garbageman” I’d be rich.

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