Dinosaurs and Marketing

I just thought, “What will I blog about today?” But I thought it out loud.

Our marketing coordinator, Molly, offered this suggestion: “How about dinosaurs?”


Ronnie, our social media master, asked, “Can you pull some correlation about social media or blogging or marketing with Cinco de Mayo?” He stopped to think. “Maybe not the drinking part of it.”

Is there another part of Cinco de Mayo?  This might be an important holiday for our neighbors to the south, but I think most Americans just use Cinco de Mayo as an excuse to drink margaritas before noon.

So, dinosaurs it is.

This is actually an interesting challenge.  How can I connect marketing to dinosaurs?

Okay. Last summer, I went to visit the dinosaurs at Milwaukee County Zoo.  For weeks last summer, advertisements bombarded me from every direction with the promise that I could “journey within an outdoor display of prehistoric wild plants and dinosaurs with ‘Adventure Dinosaur!’”

I thought to myself, 29 life-size dinosaur recreations? INCLUDING a tyrannosaurus rex? Yes, please!

So I rounded up the one person I could count on to accompany me to anything and made the trip to the zoo.  Trembling with anticipation, we followed the faded dino tracks to the exhibit, paid our additional $2.50 to enter, and found ourselves in…a gift shop.

Minor setback.  We wandered through the kids screaming and waving t-shirts at their exhausted parents, and started down the path to dinosaur adventureland.  The Zoo website said:

 The figures are so “real,” moving and rumbling in their outdoor habitat, that it might be difficult to even believe that dinosaurs are extinct! 

 False.  Nestled in bare patches between scrub trees and electrical boxes, the plastic-covered dinosaurs resembled oversized toys more than the realistic creatures describe by the Zoo’s advertising spots.  They didn’t even look like the pictures of the dinos on the billboard I saw next to the highway.

They only look this good in pictures.

I was disappointed, to say the least.

The marketing lesson in this is: when you make a promise to your customers, you have to follow through.  Deliver.  Use your advertising spots and marketing communications to convey only what you can actually make happen.  People return for a repeat purchase only if you’ve satisfied consumer expectations.

 Look at that! We can make anything relevant to marketing.

 If you’re interested in challenging me with a word like “canasta” or “green tea,” go ahead and leave it in the comments. I’ll be here all week.


2 responses to “Dinosaurs and Marketing

  1. Jean M. Clifford

    I challenge you to Chicken Nuggets!

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