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Creating Passionate Renters

Dogsrequired

Today when I saw this "Pets Required" sign (didn't have my camera, so I reproduced it) on the side of an aparment building in Boulder, I thought wow, that's a great way to make people feel good about having a pet. Because most landlords make you feel like they can't decide whether to rent to you or that other guy and thinking, "Hmmmm-- drug dealer or dog owner... tough call."

You know how hard it can be to find rental apartments that allow pets. And even when they do, they make you sign the extra Pets Lease and pay the extra Pets Deposit. I'm only partly ashamed to say that yes, I have in fact stretched the truth on more than one rental application, and committed more than one act of felony pet-concealment.

But this "Dogs Required" sign let's someone say, "I Rule because I have a Dog". I don't know if the apartment offers dog owners a discount, but that's what I'd do : ) Can you imagine all the things you could do to make an apartment complex not just pet-tolerable, but pet-passionate?

That got me thinking about how cool that is to take something that users/customers/renters are made to feel guilty about—a perceived liability—and turn it into an asset for that person. I just love that.

On that note, what are the ways you can do this in what you do? Can you find a way to turn something around 180 degrees like this? To take an "I suck" (or at least a "everyone in this business makes me FEEL like I suck") and turn it into an "I Rule" ?

Posted by Kathy on January 23, 2005 | Permalink

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"On that note, what are the ways you can do this in what you do? Can you find a way to turn something around 180 degrees like this? To take an "I suck" (or at least a "everyone in this business makes me FEEL like I suck") and turn it into an "I Rule" ?"

I'll shamelessy try and jot down a few ideas, which must have taken bigger minds ages. Given an "I suck" subject, I'd like to suggest it's because it does not fit in the context as perceived by those judging it. So you have at least three entities that matter: the subject, the context, the observers.

How to make a 180 turn? Understand and (try to) change one of the three involved entities, would be my first shot at it.

Posted by: Gian Franco Casula | Jan 24, 2005 11:45:59 AM

I'm not a smoker, but I imagine a good idea would be anyplace that makes it more comfortable for them, rather than forcing them outside in the cold, or putting them in a glass chamber in a restaraunt/bar.
Like that bar that hires a limo every night and parks it out front for smokers to enter and light up after a meal so they don't have to stand outside. It's exclusive and doesn't treat them as outcasts.

Posted by: jake | Jan 25, 2005 4:54:13 PM

Thanks for such a superb blog. (landed on your site through brandingblog.com)

A story I remember about a salon...

The salon was doing wonderful business. The owner – let’s call him John - had received the salon in inheritance. It seemed like he also got the skills with it. He gave classy haircuts. The salon was prospering as people used to come for their haircuts.

But that changed. A haircutting franchise opened shop right across the street. They charged an insanely low amount for the haircut. And they could keep the costs down by hiring high school graduates to cut peoples hair.

John saw a drop in business due to the competition’s low prices. He needed a marketing fix. He took out his handy red colour marker pen and bought a huge white chart from a store. And on that chart, he wrote one sentence with red that made people come back to him instead of going across the street.

Not only did people start coming back to him, he also increased the prices without seeing any decrease in his business.

The sentence in red?

“We fix $6.00 haircuts”

Posted by: Ankesh Kothari | Jan 27, 2005 1:04:50 AM

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