I’m surfing the internet in an early morning pre-coffee daze when I see an ad for an odd-looking watch that says, “Handmade in Switzerland: 24 hours and only 1 hand…”
And I’m thinking, “Ohhhh-kaayyyyy… what fresh over-priced gimmick is this?”
And I click on the ad because, well, why not?
Now I’m on a website called slow-watches.com, and it’s asking me,
“Are you ready to be slow?”
I need my coffee for this.
“We created a watch that allows you to experience time in an entirely new way.”
“The slow watch reminds you to stop chasing the minutes and live for the moments.”
“The unique 24-hour one-hand concept fundamentally changed our way to perceive time – yours too?”
Ha! I love how they don’t claim this watch will change your life or how you perceive time, but instead, they pose those claims as questions.
Maybe not, but these questions fly underneath your skeptic’s radar and get you thinking, don’t they?
“Sit back, relax and watch the video. Then, we would like to tell you about our slow story.”
And I’ll be darned if I didn’t watch their video – twice.
A few things to notice:
The first half of the video shows you just how miserable your life is without this watch, while the second half of the video shows how wonderful your life will be with the watch.
And it turns a product fault into a positive. “Yes, our watch doesn’t tell you exactly what time it is, but who cares about exact time anyway? We don’t care about seconds or minutes because those are for losers.” (I’m totally paraphrasing here – watch the video.)
Put on this watch, and for the first time in your life, you will see, “How time naturally flows.”
“Remember, don’t count every second – make every second count.”
I thought it hilarious that while the silky-smooth talking announcer is telling you to make every second count while admitting their watch can’t count seconds, they’re showing you two good-looking guys staring at an hourglass…
I mean, just staring at…
And staring at it some more…
Like they are so bored they wish their miserable lives would end right then and there.
But wait a minute… (pun intended?)
…why are we talking about this crazy watch and how they’re marketing it?
Because there are some great lessons here.
First, making a 24-hour watch is such a simple idea, I’ve got to wonder why we haven’t seen these before. Or have we have seen them, but they didn’t catch on? The point is this: Simple ideas like this are everywhere if you are paying attention.
Personally, I would love to have a watch that reminds me every hour to get up from my chair and MOVE. But, I’d also like the watch the action as a Pomodoro timer throughout the day, with 25 minutes of work and a 10-minute break, or something like that.
Yes, I know my phone can do those things for me, but I leave my phone in other rooms, and I’d prefer to have those features on my wrist. Is that a good product idea? I don’t know, but if you decide to create a watch like that, let me know, and I’ll buy the first one.
Second, the watches cost $300. That’s why they tell you over and over they’re made in Switzerland, because we’ve been brainwashed into thinking that great watches can only be made in Switzerland, so it helps tremendously with price justification.
Third, the watches cost $300, which means it will be all about marketing and positioning. Most people are never going to impulse purchase a weird-looking unknown-brand watch for 300 bucks. Heck, most people have stopped buying watches altogether because they own smartphones. So to sell a watch without a well-known brand for $300, you’re going to have to get slick with your marketing.
Fourth, that is exactly what they’ve done here. When I looked at their website and watched the video the first time, I confess that I WANTED ONE OF THESE WATCHES! Yes, I really did.
Watching the video the second time with my marketing cap on made me totally rethink that impulse. Because hey, I don’t really believe that buying the watch will cause me to move from the city to the country and have absolutely nothing to do but play frisbee and watch an hourglass, two things I don’t want to do anyway. (Watch the video to see what I mean.)
To answer their question: “Can a Watch Change Your Life?”
No, no, it can’t.
But if you can take a simple product like an odd-looking watch and use your marketing to make people feel better about themselves, then maybe that’s not such a bad thing.
If you sell a product that teaches people how to make money, for example, then you can certainly paint a picture of their life before and after getting your product. And in fact, you can use this watch video as a template of what that might look like.
A mediocre product with great marketing can sell like gangbusters. That’s what I think they have here. If they get a few celebrities to wear their watches, it could become a viral sensation, and they’ll make millions.
Then again, there have been plenty of products that were supposed to be “the next big thing” but failed terribly.
Back to you and your business… Take a look at your products and ask yourself, what simple change can you make to stand out from the crowd totally? In other words, what’s your version of going from 12 hours to 24 hours?
Next, look at your marketing like you’re seeing it for the first time. Does it sweep you up at the moment and make you think, “Wow! I want this!” If not, you might want to rethink how you’re presenting your product to the world.
Here’s a neat little trick you can try: Every time you see an ad or commercial, imagine it’s for your product. Then, look for the elements you can borrow to use in your own marketing campaigns to make them fresh and grab the viewers’ attention.
Can your product change people’s lives (unlike this watch)?
Then imagine what you might achieve with a fresh marketing campaign that lets people feel what that change will be like when they have your product.
Can you devise a fresh marketing campaign that sells a million copies of your product?
I think you can…