A Shop that Sells Only One Product?

business strategy cmo cmo marketing marketing marketing accountability marketing economics roi romi Jun 25, 2021
A Shop that Sells Only One Product?

A marketing lesson, this time, from Lisbon (@Portugal). A while ago, I was working in Lisbon and I came across this store (see picture) What do you think they sell? Believe it or not, this company invested literally dozens of thousands of Euros in decorating their point of sales as a circus to sell one single product, just one. Not electronics, neither apparel, or sporting goods. They sell sardines, and only sardines. Yes, you read it right, the fish, sardine! At “O Mondo Fantastico da Sardinha Portughesa” (@mondosardinhaportuguesa) they really made a bet for customer experience at the point of sale. And it is not a new comer, this business was founded 74 years ago! And they only have one product: 160 grs canned sardines. They have one specific can for each year (making it a collectible) and started in 1916 so you can buy any of the 100 different cans marked with an event and a historical character that was born for each one of those years. Each can sells for €5 while in Carrefour, you can buy 160 grs of branded canned sardines at approximately €2,50! Needless to say, marketing experience at the point of sale is highly profitable, or at least, that’s what it seems…

If you’ve had enough money to set up a shop in a prime location in an European capital, and been able to invest thousands of Euros in creating a customer experience to entertain people Disney-like, what would you sell in that store? Would you dare to sell only one product? I mean, just one sku? If you were forced to, what would that product be? I am pretty confident that whatever your choice or choices, none of them matches this real story. The owners of the store are the very same manufacturers of the product, eliminating intermediation and making the margin even larger. Vivid colors and a refined packaging complete the puzzle of a successful store that it is always full (and not only with tourists, although the majority of customers come from abroad), selling one single un-glamorous product: sardines…

Customer experience and point-of-sale marketing would never find a better example to demonstrate that both things combined can drive economic sustainability and profitability selling “almost” anything…

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