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5 Marketing Lessons Your Business Can Learn from Mr. Potato Head

May 6, 2013

What can a potato and numerous plastic pushpin body parts teach marketers? When it is in respect to one of America’s favorite childhood toys, Mr. Potato Head, the answer is a lot. After the recent discovery of a 1970 edition Mr. Potato Head by Lure Creative’s President, Ryan Parshall, we decided to look into this iconic brand and see what we could learn from its sixty plus years of marketing.

Use Your Marketing Dollars to Appeal to Your Target Market

While angling a marketing campaign toward your target market might sound like common sense, it is often more easily said than done. In April of 1952, Mr. Potato Head became the first company to advertise directly to children. Prior to this, marketers ignored their target audience and marketed toward the parents instead. Mr. Potato Head’s revolutionized marketing strategy resulted in the sale of over one million kits in their first year.

Simplicity is Key, Especially in Marketing

The concept behind Mr. Potato Head is extremely simple, just as marketing should be. We have all seen ads with one or two too many messages leaving their audience confused. Simple marketing campaigns go a long way. Not only are they more memorable, but they leave their audience with one clear point or action to take.

Keep Branding Consistent, No Matter the Marketing Channel

Most marketers know that it is important to maintain consistent branding across all marketing platforms. Be it social media, websites, or radio advertising each time a potential customer interacts with your brand, you want them to receive a similar experience. As Mr. Potato Head gained popularity, this toy was featured in the Mr. Potato Head Show, the movie Toy Story, and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Regardless of the outlet, Mr. Potato Head stayed consistent with branding which helped to grow a strong image across the country.

Do Not be Afraid to Try New Marketing Outlets

Back in the 50s, television was a brand new medium. Many marketers were unsure of advertising on TV. Mr. Potato Head was the first toy to use television advertising. The result was great success. In today’s marketing era, there are constantly evolving and new technologies. Do not be afraid to test out one of these mediums and see what the results will bring.

Strong Brands Stay up to Date

Since its creation, the shape, material, and functionality of Mr. Potato Head have been modified in order to stay in line with society and safety regulations. Just as Mr. Potato Head needed to be constantly updated, so does your marketing strategy. Marketing is not a one and done kind of process. It requires constant updating and attention in order to stay ahead of competition and continue to generate results for your company.

So there you have it, five marketing lessons courtesy of Mr. Potato Head. For more information about marketing strategies, give Lure Creative a call at (913) 649-4040.

About the Author

Scott Christian

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