Some time ago, the Bic pen company sold it’s 100 billionth ballpoint pen. If you do the math, that means they’ve sold about 57 pens every minute since 1950 when the Bic pen became reality.
The Bic pen was invented by French Baron Marcel Bich. He found a way to make a ballpoint pen that was both cheap and didn’t leak all over.
One thing I find fascinating about this is that there was actually a person behind this famous pen.
The second is how big and pervasive the Bic brand became over the last 60 years. Bic is synonymous with pens. And even though there are many different brands now, Bic is still the best known name in pens.
The third thing I find amazing is how many pens they’ve sold. 100 billion is a huge number. In terms of consumer brands only McDonald’s comes to mind as a comparable.
So, how do you build such a big and successful brand?
Baron Bich’s son Bruno said his father put all of his investment into making cheap pens. And he did it very well.
So one lesson would be to focus. Focus on just one goal, one mission, one outcome with your business.
And while you focus, remember that world-domination is probably not realistic. Even Baron Bich probably did not plan for his invention to be such a well known, world-wide success.
Instead, focus your efforts on the people who matter most to you: Those you can best serve.
Figure out who your company best serves and make sure your marketing is delivering the right message to them. You CAN brand a small business. But you brand it in the eyes of YOUR market, not the whole world.
Deliver your message to your market often enough and (if it’s a message they want to hear) they will respond by taking an interest in your business. You’ll get their attention and eventually, you might get their business.