What is the price for spontaneity?
Idea Shop East post by Joo Teoh, Business Director at Ogilgy & Mather Advertising
Spontaneous Expression came to Idea Shop East for ideas to launch the brand and the business. The business is a London-based gift service with a difference – you name the gift you want, and they will purchase it, wrap it and deliver it on the same day. Rabeela Aziz, the woman behind the idea and the brand, is dynamic, ambitious and enthusiastic, so the business is off to a great start in my opinion.
During our session, the more we discussed her business, the more it appeared that there was a mismatch of her ambitions for her business, and our understanding of what was being offered. We thought this would be a great service for people who are too busy to buy gifts themselves for their loved ones. Rabeela’s ambition is for this to be a gift borne out of “a spontaneous expression moment” which would “strengthen ties and kinship… contributing to a happier and peaceful world.” A terrific ambition, but one which we feared may be mismatched with her consumers’ needs and market niche.
We encouraged her to research her market segment – Personal / Executive assistants, busy executives, hotel concierge services – which would give her an indication on the market size, preferences, and needs. We also encouraged her to look at her competition – the current e-commerce options available from most retailers – to find her unique positioning.
We recommended that she launch her brand through networking groups (like a special reception for personal / executive assistants in key locations like Canary Wharf or the square mile.) This would give her a chance to showcase her sense of style, her personality and her bespoke range of gifts.
The idea of a member’s club – or subscription to her services by membership only – was very well-received. For example, during the launch, give 5 free memberships to key lifestyle journalists. Thereafter, you can purchase membership for £85 for 5 purchases (excluding cost of gift). With this, you get 10 greeting cards to personalise for each purchase. It’s always nice to get a card that has been written by the giver. Rabeela would collect these greeting cards before delivering the gift, so the gift arrives with a handwritten note from the giver.
We expect her brand will grow with word of mouth rather than via mass marketing. She is a small operation for now (she intends to do most of this herself, with help from family members) so the logistics support will need to be in place before the service gets too large. If Spontaneous Expression could become known as “The busy/forgetful boy/girlfriend’s best kept secret” that would be a good start. Or maybe that should be “The spontaneous boy/girlfriend’s best kept secret”…?