Monday, August 09, 2010

Marketing Monday: Nancy Boy, Inc. Raises the Bar on Soap

Here I am with Eric Roos, co-owner of Nancy Boy, displaying the new laundry detergent.
The product line has a clean, no frills look and feel, and their basic signature soap is unscented.

We recently had the pleasure of visiting Nancy Boy (aka Eric) during a trip to Sebastopol, and it was a stop well worth taking. I first came to hear about Nancy Boy was through social media -- namely, a great blogger and rather famous internet communications gal named Sonia Simone, from Remarkable Communication. So Sonia writes this amazing blog post (see link above) about how great Eric's e-newsletters are, including a quote that I will reprint here in a moment...

Intrigued by the soap, and the quoted newsletter passage which makes me at first think "what in the world does this have to do with soap anyway?" and then makes me think: "OK, that's the point right? We don't want to be obvious that we are promoting soap, you see..."

So I investigate further, and find the website which features all kinds of goodies like soaps and lotions, hair products, shaving creams, and a sign up for the cool newsletter, which I do start to receive and am totally awed by, because Eric is not your typical marketer.

A former ad executive, Eric is an antimarketer in the traditional sense, in that he and his partner Jack don't choose to advertise, but rather rely on word of mouth, which seems to be working quite well for them. In addition to numerous press articles, Nancy Boy has 2 retail locations and does impressive online sales, with a website that offers whimsical and even philosophical product descriptions. You can also enjoy discounts by joining Club Nancy Boy, which I believe also gets you the aformentioned whacky and wild newsletter.

But there's more. The Sebastopol store totally rocked. I was there for over an hour, sniffing and spritzing, and trying out the cool retro furniture, and probably would have stayed longer but I needed to eat, as all that sniffing and spritzing made my hungry.

Of course, we did not leave empty handed. I waltzed off with a mini-facial wash which I'm enjoying muchly, and Mr. Picket is also quite happy with his shaving foam, which he promises he will share with me, although this has not happened yet. May need to order more!

So, congratulations to Eric and Jack, on pulling off your unique branding with finess and class. You guys have truly raised the bar on soap (and related) which is not easy to do in such a crowded market.  And now without further ado, here's an excerpt from a previous newsletter:

At the Sebastopol store, elegant vintage and antique furniture is sold in addition to soaps, lotions, shampoos, organic tea, and shaving and bath items.
"But the most excruciating social prevarication occurs during the dental hygienist interrogation. "You signed under oath in 1987 that you brush twice a day with prescription toothpaste, floss after each meal, use the Proxabrush and Stim-U-Dents nightly and gum stimulator every other night do you still swear it to be so?” My eyes roll back in my head as I dimly recall meaning to buy floss at duty free when we went to Martinique in 2002 but I smile brightly and exclaim, “Now I’m doing the gum stimulator EVERY night,” a bootlicking lead-in to the nitrous score. Yes of course just for the cleaning for anything serious like a cavity I have Madonna’s private anesthetist."

OK, now you see what I mean.

Additional link of interest:

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