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SIE’s Hauntrepreneurs – #2 Chucky

“I’m gonna be six years old again.”

What makes a good customer? It might seem like an odd question – on the surface it shouldn’t matter who buys your product, as long sales are being made. If you manage to tap an unexpected market, so much the better. The problem arises when there’s a mismatch between consumers’ expectations and what you can (or should) deliver. If you’ve seen Child’s Play, you can probably figure out where we’re going with this.

Chucky is a Good Guy – it says so right on his packaging. Unfortunately, the undead serial killer he’s possessed by isn’t so great. You could say his branding doesn’t match the content of his service. It’s a discrepancy that creates serious trouble for his manufacturers when the demon toy ends up in the hands of a little boy – and ultimately, some serious trouble for Chucky too. He has strong values (murder) and a clear purpose (eternal life), and yet he’s thwarted repeatedly by disgruntled consumers.

We can’t blame the toy company for the mix-up in this case (though a recall is generally a good idea if you suspect your product may be contaminated with vengeful murder ghosts). It’s Chucky himself who chooses a child-friendly brand for his decidedly child-unfriendly schemes. Perhaps if he’d thought more carefully about the values he wanted to project, he’d have found himself in the hands of somebody more sympathetic to his overall mission – as Bride of Chucky shows, the right customer is always out there.

If you need help identifying your ideal market (or adjusting your business plan to better serve the customers you’ve found), our business advisors offer free one-to-one support. Or, if you’re still working with the seed of an idea, enter your concept in our monthly Fresh Ideas Competition for a chance to win cash prizes! We’ll help you get your product into customers’ hands without resorting to black magic.

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