Raiding the dressing up box

Hello. The blog is back.

Did you miss me? I hope you had a good Easter and haven’t over indulged.

I have definitely over indulged over the last few months. Birthday parties, cold weather, Easter – you name it, I’ve eaten to celebrate it.

So now, like many of us, I’m back on the diet again.

But this time it’s different. I’m doing it without the aid of Weightwatchers.

Having been an afficionado of Weightwatchers for many years I was horrified when they changed their points system in 2011.

“It’s because we’ve discovered new, scientific ways of measuring the energy value of food” was the explanation.

“Energy value my extra pounds” was the rejoinder from many.  ”It’s just a marketing ploy to make us buy new recipe books, points calculators and food guides.”

Being a marketer myself, I kind of agreed.

Nothing to do with the fact that I couldn’t get my head around the new points system.

It’s the oldest trick in the marketing book. Give something a new name, or added ingredients, or a ‘new formula’ and it will increase your sales – most of the time.

Come on, ‘fess up. How many of us have bought products because of the ‘Pro-Argin’ formula, Culture ‘Bifidus Actiregularis’, ‘Penta peptides’ or that old chestnut – anti-ageing?

Some people hate it, though. Take away the comfort blanket and they’ll change brands just like that.

The Weight Watchers points change hit the media in the US like a juggernaut – my favourite was “Weightwatchers Point Changes Plunge Members Lives into chaos.”

What’s chaotic about a change that allows you to stuff your face and drink like a fish at the weekend? I just can’t do the maths.

Ok, we’re not all multi-national diet agencies but we do need to consider the effect change, or that  ’super new formula’ has on our customers

If you’re offering a ‘bespoke’ service, make it bespoke. If you’re rebranding make sure you ‘live’ what you’re saying in your name or strap line.

And hey, you could always ask them what they think, first.

I’m off to phone Jenny Craig for some diet advice now.

You do get to talk to Jenny, don’t you?





About Philippa

Philippa Cowley-Thwaites is a no-nonsense South Londoner with a passion for communications. Since graduating in English from London University in 1983 she has established herself as an expert communicator for a variety of brands in the private, public and voluntary sector with great success – she’s one of the best business writers in the business.

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