You can watch the entire bidding process in the embedded YouTube video, if you want, but I’d advise skipping to the 8:14 mark, where they interview the winning bidder:
In response to the question, “what made you want that car?” Rick Champagne gave the following list:
- I grew up in that era, so it meant a lot to me.
- I’ve been watching that car for 20 years and waiting for this day [when it would finally be sold]
- I’ve been a Barret Jackson customer for well over 15 years
- The car is going to go in my living room
- I KNEW I was going to get it
So, just a few reflections from me on the event and Mr. Champagne’s list:
Sentiment & Emotional Connection MATTERS
Yes, there is also exclusivity driving up the price of this car, but by far the biggest factor, and the one mentioned first by the winning bidder, is the emotional connection to the old TV show, and in turn, to the famous Batmobile.
If you’re not taking this into account — if you’re not baking a little Magical Thinking into your marketing and advertising — you probably ought to be.
Baby Boomers Control 70% of the Disposable Income in the US
Of course, given the era of the Batman TV show, it’s not surprising that the winning bidder was a Baby Boomer. But don’t overlook the fact that the majority of the buyers sloshing obscene amounts of disposable income around that auction house were also Boomers. That’s because Baby Boomer’s hold the majority of wealth and disposable income in America.
If you’re selling luxury or high-end products or services and your marketing speaks primarily to or from a youth mindset, you might want to rethink that.
Anticipation Combined with Confidence Is An Unbeatable Combo
Rick Champagne has been waiting to buy this car for 20 years. That’s a lot of anticipation, a lot of time Rick spent imagining himself buying that car.
Rick’s also done business with the auction house, Barret Jackson, for “well over 15 years.” That’s a lot of repeat business and confidence.
It also helped, of course, that Barret Jackson had the car’s original builder/designer and single-person owner on hand to further verify the authenticity of the vehicle. Personally, I think it would have been even better to have had Adam West there, too, but you can’t have everything, I guess.
At any rate, the end result is that Rick Champagne was absolutely 100% certain that he was getting exactly what he wanted — the 100% genuine real deal — from a company that he had full faith and confidence in to deliver.
This is why he walked into the auction KNOWING that he was going to walk out as the new owner of that car.
What does your company do to help people IMAGINE buying from you and IMAGINE getting the benfit from your product or service?
When people walk into your business do they KNOW that they are going to buy from you? Or do they think they might possibly buy from you, if the pricing is competitive and you seem to have what they want?
So what are YOU doing to:
- Take advantage of, or establish, emotional connections?
- Give people full faith and confidence in your product or service?
- Allow people to develop confidence in you through previous business dealings?
- Provide something worth waiting for?
Here’s a small business example: for most HVAC companies, the pay-off is when someone buys a new Heating and Air Conditioning System from them. That’s payday.
But the smart companies don’t wait for payday to try to get your business. They’d rather you develop confidence in them BEFOREHAND.
This process is started with great ads that establish an emotional connection to the listening audience. And if that emotional connection seems based on old-timey values and slightly older cultural references, well, that’s probably NOT an accident.
This emotional connection is further strengthened by the offer of value-priced, high-quality tune-ups and fast, effective repairs. A strategy that ensures prospects call YOU when they need a tune-up.
And after 5 or more years of having their system tuned by you, YOU become the first person they call when there is a breakdown — and the only people they trust when it’s time to buy that new system. Payday!
- advanced filtration,
- added humidity control,
- room temperature equalizing functionality, and
- energy saving features.
The kind of system that makes a home noticeably more comfortable and pleasant; a luxury system that the home owner desired for some time and planned on buying “someday,” when it was time for a new one.
And that’s how you can put some super-hero-powered CRACK-POW! – BAM! into your marketing and advertising.