Graphic Warning: Don’t read this if you’re eating dinner. It’s not exactly pleasant reading.
So I’ve tried to bin my manual toothbrush for ten years and transition to an electric one.
But old habits die hard, and I’ve never managed to break the routine of relying on a manual toothbrush to do my bidding. Mostly because I’m one of those weird guys who only brush their teeth in the shower (yes, I shower twice daily, don’t @ me).
The last time I went to the dentist, I got a new piece of information that flipped the switch. There was one section on my canines I kept on missing. I had plaque build-up, and it was bothering me.
The dentist handed me a manual toothbrush and asked me to demonstrate how I brushed my teeth in real time.
He watched intently for two minutes while I navigated around my pearly whites with a manual brush in hand.
As I was rinsing my mouth out, he told me what I was doing wrong:
“The side-to-side motion you’re using follows the gum line at the front, but your canines sit far lower, and you’re missing the bottom third of the tooth.”
It makes sense, I guess.
He pulled me out of one of those jaw models and showed me what I was doing wrong. I could see how I was missing that bottom third (as a side note, using demonstration is a great form of proof. Use as much as you can).
When he told me I’d solve this problem with an electric toothbrush, I was convinced I’d make the switch.
Which presented me with a new problem.
I’d need to find an electric toothbrush that was waterproof.
So next time I was at Coles, I b-lined straight for the oral hygiene section and checked out the range. Some were for $10, $50, $80, and then there were the expensive ones with security tags.
The one I was looking at was $123.70.
It caught my eye because on the front of the packaging, it made sure to mention its waterproof design.
Every other toothbrush didn’t list the feature, so I ruled them out. Some habits I can break, but brushing my teeth like an normal person is not one of them.
When I got home, my wife almost had a heart attack when I told her what I’d spent.
What she said went something like this:
“Karl, you have an extraordinary skill set, but you’re f*cking dumb. Every toothbrush is waterproof, you idiot.”
That’s actually how we speak to each other.
It was also the moment I realised I’d f*cked up.
I had just spent $100 more than I needed to because I didn’t have the common sense to realise the obvious.
While I took the L and walked away with my tail between my legs, Oral B was the real winner.
Well, someone in marketing was, to be fair.
Because whoever packaged that box knew something important:
You can only expect your prospects to know what you highlight to them.
It’s up to you to communicate the benefits and the benefits of the benefits.
The benefit of not breaking my routine and brushing my teeth in the shower was a compelling reason to buy. Knowing this benefit, I spent 6x more than I should have because every other electric toothbrush didn’t care to mention it.
What you say and don’t say could be the difference between a sale being made and a sale being lost.
Oral-B knows this, and now you do, too.
– Karl Goodman