What A One-Hit Wonder Taught Me About Marketing

Smart marketing can even be found on the bathroom wall

by Jason Falls |

There’s one phone number that most people can recite, regardless of demographic. And I mean full phone number, not 9-1-1. Think about it for a minute: What’s the one phone number than most everyone you know has in common they can recite without hesitation? 867-5309.

Tommy Tutone’s hit from 1981 emblazoned the number in our minds, and while little more of the song is all that memorable, “867-5309/Jenny” has an incredible marketing lesson buried within it’s one-hit wonderness. The song is the probably drunken announcement of a man who finds the number of a woman written on a bathroom wall. “For a good time, call …” graffiti, while most often a cruel joke, is the ultimate in smart marketing.

Why? Because it hits the relevancy bullseye.

Relevance Bulls EyeIt’s a relevant message, sent to a relevant audience, in a relevant time and in a relevant location.

Drunk guys going to the bathroom in a bar are primed to hear this message, ready to receive it and apt to take action. “For a good time, call 867-5309.”

The magic of marketing, be it social media, digital or even traditional, is to deliver a relevant message to a relevant audience in a relevant location and at the relevant time. This is our challenge.

So what are you doing to make your audience think, “Jenny, I’ve got your number. I’m going to make you mine?” with your product?

The comments, as always, are yours.

About the Author

Jason Falls

Jason Falls is a leading thinker, speaker and strategist in the world of digital marketing and is co-author of two books, No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No-Hype Guide To Social Media Marketing and The Rebel's Guide To Email Marketing. By day, he leads digital strategy for Elasticity, one of the world's most innovative digital marketing and public relations firms. Follow him on Twitter (@JasonFalls).