Almost immediately after yesterday’s venting post, I noticed an interesting idea (well, maybe just to the marketing nerds!). Sometimes you just need to let the stress out and things will come to you! Anyways, my inspiration came in the form of trying to hang pictures around the office. I’ve got three photos of engines in one company’s product line, and I wanted to hang them together in a group. Here’s my version of the arrangement:

Arranged by color: silver, blue, silver

I tend to notice colors and crops first, so my initial grouping placed the photos with the “odd” color in the middle, just to keep things even.

My boss, and industry veteran, suggested this arrangement:

Arranged from largest engine type to smallest engine type

He felt that the engines should be arranged from the largest engine type to the smallest engine type. Based on his experience and viewing of photos from aviation, planes, engines, and parts were always arranged either smallest to largest, or largest to smallest. There was some order to the arrangement based on hard data, not color or crop.

And finally, another colleague suggested this arrangement:

Arranged with engine fans framing the non-fan engines

Her assessment was based on factors similar to mine, thinking that you should have the two engines that look like fans on either side of the engine that does not look like a fan. Again, she was going with symmetry that made sense to her mind as her eye saw it.

So how does this relate to marketing? The first application that comes to mind, is grouping things together in a grocery store. Cross-selling is a basic concept in marketing that basically says you should put complementary products together to increase the sales of both items. For example, putting salsa in the same aisle as the chips makes sense, because people eat chips and salsa together. However, salsa could also be placed in the hispanic foods aisle, the condiments aisle, or the sauces/gravy/mixes/marinades aisle. Groupings are an integral part of a store planner’s job, and as my picture example shows, people often group things differently. What happens if I associate salsa with chips, but your brand of salsa isn’t on the chip aisle? If I’m only looking for salsa as grouped with chips, you lose out on me even looking for your product!

Groupings are extremely important in marketing, and how your customer makes connections to your product can make or break the sale. Are they looking at color, hard data, or pictures to determine which things “go together”? Have I missed any other groupings of my pictures?

2 thoughts on “Groupings

  1. Pingback: Morale Boost » Consciously Corporate - When business is your life.

  2. On the last, symmetrical option, I say you exchange the first and third options, and flip the engine with the “swirl” on the center of it to point out the other direction. Then, you’ll really achieve symmetry…


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