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Love your problems

This isn’t one of those blogs where I tell you to learn to live with your weaknesses. I’m not going to tell you to fall in love with your thighs or accept that even though you’ve bought the book you’re never going to read War and Peace (watching the TV series is probably enough to get you through the literature section of the pub quiz anyway).

No, the reason I love problems is that they are the spark that generates new ideas, innovations and change.

In a world where we are bombarded by marketing messages,it’s not our problems we should be worried about, it’s how to be original. Anything that gives us a chance to do something different, that gives us a USP – even if it’s a problem – is an opportunity.

Let’s look at a high end supermarket like M&S. The recession hit and they had a problem. M&S sell a high end product and people were suddenly discovering the budget joys of Lidl and Aldi. They needed to keep their high end cache. So how should they market their product to a nation tightening its belt?

The solution – the £10 meal deal. They repackaged their food not as an expensive grocery but as an alternative to an expensive night out. Suddenly shopping at M&S is a luxury that saves you money (everyone’s favourite sort).

The deal is run as a limited edition so they keep that cache. But without the problem, would they have come up with such a popular promotion that drives footfall?

Love your problems.

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