“Sell benefits, not features” may be the most clichéd piece of guidance given to people involved in marketing and sales, but it’s certainly the most valuable. It’s also indispensable when starting a business.
Benefits are hard-wired into the NoMU range of products – primarily a collection of proprietary herb and spice mixes that enable the most ordinary home cook to easily produce great-tasting food in a flash.
Over the years the range has grown to include the most innovative packaging ever for real vanilla, as well as dry mix-at-home pesto and fabulous hot chocolate. The most recent additions to the range are four concentrated liquid stocks (Fonds) that comfortably beat anything else on the market.
It’s rare to find a business that is as successful in focusing on the benefits its products deliver to its customers. The international food brands may have been like that at some point in their life cycles, but they have grown into monoliths who do nothing more than manage (dominate?) a supply chain.
NoMU was started nearly 10 years ago in her home kitchen by my sister, Tracy Foulkes, who may be the most detail-obsessed person I know (in a good way). It’s a trait that can occasionally produce inter-personal challenges, but it’s fabulous if you’re using her products.
Since May I’ve been on the receiving end of the love that people all around the world have for NoMU, in the form of orders placed on ‘my’ site Nomushop.co.za. Before building the site I had this image of Mrs Botha, living in the countryside, or perhaps even a suburb of Johannesburg or Pretoria, who turns to the online option in frustration at being unable to find her favourite NoMU products in her local store.
Well, it turns out that there is also an equivalent of Mrs Botha in Texas, Belgium, Slovenia, Australia, Chile, and many other countries around the world (OK, I know Texas is a state, but most of Europe could comfortably fit inside it).
The other half of NoMU is Tracy’s husband, Paul Raphaely, who is as obsessed about marketing as Tracy is about flavour and design. What I’m seeing, in the form of orders placed at Nomushop.co.za, is the result of their combined efforts.
At this point you can rightly ask: What is the benefit of Nomushop.co.za? Simple, it’s the world’s only 24/7 source of the entire NoMU range, including the bulk packs and refills. We’ve recently added the option of airmail (previously all international orders were sent by surface mail only, which takes a dreadfully long time). And, I’d very much like to have a stock holding in Europe and North America, so that we can reduce both delivery cost and transit time.
Just so that we have this straight, the stock holding in local markets is a feature. The benefit is quicker and cheaper deliveries.