To some extent marketing is about creating scarcity where there was none–even if that scarcity is merely psychological. As such, marketing basic necessities that are traditionally thought of as banalities, and which are available in abundance is always a challenge. Is marketing a water filter the same as marketing any other product? For years, manufacturers insisted it was.
But evolution in the water filter market, combined with unprecedented sales success, is changing the game. The makers of the popular PUR water purification products claim they’ve stumbled upon a new approach to marketing: filters that make better use of the benefits of the products themselves. As a result, there’s more demand for PUR water purifying products — particularly the disinfectant powder, which is designed to dissolve into water and quickly purify the fluids. There are now plans to triple PUR production to 150 million units every year. In order to understand such an incredible increase in product popularity, it’s important to understand the market for water filtration solutions.
Improving the lives of millions of impoverished people In America, where virtually all tap water is processed at a water treatment plant before it is dispensed for consumption, personal and in-home water filters are often viewed as an added luxury — a nice, but not necessary, layer of protection for further cleaning of water in our homes. While these filters can have tangible benefits domestically, they can be literal life-savers in countries where clean water isn’t available. The need for clean water is dire in many parts of the world, particularly in Africa, where countries are trying to acquire water filtration and purification tools to improve the quality of life. Proctor & Gamble is not the only country trying to supply those countries with much-needed filtration solutions, but they’re one of the best in terms of the quality of the product. The only downside is that, since PUR’s water disinfectant powder is considered to be the most sophisticated purification tool readily available to developing nations, it also carries the highest price tag, making it tougher for those countries to acquire. But thanks to innovative marketing strategies, PUR water filtration solutions have expanded reach to these countries.
Shifting toward humanitarian help Commercial marketing strategies didn’t make PUR disinfectant powder a big success. In fact, the traditional marketing methods led to the product being deemed a commercial failure. When that happened, focus changed to marketing that targeted the impoverished, malnourished and the non-profit organizations that serve them. Health care professionals quickly bought in, praising the product for its ability to kill and eliminate contaminants that threatened the lives of consumers of unclean water. That humanitarian success has bolstered the perception of PUR products as a whole, allowing them to expand production of their filtration powders and devices. It’s also demonstrated how much of a difference water filtration can make. Although developing nations face greater water quality challenges than the United States, water filters installed onto faucets and in refrigerators can have a marked impact on the quality of the water being consumed in the home. As clean water becomes more accessible to the world, it’s important to remember that even invisible contaminants can threaten the safety of all consumers. Given the relatively low cost of water filters, it’s a wise investment for any family, providing an extra safeguard against potential impurities.