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a recent Marketing
A Brilliant Experiment
What percent of people pay for
an item where service works on
the honor system? Guess!
Honest Tea, an organic beverage
company based in Maryland, used
this hook for a splendid
publicity project. In all 50
states, the company set up
unmanned vending stands where
hidden cameras tracked how many
people actually paid the
requested price for a bottle of
tea. Astoundingly, nationwide
about 95 percent of people paid.
The company then created and
publicized an "Honesty Index"
per state. Can you resist
checking out how your state
I love this campaign. Its
results were unpredictable - and
surprising. It's the kind of
story media outlets love to
cover, with effortless
localization built in. The
unmanned sales booths not only
facilitated the research but
simultaneously spread the word
about the product. The study
ties in neatly to the product's
branding. And its statistics are
the sort of thing people like to
mention to friends or talk about
Please pause a moment to ponder
a research question that might
connect to your branding and
spawn dozens of local news
stories, as Honest Tea's project
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