On Saturday, my son and I attended a storm chaser presentation that had been set up for the cub scouts by the local Boy Scout council. There were segments by several storm chasing teams, the local TV weatherman, and a son of one of the organizers.

One of the mothers from our pack seemed to enjoy the day more than anyone (she's a self-proclaimed storm show addict).

What she didn't enjoy was looking at the loose tooth that was poking out of the mouth of one of our pack's kids. Seriously, he looked like a narwhal. And the storm crazy mother is the wife of an orthodontist.

As we were waiting for the first segment in our group's rotation to begin, she offered the boy $3 if he'd pull the tooth out right then and there. And she told him how to twist and pull to get it out the most easily.

He wouldn't bite, so she upped the offer to $6, and even pulled it out of her wallet and showed him the bills. "This is on top of what the tooth fairy will give you," she pointed out. About that time, I was ready to check myself for loose teeth, but he still wasn't taking the bait.

In the end, he went home with the tooth still in his mouth. I wouldn't be surprised to hear that a stray breeze had blown it out later that day. But he wasn't willing to pull it.

There are a few marketing lessons in that.

What Loose Teeth Are You Afraid to Pull from Your Business?

Is there some product, website, daily practice, etc. that isn't doing your business a lick of good -- or worse yet, is making you look ridiculous -- but that you're so emotionally attached to that you're not willing to pull out and be done with? That tooth has got to go.

What if you could sell it, free yourself of the dead weight, and make some money in the process? For heaven's sake, what are you waiting for?

Well Targeted Customers Are Willing to Pay More

I think that tooth was bugging all of us. But who was it that pulled out her wallet and offered $6 to see it go? The orthodontist's wife. It just goes to show that some people feel the itches that your product scratches more acutely than others. And they're willing to pay more to get it scratched.

Reader Comment:
Adwords Expert said:
Nice anecdote. I face a similar problem quite often when checking my domain portfolio. Many are not making enough money and I think about selling them off, but most often I am not taking the required action b/c of sentimental reasons. Lesson learn...
(join the conversation below)

If you're trying to target your product at "everybody with a website" or "all females" or something, you may be short changing yourself. Tightly target people with a big itch and scratch it well, and you'll be able to command a higher price.