Marketing and the Fisherman

387-marketing-and-the-fishermanA marketer goes on vacation to a small African village. While he is having a walk along the nearby lake, he sees a fisherman getting out of his boat. Remembering the delicious fish dish of yesterday he decides to start a conversation with him.

– How much does it take you to catch fish? – asks him the fisherman.

– Not much time, indeed – answers the fisherman.

– Then why don’t you stay longer to catch more fish?  – continues the marketer.

The fisherman explains to him that the fish caught is quite enough for him to meet the needs of his family.

– In fact, what do you do in life? – asks the marketing consultant.

– I sleep late every day. I go fishing a little. I spend much time playing with my children. I have a rest under a cocoa palm every afternoon. I go to the bar to meet friends in the evening. We drink some beers together, play the drums and sing some songs. My life is happy and fully completed – replies the fisherman.

The marketing consultant just sighs:

–  I’ve got a MBA Degree in Marketing from the Harvard University and I could help you. Firstly, you ought to start going fishing longer every day. This way you’ll sell more fish. You will advertise your fish at all local restaurants saying that fish is never over and they will start working only with you.  With the extra income you will buy a bigger boat. You will place an ad of your fish in the local newspaper as well. The more money you earn the more modern boat you will be able to buy. After that you will buy another one and another one, and so on and so forth. Everybody will begin talking about your marine fleet of boats and about your business. You will start negotiations directly with leading fisheries and fish factories instead of selling your fish to middle-class people. These fish giants will have got to know about the quality of your fish owing to the restaurants you will have been working with.  You will even be able to open a fish factory of your own, to place a banner at the entrance of your village and to give interviews recounting your success story. Thus you will be able to leave this small village and to move to a big city. Later you could even move to another, more developed country from where you will run your own business.

– And how much time will it take me to achieve all this? – asks the fisherman.

– Hmmmm … maybe between 10 and 20 years – answers the marketer.

– And then? And then what will happen?

– Then? Then you will really have fun – says the marketing consultant. – When your fish factory becomes famous all over the world you might sell your shares and you will earn millions of dollars.

– Millions of dollars? Okay and then? What will my life be after that? – insists the fisherman.

– Well, after that you will retire. Your life will calm down. You will move to a small village near a lake. You will sleep late every morning. You will spend much time with your family. You will go fishing for pleasure. You will have a rest under a cocoa palm in the afternoon. Your evenings will be full of joy and happiness because you will be with your friends drinking beer, playing the drums and singing songs … 🙂


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