In life and in marketing, things go wrong and we need to adapt and change course. These course corrections can be one of the great things about the marketing business – seeing opportunity where others see a problem. And that’s exactly what Country Time Lemonade just did.

Over the last few years, we’ve seen the David and Goliath moments of big government and/or stick in the mud neighbors running roughshod over the popup lemonade stands of children throughout the U.S. Just recently over Memorial Day weekend, kids in Denver made headlines when a neighbor called the city to shut down a local lemonade stand where the kids were raising money for charity.

It leaves us to wonder what has the world come to.

But don’t despair – this is where lemons become a lemonade marketing opportunity. Enter Country Time Lemonade to the rescue. Yep, this is the savior kids and their lemonade stands are waiting for and the genius PR moment executed to perfection by the brand.

Meet Country Time Legal Ade. Country Time has created a cute video and brand position ready to help kids in need. What’s actually happening is Country Time is vowing to pay up to $300 in fines and/or permits for kids who run afoul of their local laws and nosy neighbors and the PR spike will no doubt yield impressions for weeks to come.

This marketing opportunity shows how to do things right at so many levels.

  1. Pay attention to relevant content, pop culture and viral stories to consider how your brand might fit into the dialogue. Remember, we just talked about this here last week.
  2. Act quickly. Today’s trending topics don’t last long and you don’t have months to come up with a great idea or marketing play. If you think there’s an opportunity you must react and execute immediately. In this case Country Time was “on the case” in a little over a week.
  3. Meet your customers where they are. Country Time did not go out and look for new customers; they offered value to their existing customers which can work to build brand loyalty and new fans thanks to your support of your base.

You won’t always have a hit so big it wins the Super Bowl like Oreo’s now famous dip in the dark tweet of 2013, but you may create opportunities to start a dialogue with new and existing customers in ways that are timely and authentic because that’s what good marketing should be about. So kudos Country Time, I think I’ll go make some lemonade.

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