Have you noticed how much of your social media has become inundated with ads and marketing pieces? Companies have been increasing their social media usage over the years and in 2014 92% of companies recognized its value as a platform for marketing. While “trending”, “increasing following” and “going viral” are all admirable goals for brand awareness, there may be another way to create a surge in brand influence. Social media is effective for now, but it’s not necessarily innovative, and its interfaces are becoming more cluttered every day. In today’s world, innovation and influence go hand in hand. Help your brand reemerge from the clutter and regain its influence with four key concepts.
Creating the Sub-Culture
When consumers are choosing between brands, they primarily rely on their feelings rather than brand facts. If you can create a “rifle-approach” and appeal to consumers on a seemingly personal level it helps create a “sub-culture” and potential brand loyalty.This sub-culture creation should begin with your employees, who are your brand builders, and organically filter through to your end consumers.
Now that you’ve created a sub-culture, you can tap into it. Let’s say for example, your product is a re-usable water bottle. Your sub-culture messaging might have something to do with conservation, environmentalism, and possibly the humanitarian effort. A possible niche event (assuming we are keeping with the example) could be teaming up with state parks and inviting people to spend the day refurbishing hiking trails. This allows your brand sub-culture to build up and creates positive buzz among the community. At this point, you’re ready to brand the service and/or product through exclusive offerings or other cause-related marketing.
Exclusive has quite the ring to it, doesn’t it? It instantly peaks your interest. Why does exclusiveness resonate the way it does? Because it insinuates rareness or scarcity, and as any college Econ class will tell you, scarcity creates value. People respond well when invited to events or offerings that are not widely available. It makes them feel valuable; and they are because they are your company’s best asset. Serving consumers is your purpose regardless of your service or product. Create events, newsletters, discounts or mailings with a VIP list to engage your consumers directly and create perceived value.
Quality beats Quantity
This old adage is as true as ever. Be sure you’ve tested your product/service and that it lives up to your value promise. It is always better to hit the market with few specialized and well-targeted products/services than to go out with less developed or less researched ones.
The approach behind these four key concepts is that they build on each other. By creating the sub-culture of your brand you can easily communicate and identify with essential niche markets. By identifying your niche markets and planning events to engage them, you can then generate exclusive offerings that create a buzz around your brand and company. Finally you can ignite the buzz by delivering a quality product/service that is designed to triumph. Reclaim your brand influence and see just how influential your company can be.
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