Tag Archives: Marketing
In the competitive world of B2C advertising, what is a marketer to do when it comes to new product releases? An even harder challenge is promoting new food products at a time when groceries are becoming so expensive, and families calculate every cent they plan to spend at the grocery store with no room for impulsive buying. There are plenty of examples, studies and resources about how to use social media for new product promotion, but not every company is able to pull it off. I submit to you a potential success story.
If you use Facebook you may be familiar with a product called MiO, a liquid water enhancer that comes in six flavors: berry pomegranate, fruit punch, mango peach, peach tea, sweet tea and strawberry melon. Last month Kraft Foods launched an advertising campaign on Facebook promoting the release of MiO in grocery stores, offering free samples to the first 100,000 fans to submit a request.
This is not the first campaign of its kind, but this is the first time I’ve ever signed up for this kind of promotion. Perhaps it was because I had just returned to Facebook after a brief hiatus, or perhaps the campaign really was eye-catching. Either way, I signed up and almost completely forgot about it until I got the sample in the mail today.
MiO (and Kraft Foods, by proxy), congratulations. I really enjoyed this product promotion experience from start to finish. Here is what they did right, and hopefully you all can derive a few takeaways for your own marketing and promotion efforts.
Sharing is caring:
“Well, I personally use Dogpile for the majority of my web searching and I think my customers do the same.”
“When I search for the kind of widgets I make, I search for something like ‘bright blue mango scented widgets made in Utah’ and I’m fairly sure my customers do the same.”
“Sure, I’ve asked a few of my customers how they find me, and they usually tell me they found me through Google.”
“I dunno, I think this whole internet thing is just a fad.”
Pop quiz: What do all the statements above have in common?
a) They are insightful and well thought out
b) The assumption behind each statement is sound and will lead to marketing success
c) I’ve said all of them
d) They are dangerous and can lead to a heaping sack of money being left on the table for a competitor to come along and sweep up
If you guessed ‘d,’ then you are absolutely correct, and you win the peace of mind that you are more informed than a large population of marketing decision makers. The truth is only one of the examples above is exaggerated (the ‘bright blue mango’ example). I have personally heard these statements from people who have been put in the position to make decisions about marketing, and it makes me fear for them (and their revenue).
Let me go ahead and rip the bandage off right now: how you think your customers behave does not matter. How they do behave and how you go about finding out how they behave does matter. You see, your competitor (for example, Bobby’s Widget Extravaganza) has just completed extensive market research on the buying behavior of their customers and target markets. Bobby’s team wants to know where their customers go to search for their products, how they’re searching for these products and what content their site needs to deliver to convince the customer to buy from Bobby’s. So, while you’re busy optimizing your website with the phrase ‘bright blue mango scented widgets made in Utah,’ Bobby has implemented a holistic marketing plan that not only includes on-site optimization with targeted keywords, but billboards, emails and fliers as well. Bobby took the time to understand how to hold his customer’s hand through the buy-cycle, and now he’s scooping up your money.
“Well, yeah, I would never think that my customers would use such a ridiculously far-fetched key phrase to find my product.” Ok, but I bet you’ve been guilty of using your personal experiences to fuel your marketing decisions. Who can blame you? The easiest market research you can do is the kind you do in the mirror. In actuality, anecdotal experience (aka your hypothesis) is a great launch point for testing and formulating a plan. Who knows your product better than you? But you need to step back more often than not and try to view your product from an outside perspective.
Asking a few of your regular customers is not a bad start, but again it can be just as limiting. Your regular customers have already been sold, and are happy because they keep coming back to you. There are a lot more psychological factors at play with regular customers (habit, familiarity, fear of straying from the norm, loyalty, etc.) than with potential new customers (fear of trying new things, distrust, etc.). The best opportunities for you to attract new business or create loyalty is to understand your infrequent customers (where are they going when they’re not going to you?) and people who are not buying from you at all (are you not visible when they’re making buying decisions? Which competitors do they see first, and how are they increasing their exposure?).
Think about attracting customers the same way you think about a resume. Would you send the same resume to an investment firm that you’d send to a fast food restaurant? You probably would have done much more research for the job at the investment firm. You’d know the type of qualities and achievements you should highlight in your resume, the name of the person you’re sending your resume to and who the major players are in the company.
Knowing your audience and what they’re looking for helps you tailor your message and approach the right way so that you get the job every time.