I want to buy a VIVO phone. No, it has nothing to do with its features or sheer beauty, because I am yet to make the conscious effort to unmask the hullabaloo around VIVO phones. It’s mainly because of the promotion that was held a couple of weeks ago right outside my office.
The VIVO distributor set up an exciting three-day promotion with loud music, banners, and my most favorite part of the promotion – Mascots. The Mascots were in a balloon-like outfit resembling robots that made their dance moves graceful. I grew up in the tele-tubby era so you can imagine the connection I had with this promotion. I spent at least 20-minutes a day basking in the mascot dance moves. At some point when I could no longer hold myself back, I joined them (without the costume) only to feel like a tele-tubby. The next week, Infinix set up a one-day promotion. The Infinix promotion was characterized by impressive gadgets, a fully loaded roadshow truck complete with a stage, a DJ, and of course dancers, it was simply spectacular and without a doubt a very expensive promotion. The difference in these two promotions left me wondering, what type of promotion works well for business products and services, especially in the prevailing economic times when a majority of businesses are experiencing a cash flow crisis? How can a business set up a promotional campaign that gets the brand noticed?
Clearly profile your target audience: Profiling your target audience is so much like drawing a portrait. The artist begins with the outline, a big picture, and then goes into the details, keenly drawing the fine lines and details of the image. When profiling start from the known to the unknown. The known fact includes information that is readily available for instance, age, social media behavior, education, religious affiliation, income status etc. Once you have the big picture, dig in to get information regarding habits, beliefs, needs and ambitions. The data you gather becomes the basis of a campaign that captures your audience’s attention and imagination and most likely lead to sales.
Develop messages that resonate with your audience, profiling your audience enables development of both verbal and non-verbal messages that resonate with your audience. Take for instance the non-verbal message of using the balloon mascots during the Vivo promotion. Depending on your world view, it generates several messages, as far as I was concerned, the promotion sent a message of freedom, fun and possibilities. As a consumer, I am intrigued by the possibility of possessing a phone that can take me to moon! Then again that’s just me; I am a vain city dweller who is overwhelmed by all the advertising bombarding me from all corners.
Find the appropriate channel(s). If your message is going to reach the right audience at the right moment, then it needs to be send through the right channel that is accessible and affordable to the target audience. Based on your audience analysis it is easy to define which channels your audience interacts with. The choice of channel is sometimes determined by factors such as age, education, gender, religious beliefs, access to electricity, internet penetration and values. For instance, audiences that are highly educated will prefer to read and watch. For this type of an audience consider placing your promotions in newspapers, websites, social media channels, brochures etc. If your audience is less educated use a channel that allows verbal explanation of the product or service in a language that your audience understands. If your audience is able to understand your message then you are one step closer to generating a sale.
Know your product: Any Entrepreneur will tell you that once the product or service is launched in the market, it changes hands almost immediately, and the consumer becomes the new owner. Your role is to deliver the product/service as instructed by the consumer. Good products/services are versatile and good brands are agile in order to meet customer demands. A good example of how a product changes hands is the popular brand of jelly among women known as Arimis. The manufacturer of Arimis had designed a product for milking cows. When the product hit the market, the consumers (read women) decided that this product is better suited for their skin. When the manufacturer noticed the change of product use, they improved on the packaging, brought in a variety of sizes and improved their distribution channel. Even though the product still bears the icon of a cow, you are sure to find an Arimis tub in the handbag of the lady next to you! In understanding the product /service, focus more on the benefits that the consumer shall derive by using your products and services. Customers buy benefits not products.
Watch, Learn, improve: I am sure you have the most wonderful marketing ideas for your business. However, it pays to learn from the world around you. Do not reinvent the wheel, it was already invented in 1800’s and it shall cost you a little fortune in money and time. Learn how other brands in your industry are approaching their marketing. Study the journey of the big brands in your industry and learn the tricks of the trade. Since you may not have several millions to spare for your marketing like they do, identify one aspect of successful marketing events that can work for the business and audience and improve on it. Big brands don’t just mount campaigns on ad-hoc, their promotions are informed by data collected from their potential customers who are most likely your target audience too. Find ways to create distinctions for your product/service: small things like personal attention to client needs, or personalized service, delivery, packaging etc. Can be the adjustments you make on your campaigns to gain the audience attention.
Finally, don’t try to mount a campaign alone. Successful campaigns require a third and fourth eye. Find your closest associates and engage them to provide feedback on messaging, artworks, choice of channel etc. Better still, you can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on +254 721 256 778 and we can develop a survey to better understand your audience, and work together to design a promotional campaign that gets your brand noticed.
Good luck in designing a promotional campaign that gets you noticed!