Marketing is not just a shot in the dark and hoping something sticks. It’s a science of experimentation, measurement, and improvement. You try something, tweak it, try it again, and eventually you’ll get to a place where a particular promotion or content reaches the right audience at the right time and they convert. Also, people don’t just blindly buy products from just anybody. They are bombarded with millions of marketing messages every day and if you don’t grab their attention or answer an immediate need they have, the opportunity’s lost.
The only way to ensure that potential customers will even look at the products you offer is if they are aware of your brand. Would you rather buy a Mini Clubman or a Zotye? Say what? Yes, Zotye! Come again…? My point exactly. So although you don’t need to buy a car every day, you’ll look for a familiar brand name when you do. That’s why Mini Cooper spends millions of pounds on brand awareness. And that’s what you have to do if you want to make a lasting impression. It doesn’t have to cost you millions though. You can create inexpensive content that will keep your current customers aware of what you’re up to, inform new customers of your brand values, and hopefully impress total strangers to at least look twice when they see your logo.
What makes good content?
Good content makes people stop scrolling and pay attention. People engage with it by either liking, sharing, or commenting on it. Simple as that. Bad content is totally superfluous and bores people. It contributes to the rubbish bin in the sky, which is where it belongs.
The content you create and share should have some context, a reason to exist, and it must somehow relate to your brand. Let’s look at how some big brands do it to give you an idea. Just a note: A simple idea will always be much more powerful than a lot of special effects and gimmicks. You’ll see what I mean.
L’Oréal Virtual Make-up
Look how this campaign uses the pandemic and inherent trend of people not dressing up or perhaps looking after themselves during lockdowns, in this ad. L’Oréal addresses the fact that people could not go to stores to try out different shades. They created an engaging piece of content that caught the eye (pun intended) and certainly converted into sales.
Ikea’s “Bernie’s Chair” Campaign
It’s been a long time since we’ve seen something go as viral as this meme did. Images of Bernie Sanders popped up in the weirdest of places and still do. Although Ikea’s campaign sold a chair and mittens, it said so much more. If anything, this campaign was too successful. The concept and image performed so well that it might have outperformed the product. Did you know it came from an ad for Ikea? Sometimes ads do get it right.
Starbucks’s Interactive Artwork
Starbucks created an interactive artwork for their flagship store in Milan. Have a look at this article, scroll to the end and you’ll see how the interactive map works. It tells the brand narrative in an augmented way that’s hard to resist. It also inspires customers to create their own content. It basically delivers on all the requirements good content should have, and then some.
Red Bull’s Ski-Flyer Gets Wings
Red Bull gives its videos wings with this amazing campaign. They used Vallentin Delluc, a master ski-flyer, to speed ride over a deserted resort in the French Alps. Watch the video, it’s engaging beyond belief. Over 800 000 viewers also thought so. The video also illustrates the core brand promise of giving you wings. Need we say more?
The Internet and the world around you is filled with fantastic, and some very bad, examples of content. Keep your eyes open to learn what to do and what not to do. Before we get onto SEO, here’s just one last example of a brilliant social media ad that Burger King ran during the Covid-19 pandemic. They wanted to promote people supporting struggling restaurants during lockdowns. Have a look, it speaks for itself. This is a brilliant example of how you can create an extremely effective campaign on a very low budget.
Optimise your SEO
Although SEO is a maze, you just have to keep two things in mind. Put yourself in the mind of your user and ask yourself: “How do they talk about your products?” and, “What do they want to know?” Once you have the answers to those two questions, review all your web pages and make sure you use the same language that your audience might search for. Apply the same language to landing pages, headlines, title tags, blog posts, product descriptions, and everything else.
Social media content
Keep your timelines alive with vibrant images, relevant news, and content that is fun to consume. Host giveaways, invite guest bloggers who work in your niche to write for you, and use hashtags to distribute your content wider. Have a look at how Bon Bon Bon uses fun images to depict all their products on Instagram.
Short videos are also very popular, especially when you use them as Stories that only stay up for a day. Here’s something to keep in mind when you create images or videos: make sure they work on mobile devices, since that is where most people consume this kind of content. So instead of making a horizontal video, rather create a vertical one.
Online events and discussions
Attend conferences and events to spread the word about your brand. Don’t just attend them, participate! If you sound like an expert in the field you work in, people notice. They also notice your brand and might even visit your website. A new trend after the Covid-19 pandemic is virtual malls. Have a look at privy.com and see if you can list your store there.
Jump between clicks and bricks
Use the one to leverage the other. Use your in-person time with customers in your offline store to help drive traffic to your online site. Find low-key ways to engage your loyal customers when they leave your store: ask them to sign up for your email list when they pay; let them know about your customer loyalty program and any promotions you might be running online; and ask them to follow and engage with your pages on social media. Your in-person customers can be your greatest evangelists and can help spread your message far and wide.
Exact science or not, organic marketing certainly requires dedication and effort. By focusing on SEO, social media content, attending online conferences, and getting to know your customers, your business will grow on a foundation of consistent investment. What are you waiting for? Save money by spending time on your organic strategy.