The consumers of today are fickle, dynamic, and all the more demanding in nature. They get bombarded by thousands of brands on a daily basis, from online popups and non-skippable ads to huge billboards and TV displays. But these consumers neither have the time nor energy to invest and engage in. Majority of these messages thereby rendering most of this branding ineffective. In today’s day and age when innumerous brands are fighting for a sliver of consumer’s attention, well-defined and executed marketing tactics can go a long way in ensuring that your brand leaves a lasting impression on your consumer. Here are eight such effective strategies to generate awareness for your brand, thus setting it apart from all its contemporaries:
Define the right consumer segments
With multiple brands emerging and growing significantly, the total audience is increasingly getting divided into smaller sub-segments. This makes identifying and understanding the right consumer segment all the more important for any brand to target. Considering how every brand has a limited amount of budget allocated towards marketing, one should utilize that money as objectively as possible. Therefore, defining your core target groups will help ensure that the money, time, and efforts invested in attracting and engaging consumers does not go in vain.
Empower consumers through community building
In this increasingly digital era, the world of marketing has undergone a significant transformation. With next to everyone owning a smartphone these days, marketing is no longer a one-way mode of communication. In fact it has become a multi-directional medium, going from brand to consumer, consumer to brand, consumer to consumer, and so on. This shift also indicates how important an aspect community-building has become, when it comes to marketing. Consumers are increasingly looking for brands that enable an enhanced experience not just for them as individuals but also in terms of a closely-connected community.
For instance, renowned bike brand Harley Davidson has begun appealing to its customers emotionally by connecting them with the brand as well as each other through HOG (Harley Owners Group). Essentially, by appealing to consumers’ innate desire of building relationships, one can effectively market their brand, generate awareness about it, and build an entire community around it.
Create and distribute relevant content
Earlier, branding would largely remain limited to a 30-second commercial or a little snippet across traditional channels like television or print ads. However, in this day and age of digital interventions, brands are gradually becoming omnipresent in a very seamless manner. This has led to brands getting engaged with consumers in ways that are not so obvious and pushy, but are still enough to make an impact. By creating content that integrates the brand apparent in a subtle manner, one can enable a highly engaging consumer experience.
Therefore, a brand needs to ensure that all the elements of their messaging are cohesive, and consistently so. Associating the brand with something that would find great appeal among the target groups would work more efficiently than being very in-the-face with what they do. Such a marketing strategy would enable them to gain brand recognition and subsequently, loyalty among consumers.
Understand and harness the power of search
A lot of consumer journeys are starting from internet today, and specifically through search. While a brand might initially find it challenging, they need to understand how significant this touchpoint is. Deploying this can help a brand map the consumer journey and behaviour in an insightful manner across several parameters. By understanding and harnessing the power of search, a brand can truly optimize its presence and assert a greater influence on their consumers. For this, leveraging technological interventions like AI and Big Data can really come handy in updating a brand with real-time consumer collective behaviour, thereby enabling them to mark their presence wherever the consumers are while making the communication as personalized as possible.
Build strong referral programmes
Credibility is one of the biggest factors that helps differentiate a brand from the rest. In today’s world consumers rely heavily on the trust factor, especially when it comes from someone they personally know. ‘Word-of-mouth’ has been one of the most effective mediums of communication since the stone age. While a consumer may seldom talk about the good product or services that they experienced, they would not think twice before expressing their displeasure. Therefore, a brand needs to lay emphasis on cultivating trust and loyalty among its consumers, not just to retain them but also to gain many more through their extended social networks. For instance, a brand may introduce strong rewarding referral programmes. By incentivizing customer reviews and recommendations through such initiatives, a brand can increase awareness in a very convenient and cost-effective manner.
Own a social cause and build PR around it
In this day and age when skepticism prevails and consumer confidence towards corporates is at an all-time low, a brand needs to ensure that they assert on having a greater purpose beyond their profit margins. While making money is undoubtedly important, a brand that emphasizes on its willingness to contribute towards the society always finds greater appeal and admiration among consumers. Modern-day consumers are well-aware of the immense power that corporates have to make a positive change, and are always on the lookout for one that truly does so.
Therefore, in order to make an impact, brands need to ensure that they have taken up a social cause and more importantly, are being true to it rather than just reducing it to a PR exercise. By readily investing time, money, and energy in furthering a social cause, a brand can generate great awareness around it among consumers, earning their admiration and consequently, their loyalty.
Leverage social network
In this digital era, it is hard to imagine a world functioning without social media. With new enterprises emerging across domains every other day, mass media has ceased to be the go-to medium for marketing, and brands have begun turning to social media and building a strong portfolio there. Moreover, with the phenomenal rise of social media, it has been observed that there are now more and more influencers in the scenario with a limited reach of their own, as compared to the previous scenario of less influencers with a much bigger reach.
While this may seem like a bane to one, it is actually the other way round. This is because while the limited influencers had a greater reach, their audiences were largely saturated. Whereas the engagement levels that these influencers have among their limited reach-sets are higher. Therefore, harnessing this power of social network can be one of the most impactful, credible, and cost-effective tactics for generating brand awareness.
Prioritize high impact over slow burn
In today’s attention-deficit age, it has become an imperative for brands to grab and act upon whatever little window of consumer attention that they get to make a lasting impact there and then. Moreover, with the number of touchpoints exploding, the consumer journey has become a lot more complicated than what it previously was. In such a scenario, a brand needs to assert on a robust and seamless integration of all the touchpoints across multiple channels in order to effectively reach out to its consumers. Communicating in a manner that has a high retention value will help in ensuring that your target group remembers the impact you had on them within five seconds versus building around a premise for weeks that they might just lose interest in. While it may seem like a tougher task, brands need to prioritize instantaneous impact over gradually settling in, in order to build and increase awareness among consumers.