When you own a business, one of the most difficult tasks is building and maintaining your customer base. Entrepreneurship is great, but not everyone knows how to succeed as a business owner. Depending on the industry you are entering, competition could be high and there are significant barriers to entry that could derail your dreams.
Attracting customers to buy your product or service is challenging. The market may be saturated with similar brands, all of which have more experience and a head start. You will need to ask yourself, “how do I make my brand stand out from the rest?”
A great marketing strategy can be the difference between your business succeeding and going belly-up. Once you have determined who your target audience is, you must craft messaging that connects to them using the marketing channels that will be the most effective. Sometimes, unconventional marketing strategies can give you an edge as you build your customer base. Here are a few unique strategies that you should try.
Building brand awareness is a crucial aspect of any marketing campaign, especially for newer businesses. Your goal is to tell potential customers about the existence of the brand so that they start to think of you when they enter the first stages of the buyer’s journey. Promotional products are perfect for increasing brand recognition, especially in the local community. Basically, you order custom-printed merchandise that contains your company logo, name, or other information.
A few ideas for promotional items that you could order include t-shirts, coffee mugs, custom tote bags, rally towels, and koozies. Whenever someone receives this item from a giveaway and then uses it, they could expose your brand to potential customers and improve your public visibility.
Social Media Automation
Social media platforms have become top marketing channels for brands all over the world. With the world at their fingertips, people can connect with others via Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Snapchat, Twitter, and other platforms. This makes these channels the perfect method for marketing, granting you access to targeted audiences with pages, groups, and other similar functions.
Automation can help you generate leads more efficiently. You can send automated messages to people who comment on your posts. LinkedIn automation allows you to send connection requests or group invites to anyone who takes a specific action. Social media automation frees up your time for other tasks while still connecting with audience members who can engage with your brand.
Trying to make a name for yourself in the local community? You should consider vehicle branding. You can get a custom vehicle wrap printed for your car to display your logo or company name in a very noticeable way. This advertising method can be particularly effective for daily commuters who potentially spend hours each day driving, and they could easily notice a memorable design or logo on the car next to them.
Even if you just drive around town with this custom decal, more people will see your brand, which can pique curiosity and eventually promote brand recognition. The more people know and recognize the brand, the more potential customers you have.
Being noticed by potential customers is one thing. Getting them to engage with a marketing channel is something else entirely. Interactive marketing is a strategy businesses use to generate additional interest in a brand with messaging content that the viewer can engage with directly. This produces more buy-in and a memorable experience for the person, effectively promoting your brand.
A few interactive ideas you could use to create deeper connections with your audience include interactive videos, social media polls, user-generated content, augmented reality, and AI chatbots. If you want to go above and beyond, create a unique in-person experience. Think of the Coca-Cola “Happiness Machine” campaign, which installed a vending machine in a college cafeteria where a person inside the machine handed out fun prizes in addition to the coke. This type of marketing can be very effective and is only limited by your imagination.
Think Outside the Box
Yes, it is a cliche for every job opportunity and marketing department. “We want people who can think outside the box.” But that is the whole point of marketing in a competitive industry. You need to stand out from the rest, so your messaging cannot look or sound the same as everyone else’s. There needs to be a conscious effort to occupy a unique space in your niche.
Unique marketing strategies like promotional products, social media automation, vehicle branding, and interactive experiences can leave a lasting impression on potential customers, and if combined with compelling messages, could convince them to consider your business over the competition when they are starting the buyer’s journey.