Marketing teams in every industry hope to achieve “buzz,” or consumer-driven marketing momentum. However, as Randall Beard highlights, this can be particularly difficult to earn in the CPG space. Just 10% of brands account for 85% of product-specific mentions in any given category. For the other 90% of brands, it can be difficult to earn any mentions on social media.
The connection between buzz and strong sales is well-known. However, what you may not know is that buzz isn't usually a matter of luck. It's nothing like winning the lottery. CPG brands that succeed at earning organic mentions and customer-generated promotion typically have a smart marketing strategy. Join us as we review ten tactics that are effective tools for increasing brand visibility.
Consider Influencer Marketing
Consumers of all ages trust bloggers, vloggers, and Instagram power users. These highly-visible influencers can be a powerhouse for potential exposure. Connect with brand-relevant influencers during your product development life cycle, in order to gain access to exceptional feedback.
Know Your Niche
Your product can't be everything to everyone. Maybe you're in the business of making mornings a little easier for busy Moms. Perhaps you deliver image-conscious health products to young professionals. Understanding your niche, and working to build authentic connections with your target market, can be a far more effective tactic than spreading your brand's products far and wide.
Consumers love behind-the-scenes videos that show how ingredients are grown, transported, and sourced. Transparency can go a long way, particularly among today's smart and conscious consumers. Creating transparent marketing shows that you have nothing to hide, and it can hold viral sharing potential.
Have a Unified Story
Emerging CPG brands may have to do a lot of pitching to potential influencers and media outlets before they gain momentum. That's okay, but your brand should make the pitching process as easy as possible to save time. By developing a brilliant, unified brand story, you can ensure you're able to pitch as efficiently as possible.
Know Your “Hook”
Your brand isn't just sugar-free granola. Your products are a response to consumer demand, which speaks to a larger story. Maybe your news hook is that modern consumers are eating healthier than ever. Perhaps it's a story about how busy professionals need healthy products to power them through 18 hour days. Whatever it is, knowing your cultural themes can help you develop more enticing marketing.
Target the Right Channels
If your brand succeeds at building buzz in traditional media outlets, you may not see a spike in sales – especially not if your target buyers primarily use Instagram and SnapChat. Not all buzz is created equal, and the “right” channels for buzz are the ones that your ideal buyers are already using. By understanding how your ideal customers interface with social media and media outlets, you can focus on the right channels.
Ask for Action
By providing incentives to your existing customers, you may see a much-desired spike in your buzz. BizReport notes that brands who directly ask for social media posts and testimonials as part of a campaign can see a 4% lift.
Your brand can't be fast-and-fresh one week, and locally-grown the next. A consistent brand experience and brand story may be critical to achieving buzz. If your customers don't feel like they know your brand, they'll be less likely to promote it.
Be (a Little) Controversial
Taking a stand on what your company believes in can be extraordinarily buzz-worthy. While political marketing is always risky business, organizations who advocate for issues their customers care about can achieve brand heroism, media coverage, and lifelong fans.
Say Thank You
If customers care enough to promote your business on social media, in blogs, or in other forms of media, your company should take the time to say “thank you.” Monitoring and responding to company mentions can be a critical tool to convert casual fans into dedicated promoters.
Has your CPG organization struggled to build brand buzz? What marketing tactics have you found most effective?