If you’re a small business that’s concerned with doing as much effective marketing as you can with your limited resources, naturally, you might think that you’ve got nothing in common with big, national brands and their multi-million dollar marketing campaigns. However, failing to learn from the moves of these big brands is, in our view, a missed opportunity. Many of their strategies can be adapted and successfully used by smaller marketing teams with fewer resources.
Here are three strategies you can use right now based on recent big brand campaigns that caught our eye:
1. Think further outside the box
What is one thing that big companies like to spend their money on? Creative ideas that make them stand out from the competition. This comes from a natural problem big brands have: when you’re already a household name, what can you do to actually stand out and surprise the customer? Smaller brands need ideas for a different reason: to get noticed in the first place.
The great thing about this is that great ideas don’t have to cost a lot of money. You won’t have market researchers and focus groups on your side, but if you can manage to think outside the box, implementing the campaign doesn’t have to be so hard.
In the campaign below, KFC has found a way to showcase fried chicken in new light. The idea could just as easily have come from an independent fried chicken place as KFC.
2. Give a voice to your audience
We no longer live in a world where marketers create one-way messages that go out to their audiences. The modern marketer’s job is to take the voice of their most loyal followers and amplify it to inspire other potential customers out there.
One company that does a great job at this is ASOS. Via their social media channels, they allow all their customers to tag them with #AsSeenOnMe. This, in turn, provides ASOS with a never-ending stream of inspiring images that they don’t have to produce themselves. By giving a voice to their audience, they’re making use of what is perhaps their most valuable marketing resource.
Check out the ASOS Instagram.
3. Wear Your Values on Your Sleeve
If you’re familiar with economist Thorstein Veblen’s theories on conspicuous consumption, you probably know that the face of consumption has changed in the modern era. These days, consumers like to not only purchase a product but also align themselves with a mission.
One surefire way to get some extra traction for your company is to align yourself and your marketing materials with a cause you believe in and that people are passionate about. If people know they’re solving their need for a product or service but also helping a good cause, they’re more likely to align with your brand.
A shining example of this strategy is Patagonia, who has never shied away from showcasing their ideals, even in cases where it caused controversy and didn’t necessarily help them sell more clothes. The strength of their imagery has galvanized many of their customers into loyal advocates for the brand.
Have you used a big brand campaign as inspiration for your own company’s marketing? We want to hear about it! Let us know in the comments below.