There are a lot of brands that get it as far as their customers are concerned. These brands specifically create marketing campaigns that not only help create new products for their brands, but they also help make the customer feel involved. If you don’t know this already, if a customer likes your brand, they want to be involved.
Who’s doing it right?
Lays Do Us A Flavor – While there’s a nice reward aspect to this, in essence, this marketing campaign is allowing customers to submit flavor ideas. The best ideas will face off against one another, the flavors with the most votes become chips. Then, the flavor that’s purchased the most goes on to ‘win’ and the customer who created the flavor wins a million dollars. This makes for a ton of warm fuzzies with their customers. This creates engagement, conversations, etc. Great job Lays.
Pepsi – Specifically for the Mountain Dew brand, Pepsi has done something similar. In 2007 and 2009 Mountain Dew let customers vote for their favorite of their new flavors. While, this is something I think they should take advantage of again this is a great campaign to create engagement.
As marketers, sometimes we get stuck in a rut. The never ending churn of coupons/discount/sales emails. If you always have a discount, a coupon, or a sale, nothing is ever truly on sale — remember that.
Your customers are signed up for your emails because they want to see something meaningful, they want to see something different. They want to be engaged, and they want to interact with your brand.
So you’re asking yourself, yeah, but how do I do that?
Instead of a sale, or a coupon. If you have an ecommerce site, send out a gift card, to change things up.
Start a loyalty or rewards program for your customers. Buy X amount of dollars per month, get X amount reward. Reward programs work.
If you sell candles, soaps, makeup, etc. Give your customers control sometimes. Help us pick our next candle flavor, soap scent, or our next eye shadow pallet. Make your customers feel involved. If you don’t sell products that allow your customers to have that kind of control, make it relevant for you. Sell car parts? Have your customers help you pick a mascot, a logo, a place to feature your next commercial.
Real World Examples:
Bath and Body works – Bath and Body works is a brand I love, but unfortunately they’ve fallen into the death trap of revolving discounts. Every email is a discount, a sale, etc. Know what I want to see? (If you are not a fan of Bath and Body works, you may not know that they like to retire scents they carry. That means a scent or a product you’ve loved for years disappears.) This is the perfect option for Bath and Body works to get customers involved. For one month a retired scent will return to our stores/website. Vote for your favorite scent that you want to see return. Make a hashtag, spread the word on facebook, email. This will get your customers buzzing.
Cheryl’s Cookies – Cheryl’s is great with emailing out discounts. But, I couldn’t be less involved with this brand. I buy cookies from them occasionally for gifts, but I have no love, no connection to the company. Because Cheryl’s offers decorated cookies, and other treats — they could easily take advantage of a flavor or design contest to get customers involved. Design/create your own cookie for a chance to win a cookie assortment, give customers the ability to vote after a month or two. Winning design/flavor goes on to be a featured cookie for a month.
The Bouqs – I saw this company on Shark Tank when they were featured. I was happy to see how different they were as a company from other flower companies that simply hire local florists and send out crappy looking bouquets. I’m going to guess by their high rating on Google that they do send high quality products to their customers. This isn’t actually a brand I’ve interacted with personally. Now, if The Bouqs is trying to set themselves apart, I’d go the route of a #badbouquet hashtag on twitter. People post what their crappy flowers look like, your customer post with the #greatbouquet hashtag (given to them on the tag of their own bouquet). Offer #badbouquet customers a discount, and get them to sign up for your email list.
When reading these tips, remember at the end of the day your customer simply want to feel connected to you and to your brand. Figure out how that can apply to your company and create a marketing that will engage your customers.
note: Some of the graphics used on this page were designed with elements from FreePik.com