Isn’t brand marketing just common sense?

yeah-but-no-butYeah but no but…

I have to admit it, I’ve worked in food marketing and branding for almost 20 years and love it.

I love it for a whole host of reasons – trying to understand consumers, coming up with a great idea, the satisfaction of seeing it on the shelves and the sheer pride when I watch a complete stranger really, really enjoy it!

And I love it because what I do isn’t really difficult, it’s just common sense isn’t it?….

It is common sense at its most simple – identify a need, meet it well and make sure the people who have the need know you exist – but in practice, there is a whole load of art, science and skill to making brands grow.

So, just for fun, here are three examples of when marketing is more about using uncommon sense.

Price At A Premium

While I encourage all of my clients to ensure they deliver a quality product, I also encourage most of them to set their brand at a price premium within their market. There are a couple of good reasons for this (and shameless profiteering isn’t one of them!);

1. Premium pricing helps your brand stand apart from competitors

2. In restricting your market, target consumers tend to see the brand as more ‘for them’

If you’re already established asking for price increases isn’t the easiest thing to do. But if you’re confident in your brand, you’re doing yourself a disservice if you don’t.

Range Reduction

After the initial growth stage, most brands go into new product overdrive, offering every possible variation of their product.

Now common sense would say this is the right thing to do. Not only are you meeting the needs of every possible consumer, but you’re also taking up more room on the supermarket shelves (if you can get away with it), improving your presence and impacting that of your competitors.

But, this ignores shopper behavior when in store.

With shoppers being confronted by loads of brands in-store, if you want to be chosen, your job is to make it easy for the shopper to pick you.

Easy isn’t confusing them with loads of different options. Easy is having just the right varieties in your range that the shopper can quickly and easily find them. And don’t just take my word for it. When I reduced the range of Heinz tinned soup on the shelves in the UK some years ago, our sales numbers went up. Not down.

Say Less To Communicate More

You think the more often you communicate and the more you say the more aware consumers will be of your brand? Think again. Less communication actually has a far greater impact providing it’s distinctive.

Think about your own experience. Isn’t a lot of communication targeted at you just white noise? Which ads do you remember from your Facebook feed this morning?

To have the greatest impact with consumers;

1. Only talk to consumers who want or need what you have to offer

2. Ensure your messages are clear and concise

Most people can only take in three bits of information in one go, so keep this in mind when reviewing your on-pack, online, traditional advertising and PR copy. Nine times out of ten, a clear, simple message will cut though far more effectively, just because it is easier for the consumer to digest.

So yes, marketing is common sense…it’s common sense to keep things clear and simple after all, but it’s the uncommon sense that can make your brand distinctive and drive real growth.

If you’d like help developing your uncommon sense to accelerate brand growth, contact us at BrandWorks.


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