Ronn Torossian, CEO, 5WPR
Some businesses aren’t just out to be visible. They want to make an impact, to start a trend, to begin a movement. While a popular approach may be to go for as big of a “splash” as possible with a marketing campaign, there may be an unsung approach that accomplishes the goal of trendsetting in an even better way.
When starting out, many businesses don’t have a large marketing budget defined. Particularly prior to any fundraising or investment support — if the business ever gets any to — marketing can often be more of a guerilla effort with a shoestring budget and a healthy imagination. And this is perfectly fine, as long as the marketing strategy is scaled to grow with the business.
Any business, though, may benefit from a more targeted strategy, even if it is well-established. After all, if a concept isn’t working, perhaps it’s time to make some adjustments.
Targeting a smaller or less flashy group of consumers may be the right approach for a business looking for a fresh start or a foot in the door. Instead of going for the biggest influencers or the most expensive advertising contracts, why not take it down a notch?
Consider this: think of the last time you saw a friend make a post on social media asking for recommendations. This friend may have been seeking a referral for a plumber or looking for the best smart speaker on the market. And this friend isn’t looking on Google or Yelp or Amazon for the answer — they are asking their own network for their opinions.
This indicates something important: consumers trust the suggestions of their own personal network, often choosing to go with their recommendation over that of an influencer or a paid search ad.
This isn’t to say that paid search and traditional influencer marketing isn’t worth the investment — in many or most cases, it absolutely is. But consider finding ways to reach a more targeted group of consumers by exploring micro-influencers or “small fish” who may have more influence than it initially appears.
Appealing to a smaller group of consumers that have more genuine influence can be the igniting force for a trend. In this approach, the business can appeal to consumers that it genuinely wants to connect with. And making consumers feel seen and heard can be invaluable for building brand loyalty in the early stages.
As marketing and advertising move towards a higher level of inclusion, the idea of reaching the normal, everyday consumer becomes more and more appealing. Trends indicate that many consumers are gravitating away from the shiny influencers who flocked to social media in droves over the last few years. Now, social media feeds are filled with more normal imagery and more relatable content. Now, more than ever, is the perfect time to move into grassroots marketing.
A brand that authentically pursues its target demographic should be well in tune with that audience’s needs and wants. This enables the brand to create marketing materials that will resonate with the consumer. Including the “non-influencer” or the micro-influencer in the brand’s marketing strategy may well pay off tenfold with the loyalty of those who have been genuinely connected with the brand.