What do you do when you are a small business competing in a large market? What do you do when you don’t have endless pockets for digital marketing campaigns and your competitors do? Well you Outsmart them when you can’t Outspend them!
I was at a Marketing Institute event last week where Meadhbh Quinn from Virgin Media spoke to the audience about the journey from UPC to their new brand Virgin Media. It was interesting to hear that they don’t have the huge budgets that some of their other competitors would have for advertising and digital marketing. So when one of the most high profile rebrands in recent years was about to take place in Ireland did they just shrug their shoulders and not bother? Of course not! They just got really clever.
Launching a new brand
They were launching a new brand into a market with some very hefty competitors and that was a daunting prospect. But as Richard Branson burst into the press launch last October he told them that ‘Virgin Media is going to shake up the market with an unbeatable service – we have a great foundation to build on and there are no limits to what we want to achieve for our customers’, That’s when ‘Here comes the Magic’ campaign started. They certainly sprinkled some magic across the country. One clever marketing idea they had was to have dispensers of popcorn in bus shelters, that would cheer up any commute. They had online buzzer skill games which were generated from their digital advertisements. They delighted their customers and got them interested and had them talking about their brand to others.
Sometimes as a smaller business you can feel a little lost amongst the big boys with their huge spending power for digital marketing but by using your own little bit of ‘magic’ and being a little bit clever you can get results that really make a difference to you.
Once you know your target market, which will be a mix of existing customers and potential new customers then you can decide how to communicate with them. Decide what your brand purpose is, what can you offer them to make their life easier or more enjoyable by having your product. Let them know that you exist and that you would be so happy to sell to them. Make them laugh, touch their hearts, or just plain entertain them – whatever it takes to win them over.
No matter what your time or budget allows, make sure you know what your message is and integrate your online and traditional marketing for best effect. It’s difficult if you cannot outspend your competitors but with a little thought maybe you can outsmart them.