Think you have seen it all from kids’ parties? Want to know what a child’s dinosaur themed party can teach you about effective marketing? Read on…
This is part two of a multi-part blog post. If you didn’t catch the first post click here to read part one first.
In the last post I left you with talk of immersive marketing. Did you think about the ways you can surround your customer with an experience of your brand? The trick is to bring about an emotional response – by this I don’t necessarily mean crying or laughing but getting someone to feel a particular way even in a small way (positive feelings preferred) as a result of your brand is often a good thing.
Targeting and personalisation – As part of the dinosaur adventure trail we handed out personalised caps with the kids’ initials on them. They went pretty wild for this.
Personalisation is no longer a big deal in the marketing world and is often regarded as a given, but children aren’t regularly afforded this level of attention for detail. I went a step further and ensured when it came to activity time each child had a name card at the table which was hand written in their favourite colour and with a little icon of their favourite dinosaur next to it. This took some background research but it meant I could ensure even the small details were tailored to the individual.
When applying this to marketing it can be tricky. What if you have a varied customer base across a broad demographic, who don’t seem to have much in common? How can you tailor your communication to each and every one’s likes and dislikes? To put it simply, you can’t. But it can be a good idea to organise your customers into groups arranged by similar interests, age, location or similar (segments) – that way you can send different versions of one communication and at least personalise parts of it according to each group.
Wondering why you should bother? In our “digital” age we get bombarded with emails, adverts and spam on a daily basis [if not hourly]. What is it that makes one communication stand out from the hundreds of others? When it is relevant you are more likely to pay attention. Would you send an 18-year old woman in London an email promotion about a sale on designer boxer shorts you are having for your shop in Manchester? I doubt it! But she may be on your distribution list because she once bought some socks as a gift when she was visiting a friend at uni near-by. Capture as much information as you can about your customer as it can only help in the long run.
Look at the email from Tesco (image above) – it is personalised with the recipients name and with the offers; providing a discount on the products she buys most in-store. You can’t get more relevant than that.
Promote interaction – After the dinosaur adventure trail we had a time for activities… this consisted of painting a model dinosaur; the best one gained a prize and then digging for dinosaur bones! This kept them entertained for ages and with it brought a period of intense concentration, as well as some much needed quieter time.
For each task the children were invested in the outcome – they had put in effort and energy into making the model look the best and they also wanted the social kudos that came with winning the prize. When digging the bones up they put in some real elbow grease, determined to see what they could reveal at the end.
This interactive style activity brought to mind brand interaction. This is such a useful tool for promoting your product or company. If you can get people invested in engaging with you or promoting your business in some way it will pay-off big time. Social media campaigns are a fantastic way to encourage interaction, for example, asking followers to post or tweet pictures using your product for the chance to star as your profile picture or be the face of your brand for a month, is a cheap and easy way to gain interest and attention. A lot of people online like recognition and to score serious social points by gaining attention from others. If you don’t think your audience fits that description how about incentivise with a freebie? There will be a flurry of activity to your account (hopefully using a hashtag too) which will bring you into more peoples’ news feeds drawing attention to your brand. Whats’ more, the activity is centred around pictures (and thus promotion and advocacy) of your product!
Educate – Another activity we did with the kids was centred around fossils. We put the children in to two groups and had printed fact sheets and actual fossils for each group. The children had to guess what type each fossil was and match to the correct fact. This was a hard challenge but one they seemed to relish with their competitive spirit alive and curiosity sparked.
Educating your audience is a privilege; if you are selling expertise there is no better way to sell your product than to give an example of it first. Showing you are an expert and not just telling some one you are, is always more effective. Could you make a short YouTube video showcasing your skill set; offering a snapshot of your knowledge? I try to do this myself with my blog – giving readers a taster of the value I can add. The idea is to prove what you know, free, so they think about how much more you can bring to the table if they commissioned you!
Follow-up – Finally, not only did I send the children on their way with a goodie bag and a slice of cake, I followed-up a few days later. As a matter of politeness I get my son to write his thank-yous to his friends for coming to the party, but I wanted to make the experience even more memorable. I created dinosaur rocks or “volcanic rocks” made from a mixture of flour, sand and coffee which my son gave out along with his thank-you notes. For those interested, you create a dough and plant a surprise inside – in this case a small plastic dinosaur, and bake in the oven until they harden. You crack them open with a spoon to reveal the gift!
Brands can learn a lot from this. Even if you have had a great experience with a business, it is easily forgotten in the rush of every day life. Why not send a reminder or follow-up, to keep you in the forefront of their mind? Often if a direct mailer with an offer is sent out it is a good idea to send a follow-up with a hurry message some two-weeks later. Just remember, don’t send out comms too often or you will become “spammy”, always add value, be relevant and a follow-up will be welcome.
I hope you have enjoyed this post and found the pointers helpful. Let me know if you have any questions and feedback is always welcome.
Thanks for reading xx