What a Bargain! Successful Strategies for Marketing to Parents

Parents are always looking for ways to save money. If you have kids of your own, you know just how expensive it can be to feed, clothe and entertain an 8-year-old ball of energy. In fact, Parenting Magazine says the average child costs about $15,000 a year (and that doesn’t even include extras like private school tuition or ski lessons.) And, as a marketer, it’s important to consider these variable costs when you’re trying to reach their parents. Parents have to think ahead to be able to save for college tuition, for rainy day activities and for unexpected circumstances.

This is why most parents, like myself, will find themselves attracted to things that will save them money. Wholesalers like Costo and Sam’s Club do extremely well with their model of selling bulk goods at wholesale prices because people just can’t pass up a good bargain. You can buy a month’s worth of paper towels for a family of five in a single trip to Costco, and pay far less than you would for it had you gone to a local drugstore.

[quote]Check out BIGEYE’s successful mom marketing strategies that brought The Daily Mom App to the Top 25 Downloads Position on iTunes. [/quote]

In marketing to parents, it’s important to consider their needs and think about the things that really affect their lives. The good news is that parents always need ways to entertain their children. They also desire to provide fun and interesting educational experiences to children, ways to give them new ways to think about the world and nurture their interests. And, when there’s a deal tied to a way to do that, it often sets forth a psychological signal that encourages the parents to buy.

Even when the deal isn’t necessarily that much better than the actual price, sometimes just seeing that you can get a free soft drink with a purchase inspires you to go for the deal. This is why the coupon special at Chuck-E-Cheese can get people through the door and, in many cases, cause them to spend even more than they would have if they had gone there without a coupon. Something about the terms “20% off” or “Buy One Get One” send a signal that the parent is getting more bang for his buck, even if it’s a product the parent wasn’t planning to purchase in the first place. (Of course, if you do experiment with coupons, be sure to integrate testing mechanisms to see which types of deals perform better with your customers.)

Psychologists know that material things will only last so long, but that the experiences that parents can give their children can stay with them for their lives. But often it becomes a financial issue, or at least a perceived one, that they can’t afford a vacation they wanted to take or go to an Orlando Magic game. Of course, in attaching a deal to that, it suddenly makes the excursion appear to be more affordable.

If you need more ideas to help connect with parents using a deal marketing approach, contact the team at our Florida advertising agency, and we’ll give you the information you need to offer great strategies to reach parents that are cost-effective to both you and the parents you aim to reach.

Cultivating Community Through an Event Based Strategy

At our Orlando marketing agency, we believe that in building your business, it’s becoming increasingly important to try to build a community around what you do. Building a community fosters engagement both online and offline, encouraging people to share their thoughts and opinions and to make their voices heard. One of the best ways to cultivate a community of people is through an event based strategy. Most of the strongest communities I’ve seen are those in private clubs and membership organizations and are hugely events-based, hosting more than 300 events a year in order to help keep their members and communities happy while simultaneously helping them grow their networks. But even if you’re not a fancy private club or a networking group, you can still take advantage of the sense of belonging that an events-based community strategy offers to your customers.

Since the era of social media, the term “community”seems to have taken on a life of its own. To older people who aren’t actively using social media on a regular basis, “community”is synonymous with “social media,”which in reality is only partially true. A community manager’s job is to engage the community, and while social media may be part of that, so is blogging, email marketing and, of course, event marketing.

In order to run an effective event-based community strategy, it’s essential to know what your community wants. Do this by requesting information via survey data, with specific questions about what you think they might enjoy. Wine stores might benefit from tasting events and private wine classes for VIP customers, while luxury hospitality businesses might want to woo their customers with formal dining events and open bar cocktail parties sponsored by popular liquor brands. Depending on your business, it’s important to know the time of day people are interested in attending (breakfast, lunch, happy hour, evening or all-day events) and which day of the week they prefer (for instance, people who have 9-5 jobs and small kids may prefer family-friendly weekend events to after-work events). Responding to their needs also shows that you truly understand your target audience, which is extremely important for any business.

Oftentimes, businesses that are faring pretty well have no desire to explore other ways to generate more business, particularly because they don’t realize how much more money they can generate by doing so.[quote]The good thing is that businesses of any size can hold events for nearly any budget.[/quote] If you have a space and a reason for people to gather, the potential is there…and things like appetizers and beverages can only sweeten the deal. If you’re using the information from the survey data and you’ve been careful to find out the types of events interest your group, then you should have no problem identifying potential guest speakers or planning leisure activities that can also help facilitate community involvement around your business or brand.

The problem for many people is that events aren’t always direct revenue drivers. Take, for example, a lawn care company that hosts a free wine and cheese client appreciation event. This may cost several hundred dollars in securing a location, providing food and beverage, and lost work hours in planning the event. It may be even more if you plan to create signage or need to purchase nametags and other supplies. But, if that small event encourages your clients to share their experiences with their friends and colleagues, and one of those referrals turns into a new client for the business, then it was well worth the time.

Events are great because they can build online and impersonal interactions into more genuine connections. From a business perspective, this makes good sense because the more people are engaged with your community, they more likely they are to hang around. We’d love to help you connect with your audience at-large – contact us to determine how we can help craft your engaging event based strategy!

The five Tips for Identifying Your Business’s Target Audience

For most companies, your audience is the heart of your brand. When they’re satisfied, it means that the brand has lived up to its promise. People who love their favorite brands can be some of the best marketing resources you have…and you don’t even have to pay them! When your audience is so impressed with your product or service that they’re sharing it with others, you’ve hit the sweet spot in the market —a figurative bulls eye comprised of finding your target audience and filling their need.
But for some companies, the tricky part isn’t necessarily the audience itself; the tricky part is the challenges that present themselves when trying to find the right audience. Your new luxury hotel isn’t going to do so well if you focus all your marketing towards people who don’t travel, and your sports industry business isn’t going to fare well if you spend all your ad dollars trying to reach people who aren’t interested in sports. Seems pretty obvious, right? Unfortunately, it’s not always so straightforward.

Take, for example, a business that sells customized staircases to high-end clientele. This is a very niche need, so rather than trying to build awareness with everyone, you’d need to focus your efforts on a group of people with that specific need. You might have a low conversion rate, but even a single conversion leads to an extremely high-value transaction, the goal is to focus on reaching quality potential customers, as opposed to just reaching a high quantity of people.

So, how do we go about finding your business’s target audience? Here are a few ideas from our Orlando marketing agency.

 1. Market research reports: These days, market research is available all over the web. Some of it you may have to pay for, but it’s usually a wise investment – market researchers from companies like Forrester and Nielsen have already done the hard work for you, so it’s cheaper than spending your own business dollars to try to glean insights into customer behavior. [quote]There are market research reports on almost every topic under the sun: from organic eating habits to people’s growing use of mobile technology.[/quote] Look to these reports to help you understand the consumer landscape.

2. Census data: We often think of the census as that thing the government does every 10 years. However, the U.S. Census website has a ton of interesting demographic information that can be extremely useful in targeting people based on geographical needs. Use this in tandem with other research for best results.

3. Survey data: Companies like SurveryMonkey and Qualtrics are useful for gaining statistical insight into peoples’ activities. Use this information to formulate hypotheses about your target audience, which you can then supplement with research data and test through your communications and marketing strategies.

 4. Qualitative data: While often more expensive than the other forms of research listed here, this is one of the best ways to gain insights about your target audience. This is because it frees people to give open-ended responses, giving the person conducting the interview or focus group more opportunities to gain insights beyond a simple yes or no response, as is typically the case with survey data.

 5. Online listening: Looking at brand mentions on online platforms can help figure out who influences your brand. By reviewing those peoples’ demographics and their own audiences, you can find out more about them and how they interact with your brand or business. There are a host of online listening tools available, but some favorites here at our Orlando advertising agency are Brandwatch, Radian6 and SDI Social Intelligence.

The team at our Orlando marketing agency will be happy to field any questions you may have! We want to help make sure your marketing efforts are 100% on target. Contact us today to determine how we can help!

Why Automobile Companies Must Understand Mom Marketing

It’s a movie cliche we’ve seen a million times: a woman goes to purchase a car, but gets swindled by a sleazy salesman because she supposedly doesn’t know her way around a car. Regardless of whether this was ever an accurate depiction of women’s role in the automobile purchasing process, this is certainly not the case today. To draw on another cliche: the times, they are a-changin’! So, automobile marketers need to embrace mom marketing.
A new report from Cars.com shows that 73% of moms consider themselves to be the sole decision-maker in the vehicle shopping process. And, it makes sense — after all, if you’re going to have to haul Sammy and Stella from soccer practice to swim team to ukulele lessons, then it’s important to make sure you’re able to do it safely and comfortably.

In the era of smartphones, tablets and lightweight laptops, it’s easy to research a car from anywhere with an Internet connection. And, granted that I can spend close to an hour trying to find a good restaurant on Yelp, I can also spend far more time trying to find the right vehicle to meet my needs.

However, the team at our Orlando ad agency has noticed that when you see TV ads for new cars, they’re nearly always marketed toward men. But if moms have so much influence on the car purchasing process, doesn’t it make sense to try to court them through marketing, too?

In viewing a compilation of Superbowl car commercials, I noticed that not one of them featured a female driver. Whether this is more of a response to the automobile marketing landscape or simply just the Superbowl demographic, it still seems strange. After all, of the 111.5 million people who watched the Superbowl, 50 million were female.

Yet for some reason, these car companies don’t seem to care as much about attracting moms. It’s interesting because moms tend to have a lot of say in most major purchases across the spectrum – we’re not just talking about cleaning supplies these days. The purchasing power of millennial moms is estimated at $170 billion. And, if moms are making the car-buying decisions, then why are these companies trying so hard to sell to dad?

Car companies that decide to market to women would have an upper hand in trying to lure their business, since as it stands right now, there is so little competition in that space. And, we’re not talking about trying to sell women on light pink minivans with extra compartments to keep makeup. Women need cars to be useful and practical.

Moms tend to be more concerned with safety and durability, and with all the new safety features the car companies are introducing these days, there’s no reason they shouldn’t think about moms in the marketing process. They also care about gas mileage because lugging children around can put a lot of miles on a car. Focusing on these benefits is a terrific start in helping reach the mom market.

[quote]Women make up more than half of the world’s population, and drive at least half the cars on the road.[/quote]Car companies are already installing the features that make moms happy. As such, the team at our Orlando marketing agency thinks these companies should spend more of their dollars trying to reach moms, who more than ever, are in the driver’s seat in making automobile purchasing decisions.

Contact our team of mom marketing experts today to uncover ways to reach this powerful target audience!

Here are the Tips for Comprehending Consumer Behavior

Imagine that I owned a store next to your office, where you would occasionally drop in to buy candy. Imagine I were to tell you that you could buy some candy today for full price, but that you could come back tomorrow and all the candy would be 75% off, chances are you’d wait until the next day to buy that candy (unless you were seriously craving some Hershey’s Kisses!). After all, you can save a lot of money that way, so it seems like the rational thing to do.
However, the entire story changes when the dates matter. Imagine I told you that candy would be cheap tomorrow, February 15, because it’s the day after Valentine’s Day. If you were standing in the store on February 14 because you hadn’t already gotten your partner a gift, you’d gladly pay full price.

While it seems technically irrational, it’s a matter of understanding the emotional needs of a consumer. A person isn’t necessarily always driven by the lowest price —there are so many competing factors that brand managers need to take into consideration when they try to comprehending consumer behavior.

Luxury brand managers are able to do this with expert finesse. People will often irrationally spend money on impractical items simply because of the prestige that comes with owning such a product. Think of a wedding ring. People are willing to pay so much for diamonds because of the symbolic representation of what a big, beautiful ring implies.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that you have to be a luxury brand to be able to capitalize on human emotions. People purchase Nike shoes because they feel inspired by the brand, the brand’s image, and the brand’s commitment to improving individuals through athleticism. Or, a person may choose Coke over Pepsi because of the element of nostalgia that comes with purchasing a Coke.

[quote]The good news is that by tapping into consumer behaviors, you can also learn to influence their purchasing habits.[/quote]The team at our Florida marketing agency sees this as the entire rationale behind marketing —how can we convince people to spend their dollars with us? The best way to know where to start is to explore differentiation, which means creating and defining a distinguishing characteristic about your business and highlighting it.

Brands with a defined point of view tend to see more success than competitors. Think about any brand you love and think about why you choose it over alternatives: it might be that it’s cheaper, it tastes better, it’s more convenient, or it simply looks more interesting. Emphasizing what sets your business apart from others is the best starting point to build a bigger strategy for your brand.

From there, you can design marketing campaigns around that distinguishing feature. Taking into account these human emotional behaviors, you can create a campaign that’s aspirational, inspirational or just funny —these are all types of things that might encourage a person to use your item or service over a lower-priced competitor.

For more information as to how you can use customer insights to create a marketing strategy, contact our Florida ad agency for a consultation.

How to Maximize Budgets with Website Testing Tools

If you’ve been working in marketing for a while, you probably understand the importance of testing, at least on a theoretical level. When it comes to all things digital, website testing can help you optimize all your processes. But in the real world, when is there ever time to test? Unfortunately, failing to test means you’re relying on blind chance that your marketing plan will work. By failing to take the time to test your strategy in order to improve it, you could be costing your company tons of time and resources.

At our Orlando marketing agency, we believe testing is one of the most important aspects of marketing, yet I see many marketers that allocate only a fraction of their budgeted resources to testing. If you’re not testing your marketing strategies, then you are missing out on chances to greatly optimize and improve your marketing and advertising activities.

If you haven’t already, I implore you to sign your business up for Google Analytics. It is incredibly easy to sign up for Google Analytics, and companies that have not already implemented this data are at a disadvantage in understanding their audiences, user activities and the effectiveness of their marketing strategy. Then, start changing things on your websites to see if you can notice improvements. Does simply changing the verbiage of a call to action increase your site’s conversion rate? You’ll never know unless you test!

Engagement metrics such as pages-per-visit, time on page and micro-conversions are great for measuring your whether people are investing their time and energy into your content strategy. Setting up goals is a great way to help track what you’re doing. This can be an email metric, an actual financial conversion or filling out a lead form. And, if you aren’t seeing results, then try making minor adjustments to the site content to see what helps.[quote]Sometimes something as simple as changing the color of a call to action button on a landing page can help to increase clicks.[/quote]

Facebook also shares data about the demographics of your users, and by pulling out the demographic data from Facebook it becomes easier to design a comprehensive content strategy. Sharing metrics can also help gage the effectiveness of individual pieces of content. Compare something humorous to something simply informative. Do you see a difference in response? If so, then perhaps you’re learning that your readers’tastes, and knowing what resonates with your audience can help improve your conversions over time.

You can also help boost the reach of your content by investing in your content marketing. Promoted tweets and sponsored stories are great ways to amplify your efforts. Extremely focused keywords can be very cheap, leading to a very cheep per-visit rate. These stories should be interesting, rather than self-promotional. As much as possible, it should seem thoughtful and organic. Test these by trying variations of different posts, and see which ones maximize results. Most platforms that offer promoted options also offer analytics to help review the effectiveness of your paid media.

In testing the effectiveness of your marketing, marketers should also plan to invest in A/B testing. A/B testing involves replicating the exact same test, with a single variable that looks different to different audiences. Ideally, it works best to try only one variable at a time, but we know that in the fast-paced world of marketing, that’s not always possible. Still, any insights you glean from A/B testing can help validate ideas about how your audience reacts to different messaging and imagery. One of the easiest places to start A/B testing is with email marketing. MailChimp.com and ConstantContact.com both make A/B testing easy.

Failure to test can cost companies thousands of dollars per year. By making sure you content is optimized for your audience, you can persuade even more people to use your product or invest in your service. At our averting agency in Orlando, we believe that if you want to be the best, you have to test! The resources it takes to test early on can help save your company money in the long-term.

BIGEYE offers a plethora of website testing services including website conversion optimization where we can help you to establish goals, launch A/B testing, deliver monthly reporting and analysis and more. Contact us today to get started!