You know your brand is different from others. You know your products are distinguished from the competition. But consider the view from your audience’s perspective. You may think they know why your brand is different and unique, but to them you are one brand among many. Marketing is all about telling people what to think about you, so you need to speak that loud and clear—in a way that is relevant to your audience.
This is the second article in our series, How to Build a Strong Gourmet Brand. See the first article here.
Your audience consists of consumers at all different levels of experience with your brand, and therefore you need to tailor your message to what they’re looking for at each stage. It’s important to note that your audience members can and often do move up to the different levels.
People Unfamiliar with Your Brand
This group is strongly surveying the competition and comparing and contrasting. They don’t know you from the next brand—in their eye, you and the competition are all the same. Many in this group will deflect to the competition, especially if they don’t get the information they need right away. They need to know right off the bat what makes you different from your competitors. Over 70% of purchasing decisions are made in the store, so they are mostly relying solely on your product’s package in order to make their decision.
People New to Your Brand
These people have moved up from the first group, so you made the first cut with them. You’ve got them in, now you need to shine. The product itself and the package’s functionality come into play here. They made their decision based on the package, and now with successful product performance—meeting or exceeding expectations—the package reinforces their decision. They continue to analyze the package as they use the product, wanting to learn more and go deeper. They will start looking at your website more in-depth and explore other products in your assortment. They may start following you on social media, wanting to get better acquainted with your brand. They are looking for usage tips and new ideas for using your products.
Loyal Customers on the Lookout for Something New
This category has strong loyalty but is not opposed to going elsewhere for a change of pace, especially if the competition is offering something new and exciting that you’re not offering. It’s essential to keep your brand and products fresh and relevant to this group. You can’t get comfortable assuming that once they’re loyal they won’t go anywhere else, because that is not the case. They love your products and are enthralled with your brand but if you get stale they could quickly lose interest.
This group will likely remain in the same status unless something suddenly irks them or if your branding plateaus, in which case they could deflect or move back down to the previous group. They not only love your brand and regularly purchase your products, but they also are mini-marketers for your brand, speaking your praise to others. They are all over your new product offerings and regularly follow and probably even interact with your brand on social media. You’re likely doing all the right things for this group if you have a good portion of your audience here, so it’s important to remember to focus on your other audience groups too. For this group, find new and innovative ways to keep them connected to and excited about your brand. They are constantly looking for you to advance beyond their expectations and surprise them.