Earlier this year at the International Home + Housewares Show, we got the chance to talk to so many brands with questions (+ complaints) on how to rise above the noise and reach their target audiences. We consistently asked for more information on those target audiences, and didn’t always get a clear understanding from brands. It’s no secret that the housewares industry is a crowded one, full of brands with long histories and trusted products alongside new brands with fresh technology and solutions. The need to set your brand apart and connect with your audience has never been more important, so what’s a brand to do?
We know that consumers will pay more for a product when they feel connected to a brand, and we know that 89% of consumers are loyal to brands that share their values. Housewares marketers today need to sell stories and solutions, not products. Generating trust and loyalty can be so much more impactful than generating a quick sale.
Last year, I listened to a Google Podcast for Agencies on the importance of creating and delivering on your brand’s promise, and it’s really stuck with me. Throughout the launch of epower at home and our increasing work with housewares brands, I’ve carried many of those message points with me. It’s more important than ever to connect with your audiences and craft an authentic, emotionally charged brand story, then integrate it into every aspect of a marketing strategy. After our talks with housewares professionals at #IHHS2018, it was clear to me that many of the brands we talked to didn’t have a marketing problem, they had a customer-understanding problem. They didn’t feel like they were effectively marketing to or connecting with their target audiences, and a lot of that had to do with the fact that they didn’t really understand those buyers.
So what did we do? We put together a comprehensive buyers persona guide to help housewares brands generate a meaningful, purposeful understanding of their customers, complete with an easy to use worksheet to keep your research organized and your end result easy to read, share, and use! Buyer personas are just the first step though. How do you keep your momentum moving?
Keep things simple. The more complicated you make your story or marketing campaign, the less impactful it will be. Target your work to specific audiences based on what you uncover with your persona development. Reuse your content and campaigns, optimized for each persona’s preferences and needs.
Set your intentions. Before beginning on your next great marketing campaign, have a clear concept of what it is you want it to do. You want to create an emotional connection, that’s great! But what kind of emotions do you want to spark? Nostalgia, gratitude, excitement, joyfulness, generosity… How do you want your customers to feel? What emotions are you looking to invoke from them?
Incorporate your strategy everywhere. Make sure you are integrating your personas into every piece of your marketing and advertising. Online. Offline. On your owned media, earned media and paid media. Wherever your brand is being found, keep your story, messaging and voice consistent so your audiences will recognize, trust, and love you no matter how they find you.
As you look for new and more meaningful ways to connect with your customers, make sure you’re focused on the details of your audience that matter most. Craft your personas with the intention that they will drive all of your marketing and advertising initiatives, so that everything you do is more focused and purposeful. Cut through the noise, and shine the spotlight on your brand by knowing your consumers better and delivering the stories, products, and messages they need before they buy.
So, what’s your next step? How are you going to better connect with your target audience this year? Let me know in the comments below, or let’s set up a time to talk!