As a business owner, you may experience periods with a lack of customers and struggle to get your name out there.
One massage cream business, fisiocrem, ran into this very problem. With a total staff of only four, they were trying to think of ways to promote the business.
“We [didn’t] have the massive budgets of the big players, but what we [did] have is an awesome product and a team who truly believe in the good it does,” says Peter Smith, general manager of fisiocrem Australia.
“We figured all we'd need to do is show people we care about their pain.”
They decided to achieve this by giving away their products.
For SMEs moving inexpensive goods, fisiocrem’s marketing push can be easily adapted to create brand recognition:
Social media giveaways
Everyone likes free products, and potential customers are no exception. This can be used to your advantage when relying on social media users with considerable influence over their followers.
Giving away free products or services to various social media influencers is something that any SME can do. If an influencer has a positive experience, it can translate into good publicity for your business.
The fisiocrem team drew upon this strategy, combining social media usage and the hashtag #hurtingsucks to locate social media influencers.
The giveaways started when a local marathon runner was injured, and fisiocrem decided to send them a care package of fisiocrem, apparel and lollipops.
“The ripple effect of this gesture on social media was incredible and the brand became a must-have,” said Mr Smith.
That was when fisiocrem decided to create the #hurtingsucks hashtag, and closely follow its usage on social media.
“We trawl through social media posts and communicate with our followers to ascertain who best fits our brand and will be a great advocate for fisiocrem,” Mr Smith said.
However, be careful not to enter into any potentially misleading endorsement agreements.
Pairing with a celebrity – local, national, or otherwise – can be an effective way to promote your products or services.
However, simply having the celebrity mention your business isn’t quite enough; there needs to be a public dialogue between you and the celebrity.
Alongside their social media campaign, fisiocrem also entered into a ‘feud’ with radio hosts Hamish Blake and Andy Lee.
After fisiocrem and PR company Tailored Media sent Hamish and Andy some caps bearing the fisiocrem logo, the duo talked about their poor quality, dubbing them “crap caps”.
fisiocrem turned this criticism into a marketing opportunity by responding on social media. The exchange went back and forth for months, generating publicity and demand for the crap caps.
For fisiocrem, the celebrity endorsement has resulted in increased brand recall and demand.
The company recommends that other SMEs take guerilla marketing on board.
“You have to stand out and be different, no matter what your product or service,” said Mr Smith.
“If you think within the box, you will get bland results.
“Think big and think differently, it doesn’t necessarily need to cost a lot of money.
“Be smart and surround yourself with people who get your brand.”