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B2B Marketing

Marketing Innovation & Belonging

One of the biggest hurdles with marketing innovation today is getting a better advertisement out there. Yet it really isn’t all about making a bigger, better, flashier ad to attract customers — it’s about getting people’s attention to be part of a product. It’s all about belonging.

The Dilemma

The modern advertisement often has something silly, humorous, or outrageous to say to get the attention of customers. Part of marketing innovation seems to be doing things bigger and brighter in order to get people attracted to a brand. However, the problem with this is that every brand is doing it, and they’re all trying to top one another. This is the equivalent of fifty people all gathering on one street corner with bullhorns, each shouting out a different message to passers-by. When that happens, the people who should be getting the specific brand message wind up filtering out all the noise — and the target audience isn’t reached.

The Solution

The marketing innovation needed to combat this idea of modern noise, and doing things bigger and better all the time is a quiet solution.

The answer is leading marketing campaigns by encouraging a sense of belonging to the brand being advertised. For example, the Pepsi “Refresh Everything” campaign decided to abandon expensive marketing ploys for the option of donating money to community charities. By doing good for the general public, they also gave people a chance to “come in to the fold” by posting their charities on their website, and encouraging people to donate as they saw fit. By revamping themselves as a company with responsibility to the worldwide community, people started feeling as though they belonged to something.

It is in this sense — the sense of belonging — where marketing innovation kicks in — to bring people into being part of something greater than themselves. If people feel a corporation wants to be part of their community, then they will often reciprocate such feelings. This then increases brand loyalty, as a member of a “tribe” will almost always be loyal to his or her own people.

Essentially, a good marketing innovation strategy breaks down to three key concepts:

  • Being part of a group, encouraging a sense of belonging.
  • Taking action in the community as a whole to demonstrate the brand’s loyalty to the public.
  • Publishing and displaying the results of being part of that community for all of its positive effects.

Marketing innovation these days needs to be done on a person-to-person basis. The flashy, bullhorn method has made many markets tired and worn out, and they’re just not buying in to the press. However, a good campaign that raises awareness on how a corporation is participating in the community as a whole strikes an emotional chord with audiences. These audiences are more likely, then, to give back emotionally. This giving back comes out in attracting new customers, as well as keeping old customers coming back for more.


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