For our third article in the series we’re going to focus on how a medium sized company used a regional Influencer Marketing campaign to combat two larger competitors. Again, we’ve held back a few of the details to protect the parties in question.
Background – Medium vs. Large
About seven years ago I was asked to assist a medium sized CPG company, we’ll call them Company B, in defining and implementing a program to stem the decline of their flagship brand. The brand in question was in third place at the time behind one brand each from two larger competitors. The setting was the Southeastern US and the competitive companies were the two largest in the industry. We’ll call them Company R and Company L.
Here are a few of the key details pertaining to this study.
- All companies were over hundred-million dollar entities with the corresponding resources.
- All companies employed the full marketing mix in their efforts.
- Company B was the smallest of the three and the only one with sales limited to the US.
- Companies R and L had a combined Share of Market (SOM) of more than 70%.
With our staff limited to me, two company employees and three contracted event staff, we were able to significantly increase both brand awareness and consumer adoption. In a six month period, Company B was able to increase brand SOM by 57% in the trading area in which the campaign was implemented. It should also be noted that company B was able to take over as the #2 brand in the trading area during this time frame. Companies R and L did not appear to launch any type of response to the program.
The Influencer Program we created had a very modest budget of less than $10,000 total and we used no mainstream media or retail components. The program was entirely implemented using only direct marketing tactics. Here are a few of the key reasons this was successful.
- Extremely Targeted – The program was limited to a single venue that was heavily visited by the targeted consumer group. This significantly increased adoption while keeping costs low.
- Complete Assimilation – Company B only used people, both internal and external, that were completely at home in the targeted environment. In effect, they were the targeted consumers. This enabled instant credibility with consumers and garnered immediate results.
- Repetition – Through the use of multiple events (about a dozen) at the venue bolstered by email and mail offer follow-up, Company B was able to reinforce adoption with nearly two dozen Brand contacts.
In short, despite a very small budget, Company B was able to reverse the decline of their brand and grow nearly 60% in LESS THAN 6 MONTHS! They even managed to overtake the number two brand and threaten number one. The campaign was so successful it was immediately renewed and a project was kicked off to expand to other areas.
Be sure to read the final Influencer Marketing article about a successful US pet food brand ambassador program.