Staff Reporters
Aug 9, 2012

MARKETERS FORUM: Low-cost can be highly rewarding

Big budget campaigns are not necessarily the most effective—it is the idea that counts. So how do you get people to talk favourably about your brand with minimal investment?

MARKETERS FORUM: Low-cost can be highly rewarding

Elisa Lumbantoruan
EVP, sales and marketing, Garuda

Elisa Lumbantoruan

Surprising consumers by giving them more than they bargain for can have a huge impact. The surprise can be big or small, as long as it is relevant and well-timed.

Examples vary, but what Garuda has started is to give something small yet important. For example, we all know how frustrating it can be to wait in the airport immigration line after a long flight. So we provide an on-board immigration service, meaning that passengers are good to go once they get off the aircraft.

Services like this create word of mouth that can be the cheapest form of advertising. In the case of Garuda, the service has generated positive conversations that have ultimately become a key message for the brand.

Jayant Murty
Asia-Pacific director of brand strategy, Intel

Jayant MurtyProgressive brands are investing in responding to the modern, socially active consumer by becoming honest and transparent. A large investment for one brand may be a small one for another, but in general, taking this approach requires bold thought and behaving like a start-up: trying new approaches, with a high tolerance for failure, in order to discover new things.

The important thing is to focus on ideas that give consumers the joy of sharing. To be successful, you must identify and engage believers. Be useful — a coach, not the star. Leave gaps in campaigns for consumers and communities to fill. You have to respect crowds. Challenge them to champion a cause and be part of a movement. Ultimately it’s about them, not you.

Ola Lilja Molén
Head of SEA markets, Sony Mobile Comms

ola lilja molenSony Mobile has always been active in the digital arena because we recognise this is one of the most effective means of reaching our consumers and driving excitement about our brand at little cost.

For example, we recently gave our Facebook fans the power to decide when we would announce our next smartphone. The rate of participation exceeded our expectations and enabled us to create buzz for longer without spending copious financial resources.

Another way is to organise product launches in conjunction with regional and global industry events and tradeshows to leverage the anticipation that has already been built up among our key stakeholders and channel it towards the brand. 

Rachel Ang
Marketing manager, Havaianas Singapore

rachel angTo start with, we believe in developing a strong set of brand values that consumers can relate closely to. Once the first level of interest has been created, we need to continue engaging with key stakeholders meaningfully and positively, which encourages them to spread good word-of-mouth for the brand.

A good example is the recent celebration of Havaianas’ 50th birthday, where we introduced a ‘Make Your Own Havaianas’ event to Singapore, which gave people the opportunity to customise a pair of flip-flops. Because of its novel concept, the three-day event was exceptionally well received, despite minimal paid investments, and managed to generate great hype among consumers, the media and trade partners.

Louisa Harker-Marin
Director marketing, Press Room Group

Louisa Harker-MarinIn an age of consumer belt-tightening, personal referral sits more than ever at the top of the ladder. 

Hospitality-based groups like ours have a strong starting point. It’s less arduous to compel another consumer to eat, drink and be merry than to proclaim adoration of boot polish. But good results are forthcoming when relating not only the product and its benefits, but a rich context in which to relay it.

The visual and musical arts provide a wealth of opportunity here, with emerging talent always grateful for a platform to showcase their craft. Going a step further identifying a CSR partner cause can generate widespread goodwill at the relatively low expense of product, time or visibility over time.

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