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Awareness vs. Persuasion: Taking A Leap Towards Strategy

When it comes to your marketing strategy are you aware of what your ultimate goal is? Are you trying to get people to make a choice or will you profit simply by making your presence known?

Most companies use a mix of awareness marketing and persuasion marketing tactics when reaching out to new customers but if you aren’t sure which is best for you or when to use them often times your message  can become jumbled and consumers will either forget your brand all together or remember it for the wrong reasons. So, before you begin it is important to know what you are trying to say – the message is the first and most important step.

Awareness marketing is typically used for companies who just by entering the marketplace are likely to make a profit.  Think insurance, toothpaste, laundry detergent and other necessities. Insurance companies want their name to be in the back of your mind for when the time comes to purchase a new plan or simply change providers. When that time comes consumers will begin to think of any insurance companies they know, next they will stop by a website or maybe a brick-and-mortar location, and finally a decision is made.

The typical awareness cycle goes like this: Awareness, Consideration, Purchase, Experience, Opinion, Advocate/Conversion and then the cycle starts over. Take this insurance campaign, it is making you aware of the company’s purpose and what they can do for you when you are in need for insurance.

FMG Insurance

Photo Courtesy of: Mike Mackinven

Now, just because you decide to launch an awareness campaign does not mean that later on your company cannot decide to use a persuasive campaign. Very often you see one brand of detergent side-by-side with another brand proving why it is the better choice. Take OxyClean for example, they take soiled clothing, swirl the items around in an OxyClean mixture and then the clothes are stain free. Pretty convincing right? When utilizing a persuasive marketing campaign your main goal is to convert the consumer to your brand right then and there, so that the next time they enter the store the consumer will think of your brand first and possibly even seek you out.

Apple uses a great persuasive technique; they show you how the MacBook is made. They describe the unibody design which cuts the metal for the machine from all one piece of metal reducing assembly and increasing precision. They are telling you the story of the MacBook, describing what makes it so special, and how advanced the product is compared to other new computers.

So, when making the decision to use awareness vs. persuasive campaigns there are three things to consider:

1) Are you creating a product that is truly unique or is it relatively similar to what is already available?

2) What makes you stand out from your competition? Is it where your materials are sourced or is it how you handle the materials which makes your product special? If you do not have a unique product this is where you would begin to think of how you can position your brand – make is eye catching, create a brilliant slogan or begin the process of how to differentiate.

3) Where is your product in the marketplace? Is your product one of many but needed regularly or is it one of many and only chosen at distinct times?

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