Bellevue, WA — Brand owners should focus on developing culturally relevant marketing programs through connecting with consumers as opposed to trying to market a commodity or category, according to The Hartman Group, Inc.
The research firm explains that category marketing uses a “brawn” approach, which includes activities such as acquisitions, line extensions, knockoff products and low pricing.
By comparison, culturally relevant brands use what Hartman calls the “brain” approach, giving for example such initiatives as fresh-food experiences, natural and organic and gourmet products.
In order to be culturally relevant with consumers, Hartman recommends the following:
Be Trend Centric: Cultural marketers do not ride trends, but immerse themselves in them and lead them, Hartman says, giving for example brands such as Kashi that understand natural and organic don't need to be taken literally. However, they understand that elements such as ingredient narratives and the eating experience help further meet consumer objectives.
Change Agents That Change: Marketing programs should remain aligned with consumers and avoid getting stuck in single propositions. The researcher gives as an example CPG brands that understand that consumer wellness trends expand beyond a nutritional focus, but also include elements such as indulgence.
Transparent, Real and Authentically Driven: Compared with legacy brands that don’t require as much focus on consumer relevance, cultural marketers should turn toward elements such as fresh and less processed, organic, local and sustainable as points of distinction.
Purveyors Of Premium Experiences: Consumers have shown that if offered a premium experience, they will invest in it. This can include elements such as high quality ingredients, flavors and packaging.