CSD: Reaching Your Target Audience
By Tom McIntrye
a special arrangement, presented here for discussion is an excerpt of a
current article from Convenience Store Decisions magazine.
There’s tremendous pressure
to cut costs today, yet somehow advertising budgets are usually considered
the most expendable luxury in the struggle for economic survival.
But executives who succumb
to this pressure put the long-term viability of their companies and brands
at risk, according to Peter Fader, marketing professor at Wharton School
at The University of Pennsylvania.
Today’s economy provides
an unusual opportunity to differentiate your brand so it stands out in
a crowd, but it takes courage and conviction to get senior management on
board. The key here is that a business must craft a message that reflects
the times and describes how their product or service benefits the customer.
Some guidelines to consider:
- Be careful to position yourself
as the "lowest-price provider." It could have a long-term negative
impact on your brand unless your business model is built on this concept.
is what you get for your hard-earned money at our store."
COO Dave Sable says customers need you as much as you need them. If your
communications and advertising cuts are too deep, the cost to regain
share of voice once the economy improves may be four to five times the
cost you saved by making the cuts in the first place.
- In our digital
world, negative news about a brand spreads like wildfire. It’s critical
to give people good reasons to say positive things about your brand. Recessions
come and go, but a brand is for life.
- For c-store retailers, Matt
Williams from The Martin Agency said it best: You can position your brand
as an ally to consumers in tough times with product development or sponsorship
programs that compel consumers to say, "I see by its actions that
this brand is on my side." That will pay dividends not only during
a recession but far beyond.
How should advertising budgets be adjusted during tough times, especially
for c-stores? What piece of advice would you have for c-stores around
advertising during difficult times?