Marketing Strategies from the Top Companies Around the World
by Kim Garmon Hummel, on Jan 16, 2020 12:00:00 AM
When it comes to marketing, building a strategy that relates to your brand identity and customer base can truly set you apart from the competition. Strong marketing campaigns that innovate and elevate a customer’s experience with your brand help to engage new customers and create longevity.
Becoming an iconic brand takes more than a perfectly crafted marketing strategy, but becoming an iconic brand without tailoring your marketing strategy to your consumers is impossible. Looking at some of the most iconic brands currently around, one thing remains the same in their strategy: keeping true to brand identity.
These brands have put tremendous thought into the message they want to convey to their consumers and the world regarding their products and services. Everything from brand voice to the color scheme on their social media channels is precisely chosen in order to deliver a cohesive visualization of the brand.
The masters of marketing have created strategies that don’t necessarily make you feel you are being marketed to; rather, they make you feel inclusive to a small group of like-minded people which in fact spans the globe. Hitting on pain points of the competition’s products or services in visually captivating ways enhances the company’s image to you the consumer.
Selling a Lifestyle
It’s hard to fathom a time when people weren’t obsessed with Apple products. It’s even harder to imagine a time when the iPod was the newest technological advancement in music enjoyment.
Apple started with humble beginnings but through strategic advertising and marketing strategies, the company has become more than just a tech company. It has evolved into a lifestyle brand.
Starting with the iconic ‘1984’ Super Bowl commercial, Apple’s brand promotion campaigns highlight a key attribute of the brand: its differences from the mainstream. These campaigns empower the innate desire in us all to stand out and to be different.
Since 1984, Apple has focused its digital marketing strategies on emphasizing the differences between the capabilities and aesthetics of Apple compared to PCs.
Across the world, dedicated Apple users will continuously shell out money in order to have the latest and greatest Apple product (though Apple Music seems to be an exception). Apple prides itself on being creator-focused whether you are a photographer looking for the best OS to edit your film on or a designer looking to take your creation from pen to screen in the easiest capacity.
The synchronicity between each Apple product has also created an immense following from those creators. Your text messages won’t only appear on your phone but also your iPad and MacBook. Likewise you can use the Apple Pen on your iPad to illustrate more easily and be able to upload to your MacBook for use in projects.
Becoming a lifestyle brand is not an easy task. By focusing your marketing efforts on the day-to-day tasks of your customer base, you can create a movement behind your brand that will highlight your customers’ needs and wants.
Staying Authentic to Self
Coca-Cola is one of the most recognizable brands in the world. The iconic red can with white cursive letters is a classic image that has been around for over a century.
The brand has stayed true to its original brand strategy with very little fluctuation over the years, making it an easily recognizable brand in any country.
Though the company has expanded its beverage offerings over the years, the iconic red can remains the same. Over the years the brand’s slogan has changed with new marketing campaigns, but they all highlight the same message: delicious and refreshing.
Staying true to their brand allows Coca-Cola to have brand recognizability across different decades and countries. You can go anywhere in the world and will still be able to recognize the iconic drink wherever you land.
The consistency in branding for Coca-Cola has made it a household name with international success. The newest campaign hones in on Coca-Cola being a drink for everyone even though it has a specific name attached to the can or bottle. This campaign aims to take Coca-Cola from an international conglomerate to being your beverage.
Maintaining brand consistency is key for every business. For Coca-Cola, maintaining that consistency from 1892 to today is impressive. Times have changed drastically over the last century, but Coca-Cola has remained by-in-large the same and cemented its brand identity for generations.
Forefront of Innovation
In today’s day and age, fast fashion is number one. Ikea has been able to see worldwide success through its ability to offer fast fashion in the form of furniture and other household items.
Ikea has an impressive offering that spans many different styles, colors, and needs, making it a powerhouse in the furniture business. The easy-to-assemble furnishings allow the furniture to be easy to transport and cheaper to ship touching on two pain-points of many of Ikea’s customers when shopping with other furniture outlets.
Innovating the furniture purchasing process is not the only way Ikea has changed the game. In 2013, Ikea launched the Catalogue app which allows customers to view a piece of furniture in-home using augmented reality. The use of augmented reality before the Catalogue app was mainly in gaming and military surveillance, making Ikea one of the first corporations to introduce the commercial use of augmented reality as a means to enhance the buying process.
When buying furniture online - and sometimes even in store - the biggest challenge is estimating the size within your home. Ikea saw this pain point in the furniture buying process and invested in this technology for the benefit of their customers which in turn resulted in more sales.
Ikea has also created a new shopping experience unique for a large box store. Parents of young children can benefit from the playroom located right inside the front doors with 60 minutes of babysitting for absolutely no charge.
With the added food court inside the store, you have almost no reason to leave even after you checkout. With breakfast available for as little as $1, and family-friendly offers such as buy-one-get-one-free frozen yogurt, it’s little wonder that IKEA’s family memberships increased from 4.3 million to 6.9 million in 2014 to 2015.
Innovation does not stop at design for Ikea. Innovating the entire buying process for their customers is what is keeping Ikea at the forefront of the furniture industry.
Masters of Content Creation
Since 2012, Netflix has increased its content creation drastically going from producing 8 hours of original content to 1,500 hours in 2018. This growth in content creation enhances Netflix’s service offerings and increases the overall membership sign-ups as this content is only visible on their platform.
Content creation creates clients. Creating high-demand original content has allowed Netflix to become a powerhouse in the film industry rivaling that of Hollywood. Netflix has a unique advantage over Hollywood’s film industry, which is the ability to run analytics in order to enhance user experience and cater to their user’s preferences.
After conducting a survey in 2013 on their user’s preference, Netflix learned that 73% of subscribers liked to binge-watch television shows. As a result, Netflix decided to continuously renew series such as “How I Met Your Mother,” “The Office,” and “Parks and Rec” as well as reaffirmed their decision to release the full season of their own shows all at once rather than over the course of a few months.
The algorithm Netflix uses to suggest new content to its users allows the company to better determine the types of content to create. By tracking every user’s viewer history and when they clicked off of a certain show to watch a different one tells Netflix how to enhance certain shows and curate content that will be fully consumed by users.
Many speculated Netflix would not have many subscribers and would possibly die due to the cost compared to free cable TV. Almost every aspect of the Netflix service is personalized - a clever and strategic move considering Netflix is offered largely as an alternative to mass-media television. And where many believed ‘free’ would always triumph, we now see Netflix taking over television’s viewership.
Creating their own content while still offering new shows and movies has made Netflix a paramount film and streaming company. The constant creation of new content has increased the demand for memberships as people who don’t want to miss out on the often award-winning content.
Niched to Perfection
When you think of Red Bull, a few things might pop into mind: the energy drink known to give people wings, or that one person you know who can't seem to get enough of the sugary, jitters-inducing beverage - shoutout to Maddie.
Red Bull understands that it is not a drink for everyone. Instead of trying to be a universally liked drink like Coca-Cola, Red Bull caters to their very specific demographic through showcasing extreme sports and video game competitions.
Red Bull’s website isn’t a typical website for a company selling products. Instead of flashing their newest product across the homescreen, Red Bull opted to promote things their loyal consumers would most likely be interested in learning about or watching. Red Bull uses their site to highlight professional online gamers, extreme sports competitions, and other events or athletes sponsored by the energy drink company.
Rather than just creating marketing for the beverage, Red Bull promotes and creates multi-media geared towards their target demographic. This highly-targeted marketing strategy has allowed them to be a powerhouse of content related to gamers and extreme sports enthusiasts. Even if you do not enjoy the drink, you can still enjoy and respect the content created by the brand.
By focusing their online marketing strategy towards a niche group of individuals, Red Bull is able to monopolize on an often forgotten market. As many companies begin to try to figure out how to monetize from this demographic, Red Bull’s niched approach to marketing puts them in the perfect position to remain the go-to content creator and company for many 14-30 year-old gaming and extreme sports enthusiasts.
Becoming an iconic brand does not happen overnight. It takes a dedicated branding strategy targeted specifically for your ideal demographics. It also takes aligning your strategy to your brand and vice versa.
Spending the time to truly dive deep into your buyer personas, brand story, and brand voice and tone can seem exhausting. But doing so will increase your chances of your brand strategy helping your company become something iconic, unforgettable.