marketing

Marketing Monday: Thrive

It’s a new year, which means that many of us have started out the year with resolutions to eat healthier and start working out. After a couple months off for an end of season break, Thrive in Bar Harbor has re-opened with new hours and a new menu. We’re pretty excited, and here’s why you should be, too.

Salad by the pound. One of my favorite things about the Bates College Dining Hall was the “choose your own adventure” aspect, and the climax occurred at the salad bar. Thrive’s new salad bar setup brings me back to my college days (in a good way). You get to pick out only the stuff you actually want, and as much (or little) as you want.

Online ordering. If you have a limited lunch break, Thrive’s online ordering option is perfect. You can access through Facebook or their website and schedule for pickup now or later, whatever works best for you. Personally, I love the ability to order online because talking on the phone is my nightmare, even when amazing food is on the table. If you’re in a rush but don’t have computer access, they also have a “Grab and Go” selection of pre-made meals prepared that morning. Convenient plus nutritious = win-win.

Marketing Pros. In addition to being active on social media, you can also find these cards at both Thrive and Side Street Cafe:

sscthrivecard

It’s easy to see where your traffic comes from online, with the help of tools like Google analytics, but for brick and mortar establishments who want to know where their traffic is coming from, it can be a bit trickier. These cards encourage customers to share how they heard about either place.

Local Businesses Supporting Local Businesses. The idea of “Thrive” goes beyond reaping the benefits of a healthful diet, there’s a community element, too. Thrive’s ingredients are, as often as possible, from local sources, like Mandala Farm in Gouldsboro. Thrive also recently partnered with Destination Health, a new fitness studio in Bar Harbor, for a New Year’s Resolution wellness program. Fostering these community relationships in creative, helpful ways is something we definitely appreciate.

destheatlhthrive

Winter Deals. As many businesses who stay open through the winter know, it’s not the easiest feat. To keep things interesting, Thrive has developed a “Deal a Day” offer throughout the winter. It’s something different every day. This keeps things interesting for the already consistent follower, and gives an incentive for the on-the-fencer to stop in. Last week, one of the deals was “Buy one juice, smoothie, salad and receive $5 off any other item.”

If you haven’t already stopped by Thrive or checked them out online, I recommend that you do both. Looking forward to having this option nearby all year long! You can also hear more about Thrive’s mission by listening to their interview on the My Desert Island podcast a couple weeks ago.



Marketing a Memory

It’s been a big year for looking back. At least, it certainly feels that way, with “Back to the Future” Day this past October and the new Star Wars movie coming out in a few weeks. Some classic Nick at Nite shows are airing again, Mad Max and Vacation came back the theaters, and even fringe was back in for a little bit. It’s like the Ghost of Christmas Past visited last year and decided to stay put. Appealing to nostalgia has always been a technique in marketing, for reasons that can be summarized in the following quote from Dwight Shrute (The Office): “People underestimate the power of nostalgia. Nostalgia is truly one of the greatest human weaknesses..second only to the neck.”

nostalgia

You’ve noticed Facebook’s “On This Day” messages by now, and have probably seen and/or dabbled with #tbt (Throwback Thursday, or maybe even Flashback Friday or Transformation Tuesday). Social media has been jumping on the sentimental bandwagon this year. Facebook’s is especially intriguing- it’s kind of a gamble, right? Some memories take us back to good times, like a group photo of your college friends on vacation together or crammed in a dorm room for a Tuesday night viewing of  She’s the Man, jerryrigged with a storage tower, several textbooks, and a 2007 Macbook (oddly specific because this just came up in my own newsfeed). There’s also the gamble that a person will revisit an unpleasant memory, like an ex-significant other. It’s like Scrooge being forced to look back at his past and relive the pain of losing his lady (a scene that’s even more painful in A Muppet’s Christmas Carol because there’s a whole breakup song that Scrooge has to re-listen to). According to this article from Hubspot, the risk of serving a painful memory is worth it, since nostalgia can produce some pretty powerful positive feelings in people. It can band together a generation, encourage people to reach out to one another, and yes, buy things.

Some brands are tapping into this “blast from the past” by reintroducing old products or campaigns- it’s like re-purposing memories! According to recent articles on the subject, the ’90s are in right now. This article from Entrepreneur has a hypothesis that there’s a 20 year sweet spot- in other words, 20 years is an appropriate time to consider “retro” enough to market again. Another consistent piece of advice I’ve seen for brands considering the idea of re-introducing an old product is to take a look at what your customers are saying- especially on social media. There might be a clear demand for a certain product they’d like to see brought back, as Crispy M&Ms and Burger King’s Chicken Fries discovered. Coca Cola revamped (note: not “re-used”) their “Share a Coke” ad from way back when and added names to their labels. From a business standpoint, nostalgia marketing is an efficient approach- it saves time not reinventing the wheel, and it’s brings back something that has already been successful. The key is to not overdo it…like Rocky.

The assumption that people view the past through a rose colored lens, and perhaps the best time to Holidays and nostalgia go together like peanut butter and jelly, which you’ve seen from Coca Cola’s Christmas ads with the polar bears (1997’s edition below) to anything with a family setting. We all feel drawn to the idea of “home,” so these ads and marketing campaigns tug at our unsuspecting heartstrings. Verizon is now incorporating the old Rudolph movie into it’s holiday commercials, and I’m personally hoping for one where Yukon Cornelius and the Abominable Snowman come in to buy a family plan. They should probably get unlimited data.

Although nostalgia allegedly “increases feelings of social connectedness” and can create “positive feelings about the future,” I’m personally not looking forward to the things that will resurface 5 years from now…can we just remember the ’90s forever?

Tech Thursday: Terrible or Not Terrible (Social Media Edition)

Kassie and Nicole weigh in on what they think is and isn’t terrible. Part game show, part nerd show.

(And please don’t steal our Halloween costume idea)



Tech Thursday: Online Ordering

This week, we’re looking at some different things (whether goods or services) that you can order online!

  • Local Restaurants: can place orders with substitutions and pay online, for delivery or pickup.
  • Online-Only Sale Offers (that expire in mere minutes!)
  • People to assemble Ikea furniture or pick up your groceries (via TaskRabbit or Amazon Services)
  • And more!

What is it about online ordering that’s so appealing? You’ll have to watch the video to find out!

Give us your ideas for our next Tech Thursday in the comments or shoot us an email!



Marketing Monday: Flavor God

I am in my usual ‘fall as new year’ kick and have been following the Whole30 for about 4 days. Last night, in an attempt to crisp up green beans so they would function even a little bit like the crunchy snack I actually wanted, I realized to get through the next month, I’d have to get a lot more into seasonings.

I’ve been following Flavor God, first on Instagram and then a few other places. I want to talk a little big about what is going right with this product:



Super Short Videos

Many videos are 15 seconds or less and can be watched with or without sound:

VIdeos are oftentimes short and look delicious. Vine (and share) worthy.

Videos are oftentimes short and look delicious. Vine (and share) worthy.

Creating Scarcity

FlavorGod often has flash sales. I even saw a Facebook ad (which I forgot to screenshot) telling me I had 13 minutes to act on a package deal.

flavorgod-creatingscarcityWhen things are constantly available, there is not incentive to act. By periodically retiring and re-releasing spices, Flavor God not only has new things to say but allows his customers to act.

Differentiation

I am pretty clear on Flavor God’s value proposition. His spices are larger, freshly made, endorsed by celebrity chefs/bloggers and otherwise seem different to what is readily available at the supermarket.

Part of the value proposition is the fact that Flavor God spices are larger than major brands.

Part of the value proposition is the fact that Flavor God spices are larger than major brands.

Flavor God regularly illustrates what is valuable about his products, which justify a higher price point and the hassle of having to order them.

Master Of The Feedback Collage

I’m going to say it, this is slightly cheesy but like most slightly cheesy things, people like it:

flavorgod-testimonialcollage

Flavor God regularly not only posts tweets but photos of his customers with the product. Not just celebrities but also normal people and tags them when possible.

Best Emoji Use/Overuse

What first stood out when I began following Flavor God was his borderline aggressive emoji use. Here’s a recent Instagram post to show you what I mean.

flavorgod-emoji

Attentive Of The Marketplace

This is the footer of FlavorGod.com:

flavorgod-diets

Did Flavor God have to go through extra trouble to make vegan approved seasonings? Maybe, maybe not. But by communicating they work with a vegan diet, he is attracting those customers to his store. By being attentive of the current popular eating trends (gluten free, Whole30, paleo), he is able to have a product not only make food taste better but address the needs of the different dietary communities.





He’s Not Afraid To Ask For The Sale

What I love the most about Flavor God? He asks for the sale. He regularly gives his online store’s URL, he asks people to buy, and even reminds people that he ships worldwide (and other potential barriers to sale) in just about every post.

He doesn’t ask once (like some of us writing this blog) and feel too embarassed to ask more than once in awhile. he asks, regularly. He answers the same questions over and over, with a patience and enthusiasm that’s admirable.

Flavor God, I’m going to buy some of your stuff. Your online marketing is certainly impressive!

www.flavorgod.com

https://instagram.com/flavorgod/

https://www.facebook.com/FlavorGod

 

 

 

Tech Thursday: Is it Advertising or Marketing?

Apparently this is a slippery slope. Nicole and Kassie tackle the question by discussing several scenarios:

Scenario 1: You take out Facebook Ads for your business.
Scenario 2: You put your event on your blog, in community calendars, send out a press release, and make a Facebook Event where you invite your friends.
Scenario 3: You get an event cosponsor who also helps promote your event with you.
Scenario 4: You buy a small video clip that plays in before news clips on a local news website.
Scenario 5: You send out an email newsletter with a coupon code in it.
Scenario 6: You give away t-shirts at a parade.

So, what do you think? We have similar ideas about marketing vs. advertising, so we’re interested to hear from others!



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