My Marketing Strategy
Nicolette Lemmon, President & Founder
While taking a Hawaiian vacation, I was struck by how many ads on television pitch being “locally owned”. In the down economy, there are small businesses trying to use a message like:
“When you buy from local small businesses, most of the money flows back into the economy.”
Does this resonate with the consumer today or sound desperate?
When the only reason that a small business can promote to consumers is to support locals, it is not enough of a competitive advantage to be convincing.
If consumers are looking to save money, being a local vendor must have marketing messages tied to why that makes a difference for lower prices or more value for the dollar spent. Most often, I hear messages that just say, “help us and we can help our community.”
Another aspect is that a local business with a good story, a business narrative that is compelling can inspire more loyalty. For example, a long-time restaurant that we visited in Hanalei had added a sushi chef that was so popular that they expanded. And, the story was further embellished with the comment that local fishermen bring their catches to the restaurant first to him. The word-of-mouth with this business narrative creates an expectation of a local “must see” that has fresh local flavor! The place was packed and had an hour wait while the other half dozen restaurants down the same street did not.
Consumers buy from the businesses and the brands that have a consistent experience that continues to satisfy, provide value and most often – delight.