Saturday, July 11, 2015

Following Marketing Trends in South Africa

Sometimes brands get caught up in what I call ‘following marketing trends cause ke trend’ very easily without actually realizing it. While it can be said that the marketing playing field always is totally influenced and often changed by various trends that come and go, what is trending doesn’t always call every brand’s name but often majority of brands answer the call instantly without thinking twice. There are a number of good reasons why brands feel the need to follow new trends, even if it means spending more than usual. However, I cannot speak for all brands as their reasons differ but most of them forget that it is not always a good idea to just follow a trend without a plan.

No marketing trend guarantees success neither does any method of marketing – a trend or not. As a marketing entrepreneur I have set in various meetings telling clients exactly what I am going to do for them also laying out the pros and cons. Marketing is about understanding your target market fully, with that comes employing ways and methods of commutating to them effectively in view to get them to buy whatever it is you are selling. Some ways work better than others but it can go both ways, you just have to be prepared and the implementation thereof, must be realistic and aims to solve their problems. How often have you heard clients complaining that they have spent a certain amount of marketing budget and are still waiting for the results? Plenty probably but none hardly take time to evaluate what went wrong and formulate strategies that might work better.

Social media for instance keeps on changing and popping out new trends with social media networks constantly changing and adding few elements. You find many South African brands implementing strategies based on trends that are currently introduced via either the USA or Europe. Some win that day while some lose but end up attracting international following while only based in SA (and servicing SA). It’s still a jungle out there for brands on social media with few getting it right in South Africa. South African market is a difficult one but should not be if you play your cards right. If a certain brands runs adverts on social media and winning, don’t follow what they are doing unless you have your target market there. I know most people believe everyone is on social media these days but are they really? For every brand under the sun? Don’t fool yourself. If they indeed are, which one? Are they active? How do they communicate while there? What do they like?

Before you start following trends, look at what you offer against your target market. Avoid following trends for the sake of it or because others are. While social media marketing is seriously big and cannot be ignored, apply common sense - research! If you do not know where to start you can always email me
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