Category Archives: Social Influence
Learn how lingerie companies can win over college students this Valentine’s Day with fun on campus events and visual gift guides.
How Lingerie Companies Can Win Over College Students This Valentine’s Day
1. Host Sorority Lingerie Parties Leading Up to Valentine’s Day
Sorority members have huge influence on campus and can quickly launch a brand to success via word of mouth and peer-to-peer recommendations. Kim Bhasin explains in her article, Win the Sorority Girl, Win the American Wardrobe, the influential power sororities have: Once one sorority picks up on a brand, it can spread from person to person like a scandalous secret, infiltrating one house after the other until every sorority in the country knows about it.
A Look at the Potential Benefits of a College Marketing Strategy
Companies need to thoroughly research their target demographic in order to develop an effective marketing strategy. If you understand your target consumer’s viewpoints and the way they think, you can do a better job of appealing to them. Using this knowledge, you can develop a college marketing strategy that focuses on their values and builds on their experience. Companies who appeal to college students can benefit in a number of ways. Of course, not all companies readily appeal to the college student demographic, but with research, creativity, and innovative marketing techniques you can gain attention with this lucrative target audience. When advertising to college students, you need a mutli-faceted strategy that is regularly measured and tweaked for optimum success.
Fraternity and sorority marketing is a great way for companies to promote their products on campus. Fraternity and sorority groups are comprised of influential members of the student body and can have a big impact on campus trends.
Fraternities and Sororities Have Huge Influence On Campus
Fraternities and sororities have huge influence on campus in part because of their active role within the campus community. Greek organizations require their members to participate in a wide variety of events and activities, such as attending socials and mixers, participating in philanthropic activities, going to assigned tailgates for football games or anything that a chapter sees fit. Their huge social presence within the campus community allows them to interact with many students, both Greek life members and non-Greeks.
The auto industry faces rising competition with ride sharing services. Car companies advertise on college campuses to establish consumer trends and develop brand loyalty.
1. The Auto Industry Faces Rising Competition with Ride Sharing Services
According to a study by Alix Partners, a consulting firm, “a half million vehicle purchases in the U.S. have been avoided due to the growing popularity of car sharing programs like Zipcar and Relay Riders.” Ride sharing services know that by penetrating the college market, they will find people open to alternative means of transportation and as students adopt this new technology, growth will occur: “Research finds that most college campuses that start a program see sizeable growth rates in car sharing usage, growing 20-30 percent on a year-over-year basis.”[i]
Here’s a list of 3 common mistakes marketers make when advertising to college students:
1. Thinking Digital Media is the Best Way to Reach College Students
While it’s true college students spend a great deal of time online, digital ads often get ignored. In fact, “82% of Americans ignore online ads . . . . The online ads Americans are most likely to ignore included: online banner ads (73%), followed by social media ads (62%), and search engine ads (59%).” Online ads are so prevalent today that they don’t catch the attention of viewers.
2. Not Using Peer-to-Peer Marketing for Social Media Marketing Campaigns
College students are particularly adept at navigating the web and finding exactly what they’re looking for, while filtering out and ignoring ads that get in their way. If you want to use digital media to reach them, you need to think outside the box and come up with innovative ways to reach them online, such as peer-to-peer marketing. In fact, peer recommendations or peer posts related to products, carry significant weight among the college demographic. In fact, “68% of 18-to-34-year-old social media users surveyed were somewhat likely to make a purchase after seeing a friend’s post.” This is much more effective than traditional social media marketing techniques.
In my last blog, “College Marketing: The Rise of Social Activism Among the Youth Part I“, I examined the increase in social activism among Millennials and explored some of the reasons behind this trend. In this blog I want to further discuss why companies should care about this shift toward a more societally active youth.
Young adults and teens want to contribute to the world and their community. A study conducted by dosomething.org found that “93% of young people are interested in volunteering; just over 54% of those surveyed had done so. The gap represents opportunity and untapped potential”. This demonstrates that the majority of young people have already taken action to help organizations and causes, while 39% of young people would like to volunteer their time, but have yet to do so.
Transitional periods make great marketing opportunities. Reaching college students during orientation is a great time for brands to connect with the youth.
Given the problems Millennials face today—the tough economy, increasing student loan debt, and high unemployment rates among college graduates—marketers might overlook this highly influential market, thinking that they do not have significant buying power. Sandra Lopez, Intel Marketing Strategy Director for New Business, in a recent interview quickly dispelled this notion:
College students are highly receptive to word of mouth viral marketing, especially when it’s communicated face-to-face versus online or in other formats.
Even though college students and teens prefer communicating through technology, such as smartphones and social media outlets, face-to-face interaction still plays a significant role in influencing them in consumer purchases. Reaching college students utilizing word of mouth viral marketing is crucial when trying to capture the youth market. This college marketing technique appeals to them for a variety of psychological factors, including trust and impressionability.
Many companies believe that creating their own network of student brand ambassadors to work for them on campus is a quick and easy solution when it fact, a successful network requires a full time commitment and compensation.
Every now and then we come across companies who engage us in conversation about college marketing and how they can better utilize the college market for their business. Initially in the consultation, I start to suggest various ways to incorporate my student brand ambassador network whether it is peer to peer marketing, dorm room marketing, social media connections etc. At this point, the company with whom I am speaking says something to the effect of, “Student brand ambassadors don’t work, we’ve tried them and they didn’t work.” This always makes me cringe to some degree because the fact is that I have been utilizing student brand ambassadors on campus for almost 20 years in different ways to the success and benefit of my clients. It’s also a fact that college students trust their friends versus any other type of media before making a decision of purchase.
To properly utilize Facebook as a medium for reaching college students, your fan base must be advocates and make recommendations to their friends on campus.
Many marketers know that Facebook marketing and social media marketing must be a part of any and all successful college marketing strategies but there is a disconnect when it comes to building the brand’s fan base between ‘quantity vs. quality’. Many companies believe that acquiring as many ‘likes’ as possible is sufficient to deem their social media marketing campaign a success. The problem is that the number of ‘likes’ your college promotion’s Facebook page receive is meaningless unless the ‘likes’ (also known as ‘fans’) are making recommendations to their friends on campuses and really acting as an advocate for your brand.