Disruptive marketing is all about rethinking the traditional and breaking new boundaries in your industry. In today’s world, where consumers are faced with thousands of brands and marketing messages, standing out from the noise is important.
You don’t need a big marketing budget or a massive company to start being disruptive. You just need to think differently. To help you, we’ve put together a list of tips to make you start thinking like an innovator.
So if you want to stand out and offer something new, your business should look towards disruptive marketing strategies. If done right, disruptive marketing could help to position your brand miles ahead of the competition. Follow our guide to help your business achieve this.
Understanding Disruptive Marketing
Disruptive marketing is about throwing away any rules and ideas you have from traditional marketing practices and doing something completely different. Disruptive marketing campaigns can be done when smaller businesses, who don’t have the resources to compete with big companies’ traditional marketing strategies, do something to stand out and carve their path.
We see disruptive marketing as going against the status quo, taking risks, and rejecting the idea that things should only be done in a certain way.
Instead of just settling for traditional marketing ideas and building off the way that things are always done, disruptive marketing flips this around. Disruptive marketing campaigns don’t just place your business in a unique position, but they can reshape an industry.
Putting together a disruptive marketing strategy is all about being creative. It’s about challenging the marketing norm and forging a unique positioning in your industry. Disruptive marketing can set your company apart. It can change industries, and create a whole new market for your business.
Successful disruptive marketing will give your company power over the competition. Truly disruptive brands can forget about the competition because they’re doing something that nobody else is doing.
When understanding disruption, there are two main areas that the process could fall under. These are:
- Offering something new: When a business creates some kind of a novelty within its industry. This could include a new product, a new business model, or the use of new technology to change the way things are typically done.
- Refining what exists: Using technology, creativity, and innovative tactics to improve what already exists. This could include things like making products better, more reliable to their target audience, or cheaper.
When putting together a marketing campaign for your business, keep these two ideas in mind. You don’t have to invent the next Uber, but you can always find new ways to improve what you’ve already got.
Why Does Disruptive Marketing Work?
Customers love disruptive marketing campaigns. Disruptive marketing makes products and services stick in our minds. We pay attention to them and think about them. Disruptive marketing can make your brand a household name, and it can help customers to place your products or services on a pedestal above the competition. So, why is this the case?
Here are some of the main reasons that customers respond well to great disruptive marketing campaigns:
- They’re easy to understand: From a customer perspective, disruptive marketing is easy to understand and digest. These campaigns aren’t designed to be complicated, they’re specially created to be easily approachable.
- They’re unique: Disruptive companies are one of a kind. Yes, other companies can try to copy disruptive campaigns, but they’re never going to be as successful as the original. Once you stand out from the rest, customers stop comparing you to the competition.
- Disruptive marketing is obvious: A good example of disruptive marketing is to say something that everyone’s thinking. Disruptive campaigns are often able to voice the thoughts of your consumers in a way that other brands just aren’t doing. Disruptive marketing should be loud, clear, and easily relatable.
- Disruptive marketing is simple: Marketers don’t need huge budgets to create successful disruptive marketing campaigns. They just need to have a good idea. In many cases, a disruptive ad campaign doesnt require much budget. With the right idea, any company can create a powerful disruptive marketing campaign that produces maximum ROI.
How to Create a Disruptive Marketing Strategy
Disruptive marketing sounds exciting, but how do companies do this? What tactics should you take if you want to start making your marketing disruptive? We’ll explore some tips to help your business become more innovative in its marketing.
Know Your Industry
To disrupt something, you need to know what you will be disrupting. Understanding your industry and its key players is the first thing to do before developing a disruptive campaign.
To do this, you should take a deep look at your competitors, your customers, and any general trends seen across your niche. Basically, what is everyone else doing?
Pay attention to how much your competitors’ products cost, where they do their advertising, and what their customers have to say about their products. Check out online reviews to find any potential pain points that your competitors’ customers have.
Your goal is to have a full understanding of how things are already being done to find untapped opportunities for your business. If you can identify existing weaknesses within your market, then you’ve found opportunities for disruption.
A good example of this is how Dollar Shave Club was able to identify an opportunity in the men’s grooming market. They introduced a system of delivering razor blades every month to offer a new take on how we purchase new razors. They marketed this service as being only $1 for a month’s worth of razor blades – something that saw them attract a lot of attention within their industry.
Be Present Where Your Competitors Aren’t
If you want to stand out to consumers, then your company should try to reach them through new channels. Instead of trying to beat your competitors on the marketing channels that they’re already dominating, look for areas that they’re not making use of. You might be able to win over more customers here.
Today, you’ve got loads of marketing and advertising channels available. Of course, there is social media – this can be a good place to start. However, you could also consider other marketing options that you might be ignoring.
We suggest doing a deep dive into all of your main competitors marketing channels and trying to identify areas that they’re not making use of. If there’s a channel that nobody else is properly utilizing, this could be your opportunity to start creating a disruptive marketing campaign. This could be something simple, like running clever email marketing strategies that your competitors aren’t doing.
For example, when Nissan launched its Versa Note, it let customers buy the cars through Amazon. The cars still arrived at the customer’s houses in the classic Amazon box packaging. No other car retailers were making use of Amazon as a channel to sell new cars. Besides the fact that Nissan was able to sell 100 cars through this, using Amazon was a disruptive approach to help them stand out from the competition and make use of a channel that their industry wasn’t using.
Find Ways to Provide an Experience
A good way to set your company apart is to think of providing an experience for your customers. Disruptive marketing isn’t just about making your brand stand out from its competitors, but it’s also about providing something valuable that your customers will remember.
Think about ways where you can stay relevant, and add some real value to your customers’ lives. A great way of keeping your marketing relevant is to think about how you can connect with your customers on an experiential level.
This is what Barilla did when they set up Spotify playlists to listen to while cooking their pasta. They dropped eight Spotify mixtapes, each one based on a different shape of pasta. The playlists are each specifically timed to cook the different pasta shapes perfectly. This is a clever tactic to use something simple like a Spotify playlist (which you wouldn’t expect from a pasta brand) to connect with their consumer through an experience.
Refine the Customer Journey
When it comes to disruption, your company doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel. Instead, you can use your in-depth industry knowledge to look for new opportunities to improve the customer journey.
This starts by going back to understanding your industry and your customers and refining the processes that already exist. A simple change in the traditional customer journey can go a long way here.
To do this, follow your customers through each step of their journey – from learning about your brand to ending up with the final product. Map out the steps that they take, and see if there is a particular pain point that can be refined.
For example, Trade Coffee offers a coffee subscription service to make sure that you’re always stocked up with your favorite coffee. They took a typical consumer activity, like buying coffee each month, and refined it through a subscription service. This is further enhanced by offering a quiz to each customer to help find the most suitable coffee for them.
Finding a unique way to market your brand is one part of marketing disruption. The other part is keeping up with what’s important to your customers and staying relevant towards this. The best company is the one that continually thinks about its customer and carries on finding ways to add meaning and value to their lives.
Creating disruptive marketing strategies should focus on continually gaining a deeper insight and understanding of the customer, and continually finding ways to position your brand with what your consumers value.
Never just accept unhappy customers. The traditional business model isn’t necessarily the best option. Innovation should start by finding ways to improve the existing model to keep it relevant to consumers. The world is moving at a rapid pace, so your business should keep up.
Lemonade is a good example of this. This company offers a new type of insurance to consumers, using AI and software to make time-consuming insurance processes simple for consumers. Lemonade has taken a deep look into insurance customers and has changed up the typical model to make it more customer-friendly.
Don’t Take Your Brand too Seriously
A disruptive marketing tip that often works is to find some humor in your brand. Of course, this doesn’t work with every brand, but including humor in your marketing is a great way to stand out.
This seems simple, but so many businesses take themselves very seriously. Being able to laugh is something that customers love, and it can make a big difference to help your brand shift away from the competition and leave a memorable impression.
A great example of this is Nandos – an international chicken fast-food chain that started as a local South African business. Nandos is well-known for its funny ad campaigns. Often, these ads take a light-hearted look at current affairs. It’s the consistent humor that has helped set Nandos apart in its marketing, creating a unique and memorable way to put across its messages.
Understand Your Customers
Customers don’t just want companies to understand their needs and concerns, they expect it. If you want to disrupt your market, then you’ll need to develop a strong understanding of your customers and what they want from your business.
You can use tools like Google Analytics to gain useful insights and analytics into consumer behavior. Understanding your audience and creating a human connection with them is one of the best ways that marketers can stand out.
An easy tactic that any brand can do is simply reach out and ask their audience what they want. For example, Cadbury lets its audience submit new flavor ideas for its chocolate bars through its Inventor campaign. The top three ideas are presented to the public through a vote and the chocolate bar with the most votes is put into production. Sure, Cadbury is a massive global brand, but this is the kind of idea that any company could do.
When marketers talk about disruption, they’re referring to unique tactics and strategies that businesses use to stand out from the competition. This doesn’t always have to be completely ground-breaking. Making simple moves that your competitors aren’t doing could result in a high-impact disruptive marketing campaign.
So, understand your customers, understand your industry, and don’t just accept everything as it is. Marketers who start thinking about ways to get disruptive could completely change the course of any small business. Follow the tips above, and you could unlock a whole new world of opportunity for your business.
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