Going for the Local Gold

With the Olympics in full swing, you find brands grabbing the rings to get associated with the spirit of patriotism and the personal stories of the athletes.  Finding brands who want to be associated with “feel good” events is nothing new. From gum, cereal to cigarettes, brands have tried to get associated with the athletes equity and the values they represent. 

Buying into an Olympian's prestige is expensive. Very expensive. 

What can a small to mid-sized brand learn from these multi-million dollar endorsement deals that could help them go from zero to hero in a short period of time? 

Think local. 

There are plenty of heroes and athletes in every small town. Imagine when a small regional company or a local services firm connects with stars from their own community. The authenticity of the endorsement has to be right but the chance to get a positive halo over your business is quite possible.

Some examples: 
Alarm Company Hooks Up With Retired Chief:  The local fire and alarm company who decides that they want to have a retired fire chief as their celebrity endorser who is seen on their web site, email communications and possibly in some ads. If  handled carefully, the equity the Chief has can be associated with the local firm who is in the same business - protecting and keeping the public safe. 

Snack Food Firm Works with Local Chef: A company that markets a regional snack food product would work with local food celebrities to help build credibility and awareness to a brand that may not have much personality. The zesty and wild personality of the Chef's could bring some of that excitement and transfer to their product and brand. 

Dentist finds Yoga: A local dentist may want to connect with someone who helps communicates to their dental practice the feeling of being calm, relax and peaceful. This might not work for all, but a local celebrity Yoga teacher could help position this office in a new and different way. Suddenly, when you think of their office, you start to associate them with being in a stress-free environment. Yoga and dentistry - not something you might typically combine but the right spokesperson can help calm the nerves of anxious patience. Perhaps the yoga practitioner creates a YouTube video communicating ways to prepare for an anxious dental visit. Maybe the dental office has a Yoga room or a quiet space for calm mediation before they get their cavities filled. 

Finding the Right Celebrity

  1. What emotion does your brand represent? Safety, Success or other feelings?
  2. What type of person locally might be emblematic of that emotion? 
  3. How could you work with that person in a dignified way that goes beyond pay for service. If there is something in it for them, how can you help them with their own agenda. 
  4. A local celebrity could help define your brand but you want to do your homework to make sure there isn't any hidden concerns. Do a thorough background check. 
A great local celebrity endorsement can help you differentiate your brand and give you some fuel for your marketing machine. One way to think about this strategy is to ask, who could walk through your door and would represent the personality of your brand?  

Now go for the gold, locally. 


For more ideas on marketing, check out my book on Amazon as an eBook or in paperback. Thanks. 

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