During my college years, I had this great idea to start a jewelry eCommerce business as a fun project and as a challenge for myself to begin my first steps into the entrepreneurial world. The only problem here was the money. I was dirt poor and most of my expenses were allocated toward creating quality products and lavish packaging. However, I knew that I still had to allocate some budget toward marketing efforts because what good is quality jewelry if no one knows about it? I couldn’t afford a dime for PPC marketing and I had no clue on how to get started in SEO so I turned to the only marketing tool that I knew at the time – viral marketing. Below are some tips on how to generate some buzz and word-of-mouth for your brand:
- Use Social Media
Social media is a great way to place your brand out there without looking too auspicious or “advertised”. Create a Facebook page, YouTube channel, Instagram, Twitter or Tumblr. Every share or ‘Like’ by a user opens up a doorway for you to reach your target audience and allow others to become familiar with your brand. It’s a lot of work and upkeep but well worth it when a user converts for free!
A technique I used for my jewelry line was to endorse other YouTube make-up gurus since I did not have my own channel and did not have the necessary equipment to create HD videos. Usually, existing YouTube gurus already have a following so it makes sense to capitalize on their audience. I reached out to several YouTube gurus and sent them select necklaces and earrings from my jewelry line free of charge. In return, they blogged and created video reviews about my jewelry line which allowed for other potential customers.
- Enticing Packaging for Your Product
Your brand is everything! Your company should have a proper logo complete with business cards and great packaging. The first impression a customer will receive is the packaging that your product comes in. Don’t skimp out on packaging. Have you seen Tiffany’s iconic box? It is one of the most recognizable and most desired retail container in history. Having a recognizable package gives customers something to talk about and generates an enormous amount of buzz. Imagine someone unfamiliar with your brand but suddenly stumbles upon your exquisite packaging in their friend’s home, they will instantly ask about which company such lovely packaging came from and what type of product your company sells.
- Product Placement
Let your customers do the work for you! One of the best techniques in getting your product or brand known is having it out there used by customers or worn by customers and seen by potential new customers. Product placement doesn’t have to come with a price tag. For my jewelry line, I reached out to previous customers and invited them to join a contest on Facebook in which they were required to post photos of themselves wearing a piece of jewelry from my line. Many of them shared stories about how often they wore it and how great the quality was which eventually led to international sales that I never even anticipated.
- Affiliate as Much as You Can
When you have an unknown brand, partnering up with another well-established brand can prove to be very beneficial. Place text or graphic links on others’ website or reach out to collaborate for sales. A few programs that I participated in for my jewelry line included a “link exchange” and co-hosting a contest with others. I would send a few pieces from my jewelry line for “free” and allow the participating company to use them as part of the prize basket for the contest.
These few tips can assist in generating brand awareness and provide a lift to your sales. Remember, offering “free” products is always a worthy trade when you can acquire more consumers while creating buzz.
Senior Account Manager