Understand and influence behaviour with local direct marketing.
by Gary Howard

Whether you are trying to attract customers instore or online, direct marketing that is customised, localised and personalised can influence decision-making. Add to this the clever part, behavioural science - how humans react to different kinds of messaging and you have all the ingredients to “Nudge” your target in your direction.

What is Nudge Theory and how is it applied to local marketing?

Nudge theory is a flexible and modern change-management concept that is used to understand how people think, make decisions, and behave; helping people improve their thinking and decisions; managing change of all sorts; and identifying and modifying existing unhelpful influences on people.

Nudge theory was named and popularized by the 2008 book, 'Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness', written by American academics Richard H Thaler and Cass R Sunstein. The book is based on the Nobel prize-winning work of the Israeli-American Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky. Nudge theory is a highly innovative, effective model for change-management.

As consumers we are inundated with messages every day across all forms of media - this is why it is difficult to cut through the ‘chatter’ and why the relevance of the message to your audience is essential.

When considering placing a local marketing campaign make sure you deploy a simple check list. We find the EAST framework really useful as it combines behavioural economics with other sciences and psychology to really understand and influence behavioural change.

The aim is simple - understand and influence behaviour.

The customer has a desire, the brand just needs to nudge that desire to become action – it is down to marketing to make it as easy as possible and to empower them to take positive actions and help them along the buying journey.

E – Easy.

Easy to understand – simple messaging, that is clear and concise. If it is Help to Buy and you can explain the proposition on the back of a postcard then you have made it easy for the audience to understand. For example Gleesons’ offering just made it easy for a renter to own their own home. The localisation came from the fact that this is an offer for people living in a certain part of the country, close to a Gleeson development.

A – Attractive.

So many campaigns are awareness driven without due consideration of the value of their offer in the eyes of the recipient. What’s in it for them? If it is aspirational, it also needs to be achievable. Use images and copy that instantly draws attention and they are more likely to engage. Attraction is not just aesthetics, it could be a stand out headline! The Gleeson example plays the symbolism of owning your own “Home”.

Image
Image

S – Salient.

Relevant to the audience. Continuing with the Help to Buy theme, send it to those who have the most need, renters in social and privately rented accommodation. Developments close to town would attract downsizers, those looking to grow their family, and you guessed it, upsizers. The simple Gleeson message is made more powerful due to the fact that it was aimed at a particular location and only sent to a particular demographic so extremely salient to the recipient.

T – Timely.

Right time, right place, this is harder to judge but if you use multiple touch points, direct mail, door drops, email, social media, local press advertising to name but a few, the likelihood is that you will promote thoughts of moving or buying from back of mind to front of mind. The key point is that we have improved the hit rate through selection geo-demographically profiled data on those most likely to be searching for a solution to their desire to buy their own home.

Try applying the EAST framework to your next marketing campaign. But remember you must first understand your customer better through using profiled data to be able to target them with a personalised message.

Gary Howard
Gary HowardChief Digital Officer
Gary has lived through the digital transformation and has survived to tell the tale. He is champion of local marketing and has worked with some of the worlds most recognised brands in delivering a national message to a local audience. Gary is often mistaken for Ed Balls, who is (in Gary’s opinion) a remarkably good looking chap with a razor sharp mind and a personality to match!

Get in touch with Gary:

Gary Howard
Gary HowardChief Digital Officer
Gary has lived through the digital transformation and has survived to tell the tale. He is champion of local marketing and has worked with some of the worlds most recognised brands in delivering a national message to a local audience. Gary is often mistaken for Ed Balls, who is (in Gary’s opinion) a remarkably good looking chap with a razor sharp mind and a personality to match!

Get in touch with Gary:

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