Article by Michelle Jay,
Editorial Director of
Bumps, Babies and Beyond Magazine
When money is tight, and budgets are stretched, particularly when you are just starting out, every penny counts, and marketing and promotional spend can seem like an expense you just can’t afford…a luxury that can wait till you are more established perhaps. But this is a huge mistake. You can have the greatest product in the world… the most engaging website…the loveliest shop…but if you don’t have an effective and well executed promotional strategy, nobody is going to know you even exist.
When cash is tight, the temptation can be to go for the cheapest option – for example, through low-cost business cards and websites. But you can end up paying twice when you realise the cheapest option isn’t the right way for you to communicate your brand.
The bottom line to all effective marketing is planning. Here are some ideas to help you make the most of your marketing budget:
Know your target audience – through our research we have found that many brands often fail to connect with mothers, as advertising and promotional strategies see them as mums first as opposed to women with children – this is not resonating with them.
As a rule, mums tends to be lumped together as one homogenous groups, but in reality we are all very different (stay-at-home mum, working mum, single or married), and as such we all have very different requirements. If you can acknowledge these differences you have a better chance of resonating with your audience.
Set your objectives for every bit of marketing you do, and give very specific timings and metrics so you are better able to assess your success. For example your on-line advertising may be measured by how it generates sales, or the effectiveness of you printed ads can be assessed by how it generated inquiries, and so on. Once you have set your objectives you can keep track of how your advertising is measuring up, and adjust it as necessary.
Niche marketing can be extremely cost-effective. For instance, imagine you offer a product or service that’s just right for a select demographic, for instance parents with young children. You could advertise in a magazine or via a website dedicated to this audience, the circulation may be lower than the main-stream press which cater for broader audiences, but your marketing budget will go significantly further, allowing you to advertise with greater frequency or to use a more comprehensive media mix.
Bumps, Babies and Beyond was started with precisely this goal in mind. We sought to work with brands big and small, within the pregnancy to pre-school market…this is our core focus. Our magazine is free to anyone who wants it and we have a long and growing list of parents who subscribe to us, who receive a copy direct to their door. We also distribute 50,000+ copies across the UK via a carefully cultivated bespoke distribution network of pre-schools, nurseries, children’s centres, libraries, maternity units, and many more. We never door drop, thereby ensuring that our magazine and our advertisers content gets into the hands of their target market.
Product reviews is another hugely effective promotional tool for engaging with the parenting market. Many mums look for reviews by other mums before buying a product. Getting your product in the hands of a trusted brand to facilitate and share the product review will generate a lot of word-of-mouth referrals for your product. Most reviewers will be positive about your product, but if they are not this is feedback you can use to improve your offering.
Bumps, Babies and Beyond work with over 500 nurseries, pre-school and children’s centres directly reaching 100,000 parents and carers. Our research has shown that approximately 40 minutes per week is spent by parents at nurseries (for drop off and pick up) and mums have told us that it is the ideal place for them to receive information, coupons and samples, creating an excellent opportunity for you to communicate with this market.
About Bumps, Babies and Beyond
Bumps, Babies and Beyond a FREE magazine, issued 6 times a year, written for families with children from bump to 5 years old. Bumps, Babies and Beyond puts parents in touch with everything from pregnancy to pre-school. Each issue is packed full of informative articles and features, exclusive special offers, discounts and competitions.
As well as a National edition of the magazine (circulation 20,000), we also publish three regional versions – North Yorkshire, South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire (combined circulation 30,000), with further regions due to launch throughout 2015.
To find out how Bumps, Babies and Beyond can help you get your message straight to the heart of your target market and stay ahead of the competition, please contact our friendly team on 01604 706023 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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