Photo Credit: pexels
Congratulations, you’ve just survived one of the most divisive political seasons in recent memory. Being inundated by political ads could convince the most seasoned marketing executives that negative works. But, don’t forget the flip-side of the same coin. Optimism also sells. When you inspire your target audience, you’ll find that customers are willing to open their pocketbooks – be it a product, service or even if it’s just an idea you’re trying to sell.
Capital One commissioned a study that looked at the general attitude of credit consumers and found that 81% of the credit customers they surveyed were optimistic about the future and their ability to expand their buying power through responsible use of credit, which contributes to an improved credit score. This sense of optimism, when combined with the buying power that a credit card provides, is one of the reasons so many companies have jumped on the bandwagon of providing branded credit cards for their customers.
The Vibe Matters, Especially On Social Media
Whether it’s credit cards or automobiles, branding is nothing new. It’s been around for decades, and Madison Avenue has created an industry that reaches through various mediums to convert viewers into customers with targeted advertising that inspires, and sometimes scares the audience into making a purchase.
In the world of social media, creating a consistent vibe for your brand is mission critical. There are opportunities to target consumers via demographics on social media that make advertising campaigns unbelievably cost-effective, even for smaller companies just getting started in the world of advertising. And, with demographics, comes knowledge about the target consumer that can dictate what kind of vibe works best:
Photo Filters: Posts with photos get a lot more engagement. The choice of filters applied to your photos can create a warm, inviting feel, or a sense of danger that can help trigger fear-based purchasing. Communicate the use-case for your product or service with action-based photos that invite the viewer into the experience.
Presentation Style: The way information is presented varies between social media platforms. For example, Instagram uses a 15-picture grid, while Facebook and Twitter stick to a highly-curated newsfeed style that requires scroll-friendly posts and advertisements. The first step in creating an effective social media campaign is understand the pros and cons of how your information will be presented, and then catering your posts to those constrictions.
Impulse Buying Happens when We Feel Positive About the Future
One of the reasons that optimistic marketing strategies work so well in the digital age is that it’s now possible for the viewer to interact with the brand in a self-guided, interactive online journey. When properly positioned, an optimistic ad campaign can inspire impulse buyers to interact with your products and services.
And for impulse buyers, optimism is incredibly important. Impulse buyers are more social, status-conscious, and image-concerned. They may buy to make others think they are awesome. Create a sense of hope and prosperity around the future, and tie that improved future to your product or service if you want to convert impulse buyers online.
To some degree, social media is a medium that revolves around individuals displaying their best selves online to their friends and family. As an impulse buyer is scrolling through their social media feed, competitiveness manifests itself in how they feel they “stack up” against their online friends. If your product or service is strategically dropped into their feed, with the message that their life will appear better because of their purchase, there’s a real opportunity to quickly generate a sale.
Study the Vibe of Successful Entrepreneurs with a Strong Brand Following
If you’re looking for a case study on optimistic branding, look no further than Mark Cuban; an entrepreneur that has built a $32 billion net-worth by positively engaging with hopeful entrepreneurs, sports fans and technology gurus. His book, How to Win at the Sport of Business, embodies his positive outlook on the opportunity available to anyone that’s willing to compete with everything they have.
A positive brand doesn’t mean that negativity is completely cut out. Just look at the personality Cuban has developed on NBC’s Shark Tank. As one of the “sharks”, Cuban invests in start-ups that pitch themselves to the group of successful investors. If Cuban’s BS meter goes off, he immediately attacks the individual for presenting flimsy information, or outright misleading the panel. He frames these attacks within the context of protecting the consumer. Being negative, in the right context, can improve trust with a target audience.
And, of course, when he sees opportunity that the other sharks miss, he’s ready to jump in and provide motivation, and sometimes financial support to the hopeful entrepreneur’s endeavor. His optimistic brand is best summed up in one of his favorite quotes: “It’s not about money or connections – it’s the willingness to outwork and outlearn everyone when it comes to your business. And if it fails, you learn from what happened and do a better job next time.”
There’s little doubt that Cuban, and other successful entrepreneur brands are built by individuals that get out there and hustle to create positive press. Cuban’s ability to put himself at the center of the streaming audio and video revolution in the 90’s; his reformation of the Dallas Mavericks into a championship team; and his commitment to inspiring other entrepreneurs with years of participation on NBC’s Shark Tank have netted him a serious social media following.
- 3 million followers on Facebook
- 9 million followers on Twitter
- 600,000 followers on Instagram
- 9 million followers on LinkedIn
Chief Marketing Officers would be wise to pay attention to the personality driven, optimistic personalities behind the influencers that their target markets follow. Find ways to plant the seed that buying your product or service will instantly improve the lives of those that hit the Buy Now button and leverage the innate optimism of your target consumer.
This article originally appeared on Forbes.