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A Big Marketing Campaign made of ‘Little Surprises’

A Big Marketing Campaign made of ‘Little Surprises’

Whilst catching up with all the latest news and views from the Direct Marketing Association (a must-read), I came across a fascinating article about the Lidl supermarket’s #LidlSurprises marketing campaign.

Now, I have been aware of the campaign as I have seen the TV adverts, but the article alerted me to how well-crafted their campaign is and why it works so well.

Pushing all the buttons

If you are not already in the know, the campaign is built around ‘#LidlSurprises’. The premise being that people are often ‘quite surprised’ by the quality, range and affordability of their products. The hashtag appears on the header of the website and the website also shows tweets from customers who have referenced #LidlSurprises. Lidl have their own YouTube channel where you can see their TV Ads, amongst other things – all showing genuine people being genuinely surprised when they find out where the delicious morsel they have just sampled came from. Their in-store Ad banners are the aforementioned tweets from customers extolling their virtues. Their Twitter and Facebook links on the website home page show the latest activity but don’t distract the reader (Lidl has 955,122 followers on Facebook – How’s that for the inference; ‘nearly a million Britons already know our secret?!).

Counting the success

It really is a brilliantly conceived campaign – and one that, in principle, all businesses can apply to themselves.
Yes I know that Lidl invested a whopping £20m into implementing the campaign. However, no matter what the size of your marketing budget, the theories, if not the spend can be applied.

So here’s how they did it…..

Customer engagement – Lidl effectively used Social Media as a way to start a conversation with their customers. No one-way sales messages here; they have started a dialogue with their fan-base and used it to leverage new customers. A salient lesson in talking to your current customers regularly about what their needs are.

Tackling objections – Lidl have been listening to the main objections about buying their products and found the perfect way to overcome those objections, using and answering the very words of their detractors. It’s a technique that has worked before and Lidl have done it superbly. It’s so important to listen to objections – even something as simple as instating ‘free delivery’ could overcome objections to your brand, increase volume sales and make you more attractive than your nearest competitors.

That’s not an Ad, it’s a testimonial – although those testimonials that you can see on the boards around the stores are in fact Adverts for their products. Neat. And as it’s not just a stuffed shirt blowing their own trumpet (put that down Steve), it’s real words from real people – worth their weight in Gold

Joined-up thinking – Lidl has made an instantly recognisable marketing campaign across the whole of the brand. #LidlSurprises is central to all their marketing communications – it carries across its stores, website and all social media channels. Often, as smaller companies, the marketing message can be a bit piecemeal, depending on the platform. Using a hook to hang the whole of your marketing campaign on makes your marketing message clearer to follow and easier to understand.

All these theories aren’t only possible for big business – find the clarity in your message, overcome objections, make it easy for your customers to engage with you and listen to them.

All good stuff from the hitherto ‘poor cousin’ in the supermarket wars. Just goes to prove that size isn’t everything if you’re wily and quick on your feet.

I’d love to say ‘Every Lidl helps’, but I think I’ve used that gag before!

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