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The speed at which the web was adopted by the masses coupled by its influence on their lives basically meant that many industries were caught unprepared. A growing number of Singaporean businesses are fighting to outshine their more technologically savvy rivals through the unknown internet marketing platform. The usage of digital media is oftentimes more difficult for larger firms that already comfortably participate in conventional procedures. Recently, there was a situation in which a big corporation was suffering from huge losses due to a number of factors. It is good to understand though that they explored their digital marketing options to avoid further ruin. This company is none aside from UnityThrift.
A key player in the Singaporean Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) marketplace, UnityThrift was regarded as one of many biggest and most highly regarded supermarkets with fair popularity. The supermarket chain had stores in nearly every town and had very little competition outside of modest grocery stores. However, when November of 2009 rolled around, UnityThrift found itself struggling due to several reasons.
The previous Chief Executive Officer, unable to capture the Southeast Asian markets effectively, was told to leave and a new one arrived. To adapt the new Chief Executive’s vision for the business, entire processes had to be overhauled. The restructuring process raked up some large expenditures that affected UnityThrift’s financial standing.
Various Hurdles for UnityThrift
In Singapore, sub-urban malls where UnityThrift stores were normally found, were also becoming less popular. Rapid growth of competitors Vyeco and Fixry was the next large hurdle. These two competitors embraced technology to a great extent. They successfully took control of a niche target audience thus attaining a grip on the marketplace. Both were successful in getting the two ends of the marketplace: the value-conscious and the premium-seekers. In the meantime, there was clearly a noticeable change in purchasing behavior that resulted in customers embracing the importance of value over brand loyalty. This extreme change damage UnityThrift’s books, which unquestionably caused a furor amongst its shareholders as they witnessed the valuation of their investments decline sharply. Certainly, the large decline in profits caused shareholders to realize the problem.
Prior to the deployment of a marketing plan through digital media, UnityThrift’s on-line reach was limited to a basic e-commerce website. It was totally working and functional, but the changing competitive landscape meant that radical changes to it was required; the newly appointed CEO, who was a powerful supporter of technology, was appointed just for this task – to renew and rejuvenate UnityThrift’s on-line presence.
The preliminary approach was to launch an in-house agency specializing in digital marketing by hiring inventive tech driven marketers. By tapping on their excellent innate skills, UnityThrift seeked to unleash the complete potential of this team as an alternative for a digital advertising agency.
To reinforce their on-line grocery arm, they need to attract more people to their e-commerce stores. While conventional advertising methods are still successful, it is no longer cost effective when there are digital options. Depending on a tried and tested instrument, UnityThrift’s digital marketers chosen to use the highly profitable strategy referred to as marketing through branded content.
A Microsite that Provided Users with All Sorts of Important Information
An element of the content marketing strategy was developing an informative microsite which was linked to the UnityThrift online store. The unique microsite encouraged healthy living and positive habits to UnityThrift customers. Essentially, UnityThrift uses the microsite to efficiently disseminate applicable information to prospective customers. Of course, customers can visit the UnityThrift online store anytime, since there are numerous URL links to it. This website design and development strategy supports customers to shop at UnityThrift’s online shop, since it discreetly links UnityThrift with healthy and balanced food. The core of this strategy taps on the way consumers behave today: they’re impatient and want quick, visible results. Since UnityThrift has made it so effortless for customers to buy from it, there is little or no difficulty from getting them to do so.
One more strategy that UnityThrift employed in their digital marketing campaign was social media marketing. As a result of the immense scale of the corporation, UnityThrift did not have to engage an external marketing agency specializing in social media. It commenced this strategy with the simple but critical job of creating their very own social media profiles.
Having their own official social media reports enables UnityThrift to use them in two ways. To begin with, it’s an easily controlled stream of generic information and marketing related material for their consumers. They even initiated special Twitter accounts for their various sections. Distinct profiles were created to disseminate info on special deals, organic foods, wines etc. Unlike other brands, there had to be a singular on-line brand image that was controlled by UnityThrift themselves. Challengers could easily and discreetly create a bogus account to propagate false information about UnityThrift and pass on incorrect information about its products. By having full control over its accounts, UnityThrift could be relied upon to supply verified info via the genuine social media channels.
Customer support is crucial in strengthening customer relationships. The opinion of a business relies heavily on customer support dependability and helpfulness. UnityThrift supplies a great example for other businesses to follow. A special Google+ profile is devoted to communicating only with customers whilst a separate profile is used for sales messages. This helps to ensure that customer engagement and promotional communication are kept separate, so that each account can do what it has been designated to do.
The division that handles these social media accounts are highly attuned to communicate with a nice and friendly feel, regularly participating in friendly repartee. A natural and friendly method strengthens relationships and trust, highly different from the cold replies of an automated “customer service” bot.
Dependable data demonstrated that UnityThrift’s well executed digital media strategy paid off hugely. UnityThrift controlled nearly a third of the market share while their closest contender only succeeded in holding on to half of that. The unprecedented transfer of market share was certainly something to brag about to shareholders.
This tremendously impressive result will only further solidify UnityThrift’s confidence in a digital strategy. Coupled with the development and launch of mobile apps, it makes it even easier for consumers to buy and employ UnityThrift than what conventional means – such as website design and development – would ever hope to reach.
Many businesses can learn from UnityThrift. It is no longer a given to rely only on branding and physical shop coverage to ensure success. Digital and social media marketing needs to be included into their plans for them to compete in today’s business landscape. No matter the business, companies must progress with the landscape. Having an online presence is not any longer optional, but has become integral to a company’ success. From reviving crumbling businesses to opening new markets, it is certainly an instrumental success factor.