When advertising inspires 8th Street

People have strong connections to the brands they love and use. These brands influence their lifestyle, their emotions, and how they are perceived by others. So, if brand messaging can have such a profound effect on peoples’ lives, then it has the power to shape the very character of the consumer – when done right.

Walking down 8th street in Alex at 8am on a Monday morning and seeing the number of people just “hanging in the streets” painted a vivid picture, beyond the stats, of the challenging economic times we’re in as a country. It sparked a thought: when creating marketing in today’s economy, which brand messaging strategies matter? 

Nike | Just Do It: Caster Semenya. Chicken Licken | I am Sbu. Allan Gray | “Father’s Share”) Emotive and inspirational advertising versus impassive advertising.

Driving volume is important. It’s the lifeblood of every brand. However, in terms of messaging and positioning, what resonates, what really connects with people beyond the price tag and in a way that can inspire the nation? 

With a median age of 26, we don’t have a youth market, we are a youth market. The messaging that we put out can either matter or not matter to the people that buy our brands.

Using Shoprite as a case study: at a functional level, they stand for value (lowest prices) however they don’t stop there, as many brands do. At an emotional level, the brand connects to the hustle mindset of their market; which is about pushing oneself and identifying opportunities.

If you take a side step from the high street, venture beyond formal retailers and head into your nearest wholesaler, value is everywhere. In fact, it’s essential. 

“Our customers come to us because of our price. We know who we’re catering to, so we try and win on price, that’s why I said to you it’s not always easy – especially in these economic times.” 
– Owner of a popular Wholesaler

In our current climate, communication strategies that work together to create inspiration and enthuse action are possible. And brand messaging can do this. 

So the next time you find yourself defaulting to value, take a walk through Mzansi’s streets. Notice the possibility for your business in every consumer and how your brand story can have a profound effect on their lives. 

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