Staff Writer: Max Smith
Helping The Community Through Grassroots Marketing
Grassroots marketing consists of a series of collective efforts made by a group to achieve a marketing goal that is supported by all the members of the organization. Grassroots became the term for the now familiar activities of various cause-oriented groups and brand enthusiasts that are conducting different marketing programs and stunts, such as fun run or country bike tours eliciting contributions along the way, to raise funds or public awareness for the cause they are pursuing. While some forms of marketing such as equity marketing are done solely for the purpose of financial gains, believers in marketing through grassroots have a deeper purpose than mere monetary rewards. Many sectors of the society that will otherwise be neglected by the society at large find solace in the activities done by grassroots marketers.
Cancer patients for example do not have the means of maintaining the expensive treatment regimen that is common in cancer cases. Such unfortunate individuals are given the necessary financial support by grassroots organizations around the world. Grassroots groups also focus in caring for the sick and homeless children as well as countless old people in homes for the aged. These organizations conduct marketing drives across its respective locality and across the world to gain public sympathy to the cause they are fighting for. Each marketing drive is conducted in a way that donations and offerings are usually in cash but other kinds of donations are also accepted. Working with a grassroots organization will not generate income for the employee even though the organization will be engaging in activities that will earn money for group.
The Good Samaritan nature of these organizations has allowed them to operate almost with impunity everywhere. This is true except in cases where the group’s aim or goal is against the state or an established government of a state. In these scenarios, members of the grassroots organization frequently experience discrimination and bias treatment from the authorities. In fact, there are grassroots organizations that are solely for political purposes, conducting marketing activities to raise funds for their cause. Marketing for a cause on the internet involves creating a web site that will appeal to the senses. Due to the emotional nature of such activities raising the emotion to certain level is often needed to persuade a viewer to participate.
Different situations for a marketing drive
Certain professionals, because of the nature of the marketing campaign, can only carry out several marketing drives. In equity marketing for example where trading on stocks is the focus, only individuals that are familiar with how the stock market works can engage in it. Because only workers and professionals of the stock market know matters about equities and stocks, dealing stocks trading would be suicide for the layperson belonging to the society at large.
Marketing drives are also conducted on a variety of focus and each requires a different strategy. Some conduct their drives in their own chain of stores such as that done by a company called star marketing which has a series of stores in a number of locations. Each locality requires different marketing focus so several marketing designs will have to be tailored to fit each store locality. Specific industry also requires specific marketing concepts. A marketing design that was tailored for one situation or location cannot be conducted on another or vice versa. Therefore, a team of marketing experts has to be always on hand to be able to do a marketing change as the situation demands.
A company operating in another country with a similar name star marketing is engaged in a different business. This company has its team of marketing experts to thank for in establishing the company as the trend setter of the real estate marketing sector in its country. Though each team from each similarly named company has performed brilliantly in its marketing task, each particular team’s effort cannot be conducted on the other’s territory. In addition, though each marketing plan was designed brightly it will fail in a totally different circumstance.
Well-established companies in their respective fields conducted the aforementioned marketing drives. However, gaining an access to a market is a different story. Getting in to a market is carried out through access marketing where the focus is in gaining a foothold of a particular market segment or niche. An intense promotional campaign must be conducted hand in hand with the marketing plans of a company. This is to enable the firm to establish a name and make an impression for its brand on the buyers’ consciousness. This is a scenario where promotions and marketing must have a dual responsibility since each may fail without the support of the other. Access marketing requires time and is more expensive. This is because everything has to start from square one instead of just building from already existing marketing campaign resources.
The advantage in conducting grassroots marketing
In grassroots marketing however, everything can be cheap even if a marketing campaign is being conducted for the first time. This type of marketing does not require expensive and elaborate resources to be able to be set in motion. The driving force behind this type of marketing is the motivation that each member of the group has, which allow them to withstand the constant strain of battling the forces of nature and of man. The focus of each campaign conducted under this type of marketing may be different but since it does not usually require much sales transactions to produce the necessary funds needed for a particular situation, making it a success is relatively easier especially if it was conducted in a locality where the locals are sympathetic to their cause. Participating in it may require great motivation because of its voluntary nature but participants gain a moral ascendancy that is not possible if the sole purpose is to gain financial rewards.
Grassroots marketing is best done online because of the inherent nature of this kind of marketing. It has to reach more people in more places to be able to solicit a much needed fund or support. In so doing, the contents of the website should be given particular attention. Your presentation will be the basis for complete strangers to trust your organization with their money. Articles meant for online publishing should highlight the importance of supporting your cause and the benefits it can give to its recipients. Past successes and testimonials can be presented to strengthen what your stand is on an issue. With these, press releases may perhaps be a good accessory. This will help establish your credibility and assure your target audience that you are for real, and not just a scam designed to fool the public for their money.
A website that is properly optimized for the search engines also gets more website visitors. But the presentation should be in a way as to present your salient features and company advantages so as to maintain audience interest. Perhaps it is the people that you have helped, or the funds that you helped raise for refugees, anything that will sustain the flow of internet traffic which is your lifeline for survival.
Also, make sure that all your marketing logistics and support services are in place, ready to support your online marketing drive. It is senseless to push for something and then ran out of fumes early in the race. Though you are not exactly selling anything, it is best to have people with sales experience as the front men of your online program. They have the necessary communications and people skills that are needed for convincing people all over to patronize whatever cause you are promoting on the web.