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Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed with choice?  I do!  There are now soo many competing product offerings out there, everywhere we look and everywhere we go – online and offline. We are bombarded by products to improve our skin, our hair, our health, every part of our lives, all day, every day, so it’s not so surprising that we are more confused and bewildered than ever about what would work for us and those we care about. 

It’s also not surprising that we are tired of having to waste valuable time to scroll through social media and read endless reviews to work out what products to buy, so we find ourselves going back to basics and simply asking our family and friends whose opinions we trust what they love and use for themselves.  This saves time and energy and gives us comfort and confidence about trying new products that they have recommended.

As a small brand without the luxury of a hefty marketing budget, it’s extremely difficult to stand out, and we really rely on word of mouth referrals from our customers to share the love for us.  The snag with this is that because customer referrals have now become a key and powerful marketing tool for many brands, customers are now being inundated with review requests – every time they make a purchase or use a service.  This is now becoming pretty tiresome for most people.  We all have busy lives and whilst we would love to find time to review all the products we use, it can become simply another chore!  Therefore, less people are bothering to post and share product reviews. 

Also, marketing methods are moving and changing shape quickly and the mega influencer phenomenon is waning as brands and consumers pursue more authenticity.  Influencers are now not as influential as they once were, often promoting products not relevant to their target audience and customers are now seeing through them. 

Brands are now questioning the value of using influencers as they know that their followers are now questioning their credibility and Instagram is now hiding the number of likes.  This will lead inevitably to the demise of the current influencer model. 

So…with all this going on, it’s the customer that has the power to build a brand.   Customers opinions and referrals matter more than ever.  As a brand, we are often pleasantly surprised that without being asked, our customers are continually referring our products to their family and friends ….promoting and building brand awareness for us.  This is the gold and we really do appreciate them sharing the love.  If you are buying products from small brands, especially those made here in Australia, please support them by posting, sharing and letting people in your world know about them.

A final thought….

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a platform we could join, like a purchasing circle for our family, friends and colleagues whereby they post products that they use and love and are happy to recommend to their group.  Others in the group can check in to the platform whenever they are looking to buy something new and see what their tribe loves….and why.  Perhaps it can be linked to a code from the brand that gives the group a savings offer so that they can all benefit.  Surely there’s an app for that?