Ad Channels: FaceBook/Instagram
Techstack: CrazyEgg, Google Analytics, SalesForce, Hootsuite
3x sales projections (sold out completely in the first week)
271% Return On Ad Spend (RoAS), well above original projections
12% bounce rate on website
Bring Your Balance Back To Show Your True Potential
We specialize in Small Businesses, Nonprofits and Startups. Because of that, many Big Brands come to us to launch new products as we would a startup. Fast, lean and agile. With entrepreneurism being all the rage, “intrapreneurial” projects are becoming quite popular too.
Because of this, Pocari Sweat – an international sports drink brand that is as well known throughout the rest of the world as Gatorade is in the US – tasked the Bureau Of Small Projects with introducing it to the American market.
And we must have done something right because we sold out their entire production in the first month. But certainly the biggest factor is because Pocari Sweat is just plain awesome.
When a product is different and better than their competitors like Pocari Sweat, marketing is easy, it’s just a matter of getting the brand in front of people and never in the history of the world has there been more ways to do that.
The very best way to create marketing that performs is to learn about our client’s competitors. Learn what they do well and what they do poorly. The reason we need to know what they do well is that our client needs to be at least as good as they are. And our client needs to know what they do poorly because that represents opportunity.
Pocari Sweat’s competitors have value propositions related to: Connections to sports teams and celebrity athletes (Gatorade, Body Armor), support of endurance athletes (Nuun), science (Gatorade, Liquid IV) and Clean ingredients (Nuun). Pocari Sweat can meet these competitors ihead to head n the areas where they do well including: The use of simple, ingredients, Educating the public about hydration, benefits of carbs/electrolytes, Backed by science and health professionals.
The data showed that Pocari Sweat could begin to carve out a lane to own in terms of: It’s unique Japanese origins (perhaps in association with Japanese pop culture), A unique flavor, An excellent unique and different story about why people should drink it.
Value Propostion, Strategy and Messaging
Once we’ve learned about our client’s competitors, we need to articulate what it is that our client does differently and better than the folks we just learned about.
Our bodies become depleted by activities like exercise – with Pocari Sweat, you can FEEL your body rehydrating as your internal balance is restored. Pocari Sweat is formulated with a perfect blend of minerals, electrolytes, water and carbohydrates, and is scientifically designed to be quickly absorbed to truly replenish what you lose in sweat.
Pocari Sweat gives you exactly what you need for hydration and nothing unnecessary – no artificial color, artificial sweetener or caffeine – so you are replenished and rejuvenated to perform at your best.
Our bodies thrive on nutrients, which are not easy to replace. Pocari Sweat’s composition closely resembles the fluids we produce naturally, which helps you hydrate faster and stay hydrated longer.
Pocari Sweat makes you feel refreshed and renewed – physically, mentally and emotionally – so you can show your true potential.
Now that we can articulate what it is that our client does differently and better. We need to make it believable. Saying you are the best is not enough. This is where our client’s story comes in. We need tell people why they do things differently and better.
We reinforce Pocari Sweat’s heritage, with a basis in health, a scientific approach and decades of research. We communicate their proven scientific approach to hydration. We will speak about the uniqueness of Pocari Sweat. It is a wonderful discovery and compares very favorably to the overly sweet tasting competitors without the typical aftertaste.
While sports drinks are often brightly colored and overly sweet, Pocari Sweat is a uniquely refreshing citrusy drink with a clean taste that is delicious, complex and sophisticated.
Descriptive words to include that provide brand imagery and emotional connections: balance in all things, refreshing, restoration, discovery, uniqueness, proven science, hydration you can feel, different is better.
The design of the homepage is where things get real. Our client’s website is the first point of contact people have with their organization so we need to make it spectacular.
We begin by creating three to five different homepage mockups ranging from conservative to a little bit “out there”. Conservative does not mean dull and boring though. We will have a kickoff meeting, and in this meeting we discuss the things our client’s are looking for and make our recommendations. Then everyone usually walks away with some idea of what the homepage is going to look like. This is the conservative one.
The key to everything is the Value Proposition, what makes Pocari Sweat different and bette than their competitors , so we will incorporate the headline “Bring Your Balance Back”. Then all of our messaging will reinforce Pocari Sweat’s U.S. personality as we scroll down the page. WISE: We are rooted in knowledge, of tradition and the earth. CLEVER: We are intelligent and resourceful, always seeking new solutions. ACTIVE: We are always on the move, living every day to the fullest. SUSTAINING: We nourish and restore, bringing balance to people’s lives. SELFLESS: We are devoted and generous, giving to others so they can benefit and grow.
We do 100+ websites a year so we see what works and what doesn’t. So we also want to show our client ideas that they haven’t thought of. Not crazy or unusable ideas of course, but we like to push the envelope a little and show them something just a little past their comfort zone.
Then we do a range in between. Our client picks the one they “kind of, sort of” like the best and we make revisions until they love it!
This works especially well with large groups of people and is an amazing focusing tool. Then once the homepage is approved to code, we create mockups or wireframes for the key interior pages using the fonts, colors and styles of the homepage to be used as templates for the rest of the site. This part can get pricey, so we have budget friendly alternatives, but if budget permits, we recommend doing mobile mockups as well. Especially if data shows the primary audience prefers to use mobile devices to access the website.
VERY IMPORTANT: When marketing a product people can get discouraged because they run ads and sales don’t improve. Especially brand new companies with unfamiliar products. Don’t blame your ad agency, even if it is not us, getting people to come to a website using ads is the easiest thing in the world, getting them to pay for a product or service is one of the hardest things in business (which is why 50% of all businesses fail in the first few years). The key to getting people to buy is data. If anyone tells you otherwise, run for the hills. Getting people to spend money on your products, your services, or join your organization takes time. Once ads bring people to your website, you need to look at the data, learn from it and adjust your website messaging accordingly.
A comprehensive social outreach plan for Facebook and Instagram will be strategically executed on a weekly basis. With the operative key consideration being strategic targeting of an audience profile that has a high propensity of consuming Pocari Sweat. A primary focus will be to reach and penetrate the active “individual performance enthusiast.” The strategies presented here utilize the very latest social media systems and technologies. These are the same tactics utilized by America’s most prominent and successful organizations to drive ongoing brand awareness, ROI, and loyalty.
High-quality, professional social media will be designed, developed and utilized to connect with highly-qualified target audiences for all segments. Effective for adding reach, frequency, context and detail to marketing programs at exactly the right moment when consumers are talking about relevant subjects, social media will be utilized to support the branding process and position Pocari Sweat as a leading brand in the hydration/energy drink industry.
Ad Channels: Facebook, Instagram
Once Pocari Sweat’s website was built and tuned, we focused on the execution of the marketing plan.We worked with Pocari Sweat to put a social action plan together that was in line with their introduction into the USA. This included paid and organic content on Facebook and Instagram. With deep discovery to identify the right audiences and using finely-crafted messages we managed to sell out of the product allotted to the USA market in 30 days.
We also drove local traffic to specific grocery stores to test our campaigns’ effectiveness at driving brick-and-mortar purchases. Again, we ran out of product.
Lastly, we wanted to know which media and messaging worked the best for various social actions such as user promotion, sharing, and engagement. These results were critical as they armed us with important data we are using for our second phase of testing for Pocari Sweat. We used our finely crafted value proposition message “Bring Your Balance Back” to test it’s effectiveness timed with our content calendar for various sports events and holidays.
All of the social marketing results have exceeded our expectations and we learned our lesson to always have more product available than we originally anticipated.