A Nazarene once stood by the seashore telling a large crowd of about five thousand men how the kingdom of God has come to dwell among men. The laws, the man sermonized, were outdated and God has metamorphosed in him to rescue mankind from the intending doom. Beyond the laws given by Moses to the Israelites, he made haste to add some more of his own laws or reverse the existing ones. Soon the teachers of the laws and leaders in Israel launched an attack and succeeded in inciting the people against him. His followers were forced to see him at night. He proved his points by offering some miracles before the very men that despised him. But then more was needed to keep his teeming followers loyal. He withdrew to a lonely place.
Notwithstanding his withdrawal to a lonely place, this 5000 followers came to him seeking more explanations to what he had said and divine intervention in their cases. Attending to the crowd, he noticed that it was dusk already and realizing that the people had been with him all day, he called one of his disciples and asked if there was anything to feed the people. The fellow must have laughed his master considering the cost of attempting such feat to his Master, he then informed him that there was a boy among the tired followers that had five loaves of bread and just two fishes. “Of course you know that makes no sense where this crowd is,” he added. The Master then ordered everyone to sit down. Thank God for the naturally trimmed green grass of the sea shore.
He ordered for the fishes and loaves to be brought. Offering a few prayers while looking up. He addressed God as his Father in the presence of 5000 men who believed God has never bore a son and as such no one had the right to address him as Father. This was blasphemous but the men held their temper. After all, what the leader was about to do will bring them free food. At the end of the ‘blasphemous’ process, he handed over the repast to his devotees to share to the 5000 men. The meal was shared and at the end of satisfying all present, 12 extra baskets were gathered as remnant.
Few days later, while he was away with his core believers having a personal time to refresh their minds. The entire community trooped to his feet seeking to be his followers. By this time, they have forgotten the laws that guided their religion. Indeed God has become man. “God gave our fathers free food in the desert and so if this man can offer us same gift, then he is God indeed.” They argued. While the teachers of the law sought for one who will testify to blasphemy for a death penalty to be awarded the imposter, the message of his benevolent spread far and wide. By the time of his death, he has gotten such strong followership that the faith of his believers in him could manifest same miracles. Soon they were recognized by the miracles they were doing and a name tag was given to them identifying them as the followers of the Nazarene. In the nearest future, one of the world’s largest religion was established.
Understand this: Animals live a simple careless life in the jungle. They can walk around feeding on available resources without bothering how such food came about. A leaf here and a prey there is ok to feed their hungry bodies. But this is not so for the sons of men. They must toil. They hire themselves to taskmasters most times, all in a bid to satisfy their mortal body with food. Those who have what to eat lord over the hungry ones making them slaves before a meal could be served. Of course such food rarely lasts and in no time they are hungry again.
As a digital marketer, you must exploit these tendencies in men. Reading deeper in the story of the man used as an example above, he cured men with withered hand, leprosy, blindness, etc. but he never witnessed such a large crowd seeking to follow him at once until he offered them free food.
To achieve this, calculate the total cost of the product and the interest expected to be made on the product, then let go part of your interest as a free gift to your customers. Offer these gifts to your customers before the cameras and give them the opportunity to express their joy. Tailor questions during the presentation to bring out your customers’ inner feelings that will be used in promoting your products in the coming days while you give your brand/product an unassailable reputation. The story of the free gift will definitely go far beyond what you ever strategized for.
You can also offer free services after sales. If it is a product that needs warranty, be ready to offer assistance at anytime via your channels. In the previous strategy I numerated the need to segment your forces using the religious strategy. Now you can have technical assistance and leads at various locations where you have your product sold. In most cases while the service is advertised free, attach the cost of such services to the price of the product. This will help you have a certain percentage on the total cost of the product to help in this running around. This is always a good idea since all the products cannot have problems before the expiration of the warrant period.
It is also a nice idea to once in a while organize an event which will be used to promote the brand at different locations of your coverage. During this event, endeavor to send the people away filled. Such event can be organized to serve as a training session where you educate people about your product. Invite individuals to speak on the brand. Setup a panel at such events so that the moderator will ask questions which seems to come from your users. While these questions are being answered, the message is passed to your listeners. At the event make sure your audience has a bottle of water to calm their nerves. Provide free lunch as much as you can and share photos of the event on your social media handles for other users to share, then watch as your followers grow in number.
By late nineties Yahoo mail was the biggest email portal in the history of the internet. The company offered free email accounts to its users and before long millions of people were having yahoo mail as their personal and even corporate email address. Yahoo dominated the internet as long as people were looking for free email service. Other paid email portals soon folded up as yahoo mail spread their tentacles from the United States to Africa, Asia, and Europe etc. If you didn’t have a yahoo mail, then it was hard to communicate with you. The mail portal had a reputation second to none.
Then came the Gmail owned by the world’s largest search engine on the internet, Google. Before long, Google has setup a marketing strategy where young people were adopted as ambassadors. Their work is mainly to introduce young people to the various services Google offers. Gmail in itself is free but then with the availability of Google ambassadors and mentors trained and deposited all around Africa, Google seems to offer better services than yahoo. Gradually, most if not all yahoo users had Gmail accounts and as time goes on most migrants from Yahoo mail took Gmail as their official accounts. Of course the services of the Google ambassadors and mentors are just free.
Also by setting up the Google Developers Group, the company is able to organize events that educate users free of all charges on the various products Google offers to its users. It is during such events that users are informed of the many opportunities the company offers to young developers and programmers to help them build their careers in the ICT industry. Worthy of note also is the fact that at such events most times, lavish banquets are offered to the participants making it enticing for a revisit whenever such events comes up. As the opening of Gmail is tagged to other free services like blogging, etc. This is the power of offering free lunch. Invariably today, Gmail has dominated everywhere and the market is expanding daily into the deepest part of the African continent.
Remember: Your work is not to drain your resources by offering free food to hungry social media users. It should be customized in a sense that resources needed for these events and activities are paid for by your profits. Start with simple free services before advertising free lunch to your teeming followers. Sometimes it is better not to advertise the possibility of a free lunch but while your guest turns up, surprise them with packages that will fill their mortal bodies. This will send the message far and wide and you will notice numerous customers striving to identify with you and your brand. Never throw your brand into bankruptcy because you want to offer free lunch to your followers.