Building Relationships One at a Time.


Peter Bretschger

May 8, 2015

Or a thousand at a time.

It’s all a matter of integrating the plan.

No matter the customer group, demographic or geographic clustering, building relationships is the currency of every business. The key to accomplishing this is to understand the other person’s interests and needs.

Marketers have to take the same attitude of all good sales people and need to go out and meet them in the context they feel most comfortable. In today’s media that can mean greater engagement of a fan base through facebook, instagram, twitter or pinterest, while other marketers will be equally served by optimizing cable broadcast, targeted radio or selective print vehicles. Often it’s neither one or the other, but finding the integrated blend of traditional and social media, both as paid advertising and earn editorial.

This 2015 season at The Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch, we have been having one of our greatest attendance increases due in large part to the media mix used to attract a diverse Persian, Asian, and Hispanic families to the many weekend events/festivals during April. While we have been using a variety of Asian and Hispanic print and radio in the native languages, all of the audiences have been coming together through the Flower Fields facebook page where over 30,000 fans (no matter their country of origin) regularly discuss their positive experiences, share in photography contests and appraise one another of the conditions of the floral displays which can change during the course of the 10-week season.

We have found that creating a lasting relationship with the customer base is best achieved by

  1. Building relationships based on mutual respect and harnessing the voice of the customer particularly in social media. In the first two weeks of the growing season the floral bloom was less than 30% of the acreage, but facebook follower choose to focus on the extraordinary lower five acres of gardening ideas and water conservation technics in growing edible and decorative plants. Even the mommy blogger who came for an early media day overlooked the lack of major bloom in the surrounding 45 acres and focused their positive reviews on the customer experience created in the lower gardens and an amazing set of volunteer dosans.
  1. By allowing the customer voice to be heard, they earned the trust of their followers which increase their level of pleasure during the early visits and built a following of those who waited to come to see the larger floral display which bloomed just when we launched the 15: radio ads across a variety of radio station formats from country to classical, from general market to Hispanic listeners.
  1. Building relationship is often based on being good listeners. By observing the actual way that families participated and toured the 50 acre site, we were able to tailor the on-site entertainment, exhibitions and increase family oriented seating and play areas.

The lesson from the Flower Fields is applicable to every business. It’s almost impossible to say that anyone has one homogeneous audience. Today’s media offering allow us to approach a wide variety of consumers as if it was just one-to-one by making sure we are culturally sensitive, listening to what they are finding attractive about our products and then leveraging that information in meaning programs that work.

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Brand Strategy

Integrated Marketing