effective comms tactics for a lifestyle brand
What defines a lifestyle brand?
Lifestyle brands; the ones that inspire a way of life, stimulate us to live, breathe, consume and develop our personal aesthetics in a certain way. These are the brands that successfully go beyond offering a functional product or service and become an integral part to achieving a desired way of living life.
When such a brand makes the decision to recruit the talents of a comms or PR agency, it is crucial for said comms professionals to understand what the lifestyle is that they are selling prior to charging forward with media communications. This is just as important as understanding the functionality of the product or service in question.
Living the lifestyle
Brands can represent and inspire an audience and in some cases, conjure a very clear idea of a lifestyle just at the very mention of the name. I defy you to think of the following brands without having a defined image of the end consumer: Rapha; Waitrose; Lamborghini; TikTok. See what we mean?
The associations can be incredibly clear. Adventure brands focus on exploring or taking risks, some brands are structured around sustainable living or perhaps it’s championing feminism they embrace. In most cases, it is usually a way of life that connects individuals to what they believe is the best version of themselves.
Taking the time to understand this is what will give PRs direct access to the community of people dedicating themselves to that way of life and as a result, will buy into the products or services that the brand is selling. The goal being to position the product or service as being a crucial tool for achieving this lifestyle.
Spending time observing, speaking to and researching the communities’ social preferences and behaviours is a great way to start this analysis. A PR should always ask the following questions:
- What does this audience long for from travel, food, drink and fashion experiences?
- Which public figures do they aspire to and why?
- How do they like to spend their money?
- What causes do they support?
Lifestyle touch-points for comms professionals
Once you know exactly what kind of lifestyle you are helping the target audience to reach, you have personality profiles to target. Then it’s time to think about where they would eat, sleep, party and repeat to fulfil their ambition of attaining this lifestyle and, how you are going to use these touch-points to tell the story of the brand.
Once these are agreed it’s time to introduce the most relevant and influential voices to communicate the brand’s core messages and stories.
This is where the right media, influencers, brand partnerships, brand ambassadors, events and product/service line extensions come into play. Be it partnering with a like-minded brand, working with a brand ambassador, or supporting an activist; these tactics mean that a brand is able to enhance the positioning of their own values and beliefs.
When Kate Moss was infamously seen in the Hunter wellies we sent her at Glastonbury Festival, the product didn’t just get promoted as being useful tool for dealing with mud, but became a symbol of timeless rock n’ roll, a way of life that every festival goer wishes to embody – hence, urging them to buy Hunter wellies.
In 2002 when Patagonia created a non-profit donating 1% of its annual sales to grassroots environmental collectives, they didn’t just do a good deed, they enhanced the brand’s core values of supporting ethical adventure travel, offering their customers an easy route into adopting the purchasing habits of a sustainable individual and a symbol of communicating this to their friends and family.
The lesson to be learnt is, always understand the lifestyle that surrounds your brand and become an integral brand in supporting customers and followers in achieving this desired way of life. And, crucially, stay tuned in because this lifestyle will evolve as new influences emerge, so the brand positioning has to evolve with its audience...or grow to embrace another lifestyle audience, but that’s another story for another time.
If your business is in need of some lifestyle PR magic, drop us a line firstname.lastname@example.org.