Using Social Media for Brand Awareness – Partnerships Pay!

December 18, 2014

A new client of mine asked me two months ago to set up a promotional event that would get their name out into the community. They didn’t want anything as promotional as wrapping vehicles or running traditional ads. In fact, as conservative as this firm is – they handle high-end homes in a few affluent south shore communities – they were very open to using social tools to build awareness.


So, that’s what I did. In a few paragraphs, here’s the case study of how I made a client stand out without a huge outlay of money or effort. While making their target market take notice and actually thank us for running our promotion.

Think audience

Every move in communication must include this step. Think about who you’re trying to reach and what you’re trying to convey. For this client, they wanted to tell people about their new location and they wanted to do so while making people feel good about a local company.

For this real estate company – Planter Hill Partners – we determined their audience to be anyone from the area who might be interested in purchasing or selling a high-end home. Further, we took income and lifestyle into account and also studied a bit of the geography and commuting habits of this demographic.

Think Low-Impact

For some products and services you might be well served to shout from the rooftops. For high-end real estate…specifically luxury homes on the South Shore of Massachusetts…there’s no need to be pushy. People take their time studying the market and most transactions begin via word-of-mouth referral.

Our goal with the promotion was to just make people smile and associate Planter Hill with community, generosity and local knowledge. Fortunately, the agents and broker at this particular company have lived and worked in the area for a cumulative 150+ years. That means they know the towns they serve and the nature of the community.

It also means that no hard sell is necessary. The agents already speak the local language and probably have friends in common with many of the folks who were expected to take part in the promotion.

Think Community Partner

The last piece of the promotional puzzle was creating an event that would garner attention, good will and positive memories. We also wanted to do this without shining too big a spotlight on the company. Therefore, we found a partner for the promotion…a local high-end coffee shop.

Our prospective audience for this promotion mirrored the clientele at the coffee shop. They stop there on their way to work and gather there in the mid-morning to meet friends and enjoy conversation. Reaching out to the coffee shop was a no-brainer.


That was it. For four hours on a rainy Wednesday, the agents from Planter Hill Partners purchased all the food and drink for anyone who came into the coffee shop. A simple flyer on the counter and a few Twitter updates explaining the event were all that was needed to get people excited.


And for four hours people were thrilled to learn about Planter Hill’s new offices (right across from Red Eye Roasters – the coffee shop where we hosted the event). And they were similarly thrilled that the company was generous enough to treat the community to something as valued as a person’s morning cup of coffee.

So far, traffic on Planter Hill’s Website is up and they’ve already had multiple visits to the new offices. So, if someone tries to convince you that social campaigns and simple brand awareness efforts don’t work, they’re likely doing something wrong. With a simple message, a well-defined audience and plan, and some little tweaks (like a great partner and a fun product), your brand campaign should result in positive notice for your clients.

Got any questions? Tweet me @jeffcutler or leave a note here on the blog.

Thanks for reading!