Triggers: use the situation

In the previous two blog posts I talked about triggers. We looked at day-related triggers and emotion-related triggers. I explained what a top-of-mind brand is and how you can use triggers to become one. In this last post about triggers we are going to look at different situations your customers might experience and how you can take advantage of these? Meaning: how can you become top-of-mind when your customer finds his or herself in a certain situation?

Customers find themselves in all kinds of positions and activities each and every day. They wake up, get out of bed, get dressed. They go to work, maybe they work-out, they cook, they scroll on their mobile phones, and so on. Let’s take a look at a couple of ways you can link your brand to the daily-life of your customer.

A good example

Before we dive into this, let’s take a look at a good example. The ‘4 o’clock, cup-a-soup’ by Unox. This Dutch brand played with the idea of people often getting a bit hungry and at the same time sleepy (after-lunch-dip) around 4 o’clock. So they introduced the slogan ‘4 uur cup-a-soup’, meaning ‘4 o’clock, cup-a-soup’. These commercials are old (10 years), but they were crazy successful and therefore worth sharing here. They’re only available in Dutch, sadly enough.

Snickers and hunger 

Since the example above is only available in Dutch, I decided to add another one: the superbowl commercial made by Snickers in 2010. This one was followed up by a couple more commercials all playing with the same situation: hungry feelings at a time when you can’t sit down for a complete meal.

“You’re not you when you’re hungry”

Now why is this a good example? Because Snickers plays with an emotion we all know: hangry. When you get angry because you’re hungry. It’s a funny situation – not in the moment, but afterwards, yes. It’s relatable. It’s something we can all laugh about. ‘Remember that time when you were so hungry that you…’. By replaying the commercial over and over again, getting it in front of everybody’s eyes, Snickers successfully linked their brand to this situation of “I’m hungry, but I don’t have time to eat” > so let’s buy a Snickers.

What situations can you play with?

So now that we’ve seen two brands successfully take advantage of very common situations, let’s look at some other possible trigger-moments:

  • Not being able to get out of bed in the morning
  • Sunday sleep-ins
  • A hangover
  • End of the month empty wallets
  • Pay-day
  • First day of the week
  • Rushing for the train/bus
  • Late hours at the office
  • Nothing on TV
  • Coming home late after work
  • Holidays
  • After dinner/lunch ‘dips’
  • “Too many messages waiting to be answered”
  • Work/study avoiding behavior (endless scrolling when you should actually be productive)
  • Working out, or the satisfying moment afterwards
  • Wanting to work out – but not being motivated enough
  • First day of … [season] [sale] [new job] [etc.]

Quite a list, right! Now let me show you a few more examples. I hope these clarify how you could make use of situations your customers can relate to – and inspire you to do so.

A few more examples

McDonalds: when you just got your first child and you finally have a night off again

KitKat: Have a break, have a KitKat – Who doesn’t relate KitKat with a break? Yep. They did well. ( Student Life and ordering food online. Commercial is in Dutch, but easy to understand.

I hope these examples help you a little bit to understand how you could make use of your potential customers daily situations. To do so it’s important to first create some buyer personas. This in order to understand what typical moments in their ordinary life are. After that, distinguish the opportunities and.. start creating!

BUT, what about me?

A few ideas:

  • Coffee shop: people needing a quick cafeïne rush in the morning
  • Pizzeria/Italian: guys trying to organize a romantic night for their girlfriend but not able to cook a good Italian meal themselves (so order in, or take girlfriend out for dinner)
  • Salad bar: good resolutions at the start of the week, after a baaaad weekend
  • Brunch place: taking someone special out for birthday (but this may not be a very frequently occurring situation), or celebrating the weekend in general
  • Mediterranean: people longing for holidays, take them on vacation through your food
  • Bagel shop: for college students breaks

Did you enjoy this post?

I’m trying my very best to put out content that helps you, the owner, designer of manager of a hospitality brand, to bring your business to the next level. All posts on Tremento are created with hospitality brands specifically in mind. Articles talk about practical tips and inspiration for social media, design, photography and more. You can read the previous two posts about triggers here & here.

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