When you’re trying to grow your reputation, you need to do more than market your products or services. You need to connect with your customers. You need to turn your company into something that inspires your audience and makes them want to be associated with your brand. This is called lifestyle branding and it’s the fastest growing brand marketing method out there. Before we talk strategy, let’s first look at the basics.
Lifestyle marketing definition: Lifestyle marketing is a specialty in marketing where a product is branded and marketed such that it is perceived to possess the ideals, aspirations, and aesthetics that the targeted audiences identify with and revolve around an ideology that gives meaning and purpose to why it exists.
Defining The Term Lifestyle Branding
A lifestyle brand is a next step in product marketing. You’re not just selling a physical item—you’re selling the way of life behind it. For example, if you’re selling a new fitness tracker, you’re not just selling the tracker. You’re selling the active lifestyle clients want when they buy the product. Your marketing campaigns need to inspire the emotional connection between your brand and your customers.
You will need to inspire and motivate your audience. There is less focus on the product itself, and the goal changes to contribute to the definition of the consumer’s way of life. A marketer needs to focus on evoking an emotional connection with its customers. The consumer needs to feel a desire to be associated with a particular brand’s values or culture. When done correctly, this marketing style can be very effective, and in the best cases it can even go viral on social media.
Why Does It Matter?
It is a long-term strategy that focuses on connecting your customers to your brand as a whole. Going back to the definition of lifestyle marketing, they’re not focused on a single product. This makes it easier to inspire them to buy other things and support you long after they purchase your lifestyle products (apple has been very successful with this strategy).
It matters because it is VERY effective and works on a much deeper level than traditional advertising. It also targets what potential customer wants to do and the lifestyle they hope to achieve.
The marketing team needs to understand what experience their audience craves in a brand and what truly inspires them. Understanding this will benefit your company in a positive way.
How to Brand A Culture?
The key to success is to identify what your customers are looking for. You need to understand what drives them and what motivates their interest in your products in the first place. Once you do this, you can start tailoring your lifestyle marketing efforts to appeal to that motivation.
Always think about the branding of your lifestyle products before you actually start your marketing campaign.
Here are some steps to keep in mind:
- Define target market with demographics and psychographics
- Identify where target market receives information from
- Identify how that lifestyle brand will be positioned
- Define marketing channel
- Moderate information flow and monitor public response
Learning About Lifestyle Products
Just like the name suggests, a lifestyle brand is a company that will market services and products that appeal to the interests, opinions and attitude of a culture or group.
Lifestyle products will inspire and motivate people. The goal of the product is to contribute in one way or another to the consumer’s lifestyle.
Stop Focusing on the Products Alone
In sports marketing, it’s easy to get caught up in the products themselves. That’s what we’ve been told to do for decades. To sell your products, you need to get them in front of customers. The landscape is changing. Instead of focusing on the lifestyle products, focus on your customers and the people they want to become by using them.
Market that—the lifestyle—instead of highlighting your products. By all means, use them in your images, encourage sponsored athletes and social media influencers to use your lifestyle products and mention them in their posts. But your focus should be on the lifestyle itself.
Four Great Lifestyle Marketing Examples
Here are some brands and companies that took lifestyle marketing to a whole other level. These products are transformed into some of the cool lifestyle brands that we know today. Some brands really are experts in this way of marketing a lifestyle to their audience.
Nike: The Brand For An Athletic Lifestyle
First of all let’s talk about Nike. If you know anything about sports, you know Nike. It’s the biggest brand in sports retail by far (Adidas and Under Armour have gained ground in recent years). It’s the brand’s connection with athletes that turned it into one of the best lifestyle brands for sports. That feeling of connection with the superstars you see on television and their successful slogan ‘’just do it’’, has played a big role in capturing additional market share in the sportswear industry. In the end, Nike helps make the average person feel more like an elite athlete simply by supporting them. Just like they did with many of their NBA marketing campaigns
Aside from that feeling of being included in a team of pro-athletes, the brand also reinforces self-discovery by its lifestyle products as doors to healthier choices and healthier ways of living. Afraid of exploring working out? Nike offers products that aren’t just useful in the gym but actual stylish leisurewear pieces. The brand’s consumers are given the chance to curate a lifestyle that coincides with the one they have now and the Nike lifestyle they hope to have in the future.
Ikea: The Brand in Budget & Quality Furniture
Another great company that just ‘’gets it’’ is Ikea. Ikea never was a regular furniture store. They raised the bar completely and also changed the way we consume and shop for goods. An Ikea store usually includes a warehouse with a showroom, a full assembly team and even a cafeteria. Ikea uses collaboration with famous designers to be the coolest furniture brand ever. This Swedish lifestyle brand is really a ‘’cult’’ brand, and part of popular culture. A lot of young couples on a budget that still want great furniture will visit probably visit Ikea. The brand has been used as a way of individuals to express their personal style.
The brand’s killer lifestyle marketing campaign called “Let’s Celebrate Sleep, Today” shows how a brand can encourage its consumers into a better way of living. Not only is the brand offering great furniture pieces, but is also opening a door to cost-effective, luxurious living.
La Croix: The Brand in Living A Health-Conscious Lifestyle
LaCroix is another perfect example. It used to be known as that flavorless water, where nobody really knew how to pronounce the brand name properly. Buft now, especially if you are living anywhere in America, it’s basically a way of life. Somehow, it became a part of ‘’how we define ourselves’’. But how did this major transformation take place? It’s because Americans are becoming more and more health-conscious about their lifestyles, especially their soda habits. La Croix saw these soda trends and used them for their lifestyle marketing campaigns. They did a lot of savvy social media marketing and branded their low-calorie sugar-free LaCroix as the perfect and healthy replacement for sodas.
Similar to Nike, consumers hoping to venture into healthier food consumption feel at ease by starting small with replacing sodas with the brand’s lifestyle product.
Red Bull: The Brand in the Energy Drinks Market
And who can forget about Red Bull. Now, the energy drink industry is worth billions of dollars, and Red Bull is the brand at the forefront. There’s no doubt that Red Bull is chasing adrenaline junkies. Even their tagline ‘’Red Bull gives you wings’’, evokes the idea that it will give the energy to actual fly. There’s no doubt that Red Bull has a heavy presence in a lot of the major sport events.
Think about the sponsored Red Bull video where Felix Baumgartner falls from outer space. If you, as a viewer, has never heard of Red Bull, then it’s definitely on your radar after watching that video. That’s lifestyle marketing at work. The brand also decided to make the most out of its social media management strategies by promoting the adventurous event to its fullest.
Much like the above mentioned brands, Red Bull decided to go the other way instead of marketing its lifestyle product like most energy drinks would. It focused its lifestyle marketing to the interests of its consumers.
Book a Consultation on Lifestyle Branding
Whether you’re just starting to ask “what is a lifestyle brand?” or are ready to start working on a lifestyle marketing campaign, it’s always best to get help. Contact us to schedule a consultation and let our team help you convey your message. It may be tough, but with the right strategy, you’ll see success in no time.