It is estimated that we are exposed to up to 10,000 brand messages per day (1). Given this bombardment, it comes as no surprise that consumers can be a little skeptical about product claims.
Any brand can say that their product has benefit x, y or z but providing indisputable evidence that it does what it says on the tin is where the real power lies. Demonstrating the value proposition of your brand is also an effective way to engage the emotions of consumers and win their hearts.
In 2012, Febreze conducted a series of experiments as part of brand activation, to prove the effectiveness of their products (2). The brand set up at the London Olympics where they became sponsors of the Azerbaijani wrestling team – the smelliest sport they could think of.
Sweaty items of clothing belonging to the wrestlers were sprayed with the Febreze product before being dangled in front of blindfolded Londoners, who were asked to guess the smell. Guesses included “passion fruit”, “citrus” and “floral bouquet” so they were surprised to learn what they were really smelling when the blindfolds were removed. The visual proof of the claim that Febreze ‘eliminates even the toughest odors’ created social media content and PR-stories, which convinced consumers and entertained them at the same time.
More powerful than traditional advertising, people were engaged on an emotional and sensorial level and left with lasting memories.
The proliferation of social media has provided marketers with a number of platforms on which to promote their products and prove claims. Social influencer campaigns offer consumers the opportunity to experience a product via someone who’s opinion they already value and trust. Simultaneously, the brand benefits by reaching an increased number of potential customers.
USP Solutions provided a social influencer with the appropriate demo tools to test a product claim (3).
Her results were shared with Instagram followers who became emotionally engaged with the brand as a result of being able to visualize the product benefits shown in the demo. Resultantly, followers wanted more information on the product, brand and test strips as they became interested in testing the product for themselves.
The Pore Indicator Test was used to prove the product’s pore-minimizing effect (before and after test). The indicator reacts to sebum on facial skin. The larger the pores, the larger the dark spots on the tester’s result area.
At the end of the day, consumers want to experience a product, see it, feel it, smell it in some cases to give them the reassurance that the purchase will live up to their expectations and they will not be disappointed. Proving a product claim is most effectively achieved through first-hand experience or campaigns which incorporate a sensorial experience.