The Land Shark Instant Survival Shelter and Stealth Bag is a safety and survival product designed to protect the user from extreme heat, cold, and exposure to the elements. The product was developed by a former Air Force pilot, is extremely durable, and is made in America.
When we first began working with Land Shark, the company had no presence on social media and had done very little in the way of advertising or marketing. We began by researching the market, learning as much as possible about other products available on the market that would compete with Land Shark, and about the daily lives, aspirations and brand loyalties of their potential customer demographics.
We found that a high percentage of individuals in our target demographics use social media to learn about new products, share their experiences about products they own, and stay up-to-date on the latest survival tools, tips and tricks. It was clear that a strong social media presence would be essential to Land Shark’s success.
Our first step was to develop a content strategy guide that would steer future Land Shark social media efforts. This roadmap tries to anticipate future needs and opportunities, and lays out a plan in advance. For example, since Land Shark is a useful emergency preparedness tool for hunters, boaters, and hikers, we researched the appropriate season for each activity around the country and scheduled social media posts that focused on these activities around the same time. This strategy capitalized on the enthusiasm of the upcoming season: reminding customers that it was time to update their gear, check their emergency supplies, and provide tips and tricks on how Land Shark could be used in their specific circumstances. We wanted Land Shark’s social media presence to be driving conversation about the product, not reacting to it.
It was important that we presented Land Shark as an expert in the field of emergency preparedness. To do this, we identified specific media outlets, reviewers, bloggers, podcasters, and more – each with a strong social media presence – and offered to send them a Land Shark press package, complete with a Land Shark product for review, a personalized letter, fact sheet, and other sales literature. We encouraged these reviewers to try Land Shark for themselves and speak honestly about their experience on their websites, social media pages, video reviews or podcasts. These kinds of unbiased reviews do a lot for building the credibility of both the brand and product, with consumers and media. Instead of reading formal press releases issued by the company, consumers were able to find real world reviews of the product provided by trusted members of their social media communities. In this way, we were able to leverage the sphere of influence that popular social media personalities have already cultivated – tapping into sources of potential customers that we would otherwise have to reach in more costly ways.
In addition, major publications like Field & Stream are more likely to review your product if they see that the product has been reviewed positively by other often smaller outlets. This type of “build up” of credibility can lead to larger and more far reaching reviews than you originally scoped.
Once we had begun to establish a solid number of followers on our social media channels, we designed and implemented several Facebook advertising campaigns to continue to drive conversation and interest in the product. Over the course of time we implemented 11 different advertising campaigns, each geared at a different sub-category of our target demographics, using the appropriate language and imagery that would appeal to each group. Using Facebook’s built-in targeting capabilities, we ensured that each of our ads targeted the correct demographics. In one ad, for example, we focused our messaging on how the product can be used for safety and stealth and targeted Facebook users who have listed hunting as an interest. For boating enthusiasts, we used imagery and copy that focused on the products capabilities in water, such as protection from hypothermia.