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Avoiding the February Fall: Engaging consumers to stick with resolutions

Every New Year’s season, brands commit a lot of resources to take advantage of the behavior changes consumers resolve to make. Worldwide, people declare, “This is the year I will finally ______________”: Be better with finances, work out, eat better, be present with family…the list goes on. Then comes February, and the enthusiasm that began the year fades. By March, it’s back to old vices. After all, building new habits, especially when you are trying to override old habits, is hard. Studies show it can take from 30-90 days of consistent effort.

If your brand’s business success metrics increase when people stick to their resolutions, helping them will help you. We’ve got ideas.

This isn’t a new challenge — you spend time, energy and yes, money, to recruit your target audience and convert them into users. But once you’ve got them, what are you doing to keep them? It doesn’t matter what category you are in or whether you’re selling a physical product, service or subscription. The principles are the same.

At CCF, we use the combination of a strong emotional connection and education as our recruitment strategy. Next, we turn to activations for coaching and community-building.

Coaching helps keep your audience engaged and lets them know someone is there for them. For you, it’s an opportunity to offer tips and tricks on how to stay the course and avoid relapsing. Our work in smoking cessation taught us that it takes an average of seven quit attempts before a smoker is successful. Recognizing the likelihood of relapse allows smoking cessation brands to be available and ready at just the right time to help smokers through it. This not only results in positive behavior change, but also brand loyalty and endorsement that can have a positive effect on the bottom line.

A recent study on Self Care by Persuadable Research showed that 57% of American adults have overlapping goals when looking at their physical, mental and emotional health. That means they are juggling not only your product or service as a solution, but others as well. This is where being a brand that offers support (i.e. coaching) can be a differentiator that leads to brand loyalty.

Lifetime Fitness has always done nice work here, often in the form of upselling products and services — from detox challenges to a birthday email every year offering a free evaluation from personal trainer. They create a sense of community too: whether it’s a relationship built with a class instructor or finding like-minded counterparts in their new ARORA offering for those ages 50+.

The Calm app offers another coaching example. They primarily leverage email: new session alerts, tips and tricks for anxiety relief or better sleep, or new content that’s been added to the app. Calm recently sent an email on how to allay anxiety: “Ready…put your hand on your belly and take a deep breath.” Simple thought starters like this can help keep your customers engaged, show support from your brand and build like and trust.

For a lesson in community-building, turn to Starbucks. They match team members’ volunteer time (at a per-hour rate) or financial contributions to local non-profits up to $1,000. This commitment facilitates connections for Starbucks employees throughout their local communities and reinforces volunteerism.

Building new habits is hard. You’ve already done the hard work to engage consumers — be sure you are spending enough time on community-building and coaching to keep them. It’s an important topic to us, and we’re guessing to you too. Stay tuned for a related post soon.

Need help with your activations? Give us a shout!

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