Updated: May 31
Author: Berfu Balcı
Date of Publication: 30/01/2023
What is a shared economy?
In order to have a deeper understanding of Shared Economy Brands, we should first define the term "Shared Economy." In particular, it is a system based on sharing assets or services between individuals in return for a fee or free of charge. So, in our ongoing lives, most brands benefit from this type of economy in their business plan. But how are they interpreting it to their workforce? Let's take a look.
Shared economy strategies
Known shared economy brands such as Airbnb, Uber, Lime, Spotahome, and BlaBlaCar are part of our lives. For example, one of the first options when traveling is to look at accommodations on Airbnb. For transportation, though, Uber or Lime are preferable options. It is safe to say these brands are consumer-driven businesses. Therefore, a supply and demand policy is working here. People demand things, and brands provide those things, following the needs of the consumers. So, in today's world, this is the modern way of marketing. Fresh and young brands or new startups compose this into their marketing plan, but how can traditional brands use it?
Determining the right strategy for a company
It is simply implementing a few marketing strategies. First, a brand should consider engaging with consumers as much as possible. Besides the massive impact on customers, being in contact with them helps the brand be aware of the trends and predispositions of the consumers. The more you know about your audience and their needs, the more you can create the right strategy for them. However, competing in the field with this many opponents can be challenging. Thus, to elude such challenges, there are certain things a brand can do, for example, putting outstanding pricing options on the table. In addition, traditional consumers look for ways to save money, Gen Z and millennials look for cheaper options, so it works for different age groups. The next thing that can be done is to promote the brand as the most convenient option among others in terms of service, price, and quality. Therefore, here the goal is creating demand. So, it needs to be attractive to the consumers, in order for them to use that specific brand rather than other companies with similar products.
The last thing is the brand. With the correct brand recognition (by saying "correct," I mean positive brand recognition), interests in a company can change drastically. Creating high-quality products makes it easier to increase the brand's reliability and knowability; these are helpful adjectives to benefit from. Of course, as a company, you need to know your audience and their interests to create an appealing product.
Brand and Consumers
When it is crucial for a company to attract more customers, they need to take more responsibility and be active in the market. Customer engagement is critical and brings customers together for co-creation helps. So, somehow it gives users a voice, a chance to speak about the products they use, and makes changes on things they don't necessarily need. By providing that freedom, brands give power to the customers, and this creates royalty. Based on how loyal a customer is to a brand, they tend to buy products brands offer, which is a win for the company. In the modern era, this happens by selling products mostly shifted into social media engagements. The more traffic you get on your website or social media accounts, the more you earn money. That means building a solid website and integrating more social media accounts into the business plan. So, there is no shame in not knowing how to integrate these into the business. At this point, it reveals the importance of feedback from users. Thus, the feedback can shape the direction you want for your business and your user profile.
As it mentioned in the beginning, it is essential to know about your audience and the profile to which you aim to sell the products. In fact, the company's sales rate would be more defined by targeting a specific group of people or communities. It is also easy for marketing teams since knowing the audience means creating content suitable for that particular group. Critic point here, by learning the habits and behaviors of the consumers, brands can take actions in accordance with the values of those customers. Lastly, it is essential for customers to see they share the same ideas and values with the creators in the companies. Seeing there are real people behind big brands, encourages buyers to choose that specific brand.
Giana M. Eckhardt, M. B. (2019). Marketing in the Sharing Economy. Journal of Marketing, 23.