FOMO Marketing – Are You Missing Out?

Ally Feiam By Ally Feiam | 07 Jun 2019

FOMO: The Fear of Missing Out. It’s a statement that has been thrown around lexicon over the past few years, but now it’s made its way to the marketing sector.

For consumers, FOMO plays a huge role in their purchase behaviour. If a customer senses urgency behind a sale, they’re more likely to buy something.

Creating a sense of urgency isn’t something new to those in the retail industry. Whether it’s limited stock, a flash sale or free delivery, imposing urgency upon the consumer is a great way to trigger their need to purchase. However, in the digital age, there are new tactics that can be used, along with legacy tricks, to capture the FOMO from consumers, and motivate them to act before time runs out.

Clever FOMO Marketing Tactics

Notify Consumers: FOMO doesn’t work for consumers unless they’re aware of it. Notifying them of a sale that’s about to happen, and spark their interest of the forthcoming sale, so they’ve got the idea in their head. This can be via an eDM, social media post or push notifications on a Native App. It’s important to keep your customers int he loop, otherwise the sale won’t deliver the expected results.

Offer Exclusivity: Everyone wants to feel as if they’re part of an exclusive group, so why not incorporate it into a marketing campaign? FOMO comes into play when a consumer witnesses an amazing event from the outside, and they’ll want to be a part of the action. Offering a sale that’s exclusive to those with a one-of-a-kind discount code or who are premium members can increase the number of membership signups and increase the company’s contact database. As an example, send an eDM to the subscriber base with a unique discount code or share the code across social media channels. Those who have the opportunity to snag the exclusive code will instantly feel rewarded by keeping in the loop with the company.

Picture Perfect: A picture is worth a thousand words, and this FOMO tactic is no exception. Consumers respond well to visuals, so if there’s a sale promo with calls to action such as ‘HURRY’ or ‘DON’T MISS OUT!’, the knee-jerk reaction will indicate FOMO.

The Sale Has to Expire: As with anything, a sale can’t be exclusive if it doesn’t end. If a company fails to regulate this standard and extends its sale, it comes to the point where consumers feel as if there was no point hurrying to make a purchase. So, if you’re offering an exclusive offer on a deal or a sale, specify an end date and stick to it. Customers want to feel as if they bagged a bargain, and they’ll only get this if an indication of FOMO is present.

Free Shipping (For You Only): Delivery is one of the biggest factors for consumers when they consider purchasing goods online. According to the Spotlight Series, Last Mile Delivery, 95 per cent of customers want free delivery, which comes as no surprise. FOMO is ensured when free delivery is involved. If a company runs a sale that offers free delivery for an exclusive member or with a one-of-a-kind discount code, the more likely the customer is to make a purchase. Offering free shipping after the customer has reached a certain value lets them make another purchase, even if its of little monetary value. But be sure to explicitly state how much the consumer has to purchase to receive the free shipping – this can be confusing, and make them abandon their cart altogether.

Limited Edition: A tale as old as time, the case of the Limited Edition items, exclusive collections and one-time-only events are a sure way to get extra attention. Amazon’s The Drop uses this tactic to perfection, offering exclusive designer clothes for 30 hours only. This short window of time activates the customer’s sense of urgency. They want it, and they want it now.

Who’s The Target Audience for FOMO?

Millennials are known as the FOMO Generation. Following numerous reports on marketing for millennials, it’s apparent that FOMO has the largest impact. As part of the digital generation, they grew up almost exclusively surrounded by social media. This is where they get their new information, stay in touch with friends and connect with brands. Brands have adapted to reach a new level of loyalty and trust with consumers. Makeup brand such as Australis and Urban Decay will share social media posts with witty and relatable content, with aims to make the consumer feel as if they’re ‘friends’ with the brand. As the brand and consumer become closer, the more likely the customer will feel FOMO from a sale. If they miss out on the exclusive event, then it’s like they’re not a part of the club, or that they’re a ‘fake fan’.

Although it’s no new strategy, brands should optimise the FOMO marketing plans, so they can further generate sales, secure customer loyalty and form a strong reputation amongst the target audience.

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