Love him or hate him, as marketers one thing we should thank Nigel Farage for is reminding us how to develop successful campaigns. So, what can we learn from UKIP’s success? Quite simply, they’ve followed a classic four-step approach, which we’d all do well to reflect on when developing our brand differential and tactical campaigns.

1. Understand the issues and desires facing your target audience

Immigration and the perceived impact of immigration on ‘Britishness’ and jobs has grown and grown as a sore amongst the UK population. The population wants it controlled.

So what do your prospective buyers really want?

2. Have a motivating differential

Whereas Labour avoided talking about immigration, and the Conservatives claimed ‘measures were in place to control’, UKIP focused and differentiated on this issue, which was clearly motivating to a significant percentage of the UK population.

Indeed, they cleverly diffused the arguments of the ‘big two’ regarding the economy (Conservatives: ‘we know what’s best for the economy’; Labour: ’a cost of living calamity’) by arguing things would (much) improve if immigration ‘was sorted’.

So what’s your differential? What’s your site’s differential?

3. Be single-minded: distil your differential into one word

To quote the seminal American positioning guru, Al Ries: “owning a word in the consumers’ mind is the single most important concept in marketing”.

UKIPs word: Immigration. That’s it.

In fact, can you recall any of their other policies? Contrast that with the myriad, unmemorable claims of the other parties. Then think of political victories across the pond: Obama, 2008 ‘Change’. Going back further to Clinton, 1992 ‘(The) Economy’.

As a communication discipline it works. Think Volvo (‘Safety’) and Land Rover (‘Adventure’).

So, what’s the word that your brand owns? ’Design’, Craftsmanship’? What is it?

4. Repetition of Message

Time and time again, through all channels. Consumers don’t ‘get things’ first time. Awareness and understanding build incrementally by repetition of the message over a period of time.

Chapeau Nigel Farage! NF or not, you understand consumers and communication.

Or, as we practice at MMS, understand your consumer, then say one thing and say it well.

More next time...