On the 26th of March 2015, many of you made your way to the Impact Hub in the Westerpark to help us with our marketing plan for Malawi. I would like to start by thanking all of you again for the creative evening and the big bag of ideas that I got to take back to the office (literally).
With our new factory for Tulip water filters opening this year in Malawi, we felt that we needed to take a good look at our marketing approach within the country. Within the country we have two main sales channels: through shops and direct sales by female entrepreneurs. Each of these channels needs a different marketing strategy. Next to that we presented the borrelaars with the question of how to make sure that people buy a replacement filter after one year of using the water filter.
After a short introduction of the case, the borrelaars divided into smaller groups to start brainstorming. And what a storm it was! From Tupperware parties to ‘design your own filter’, from inside the box to completely out there. And that was exactly what we were hoping for.
And now for the question: what did we do with all your ideas? We started by dividing all the ideas into groups: ‘simple and low-cost to implement’, ‘more effort to implement, but high potential’ and ‘not possible now, but maybe at a later stage’.
The first group contains ideas like ‘create ambassadors by giving away free t-shirts’. A simple idea that can be very effective for brand recognition. So most ideas in this group will be taken along from the start of the marketing campaign.
Now the ideas in the second and third group are a bit more complex, but could be very interesting for the long term development of Basic Water Needs Malawi. So these will travel with us the next time we visit Malawi to discuss them thoroughly with our local partners. Because in the end you can’t plan everything in an office or at the Impact Hub in Amsterdam, you need to simply go to the country and discuss it with the people who will have to execute it.
So there is still a lot left to develop, discus and plan. We will keep you posted on the outcomes of our upcoming visit and on the execution of the first ideas. And most importantly: how your ideas have helped in getting safe and affordable drinking water to families in Malawi.