Marketing for Social Impact – A Conversation

A couple of weeks back, the Conversant Wallah convened a small group of social entrepreneurs within the artisan made, handmade and sustainable craft & fashion sector, to talk through marketing strategies for social impact.

A common pain point often experienced by leaders in this sector, is that the established business and marketing frameworks and tools, tend to focus more on the product vs. the producer. It was evident in our conversation that each leader present, cared deeply about improving the lives of their producers, and the communities and environments in which they live. That was their primary motivation.

Gurpreet Talwar, a business development consultant and stylist whose mission is to help organizations develop brand ambassadors and not mere customers, led an engaging conversation on the tools and applications one can use to evaluate and develop a small business growth strategy. It was an informative discussion that helped us think through how to accommodate these tools and strategies in the artisan made, handmade and sustainable craft & fashion sector. Gurpreet provided us with some great tips that we wanted to share with the broader community too!

Get to know your customers by creating customer profiles

  • Visualise the market segments that you are pursuing.
  • Take time to understand the persona/profile of each segments so that you can customise the message to target that customer.
  • Overtime, remember to track your customers. Where are they now, what trends have changed, how old are they now?


  • Figure out who your non-competitive brands are, that sell complementary products and who have bigger followings.
  • Be open to looking at complementary brands and products not just within the social sector. More often than not, you are all trying to reach a similar type of customer!

Develop a sales and marketing team

  • As entrepreneurs you don’t have the time to do everything (though sometimes we feel like we do)!
  • Having a couple of people whose sole focus is the consumer (be it individuals or small boutiques), will help to drive growth.

Structure Communications

  • When developing content here are three things to remember: How does your message gain attention; evoke emotion; and drive action? Be sure to review content periodically to see if it ticks these boxes.
  • A sales and marketing team can help manage the content to ensure it drives action.

Be aware of online fatigue

  • Despite the convenience of online shopping, people want to buy products based on touch, feel, emotion, and personal interaction.
  • Find places where you can engage with the customers directly. Start small and explore local opportunities. This is a good way to find out what drives their buying decision too!

It was a terrific opportunity to get to know some inspiring women entrepreneurs, and hear first-hand how they adapt basic marketing and business tools and frameworks to better meet the needs of their social businesses.

If you have have a topic that you’d like to discuss with your peers in the social impact field, do let us know!

The Artesan Gateway – cultivating a community that empowers the lives of artisan producers & consumers through sustainable craft and fashion.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin