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Niche Marketing – Feat. TOTM

As part of our Inclusive Marketing initiative, we showcase and champion approaches, businesses, initiatives, campaigns, organisations and service providers who understand how to craft inclusive marketing campaigns, reaching ‘all’ or having set out to specifically focus and tailor their comms and campaigns for audiences that some may see as ‘niche’.

Next up, we’d like to feature a business that is challenging the menstruation industry by specialising in comms that expose the truth about tampons, to make a difference by ending the silence about periods and providing more natural and sustainable period care.

Here, our chat with Alex Patience, Social and Content Exec at TOTM.

ADLIB: For some background, who is TOTM and what makes your business offering unique?

Alex: TOTM exists to drive positive change. We’re challenging negative attitudes towards menstruation and breaking taboos to build a period powerful future.

Our conscious collection of GOTS certified organic cotton tampons, pads and liners, along with our reusable menstrual cup, are designed to be kind to your body and the planet. We are proud to be registered cruelty-free and vegan with The Vegan Society. We were also recently awarded independent Ethical Accreditation from the Good Shopping Guide.

TOTM is a force for change that’s powered by its customers. We’re not here to represent periods in a negative way (i.e. with blue liquid) or feed period taboos, we’re here to educate and empower our community. We use our online platforms to drive open and honest conversations about periods and menstrual health.

ADLIB: How does TOTM approach spreading the word about your products/services to ensure that those who could benefit are reached?

Alex: As an online brand, we spread the word about the TOTM mission and our sustainable period care primarily via social media. We’re constantly producing content to feed our online channels. Based on our target customer, Instagram is a key channel for us. It’s encouraging to see conversations about periods growing online. We’re a community-driven brand and we love seeing our customers sharing their period tips, stories or photos of their go-to TOTM products!

We are very passionate about raising awareness of organic and reusable period care on a wider stage. In 2018, we proudly launched in Tesco to increase our brand presence in the UK and make these products more widely accessible. This market is influenced heavily by supermarket sales and by establishing both an online and offline presence we’re extending our brand reach and encouraging more people to switch to sustainable alternatives!

ADLIB: In your opinion, what is the most important factor to consider when marketing to a niche audience?

Alex: TOTM is passionate about marketing to a wider audience rather than just a niche ‘organic shopper’ audience. We think everybody should be made aware of their period care product ingredients and given the opportunity to explore more sustainable products. This also goes beyond the product. There’s a lot to be done to tackle period stigma on a wider scale. We’re driven by our mission to change this industry, to not only provide alternative products but also challenge the negative representation of periods.

ADLIB: And finally, what skills do you see as essential when it comes to marketing what has previously been viewed as a ‘taboo’ topic?

Alex: Being persistent, strong-willed and sticking to your guns is key. When we first started, we used to say to each other, “why does no one want to share photos of our boxes?” Instead of just accepting this, we made it our mission to get people talking about TOTM and sharing photos of their boxes. We aim to keep our messaging welcoming, open and fearless when it comes to fighting the taboo surrounding periods. The way we engage with our community has been a BIG contributor in encouraging people to show off their products and join in with our conversations. People are so used to hiding their tampons up their sleeve due to fear of embarrassment and we set out to change this.

We also had to remain true to the brand and not filter stuff down to please others. We once got offered a magazine feature if we removed our statement “Be Kinder To Your Vagina”. We turned it down without a second thought.

It’s important to be confident and post ‘bold’ stuff. The best way to remove the taboo is to open conversations and post photos people aren’t used to seeing. The content needs to be relatable, so people want to share and get involved.

Thanks so much for sharing!