17 May Marketing to the multitaskers
As I made my way back from The Business Show, in ExCel, this afternoon, the enormity with which the digital landscape has changed the way we fundamentally communicate, really dawned on me.
Something, which Google’s Adam Engelhardt, highlighted in his presentation this morning: “Awareness, search and engagement is now happening in one move.” No longer are we passive recipients of advertising, speech and the media; we consume things, whilst simultaneously researching them and choosing whether or not to engage.
How many of us sit in front of the TV – laptop beside us and our phone in the other hand: listening, searching and engaging all in one? This very morning, I sat listening to insightful presentations on social media and digital marketing, whilst also on my smartphone, processing the information and sharing it on twitter.
Have we become a nation of multi-taskers – quick to filter out what we do and don’t want to engage with? Or have we become just plain disengaged; bored of media that demands too much from us, quick to share events before they’re even over and impatient to get the next nuggets of information?
It seems we are both; engaged and simultaneously disengaged with the task at hand. We want information, product news, friend updates, connections, and invitations all at once, and in less than 140 characters.
So as a business, how does one navigate through this complex web of information and really engage potential customers, who are simultaneously doing one hundred and one other things?
Well despite the changing landscape, one thing was clear from this morning, the aims of any marketing campaign still involves the three age-old objectives:
It is no good marketing your business to the wrong audience; you need to be sure who your target market is, where they are and what they want. Once you’ve found them, the content must stimulate and engage them in a concise and retentive way.
Yet, when it comes to this last point, social media is altering what we mean when we say ‘Return on Investment’. You may not need money to set up a Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn profile; yet it takes time. As, Mark Hamilton Taylor of Klood, says, “ROI is dead. It is all about ROE – return on energy, engagement and effort.”
Utilising what the digital landscape has to offer needs a clear strategy. “In the 90s it was all about planning, we’ve got wiser since then – now we need a strategy”, says Taylor. Having a clear strategy, founded on research and development, will help you navigate the complex digital world, infiltrate the various mediums and engage with your customers and potential customers.
Whilst a clear strategy is essential, the fast moving pace of the digital realm allows for flexibility in your plans. The best strategy is one which you can evolve along the way. See which content people respond most to; the links that encourage the most retweets, which blog posts evoke the best conversation and adapt your marketing strategy accordingly.
If businesses are to keep up with the changing behavior of how customers link their online and offline selves, they must likewise link their business behaviours both on and offline. Setting out a clear marketing strategy offline that follows the three R’s: Reach, Relevance and ROE and simultaneously adapts to keep on top of the ever-changing landscape online is not just wise, but essential if you are to be successful in today’s business environment.
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