With the proliferation of mobile and social usage today, consumers are inundated with messaging. Countless updates compete for their attention…from friends, work, news sources and brands. To be successful, digital marketing must help them meet their needs with ease, providing a sense of clarity in the user’s cluttered messaging environment.
The key to delivering branded information to consumers is a user-centric focus – knowing not only who they are and what is meaningful to them but also what type of brand information is appropriate for them. In short, while paid media can be used to boost your message, truly effective content strategy and marketing is about helping your customers. Just as consumers move through the classic purchase funnel, we help them through what we call the engagement funnel (awareness to consideration to engagement), tailoring the information and options we offer to their current state. For example, during the awareness stage, a user might search for a general keyword relevant to your brand. Based on our content strategy, relevant branded content would appear in the user’s search, whether through website content, a blog post, a tweet, a Facebook post, an Instagram photo or a Pinterest pin that’s relevant to that search. To reach consumers in the consideration stage, it’s important to have email lists for them to subscribe to, the ability to pin your products on Pinterest or add them to a wish list or active social media profiles for them to follow. Once a user enters the engagement stage, you want to offer them valuable content and the opportunity to engage with your social media profiles, include a call to action to comment on your blog posts, provide a retail locator and make it easy for them to buy your product in store or via e-commerce.
HOW DO WE DO IT? Our cross-discipline interactive agency not only provides your digital content strategy but also its maintenance and analysis, including:
It takes more than media planning tools to develop an effective media plan—it takes an agency-wide consumer-centric approach that allows the media planners to work hand in hand with people from every department within a full-service advertising agency. The result puts the right message in contact with the right consumers at a time they’ll be receptive to it.
A MEDIA PLANNING FRIENDLY ECOSYSTEM Our office has no walls, and neither do our processes. We plan, create and analyze seamlessly and collaboratively—with the media planner involved at every stage—initially guiding strategy and creative by providing an understanding of where the consumer is spending time and what content resonates with them, through:
Then real-time analytics allow us to see precisely how the target consumer is responding and make adjustments and improvements along the way, ensuring we exceed KPIs. CHANNEL-AGNOSTIC MEDIA BUYING Focusing on the consumer allows us to develop a plan that pairs the right messages with the right channels.Our media buying services, headed up by Richard, are in line with our peers at top advertising agencies and digital advertising companies—they include:
Social media and marketing were once separate entities, but today social media has become a necessary and effective marketing channel. In fact, three out of four CMO’s believe social media impacts sales. So you know you need it. But where, how…and more importantly…to whom?
The key to ensuring a social media strategy that moves the needle? A user-centric approach.
THE USER DEEP DIVE
Unfortunately, if approached the wrong way, a social marketing strategy can cause more damage to your brand than good. The most successful social campaigns a social media advertising agency creates are designed through the eyes, ears and touch points of the consumer:
A social campaign is only truly brilliant if it’s designed with the user in mind. Only then will consumers recognize the relevance and engage in ways that ultimately impact the bottom line.
THE WHO, WHAT AND WHERE
As we build social strategies and determine which social networks will be most effective, we consider:
The presence and activity level of the target consumer in those channels what resources will be necessary to successfully provide support in that space. The result is an intricate social media strategy and corresponding editorial calendar built to deliver brand messaging and engagement, while giving the user unique reasons to follow your brand within each channel.
The development of a campaign has to start somewhere. And the execution of a good campaign definitely needs to lead somewhere. The question is where do you start, and where are you trying to lead your consumer?
START WITH THE CONSUMER
Our consumer-centric approach uses research to derive insights about the consumer, because a campaign needs to be driven by a core truth about the consumer’s beliefs, lifestyle or aspirations. The most effective campaigns create a connection between the brand, the consumer and the action we want them to take, so the challenge is to find the area of opportunity where the brand truths and the consumer insights overlap.
IDENTIFY THE CHANNEL
Once we find the sweet spot, we identify the channels that will most effectively reach consumers with our message. As a full service agency, we know the importance of carefully selecting channels for a purpose. A channel should never be an afterthought, or merely used because it’s cool. For example, marketing through social media isn’t as easy as slapping a hashtag onto a TV spot and assuming it will trend on Twitter. You use a channel because your consumer is there, and it’s a method of effectively reaching them with your message.
END WITH THE ACTION
A truly integrated campaign must play to the strengths of each channel to inspire a consumer to take action. In other words, there should be no dead ends. As a full service agency, we believe each channel will motivate consumers to do something different. In some channels, our goal might be to get them to think about the brand. When marketing through social media, our goal might be just to get them to share. At retail, our goal is to drive consideration and purchase. We recognize that every channel plays an important role in the process of recruiting and retaining consumers.
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