Unleashing Your Super Powers
It’s become almost a cliché in many business circles to write these types of articles at the end of the year, trying to predict what trend lines will hold up after January 1. But there’s a reason for that: December is the time — often the only one we get on an annual basis — when things slow down just enough for us to sit back and contemplate things a bit.
Besides, looking at trends isn’t just an exercise in total chicanery, making up stuff and flinging it against the wall to see what will stick. Basically what we’re doing is looking backward as much as forward, to see if what was predicted for the passing year has held up. If so, that likely means it will continue and expand.
So what’s on the horizon for marketing in 2015? And how can you dominate the competition?
One of the biggest changes in the marketing field is the ability to tailor and target messages to specific customers based on the things they’re already interested in. It wasn’t that long ago when seeing customized advertising next to our Web searches seemed amazing (and intrusive, to some people). Now we accept it as a matter of course.
Just recently I was looking up a local electronic retailer’s offerings on my smartphone, and wasn’t surprised when I started to receive emails from them with similar product listings.
Over at the blog visual.ly, Lizetta Staplefoote says micro-targeting is the best way to get to know your customers. The first step is to find out who your audience is and dive deep into “buyer persona development.”
“Touching these customers will require data parsing to create the kind of one-to-one conversations for successful micro targeting,” she writes.
Mobile keeps growing
While you’re familiarizing yourself with your customers’ needs and lifestyle, understand smartphones and tablets are increasingly the way many of them engage digitally. Jayson DeMers of Forbes predicts “2015 will be the year that mobile strategies move beyond simply having a responsive site or mobile app, and focus on mobile-optimized content and social media marketing as well.”
In other words, smart businesses should be thinking about ways to optimize their audience’s mobile interactions with them. That means building a fully-responsive website — we do plenty of that here at Coles Marketing — mobile ads geared to their interests, and creating separate content specifically for mobile platform users.
Social media: ads & content
Recently an experience working with a client on an ambitious roll-out campaign convinced the Coles team of one thing: reject social media advertising at your own peril. We’d exceeded all expectations for earned media and eyeballs, but the social media component lagged because no advertising dollars had been allocated there.
BuzzBuilder has a Slideshare that says it best: “Paid advertising in social media is becoming a necessity, not a luxury.”
Going hand-in-in hand is the need to create content to engage audiences across a variety of platforms and channels, especially social media. Roger Katz at Clickz.com rightly notes it’s hard to produce quality content in quantity. Once you do, he advises, use it in as many different ways as you can.
“Be smart about how content can be leveraged and re-purposed,” he writes. “One expensively produced piece of content can be distributed in multiple ways to get more use.”Edit this post