By DAN NATIVIDAD
Port City Marketing
In today’s marketing world, relevance is the only roadway to success. Marketing is constantly changing and what worked even a few months ago may not be relevant any longer.
More and more brands aren’t just selling their products and services but are demonstrating expert knowledge in their product space through content marketing. When it comes to marketing, especially social media, you often hear that “Content is King.” The quality of content is far more important than quantity. Content must not only be informative in order to effectively promote a brand; it must also be engaging well.
Empathy and customer experience is the new focus for brand publishing
The customer experience is the only thing that matters in brand promotion. While blog posting and social media posts has remained an effective way to engage customers and convert leads into sales, the rules of the game are proving to be different in recent years.
Shifting the focus from adding as many blog or Facebook posts as possible to truly inspiring a consumer and offering useful, relevant information will cause a brand to stand out like never before.
Focus on engagement over views
Words matter and announce to the world what a brand really is. They reveal whether a company is professional and reputable or not.
Words even matter when it comes to social media — often, even more. Digital marketers who engage with consumers by providing well-written content on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram will appear favorable and relevant.
As Internet speed grows, so will video content, so take advantage of it
Today, customers are consuming digital video content quickly and aggressively – binge watching full seasons of shows on Netflix, viewing cat videos on YouTube, or sharing quick videos on Vine, Instagram and Snapchat.
The same goes for content marketing. More consumers prefer product and industry-related videos over white papers, case studies and written reviews.
Educating a customer is the deciding factor if a brand sells or not
The marketing nerds at Port City are starting to see longer, more in-depth publications this year that specifically seek to fully educate a customer. This may be directly tied to Google’s improved efforts at increasing search queries that connect more relevantly to a consumer’s search terms.
The combination of educating an individual about a product and then giving them an opportunity to experience it will allow a brand to shine.
A brand’s ability to offer the consumer a product that lets them participate in something unique will most likely lead to that consumer using social media to recommend the brand to their friends.
Don’t be afraid to be funny
The most commonly shared YouTube videos are ones that are funny. It’s no different in digital marketing. More marketers compete for the spotlight by using this approach with their content.
It’s a simple fact that people are more apt to respond to content that is funny, vulnerable and transparent than content that appears fake or “salesy” in nature. Have you ever received a video from a friend about a car salesman offering the biggest deal of a lifetime? Most likely, your answer would be “no.” Brands should expect nothing different when creating a campaign strategy.
Mobile availability will make or break a brand
Smartphones are only expected to increase in popularity, and if a website hasn’t made the shift to offering mobile availability, the site probably doesn’t display properly. The result is missed opportunities to connect with potential customers.
Above all, you need to be authentic
A brand that isn’t genuine or tries way too hard, definitely stands out, but in a bad way. Potential customers can spot from a mile away a brand that’s over-promising.
A traditional fast food brand that tries to align itself with health and wellness has a high probability of being called out by consumers, unless of course they are truly trying to restructure their menu and philosophies. The only truly defensible brand position is an authentic one.
The world of digital marketing has provided brands and business owners with countless opportunities to stand out in unique ways. Taking these factors into account may prove to be beneficial in maintaining a creative edge in the coming year.
Dan Natividad, a Stockton native, is a partner at Port City Marketing Solutions along with Kristen Dyke and Erin Diego. Dan can be reached at [email protected]