Marketers are constantly looking for unique ways to create a relationship and influence purchase decision through brand communications. Thanks predominantly to the internet, advertising has changed rapidly in the last twenty years in tandem with the increased number of brand and service options that consumers now have access to. The business model has changed; you can no longer run a tonne of advertisements and expect to get a stampede, unless you provide an incentive or have established goodwill and a positive consumer reputation. In fact, many businesses invest in proprietary advertising and pay-per-click only to find that the investment does not pay off. Today’s consumer will not come running because your business wants it to; the relationship comes before the purchase decision.
The psychology of advertising in the era of digital marketing is unique. Consumers around the world are by far more educated, and more studious when it comes to purchase decisions. Your customers do more research than you might imagine, and that research can be comparing prices online with handy mobile apps like Retail Me Not, asking family and friends for advice on sales, and shopping more than one option in many cases (particularly for larger ticket items). In the new economy, consumers are also likely to wait longer and avoid impulse purchase decisions.
What does this mean for advertisers and businesses? Again, consumers will not come running because you asked them to. Dispense with the idea that purchases and repeat purchases are random; they are formulated on an established relationship and lifestyle perception of your brand or product. How do you communicate your business, product or service culture? Through an investment in strategic content marketing.
The Challenge for Brands
According to an article published by the Content Marketing Institute, “How to Win Your Battle for Content Marketing Buy-In”, 48% of business to business marketers have a formal content marketing strategy. As other forms of traditional advertising including television, radio and print advertising have become less effective at capturing mobile consumers, brands are investing substantial resources into creative planning and resourcing for a high quality content mix that will drive sales.
If it were as easy as producing blog posts and press releases, or one innovative video per year, businesses would be capitalizing on their content and satisfied with results. The article identifies some key challenges that we also experience when working with larger brands, which is executive buy-in, openness and acquiring permission to share corporate culture. The sweeping changes in mobile marketing mean that businesses have to dig deeper to share an authentic side that consumers can relate to.
For some service, sports or entertainment industries, that is a little easier; it’s fun to show your facility, events and enthusiastic staff when you are a business like Strikes, or Dave and Busters. But what if you are a bank, or an investment brokerage? What if you are a hospital or a foundation for critically ill individuals? The levity that some brands can capitalize on to create content isn’t appropriate in some industries, which is why content marketing is an art and a science of balancing propriety with personification of business, culture and ideals.
No matter what product or service sector your business belongs to, there is a way to create appropriate content that builds community around your brand. Marketing has changed. In the past, your business may have hired an advertising broker or buyer to place newspaper, radio, television or display advertising in your local community. To be clear, that still exists but it is less effective and typically far more expensive than digital marketing options (web, podcast, blog, email marketing, etc.) which can be broadcast to a larger group of potential customers, without geographic or behavioral restrictions (everyone owns a smartphone). To marketing effectively online, you need the help of a content specialist.
Explore our convenient flat-fee digital marketing bundles (which include monthly content production for blogs, press releases, brochures, email marketing and more).