The Canadian Internet Marketing Conference (CIMC) brought over 1,200 new visitors to the beautiful town of Squamish between April 14 – 15, 2016. Keynote speakers included marketing leaders from Google, Disney, Twitter, and WestJet. With a diverse range of brands and experts in the room, there were some compelling themes that connected each presentation.
Be Relevant or Fail
60% of individuals conducting online searches will not engage with an ad because they find it irrelevant. If you are relevant to a task you are 80% more likely to be noticed (Evolution of Google Search, Mediative). In other words, you are either printing money or flushing it down the drain, and the determining factor is relevance and timing. Whether your objective is brand awareness or engagement, relevance is critical.
So how can we, as marketers, ensure we’re offering relevant content? Fab Dolan from Google had some great advice to answer this question: “think about the context, intent, and discovery in the customer journey, and deliver differently”. For example, think about where your eyes go when you are searching on your laptop vs your mobile device – the fancy science term Google uses is sessions vs micro-moments. Our phones are now the first thing we reach for in the morning and the last thing we look at everyday. The average consumer will use their phone 150-200 times each day to conduct various searches (Micro-Moments Research Study, Google). Each micro-moment is an opportunity to be visible and relevant, to ultimately create impact in a moment of consumer intent.
“Experience will soon replace products as the thing that differentiates a brand. We need to revisit how we reach and engage with consumers” (Tyler Douglas, Vision Critical). An important part of any experience is authenticity; consumers are able to see right through fake or insincere content. Brands need to start connecting with their audience, not as generic shoppers, but as unique individuals. We have all come to expect real-time responses, personalized service, and a craving for authenticity from brands and companies.
What does a personal experience for your audience look like, and what’s the lasting benefit? “Brand loyalty is earned when you make people feel something” (Katie Schaeffers, BRANDLIVE). Personal moments and experiences are important connections for brands to build with both their internal and external audiences. By creating moments of surprise and delight, and developing authentic relationships and experiences, your brand has the opportunity to build long-lasting equity.
Curate a Lifestyle
Lifestyle has the power to connect your brands and your audiences, to establish trust and community. 62% of consumers trust the reviews/endorsements/testimonials from members of their tribes – social groups who share the same interests and values (Data and Design Presentation, Unbounce). We have all come to use social media to connect with their tribes and reinforce our lifestyle and values. We filter and even reject irrelevant or uninteresting content, making it hard for brands to connect into a new market. Yelp, TripAdvisor, Facebook and other social platforms offer individuals a space to build tribe communities, and gives your brand the opportunity to connect with and nurture those tribe communities.
“Lifestyle is a fundamental element to consider for marketing and branding with any client” (Scott Johnson, Warner Music Canada). Lifestyle is an element that will enable your brand to resonate on a genuine level with your audience, and will ultimately help to build brand ambassadors.
The CIMC is only in its second year, and we are excited to see how this conference continues to grow. The organizers are already underway with planning the speaker lineup for 2017 and we plan to be there to learn, connect, and be inspired.