There’s no denying that digital marketing reigns supreme in the modern business world, but just who are the movers and innovators who shape the trends in the market?
You wouldn’t be wrong in thinking that visionary entrepreneurs and experienced digital marketers that make amazing content have something to do with the innovations in modern marketing, however, the predominant actor here is the consumer. Modern brands know that the key to successful marketing is catering to the needs and wishes of the customers, which means identifying the latest trends and exploiting them until the next one comes along.
Try to innovate your marketing strategy without checking with the public first, and you will inevitably fall short of your projected ROI. On the other hand, leverage industry knowledge and you will be able to tailor a winning marketing plan and automate various processes for maximum success. Here’s how customers shape and consume digital and social marketing in the modern marketplace.
Leveraging word of mouth to gauge brand trustworthiness
Word of mouth marketing has been the most powerful marketing method throughout history, well before the global digital revolution. So, it’s no surprise that WOM would transcend the plains and go on to become the most powerful marketing tactic in the online realm as well – because customers will always trust their family and friends more than the fancy wording on your website. This means that word-of-mouth marketing should be at the forefront of your entire marketing strategy.
To an inexperienced marketer, word of mouth might seem out of their control, or something that the customer service department should worry about. That is, of course, not the case. You can boost WOM significantly by leveraging user-generated content on your website and social media, and reaching out to prominent influencers in your industry to spread the good word of your brand. Complemented by stellar service, this creates the foundation of successful WOM.
Consumer tolerance is decreasing every year
In a digitally connected world, you cannot afford to keep your customers on hold. Nowadays, customer tolerance is lower than ever before, simply because the sheer number of communication channels available has made is possible, and necessary, for brands to respond to their customers’ queries and problems as quickly as possible. This means within the workday, preferably immediately.
Keep your customers waiting, and you are slowly losing them until they finally decide to put their trust in a competitor’s brand. But it’s not just about responding to direct messages, it’s also about being active on social media and responding to the online buzz efficiently and effectively. Remember, it only takes one viral Tweet or Facebook post to jeopardize your brand’s image and reputation, so you need to act fast.
Loyalty programs can boost customer retention
Long-term success in the modern business world depends on your ability to create a brand people will want to welcome into their everyday life – a brand that inspires loyalty and motivates customers to stay by your side through thick and thin. This is especially important in this brand-hopping culture we live in now, as the millennial demographic has no problem switching brands until they find the perfect fit. So naturally, your emphasis needs to be on loyalty programs on social media and in digital marketing in general.
This is one of the reasons why loyalty promotional materials the likes of prepaid Visa card programs have become so popular in recent years, as these types of loyalty incentives provide the customer with a valuable gift that carries a brand message to boot. In turn, a gift they can use over an extended period of time has a high potential of becoming a relevant part of their daily lifestyle, which also means that your brand will become more relevant to them as well.
The mobile audience requires mobile optimization
As the global consumer market is becoming increasingly dominated by mobile devices, there is a very real need for forward-looking companies to completely optimize their online existence for mobile consumption. Firstly, you need to focus on mobile web optimization, and take advantage of Accelerated Mobile Pages to rank your site higher on Google and make mobile browsing a breeze for your customers.
And secondly, you should consider creating an app for your services or online store. It’s an app-driven world out there, and while it might not bring any SEO benefits, there is no denying the functionality and creative freedom that app development brings to the table. Combining a proprietary app with complete mobile optimization on your website will cover your brand on all fronts and ensure that your customers can access your products and services on every relevant platform. In turn, you can expect this to improve your brand’s WOM, customer acquisition, as well as customer loyalty and retention.
Personalization has become a necessity
And finally, there’s been a lot of talk about personalization in recent years, and its importance in customer acquisition and retention in the modern marketplace. Quite simply, the modern consumer needs and wants their brands to communicate with them on a personal level, and deliver a tailored experience that will show them just how much their business is appreciated.
Nurturing your customers in this manner will allow you to maximize their lifetime value, and capitalize on increased customer retention instead of overinvesting in supplementing your high churn rate. Make sure to personalize your entire digital and social strategies, especially when you’re communicating directly with them in order to strengthen your brand’s bond with the individual.
Customers are the ultimate trendsetters nowadays, and they are the primary actors in every marketing strategy, social or otherwise. With these insights in mind, you can tailor your approach to digital and social to avoid the common pitfalls and deliver an amazing experience that will propel your brand forward as a whole.
Jacob Wilson is a business consultant, and an organizational psychologist, based in Brisbane. Passionate about marketing, social networks, and business in general. In his spare time, he writes a lot about new business strategies and digital marketing for Bizzmarkblog.com.