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Why digital is reshaping marketing and how companies can adapt

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Note: This is a partner blogpost. BlogsRelease is a media partner for GMIC Tel-Aviv 2016.

By: Eti Nachum, CEO, BlogsRelease.

We all know that the marketing ‘market’ is evolving, especially on mobile, but is this process happening too quickly for brands and agencies to keep up? You may find the answer to this and all of your questions at the GMIC Conference (22 March, Tel Aviv), but until then, the latest study from the Association of National Advertisers reveals that when it comes to marketing in the digital age, companies are – to a significant extent – lost. Some key findings:

  • ‘Fifty percent of respondents do not have a clearly defined customer decision journey nor do they understand where they need to focus their marketing programs.’
  • ‘More than one-third of companies are not using data to make decisions, and almost half say they still don’t have the right analytics in place.’
  • ‘84 percent of marketers do not have a formal content strategy and distribution process.’ (Source: ANA).

The ever present specter of ‘traditional’ marketing methodology continues to haunt the industry, despite the clearly shifting priorities of consumers regarding media platforms. Increasing global smartphone penetration signals the need for more creative and solid strategies. The rise of adblocking software is the beginning of the end of banner ads. Consumers overwhelmingly trust the advice of friends and peers (including bloggers) over brands. Digital and mobile has fundamentally changed the marketing landscape, so what can companies do to survive and thrive in this brave new world?

Customer Decision Journey

Social media has changed the customer-brand relationship from a one-way, direct projection in the days of yore to a two-way conversation. Consumers can easily communicate with brands via Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms, right from their phones. Even more importantly, consumers can now communicate with each other on a grand scale. This makes the customer decision journey a more complex process than ever. Before making a purchasing decision, customers may consult social media, blogs, review sites, and more. In fact, 60% of consumers in the US have made a purchasing decision based on a blog post. Companies need to take this journey into account and rethink their approach to social and influencer marketing.

Utilizing Data

Companies need to start investing in and hiring analytical talent – it’s as simple as that. Today’s marketers must be more skilled than ever, including at least some knowledge of data analytics. If you have no idea what ROI and SEO are, you are certainly not taking advantage of the vast data resources the internet has to offer.

Content and Distribution Strategy

Content and distribution are the two most crucial ingredients to a successful strategy. Great content will not be seen by anyone if the distribution is weak; but an excellent distribution strategy will fail with subpar content. Here it is important to shape strategy on a campaign-by-campaign basis. If you’re interested in running a mobile social media campaign, for example, the distribution strategy would be vastly different than running a TV ad – this is obvious. However, a campaign on Twitter may not be suitable for Instagram. Each social network has a different audience, language, and reach. Furthermore, all campaigns need to have a certain structure and set goals in mind. Ask yourself these basic questions: What is the aim of this campaign? Who is my target audience? Where and when are they most likely to be active? What appeals to them? What tools would help me reach them?

Let’s take a blogger review campaign for an app as an example. The app Wlingua was created to help kids and adults learn Spanish. Wlingua knew that if you have an educational app, recruiting influential mom and dad bloggers to review it is a great way to promote it. By working with blogger partners to assure mutual exposure on all possible social media platforms and keeping track of their reach, reviews from just 30 bloggers generated thousands of views.

Don’t be afraid to think out of the box and embrace the new normal of the marketing reality. While the advent of mobile and digital may signal the end of some traditional forms of advertising, it opens up countless new doorways to exciting possibilities and campaigns.

Interested in launching a blogger review campaign? BlogsRelease is the #1 PR marketplace for brands to engage with influencers by posting blogger review campaigns for products, events, and news.

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