Is this a new website, or is it a new magazine?
Even collecting the latest issue of your favourite magazine or catalogue from the mailbox at the bottom of your driveway is becoming a thing of the past as online versions become the more popular method of consumption. The difference is that these are not websites – they’re applications that are delivering this exciting new technology to your mobile devices!
Your tablet is now the perfect and increasingly popular device for viewing magazines, catalogues, brochures etc, and not just viewing them, but the ability to purchase the product of your choice without leaving the couch! Download the app of your choice and open the publication. It looks like a magazine or catalogue, except it has moving pictures, video, sound, animation, the ability to ‘click and buy’ on the spot, or redeem coupons and special promotions only available to loyal customers (like you) who have their app on your tablet (or mobile device).
These apps exist, and Jag Creative is creating them for our clients. You can already download others from the App Store or Google Play.
Gary Richards says it adds a whole new dimension to the way we communicate with customers – providing them with a new way of shopping when they want, how they want – and not forcing your brand on them.
“It’s an invaluable new resource for engaging customers, building loyalty and driving repeat business – and they can interact with you from the comfort of their couch while watching TV, in the kitchen while preparing dinner, or in the shed – not stuck in the study behind the desktop computer, or fighting your way through a retail store and waiting in queues.
“It is never out of date, as a printed catalogue would be when an item runs out of stock, or the prices change. The app automatically updates with new content whenever you need it to. The trend is for your smart device to automatically update apps as they become available.”
“This means that any new promotions, updated pricing, notices, news and fresh content are automatically delivered to your customer’s tablet or smartphone,” says Gary.
“It is literally a whole new, and very cool and simple way of navigating your online shopping experience.”
For more information about how we can implement this relatively inexpensive and exciting new technology into your business, give Gary a call now on 09 370 0474 or email me.
Auckland, New Zealand: Just because we are living in an age of Internet and digital dominance, doesn’t mean that branding is in its twilight years. Branding has never been about the paper – it has, and always will be, about you… regardless of the communication channels you use.
The sheer volume of communications which are made possible by digital media means there is now, more than ever, a need to stand out and differentiate yourself from the clutter – people’s perceptions of your personality, and the value of what you offer, are just as important but far more difficult to influence.
If (as claimed by some market research companies a few years ago) the average person is indeed bombarded with more than 4,000 marketing messages a day – which is perfectly feasible – then poor, average, mediocre and even good branding will not be enough to stand out from the crowd; it has to be relevant.
People who live in the city, or alongside a motorway, will report that eventually they no longer notice the noise. The same can be said for bad smells. The reason is that the mind focuses on priorities and filters out anything that is not essential – like your own built in firewall.
The greater the frequency and types of media we are faced with (the level of noise), the more powerful the firewalls become. As a result, only relevant brands – that match your customer’s priorities – have any hope of finding their way through the filters.
As if the fire-wall challenge wasn’t enough, technology has given consumers the power to pick and choose what they will be engage with – fast forward on television remotes and the ability to skip advertisements online, are just two examples.
So, what makes a brand relevant?
A relevant brand is not one that sells an attribute. A relevant brand is one that communicates your understanding of the customer’s challenges and needs, and which also offers them a solution.
For example, let’s say you’re selling fresh produce to people who are concerned about pesticides, contaminants and toxins in their food. They are concerned about their health and the environment. This is not so far fetched, when you consider the recent Fonterra botulism scare.
How do you communicate the normal things, like fresh and high quality (which good branding would do) while presenting yourself as ‘relevant’ to your target market’s needs and concerns e.g. organic, respectful of the environment and trustworthy?
A relevant brand:
- Is consistent in its appearance and experience;
- It communicates an understanding of customer needs and concerns;
- It extends beyond a logo and a tagline all the way down to how you answer the telephone and the kind of cars you drive;
- It is about finding ways to relate to your customers beyond a sales message e.g. a content marketing campaign that informs and educates them about healthy food and sustainability;
- A relevant brand is a philosophy and practise that everybody in your organisation subscribes to;
- A relevant brand practises what you preach;
- A relevant brand evolves with its market.
When you have a moment, take a step back and have a really good look at your brand. Is it consistent in appearance and experience?
1 in 5 marketing emails are blocked by spam filters, and probably others are filed in the "to read later" box or deleted out of hand… so how do you get your message across when people, frankly, don't give a damn?
According to the ‘Australia and New Zealand Email Intelligence Report’, by email intelligence firm Return Path, reaching the inbox is tough enough for Australians, and its even tougher for Kiwis:
"Australian email marketers scored 74 out of 100 on Return Path’s rating system, performing well against key reputation measures of complaints, unknown users and spam traps. By comparison, New Zealand marketers scored 40."
So what to do about it? Three things…
- Maintain the integrity of your database by emailing people who have opted in; that is they have subscribed on your website. To begin with, your list may be small but the quality will be excellent and it will grow.
- Start by not sending people emails they don't want. Marketing firms send emails about marketing, accountancy firms send emails about accounting and… well, you know what I mean – what is relevant and important to you isn't necessarily so for your clients and subscribers. So mix it up a bit. By all means, be informative. Use your expertise to provide content that helps your clients and subscribers in some way shape or form, but give them some variety on the menu. You can do this by aggregating content from other sources - content that is informative, entertaining or educational but completely off your traditional beat. I saw a real estate agent's newsletter the other day with some real estate advice (namely how to prepare your house for sale), but she also had a recipe for pavlova and advice on what vegetables to plant in February. A wide variety of topics will have wider appeal.
- Click throughs are the real gold. Click through rate is the percentage of people who click one of the links on your email. By sending a variety of content and offers to your subscribers, you will be able to measure who is interested in what. When you understand what people click through on, you will be in a better position to segment them in to different database. I have a client who sells environmental testing equipment. Some of their customers clicked on air testing offers, and others on soil testing offers. By segmenting the database into those who are interested in air quality and those in soil quality - as well as other segments - we can dramatically increase click through rates by between 300 and 600 per cent.
What return on investment does branding offer, if anything?
Years of experience have left me in no doubt that a good brand is essential for business performance -- it’s the one thing that most organisations can change to make themselves more successful.
But the biggest obstacle is that most people don’t really understand what a brand is – there are too many misconceptions about branding, its value and the return on investment a good brand provides.
Here are three of the most common misconceptions.
Misconception number 1: “Branding is overrated”.
Many of the business owners or managers I speak to tell me that branding isn’t as important as delivering a good quality product or service at a fair price.
In a perfectly logical world this would make sense. But the research tells us that people make buying decisions based on gut reaction (in other words, buying decisions are based on emotions, not logic).
A good brand is the key to triggering a positive emotional reaction and feelings of attachment in your customers and prospects.
Providing a good product or service at the right price is a given – you need to do that just to be in the game. Winning the game comes down to the gut reaction your customers have towards you, which is where your brand comes into play
Misconception number 2: “We already have a logo”.
This may be so, but your logo is not your brand. Your logo alone will only have a very minor influence on the emotional reaction of your customers.
As an important element of your brand, your logo must naturally be professional, creative, engaging and unique – it must accurately reflect the personality and culture of your organisation.
Branding is influenced by multiple elements, including what you say and how you say it, your web presence, the colours you use, how your staff interact with people, the look of your premises – branding is the sum total of experiences that any one person has with your business, its products, its service and its people.
3. Misconception number 3: “We just don’t have the budget right now”.
Perhaps one of the reasons you don’t have the budget right now is because your branding (or lack of) is costing your business.
Branding is the foundation upon which your business and its success are built. A weak foundation is always going to leave you scrambling.
If you limit your branding, you are limiting your sales, your reputation, your aspirations and your turnover because they are all fuelled – positively or negatively – by your brand.
We all do business with people we know and like. If your brand doesn’t leave customers feeling like they know you or like you, well then…
Branding will have an effect on everyone who comes into contact with your brand.
This effect will often determine if that person will do business with you, refer your services, enhance your reputation, recommend you or simply do repeat business with you.
There is simply no bigger priority for your business.
The world is not going digital, it is digital… and if you’re in marketing or communications, this is good news because it presents an opportunity to engage your audience with some really powerful marketing innovations.
In the past, most marketing communication was one way via various types of print media like magazines and newsletters, billboards, television and radio (though it could be argued radio was a bit more interactive than most).
Effective digital marketing however combines technology and technical skills, creativity and strategic thinking to develop campaigns that engage your customers and potential customers in ways that are still being dreamed up.
First off though, it’s important to get the basics correct – like making sure your website works on a mobile device.
According to the 2011 US consumer Mobile Movement survey, 71 per cent of smartphone users that see a TV, press or online ad, do a mobile search for more information.
We know those are American statistics, but experience tells us New Zealand won’t be far behind.
Key to digital marketing is that it offers you multiple ways to add value and functionality to your customers that goes beyond pushing ads at them. Your customers will pay attention if what you’re saying or doing is relevant to their lives in some way, shape or form – and digital marketing delivers it in spades.
Now you can provide them with useful information and compelling stories when they come looking for it. You can offer cool app solutions that help them do things better, faster and more efficiently – like tell how good or bad their night’s sleep was, find the nearest bargains or scan a QR code of a product for more information.
The world is your oyster when it comes to digital marketing, but it is key to package your marketing with professional design, compelling photography and engaging stories if you want to ensure cut through, credibility, functionality and engagement.
Talk to the team here at Jag about how we can help you develop marketing that is relevant to your customers.