Saturday, April 4News That Matters

The Top Ten Tips for Brands to Distinguish Themselves on Digital in 2020 – Forbes


A new decade is approaching and it’s certain to bring new platforms, products and regulations. In this rapidly evolving landscape, here are the top ten tips for brands to distinguish themselves on digital in 2020:

1.    Run an Influencer Marketing Campaign

Yes, plenty of cheap Instagram influencer ads are cringe-worthy but your brand’s doesn’t have to be. Find the influencers who are right for your audience and balance their authenticity with your goals from the on-set with a contract that’s reasonable for both parties. The negotiations and on-boarding may be a headache at first – but the influencer industry is rife with opportunities for your brand. 

After all, Influencer marketing is the fastest-growing online customer-acquisition channel. The rationale here is that people follow and trust people more than they do brands or corporates. This is particularly important for B2C companies; in fact, 49% of users say they rely on influencers for product recommendations.

2.    Test Augmented Reality

Both virtual reality and augmented reality have been hot topics for advertisers in recent years but 2020 could really be the year that augmented reality breaks through in reaching users.

The augmented reality industry is projected to reach a worldwide market size of nearly $200 billion by 2025.

And it’s easy to understand why advertisers play a key role in this market; augmented reality ads are immersive, engaging and affordable. They also create a deeper emotional experience for the user and in doing so, can improve brand recall.

3.    Try New Platforms, Even If They Aren’t New

There are plenty of digital advertising opportunities outside of the so-called Google-Facebook duopoly; make 2020 the year you test them.

One platform to consider is Reddit. Founded in 2005, the social network is far from nascent but it is on the rise. As of December 2019, Reddit boasts over 430 million monthly active users, up 30% year over year. That’s more active users than Twitter or LinkedIn. Reddit is also expanding and improving their advertising structure, making it an even more compelling platform to add to your digital advertising arsenal.

If your brand is global, remember to look outside of the western platforms. Sponsor video content on Youku or run a WeChat Moment ad. If you’re targeting Gen-Z, lean into TikTok.

Bottom line: step outside your comfort zone. Even if a test campaign falls short of expectations, learn why: was it the content, the audience or the platform? Your digital advertising will be better because of this test-and-learn approach.

4.    Optimize in Real-Time

Don’t set and forget your advertising campaigns. Monitor them daily and refine them based on top-performing creative, copy and audiences. If you rely on an agency for paid activations, set regular check-ins to ensure no underperforming content stays in market too long.

This real-time approach can also work well for hyper-local advertising, enabling brands to, for example, run an ad during happy hour in New York from 4-7pm ET only and run an ad during breakfast in San Francisco from 7-10am PT only. Leverage these real-time offerings and highly targeted capabilities to make your brand more timely, relevant and accessible.

5.    Leverage Ephemeral Content

If you aren’t already, use Instagram Stories. Instagram Stories now has over 500 million daily active users. Instagram Stories are full screen, vertical and immersive for users. 

If you support your brand’s Instagram Stories with ad dollars, you can target users by reach, video views, traffic, conversions, app installs, brand awareness and more. Plus, Instagram is constantly introducing and evolving Stories’ advertising opportunities.

Thanks to Instagram’s parent platform, Facebook, you can also run automatic placement ads on both Instagram and Facebook. Plus, advertising within the Facebook ecosystem means access to vast audience metrics to measure campaign performance and optimize future content promotions accordingly.

6.    Go Live

Brands don’t need to live broadcast every moment, event or campaign but identifying the right opportunities to go live can help create transparency, authenticity and accessibility.

Live exists on nearly every social platform at this point (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram LinkedIn, YouTube) – choose the one that’s the best fit for your audience and measure the impact. If the time and resource investment outweighs the outcome, try a different platform and a more timely event. If it still doesn’t work, lean into traditional video. Speaking of…

7.    Invest In Video

The case for digital video isn’t new – but it is compelling. YouTube is the second most popular website lagging only behind parent company Google. More users would rather watch online videos than television. By 2022, online videos will make up more than 82% of all consumer internet traffic — 15 times higher than it was in 2017. Users watch more than a billion minutes of video on YouTube every day. And it’s not just YouTube – across social, video is omnipotent; video posts are shared on social 1200% more than text and photo posts – combined.

Just remember: the human attention span is shorter than a goldfish so keep your audience engaged by producing video that is brief and animated. Video should also be customized by platform and placement; for example, use vertical video on Instagram Stories and square video on Instagram in-feed. Keep in mind the nuances of a mobile, on-the-go audience by designing for an audio-off experience. Test different lengths, opening images and production formats and optimize as you go. Of course, keep your brand logo present throughout the video to help improve brand recall.   

8.    Stay Authentic

As digital and social become increasingly saturated with corporate advertisers, it’s more important than ever to stay authentic. Build a voice for your brand and continue to humanize it by highlighting people. Speaking of your people…

9.    Activate Your Leaders

Companies and brands that activate their employees perform better. Content shared by employees has 2X the engagement of content shared by a company or brand. Additionally, salespeople who regularly share content are 45% more likely to exceed quota. This impact also holds true on companies’ talent pipelines; social enterprises are 58% more likely to attract top talent.

10. Stay Informed on Privacy and Regulatory Updates

This is probably the area that will keep most marketers and compliance officers awake at night in 2020. Follow company updates, read the news, press your platform reps for answers and share the burden. Marketers, lawyers, compliance officers — and anyone who touches digital advertising should see it as their responsibility to stay educated on digital regulatory updates.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



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