Brands that survived the disruption inflicted on the high street by online shopping are still struggling with the transition, because they find themselves in a world where the rules of advertising have not only been rewritten but are constantly changing.
Here are five challenges that Marketeers departments face in a fast-evolving digital world:
1. TV and print content requires adaptation for digital
A lot of big brands still like their creative agencies to start with TV and print campaigns, images and content they look to repurpose for digital channels. But the problem with offline ads is that they are designed to catch attention, whereas digital is about moving viewers from A to B, encouraging deeper levels of engagement.
When TV ads feature a hashtag to try and sell the same message across digital it’s hit-and-miss compared to a digital first strategy that takes viewers on a journey to content, building profiles along the way by gathering little pieces of information – demographics or even an email address. Leads go from cold to warm and can be explored further.
2. Know the difference between offline and online buying habits
When big brands push Consumer Packaged Goods (CPGs) through traditional media, the hope is that viewers might pick up products the next time they’re in a supermarket or petrol station. Hero content is used to increase awareness for a ‘right time, right place’ purchase, rather than drive bulk sales. When marketeers think about digital channels, they need to switch it around to get inside the head of prospective customers.
Online is all about convenience: enabling people to shop during busy 9-5 lives; letting them choose a delivery time that works best for them; making life easier by selling CPGs in multipacks. So not only does the product variant change between in-store and online, the creative equally requires adaptation, thus a different type of value proposition can be honed by collecting and understanding data from different touchpoints on your customer’s digital journey.
3. Unique reach is less relevant than engagement
Having lots of people see a campaign is less effective than a smaller number acting on one. In other words, a digital campaign that takes people to content is more powerful than a billboard you pass on the street. Brands need to shift away from the vagaries of reach and share of voice to performance metrics. They need to use ad exchanges to target prospective customers in a range of ways – geographic, demographic, behavioural – to create maximum engagement in campaigns that are more measurable.
The goal online is to turn impressions into click-through rates (CTR). Equally, new measurements facilitated by these exchanges allow for richer performance measurement of your content, such as Dwell (time spent on a page) or Scroll (the way the content is consumed), and a clearer picture emerges around viewer engagement. You start to understand what content works best for your campaign goals.
4. Inability to analyse success
The problem with billboards, print ads and TV commercials is a lack of ‘true’ measurement, KPIs to identify success and inform future strategies. That all changes online where you can start to do A/B testing around four or five different pieces of content to see what generates the best conversion rates. You can also decide how many times you can afford to target a prospect without tipping into digital bombardment. It may be time to try different content and messaging to nudge people over the line.
ChannelSight operates in this space, with eCommerce enablement tools that help brands measure the efficacy of their campaigns and their impact on sales. Our data enhances profiling capabilities, helping squeeze every last drop of value out of a marketing spend in a way that was unimaginable when ad campaigns were solely reliant on traditional media.
5. Fear of eCommerce competition
One of the hardest things to grasp in the transition from offline to online is the way competitors can step in at the last minute and win a customer over. A pop-up ad on an online marketplace can promote a rival product at a cheaper price, even as your item sits in the shopping basket. Brands are understandably concerned over the loss of control and the fear that they have only succeeded in creating a lead for competitors.
We encourage them to look at the alternative. If you never compete in the leading online marketplaces, you risk creating dead-ends for your users, sending them to non-transactional end-points that increase user-research and competitor conflict. Going through retailers is a quick way to understand the purchasing habits of customers. If user journeys regularly end with them buying a competing product, it may be time to make a change to price, features or functionality. So don’t be afraid to fail, it could be a vital lesson that your business needs to learn.
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ChannelSight has a team of experts that can help you understand your customers needs better and implement solutions that can help your eCommerce strategy. Contact us today to book a demo with our team of experts.
Head of Brand Performance