By Janette Speyer, Web Success Team –
The “times they are a-changin’” indeed! In the pre-digital era, amplifying your brand meant developing an advertising and PR campaign with all the bells and whistles –radio, TV and print. Brands could count on reaching large numbers of listeners and viewers in their quest to reach consumers for their products. Madison Avenue conducted focus groups, meticulously prepared their campaign strategies and pushed out content to their malleable viewing audience. Those simple “Mad Men” formulas for brand penetration and success are barely recognizable in today’s marketing landscape.
With the explosion of Social Marketing coupled with a healthy cynicism “target audiences” are more informed in their choices and exercise their spending power more selectively. The Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval has been replaced by savvy mom bloggers whose loyal readership relies on their blogger influencers for recommendations and brand awareness.
Marketers and brand managers need to amplify their brand in ways that appeal to the modern virtual shopper. Unfortunately many messages fall on “deaf eyes” by not taking full advantage of the emerging digital marketing space. It’s not just enough anymore to say, “We do social media.”
Brands are looking to take actual messages that are already circulated via traditional channels and amplifying them further via digital methods. It helps to understand that once we move the message online it now has the ability to become a conversation rather than an announcement.
Conversations can travel very far with great benefits for your brand. Here are a few techniques to get the conversation going:
Hashtag Marketing: Before you begin any online marketing campaign, you will need to create a branded hashtag to be used and propagated across the social media platforms giving your brand “legs” and exposure. Users will become accustomed to seeing and sharing the brand’s name via the hashtag.
Blogger Influencers: Reaching out to high influencer bloggers will get a brand tremendous exposure on a macro scale. You will build a high level of trust since a blogger readership relies on the strength of her/his credibility and endorsements. You also have the potential to go viral and reach the bloggers’ readerships and their personal community of friends and networks.
Social Media Brand Ambassadors: Working with a select group of social media influencers that have a significant following will further amplify your brand. The objective is usually to create significant buzz, conversations and exposure for a product or service. By contracting a number of Brand Ambassadors, you gain their loyalty and their significant social media reach.
Twitter Parties: Twitter is the tool of choice for quick sound-bytes so why not take advantage of this powerful platform! You can benefit from large-scale exposure during a blogger gathering on Twitter. Some recognized twitter parties could make the trending topics. Imagine the impact on sales if your products are featured.
Video Bloggers: Reaching out to bloggers that produce their own video and have their own audiences and will dramatically increase brand recognition through their social media channels and their viewership. Video is an excellent means to promote a brand online, especially if it’s presented in a DIY video that can excite an audience.
In the Final Analysis
The digital space is super-saturated and consumers are even more wary of being “sold to” or manipulated. Marketers are pushing and pulling in all directions in the hard-scramble business of brand exposure. The main takeaway from this article is to expand the conversation through engagement marketing. Seeding online relationships will enhance your brand and amplify your success.