How is the digital landscape changing consumers?

Your customers are no longer just at home, at work or on the high street… oh no they are now everywhere, engaging on every platform and if you want to be part of their world then they expect you to do the same. Digital media platforms are constantly changing and businesses are not only having to understand these changes but be an active part of this ever-evolving market.

Video killed the Radio star

Let’s take radio for example; listeners are no longer just in the home or in the car, they are far more actively engaged now. They are listening across phones, computers, tablets, TV’s, the list goes on and on. Official stats from Rajar Q4 2014 show that digital offerings are growing hugely with 22% of adults say they listen to radio via a mobile phone or tablet at least once a month. That’s up 38% year on year! So not only do they need be accessible on all of these devices, but visually also.

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The look, the feel and the way people interact is more important now than it has ever been. Think about how your brand appears to consumers? How they engage with your business on multiple sites. Rather than having many different logos, different colours and out dated visuals, it needs to be clean, clear and versatile brand unification across all platforms for consumers to see and be a part of. You worked hard on the look and feel of your brand… now make it work for you.

 

What did you say?

Nothing quite beats the power of ‘Word of Mouth’, 77% of consumers are more likely to buy a new product when learning about it from friends or family. It may seem quite obvious but 43% of consumers are more likely to buy a new product when learning about it on social media. (Nielsen)

There are so many individual sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Trip Advisor, BZZ Agent but beyond that websites are now getting reviews for their own products… why? User reviews are proven sales drivers, and something the majority of customers will want to see before deciding to make a purchase, infact reviews produce an average 18% uplift in sales.

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61% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase decision, and they are now essential for e-commerce sites. This also works in the other direction… if they don’t like it… they will share.

Which leads me nicely into my next point…

 

Where were you when I needed you?

With the likes of Twitter, Facebook and other Social media channels engagement with the consumer never stops. When consumers communicate with companies they expect a two-way dialogue and personalised ads relevant to their needs, no matter what the time… we are living in a 24/7 market. With the rising expectations consumers are constantly demand more and actively voice dissatisfaction when they don’t get what they want.

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A study by Mediacom shows that 65% of consumers who use social media to “talk” to companies, and go there with problems and questions.

Like it or not if you want to be on social media you need to be available at all hours. Make sure your team has a clear protocol in place for a query and that when they speak to an individual they know the answers or that there is someone on call who can answer questions whether it is technical or admin etc, it is a simple yet effective approach to keep customers happy.

Giles Rhys Jones sums it up impeccably – “People talk to each other, they always have… however they are no longer talking to a group of 4 or 5 in the pub. They are now talking to thousands”. So what are your consumers saying? Do you know?

 

I know what you bought last week

We lead busy lives, always on the move, we don’t have much time for ourselves let alone seeing brands and adverts that mean nothing to us or are not of interest. The modern consumer has very narrow interests, which is why it is more important now than ever to know your consumer and build a profile on them. Get to know your customer, find out what they want and give it to them, and if you don’t know ask them. It is scary the sheer amount of information marketers have at their fingertips to build a profile of your consumer.

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Look at Tesco with the club card; they know what is in their house, the family and what is going to tick their box. Don’t waste the consumer’s time, they don’t have much of it.

 

We want it and we want it now…

A report done by Nielsen told of the confidence consumers have found in the market place. Consumers have found this from the power given by technology, it has given them even more confidence when it comes to their choice, reducing the power of traditional media in some markets, this creates a much more complex landscape for messages to navigate.

Lets take this put this into context of the customer. One of the biggest concerns for UK consumers is rising utility bills, so how do companies stand out and show their solution for this problem… that is a trick question.

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Price comparison sites are still a relatively new concept but they have quickly become an essential part of the buying process for many people looking to renew their insurance, mortgage, holidays, and bills. Over 19 million Britons have logged on to sites like moneysupermarket.com, confused.com and gocompare.com.

This new consumer isn’t some new kind of customer morphed into a mysterious being, they are still just the normal shopper but they consuming content quickly and sharing it even quicker. The consumers are becoming involved in the services and products you put out… so listen to them… give them a good price and an even better service. Consumers are no longer staying with the company that gave them great service they are now looking for the cheapest deal, and looking at that fine print for best value.

Your customers are out there and digital media gives you access to so many more in a much more powerful way. So use the data to your advantage, market socially and respond quickly. The consumer is changing, go with them…. and all those they influence daily.

 

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