2018 has been a right old year for consumers, poor poppets. Between Trumps Twitter & the dreaded four-letter acronym that starts with G and ends with DPR, consumers have had to face some serious trust-related-truths. As our hearts start to heal and we learn to love (brands) again, we see a ripe opportunity for companies to create a better quality relationship with their customers than ever before, one that is more balanced & based on mutual respect.
Here are some key insights from the Stylus Social Media Week London 2018 report:
*All signs lead to brands needing to create meaningful content.*
Copying popular memes will no longer be a successful strategy. By the time most brands reuse a meme, it has been shared privately through direct messaging for up to 50 days. Brands must stop trying to create 'viral content' and start aiming to capture the attention of the communities that make them viral.
Gen Z are after meaningful content, they value their time online and think carefully about their captions & creativity. They want their time online to mean something, to create a good world, to take action:
60% of Gen Z say they would support a brand that has a specific interest in causes like human rights, the environment and policy.
Nadine Heggie, vice-president of global partnerships at National Geographic Partners Europe & Africa, said the campaign netted a 90% increase in organic search, and a 20% increase in earned social impressions. "When we lean into our purpose, we find we can achieve profound impact," she concluded.
Consumers do not want to be spied on: The time has come for marketers to stop creeping into people's lives in the background and start doing the work of building actual relationships, which will generate data that's freely and actively given instead of furtively gathered.
83% of global consumers are still willing to share their data to enable personalised brand experiences (Accenture, 2018)
Air New Zealand promoted its destinations in the USA with the "What makes you say yay to USA" campaign, during which the airline collected 100,000 individual data sets on travel interests and preferences in exchange for a chance to win flights to the US. The company also generated $5m in sales when it sent 5% discount vouchers to all the losers.
Due to friendly faces & endearing identities, AI will an invaluable tool for brands to use to collect data & find out more about their customers needs. Customers will spend a lot more time chatting to Alexa than they will spend scrolling through a website.
Consider AI: through chatbots or an Alexa.
Reward data: Offer discounts, opportunities, or emotional drivers in exchange for peoples data, but be transparent about it.
Lean in to your actual purpose: Create meaningful content that consumers will care about to encourage content sharing, ambassador-like behaviour, loyalty & word of mouth marketing.