Great products don’t sell themselves. People do. Marketing will always be a necessity for getting the word out about your business, products, and services. From the days of the town crier to now, it has always been about finding the best way to communicate your message to a largely apathetic clientele.
How that task is accomplished differs from age to age. When the only medium of communication was voice and print, products were marketed via voice and print. But in the digital age, we have many more communications options. The multiplicity of those options present us with both opportunities and challenges. Here are a few examples of both.
Augmented reality is the presence of things that aren’t really there superimposed and interacting with things that are. [pullquote]Virtual reality is an entirely fabricated world in which you enter and interact.[/pullquote] If animation is a critical part of your marketing strategy, it could be a challenge to find a good VR animation tool that will allow for the full expression of your product vision in a virtual space.
The opportunity is that VR spaces are practically virgin territories. With a little foresight and initiative, you can be the first to put out a compelling marketing message in a burgeoning platform full of people who are eager to engage. The thing you want to avoid is dystopic advertising clutter that chases the users from point to point and becomes a marketing mayhem. Watch Blade Runner. Then make it your mission to not become that.
The world of digital marketing offers up new possibilities for automation. It is not just about avoiding repetitive tasks. Automation means that there will be fewer missed marketing opportunities due to human inattention or forgetfulness.
Not only can marketing optimization software increase your leads, it can increase your bottom of the funnel conversions. Automating email thank you messages after a sale is a good example of what marketing software can do.
There are also opportunities for software to keep track of customer activity on your website. If a customer searches for an item without purchasing, a notification can be sent out when there is a sale on that item.
The challenge is that automation makes it too easy to cross over from good marketing to spam. No one wants to feel like they are being stalked. Automation can be the best thing that happens to your digital marketing, or the worst thing.
Marketing In More Places
One of the greatest advantages of the digital marketplace is that it is much, much bigger, and presents many more opportunities. [pullquote]TV advertising only works when people are sitting down watching TV.[/pullquote] But people are on the computer surfing their favorite sites and interacting with their favorite social media all day.
It goes beyond the web to apps. Android dominates the smartphone landscape. And Android users love free apps that are powered by ads. 73% of Android apps are free. And 80% rely on ads according to research from 2012. That means even paid apps provide advertising opportunities.
Amazon is opening other marketing opportunities via hardware. Some smartphone makers are devoting a portion of the device’s screen time to Amazon special offers in exchange for subsidies. This is a strategy they have been using for their own branded hardware for some time.
The challenge is communication and restraint. These are two things marketers have not proven to be particularly good at. People have to be clearly informed up front that they are trading a lower price for unskippable ads. Once that deal is made, restraint must be practiced. Overdoing the ads will make the device feel like it belongs to the marketer as opposed to the consumer.
The digital marketplace offers both opportunity and challenge in equal parts. AR/VR marketing is literally a whole new world. Marketing automation is a competitive advantage. And the bigger landscape provides marketing opportunities beyond primetime TV viewing hours. Clear communication and disciplined restraint are the keys to making the digital marketplace work for you.
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