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51% of marketers believe that influencer marketing helps with quality customer acquisition but how else could it benefit your digital marketing strategy?

Influencers are trusted to give honest reviews, recommendations and tips to their followers, which means they can make a difference to which product or brands consumers ultimately buy from. The ultimate form of social proof, influencers have a degree of credibility in their niches, which makes them a go-to source for information.

Beyond this, influencers do something that many brands still struggle to do – they build relationships with their customers. A large part of their appeal is the fact that they talk to their followers, answer questions, create content that is requested and build communities around their channels.

All of this shows that brands could make an impact on their bottom line by utilizing the power of online influencers. If you still need a bit of convincing, here are a few more reasons influencer marketing could be the right addition to your digital marketing strategy:

Influencer marketing can mean better customers

More than increasing ROI and sales, high-quality customers are more likely to talk about your brand, recommend your products and create social proof of their own that helps boost your digital presence and bring more people to your site or social profiles.

Influencers delivers solid ROI

We all know that every part of your marketing strategy needs to be designed to deliver return on investment. After all, wat’s the point in activity that doesn’t bring something to the company and help you achieve your goals?

Luckily, influencer marketing delivers really strong returns. On average, for every $1 that a business spends on influencer marketing, they are making $6.50, meaning that the returns really do make it worth it.

In fact, influencer content can deliver an ROI that is 11X higher than traditional digital marketing tactics.

Influencers aren’t just on Instagram

Instagram seems to have become synonymous with influencer marketing, but it isn’t the only social media platform where influencers work. Twitter can also deliver great returns when brands work with influencers, meaning there are a lot of options for marketers.

In total, 68% of marketers believe that Twitter us a key channel for influencer marketing, which is likely helped by the fact that 40% of users of this platform have made a purchase as a direct result of an influencer tweet. On top of this, purchase intent increases by 5.2 times with Twitter users see influencer content on the platform.

A mix of content types

A big plus of content marketing is that influencers often create various different content types. From blogs and social media to podcasts and videos, you can easily find an influencer in your niche who creates the type of content that is going to best suited to your target audience.

However, video is a particularly influential form of content – especially when combined with the power of influencers. Video is highly engaging, delivers information in a easy-to-digest way and can be used across different channels. When you consider that 18% of consumers are influenced by YouTube videos from influencers, there is a lot to gain from mixing up your influencer content.

Utilizing influencer marketing

There are many ways that you can incorporate influencer marketing in your digital marketing strategy, but there is also a lot to take into account. To help you assess whether you should use this tactic and the various ways you can utilize influencers, take a look at the influencer marketing statistics included in this helpful infographic from Milk Whale:

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6 Essential Marketing Trends For 2023

Examples of digital marketing tools and techniques to give you an edge in the year ahead

Well, we’ve nearly made it! For years I’ve been looking to the future, predicting how innovations in digital media, platforms and technology will shape marketing in 2023. The cutting edge examples certainly show the exciting opportunities available – there is almost too much choice…

In this article, I’ll explore six key marketing trends based on examples and research on the adoption of the latest marketing techniques and technology marketers can use.

For recommendations on tapping into the innovations in different digital marketing channels, including email, social media and search engine marketing, see all the other posts from the Smart Insights team covering channel-specific digital marketing trends for 2023.

Trend 1. Lifecycle marketing

This focus is shown by the latest Altimeter / Prophet State of Digital Marketing report, which shows a primary focus on increasing awareness.

The role of digital in creating a unified customer experience is also high in the response, but it’s shocking that digital marketing isn’t seen as a driver of boosting revenue from existing customers. It’s an artefact of the question since digital marketing is effective in achieving all of these goals, including customer retention.

A more practical way to plan to integrate online marketing into marketing activities is to consider communications from a customer point-of-view through the customer journey. I call this always-on lifecycle marketing and recommend you review your use of online AND offline media across the customer lifecycle.

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An example of an audit is shown by this example of the use of marketing activities by a B2B company, which although strong at the top-of-funnel in terms of activities used, is less strong in the middle and bottom-of-funnel nurture and re-targeting activities. Many businesses are adopting marketing automation and account-based marketing technology to implement these touchpoints. See the article linked to above for all of the potential activities that can be audited.

Trend 2. Conversational marketing

For me, this is the most exciting trend in marketing today, bringing together rapid consumer adoption of smart speakers and innovation in search query processing, conversational interfaces and messaging.

Conversational marketing was highlighted as a key innovation in the latest Gartner hype cycle alongside Artificial Intelligence, which often fuels it.  You can see that of the technologies on the Innovation Trigger slope, many aren’t expected to become mainstream for 5 to 10 years. Of those forecast to hit the mainstream within the next 2 to 5 years, the three most significant for marketers to consider are personification, real-time and conversational marketing.

Gartner explains:

“Conversational marketing technologies enable interactions between companies and customers that mimic human dialogue and do so at scale. This category is near the Peak of Inflated Expectations phase”.

Personally, I think the hype about smart speakers to support the purchase journey is just that. While some products lend themselves to purchase, where a choice is to be made amongst complex products, they just won’t cut it until we have truly intelligent comparison bots. However, the research suggests I may be wrong. A study of 2,000 British adults commissioned by Artefact UK, an AI and data-driven agency, reveals that:

“Six out of ten smart speaker owners (60%) have used them to make a purchase in the past year. In fact, nearly a quarter (22%) said they have done so within the past week”.

I believe that building in more relevant to web, email and mobile-based conversations can have a bigger impact by boosting relevance and speaking in a more personal tone. Persado is an interesting tech here.

Persado uses a copy impact classification applied to existing copy, which is used to tailor copy and calls-to-action on an individual basis.

For example, using Persado Natural Language Generation to run an experiment, Air Canada sparked a higher response using Anxiety language getting a 3% engagement lift, compared to a 5% drop using Exclusivity language, and a 3% drop using Safety language.

Another example of  AI application is nutrition and wellness retailer Holland & Barrett using AI to provide better-targeted emails. This Machine Learning approach from Tinyclues goes beyond optimizing copy using a tool like Persado, instead, it also involves targeting based on the behaviour of individuals to create more micro-targeted campaigns.

Speaking at a session I chaired at the Email Innovation Summit, Richard Lallo, Head of Digital Marketing, described what he calls ‘strategic promotions and mono-product pushes’ in a campaign. The business was able to drive campaign revenue and increase re-purchase rate while sending emails. Campaign revenue increased by 27%, open rates increased by 19%, while email send volume decreased by 23%, which also gives cost savings.

Trend 3. Insights-driven marketing

At Smart Insights we’re huge fans of using analytics and insight to drive business performance and optimize the results from digital marketing. It’s why we’re called what we are.

Improving their data-driven marketing is an aim of many businesses indicated by the most desired skill amongst digital marketers revealed by the Altimeter/Prophet State of Digital Marketing report.

Businesses using this approach are trying to gain the benefits reported by Mckinsey research that suggested that:

Intensive users of customer analytics are 23 times more likely to clearly outperform their competitors in terms of new customer acquisition than non-intensive users, and nine times more likely to surpass them in customer loyalty.

For example, Red Bull used insight platform Vision Critical to launch a community of consumers passionate about the energy drink category. By providing a deeper understanding of consumer preferences, the community challenges widely-held assumptions. The company, for instance, learned who consumes Red Bull drinks — and how and when they buy — were changing. Data from the community provides insight on the competitive landscape, revealing channels the company can enhance to improve growth. The community also helps Red Bull deliver more value to retailers.

Trend 4. Marketing technology

Today, Marketing Technology (Martech for short) presents a bewildering choice of software services for businesses looking to improve their management of digital media, experiences and supporting data. If your business and your agencies adopt the right blend of Martech, it can help give you an edge against competitors, but if not, you may be missing out on the insights and automation processes they are using.

To highlight the range of great services available and to simplify the options a little, we designed this essential digital marketing tools infographic to recommend the categories of tools you should consider across the Smart Insights RACE Planning system and highlight the most popular, most capable tools.

We will create the annual update for this in early 2023, discussing it recently on LinkedIn has highlighted some of the latest trends that aren’t evident from this version of the wheel. Raviv Turner, Co-Founder, of B2B service @CaliberMind said:

“No MarTech stack is complete these days without the third leg of CRM, MAP & CDP. The only way to map, store, analyze and act on the complete end-to-end customer journey is having all the data in one place using a Customer Data Platform (CDPs).”

I’m not sure ‘the only-way’ is accurate, but that is the sentiment.

Kristen Obaid, Always On digital marketing campaigns manager for an international Education company, added:

“The Salesforce and Adobe MAPs are underrepresented here (eg Pardot can be used for email, social, CRM, CMS, audience management, analytics. Krux is now SF. They can both be used as DMPs if the data is configured properly.) BI with simple data integrations (like Domo, Tableau) are also missing, plus Intercom for service CMS eg FAQs, and Drift for automated service chat”.

Trend 5. Consumer Privacy and KYC

Repeated privacy faux-pas by Facebook, Google and security breaches at other brands leading to the release of customer details have highlighted to consumers that their data isn’t as safe with online brands as they may have once thought. Privacy regulations like GDPR have been enacted to improve data privacy with increased fines.

Record fines have arisen in 2023 from the maximum penalty for contraventions increasing under GDPR to up to €20m (£17.5m) or four percent of global turnover – whichever is the greater.

British Airways, was issued with a proposed fine of £183m for a breach of customer data and a £99 million fine on hotel chain Marriott for failing to protect personal data contained in approximately 339 million guest records.

While these may be more the concerns of the CIO or CFO rather than the CMO, it shows the need for marketers to work with colleagues to mitigate the potential impact of security breaches and reassure customers.

At the same time, we have seen a decreasing effectiveness of traditional identification methods such as cookies for tracking, which makes media ROI determination – supposedly one of the key benefits of digital channels – more difficult.

Emerging technologies can potentially help with both of these challenges.

New Identify Management or Know Your Customer solutions are being developed that can both improve security, reduce fraud and improve insight about customers across multiple devices.

For example, UK startup Hooyu blends traditional methods of customer verification such as database checks (where available) with ID document validation, digital footprint analysis, geo-location and facial biometrics. While this is most relevant for banks and other gambling applications, it indicates the range of data points that are now available.

With these consumer concerns and new legislation such as the EU ePrivacy legislation about to be launched and the inaccuracy of tracking online with increasing restrictions built into browser like Chrome and Safari it seems like the days of the cookie (and particularly third-party cookies) and digital fingerprinting may be numbered. This means that businesses should be considering other alternatives if they aren’t already.

Discussing Unified ID – Why Identity becomes a key success factor in the post-cookie era era – Alwin Viereck, Head of Programmatic Advertising and Ad Management, United Internet Media estimates that

“More than 20% of all cookies in a desktop environment do not live longer than a day and a further 15–20% do not survive a month. For vendors in a third party context (which are typically all participants of the programmatic ecosystem), the problem might even be worse.

Multiplatform consent solutions like Sourcepoint and Identity and Access Management integration solutions like Auth0 and OneIdentity will be adopted more widely. Within AdTech new solutions will have to be found in response to Google and Apples Ad-targeting limitations.

Trend 6. Digital transformation and Marketing Transformation

Our managing digital marketing research revealed many challenges in terms of how digital marketing is run in companies today. Problems included a lack of focus on integrated strategy, testing, and optimization and structural issues like teams working in silos or a lack of skills in integrated communications.

To counter these types of problems and to make the most of the opportunities for growing a business through digital marketing, many businesses are now putting a digital transformation programme in place.

The aim of digital transformation is to develop a roadmap to improve digital capabilities and skills, while at the same time, integrating ‘always-on’ digital marketing activities with brand and product marketing in the business.

This chart from the research shows that many businesses are active in transformation to try to achieve this aim through the success factors covered in this briefing.

Despite some talk that we might be in a post-digital world by 2023 and some traditional marketers suggesting that “it’s time to shut down digital marketing for good” the reality is that many specialist digital job roles and are needed to run digital marketing activities as my post ’10 reasons you still need a digital team’ shows.

A common practice that we can expect to continue in the future is a move to a hybrid approach to managing digital marketing with digital marketing skills being developed in marketing teams as suggested by this structure.

Through the year, we’ve been adding to our tools to help all members assess how well their businesses are adapting to using digital media and technology as part of Digital Transformation. To review your digital readiness, either for integrated digital marketing or individual channels, download our benchmarks or take our interactive capability graders.

All the best for grasping the opportunities from digital marketing in 2023 and beyond! To help you on your way take a look at our benchmarking templates, each of which will give you a quick review for digital marketing governance and the key channels like search, social, email marketing plus analytics, content marketing and experience.

Download our Individual Member Resource – RACE digital marketing dashboard

Google Analytics is a great, free service, but it contains many, many metrics and many, many reports. Although custom dashboards can be built in Google Analytics, it’s not readily possible to create a dashboard that summarises the effectiveness of digital marketing across the marketing funnel for a business, particularly for the all-important ‘deltas’ of month-on-month and year-on-year performance.

Access the RACE digital marketing dashboard

Make Influencer Marketing As Cost

The right influencer can help you get a lot of exposure for your business, so what do you need to consider when working with influencers?

You’ve got your small business chugging along nicely, but you want more. You’ve decided that it’s time to take things up a notch or two. You’ve got good traction on social media, and are getting decent traffic to your site.

Clearly, your marketing efforts are paying off.  How do you scale them up and extend your reach even further? Have you considered pairing up with an influencer? The right influencer can help you get a lot of exposure for your business.

In this post, we’ll look at how you can make the process as cost-effective as possible.

What do influencers do?

Influencers have a reasonably extensive fanbase and regularly communicate with their followers. This can be done through blog posts, social media posts, and videos, to name a few. Their fans trust them and are more inclined to take the influencers’ recommendations to heart.

Influencers typically give your company a shout out over social media, post links to your website, like and share your social media posts. Research demonstrates that small business owners seem to be aware of social media’s marketing potential, with 48% planning to use these platforms for marketing in 2023.

What are the benefits for a small business?

If you’ve chosen the right influencer, you can expect:

Better brand recognition

Product promotion

To grow your follower base

An ROI of between $5.20 and $18.00 per dollar spent

How much do influencers charge?

That depends on the individual influencer and how many followers they have. Generally speaking, the more followers, the more you can expect to pay. Check out the chart below to get an idea of what the rates looked like in 2023.

The costs will also depend on the type of work they’re going to do. Most people in this industry value a longer-term contract. This means that they might be willing to give you a better deal if you provide them with more business down the line.

How to save money on an influencer campaign Choose someone with a smaller following

Start with an influencer who has between one thousand and ten thousand supporters. As the number of followers increases, the level of engagement decreases.

Get to know more about them

This is an essential step. The more you know about an influencer, the better. What are they passionate about? What do they consider interesting? Say, for example, that they love dogs and are passionate about rescuing animals.

That’s something you could use. Why not host a fundraiser for an animal rescue organization and invite them to attend? They might come, and, even if they don’t, they’re bound to let others know about the event.

Another reason cyber-stalk your chosen influencer is to get more insight into what they say and what they post about. You can then learn to create posts that center around topics that interest them. Include a quote from a piece that they’ve written, and let them know about it.

They might decide to share your post if it’s well-written and of value to their followers. After all, the influencer’s business is to keep their followers happy. They’re likely to be posting frequently, which means that they need a lot of content. Provide this content, and your site will get a boost.

Give them freebies to review and offer discounts for their followers

Freebies are a tried and tested method to get some low-cost publicity. The downside is that you don’t know when, and if, they’ll review your product.

Perhaps you could offer free shipping off the first purchase or a discount on all purchases for the influencer’s followers. Make it something that the fans would appreciate, and you’ve got a good chance of getting some great publicity.

Final notes

Influencer marketing does not always have to be expensive. If you choose the right partner and make them the right offer, you might even get away with giving away a few products or throwing a fundraiser.

Find out more about influencer marketing today by taking a look at the 84 stats included in this great infographic from Smallbizgenius:

How This Skincare Brand Used Influencer Marketing To Explode Sales

Skincare and beauty products should make your life better.

You’d think that would be obvious. But unfortunately, it isn’t.

Most mainstream skincare products are full of harmful chemicals. They might provide a short-term lift. But more often than not, they do so at a long-term expense.

Bethany McDaniel set out to change that. She started experimenting in her home, creating products like lip balm from all natural ingredients.

This once-side passion has flourished since then, selling almost 4,000 products in a single month less than three years after debuting.

Here’s how Primally Pure has exploded by combining content, SEO, and social media.

Why Your Product Is the Best Form of Marketing

Primally Pure officially started in February 2024.

McDaniel literally did it all at the start. Designing, creating, bottling, selling, and shipping dozens of products.

Fast forward 18 months to November of 2024 and they had 970 sales. The humble home-based startup was outgrowing its roots. Fast-forward another year to November 2023, and that number rose to 3,733 orders.

How on Earth is that possible?

First and foremost, the product is the marketing. All the distribution hacks in the world can’t make up for a poor product, brand, or service.

Once the foundation was in place, the growth was sudden but natural.

“We just worked with influencers. That’s all we’ve done up until pretty recently,” McDaniel said.

Marketing is simple but difficult. It’s simple in that there are no great mysteries. Everything works to a certain degree. But consistently executing at a high level is extremely difficult.

Here is the seemingly simple, yet difficult formula McDaniel stuck to:

Find like-minded influencers and their offshoots (think: cookbook authors, health-focused food blogs, etc.)

Continue producing awesome products.

Offer to give them some.

Be a nice person.

Profit.

McDaniel would work with each influencer to create contests, exclusive discounts for their readers, or even affiliate deals to share in a cut of the revenue.

And then she kept at it.

Google “Primally Pure.” Underneath the main site and Neiman Marcus (more on that later), you’ll see something that looks like this:

Dozens of positive reviews from high authority sites in niches that her customers frequent.

What do you call this? “Influencer marketing”? “Social media”? “SEO”?

How about just “lucrative.”

How to Work with Influencers to Grow Your Brand

We’re ‘banner blind’: X’ing out or completely ignoring anything that remotely resembles an ad.

75% get the 411 from family, friends, and acquaintances. And as many as 92% trust individuals over brands (even if they don’t know these people personally)

In other words: Influencers.

We look for hyper-consuming, trend-setting niche celebrities to pave the way.

Ideally, you know the space. You know exactly who influences your customers and where to find them. If not, though, you have marketplaces.

The Tribe Group, BrandSnob, and Whalar are a few that specialize in connecting Instagram influencers with brands.

They’ve formalized the relationship, allowing you to enter campaign data, search influencers, or get matched by internal experts with the best fit.

You can browse key metrics, view sample content, get more insight into the influencer’s background, and even see potential costs for each relationship.

These marketplaces provide an easy way to dip your toe into the waters.

Facebook has also opened up an official “Branded Content” ad type to formalize influencer relationships.

For example, many brands get burned on influencer marketing when the scope, terms, and ROI is ill-defined. Facebook’s Branded Content allows influencers to essentially ‘tag’ the brand.

So they can get real-time data on the reach, engagement, and ROI of each sponsored post.

But these options are just scratching the surface. You can (and should) escalate the relationship when possible. Because while influencers and content creators often have large audiences, they don’t always have a way to monetize that reach.

Primally Pure took the next logical step, creating an affiliate program so their partners receive a cut of the revenue when their audience buys. And the affiliate program quickly made up 25% of Primally Pure’s sales.

Adding PR, Events & Retail to Brand Partnerships

But they still haven’t gone away from the well.

Each month, Primally Pure will partner with a complementary brand to do an Instagram giveaway.

They’ll create a simple email sweepstake with Rafflecopter to increase awareness, generate followers, build their email list, and drive sales.

Then, they’ll rinse and repeat.

They partnered with a natural, clean wine company. They’ve partnered with a local jewelry marker. They’ve partnered with Vital Proteins (“Really good for us.”). And even a Kombucha company.

And they’re working with Neiman Marcus.

They don’t drive a lot of sales, she admits, the opportunity for a strategic partnership like that is too good to pass up because it “gives them a lot of credibility.”

How to Use a Content Strategy to Increase Perceived Product Value

Most small, new-ish companies make the same marketing mistakes over and over.

They get an intern to manage social media. They post on a whim, whatever feels good that day works.

There’s never a rhyme or reason. And then they can’t figure it out when results don’t materialize.

Primally Pure isn’t like that.

Content mapping is a technique that describes what to publish, where, when, and why. It lines up your content strategy with the customer journey.

In the beginning, people aren’t even aware of a need for your product or service just yet. That’s what all your Realtor friends on Facebook don’t understand.

You need to focus on problems or pain points they do get, first, before you’ve:

Developed need-awareness in their minds.

Earned their attention to bring up potential solutions.

Content type differs at each stage, too.

People lacking need awareness don’t want long, technical, in-depth stuff. Only the people who’re actively researching product alternatives are.

This trickle-down effect extends to the words people will use when searching for different types of information. “Risks” work better at the top, while “Evaluate” might work better towards the bottom.

Why is all of this important?

Because Primally Pure also side-steps another common mistake: Pricing.

Their stuff ain’t cheap. Individual items are often more expensive than generic, synthetic alternatives. Store-brand deodorant might set you back $5 while theirs might be three times that.

The prospective customer has to understand why that’s the case. They need to grasp the significance behind the higher price point. They need to recognize the value.

Content is used to educate and sell that difference.

That’s why creating ROI-producing content is so tough to create. But that’s ultimately also why it sticks out above the competition when it works.

These blog posts will be distributed to existing customers through their email newsletter to continue reaffirming the changes they’ve made.

Primally Pure has also been repeating this formula with videos. Not everyone will take the time to read several thousands of words of text. But videos allow you to condense delivery to speed up consumption.

Value means many things to many people. It directly applies to the ingredients in the product itself. However, it also goes beyond that, to the indirect experience someone has with your product.

“Unboxing” refers to the moment you literally open up a product’s packaging, capturing both the moment and the unboxer’s reaction.

Google’s findings say that “the magic behind unboxing videos might be connected to the feeling of anticipation we get in watching them.”

Their work with TNS and Ogilvy shows that “66% of recent purchasers of beauty products said YouTube allowed them to visualize the product they’re going to buy.”

“A lot of customers post Insta Stories with our products,” confirms Courtney O’Connor, Primally Pure’s marketing director (and licensed holistic esthetician). “People share their own videos of unboxing, using the products for the first time, and more. We get an influx of those every day.”

That makes it easy to help educate new customers and re-use it on their website. “People like seeing how others are using the product.”

Primally Pure continues working with influencers and engaged customers.

O’Connor will look at who is already engaging with their stuff or sharing these experiences. She’ll see who’s showing interest in their product or consistently interacting with them online.

They’ll partner with other brands for email list building sweepstakes, including monthly Instagram giveaways.

Good PR hits are instantly re-shared through each social platform, in addition to the more info-based content designed to help customers understand the potential pitfalls of their current skincare regimen.

Every eighth post or so, they like to share a few behind-the-scenes shots, like featuring someone from the team, which “get the most likes by far.”

All of the images shared on social platforms are created with something like Canva or through a designer.

They’ll take product-focused shots every other month or so. These will be used to promote new products, like the recent activated-charcoal deodorant.

If they do share text-heavy images, like quotes, they’ll “send them over every few months so that they will last three or four months. The designer will take care of all formatting to keep fonts consistent across the board.”

Courtney will go inside each platform to respond to messages. “It’s easier to reply right inside, add emojis, and get around the restrictions from other tools.”

Community management is more reactive and responding day-to-day as needed to the conversations they already prompted.

Conclusion

Every company says they want loyal customers.

Every company says they want word-of-mouth marketing.

And yet few companies do what it takes to create either of those things.

They continue to churn out copycat products instead of creating truly unique visions. They focus more on promotion and PR instead of doubling-down on product quality. And as a result, they get similarly watered-down results.

Primally Pure has a concrete vision based on a concrete passion.

Product promotion becomes simple when product quality is emphasized.

That doesn’t mean it’s easy. A lot of time, energy, and effort go into doing things a certain way to produce the best results.

But the chances of success are significantly higher.

More Resources:

Image Credits

All screenshots taken by author, April 2023

Are You Ready For Marketing 2023?

Ideas to keep your marketing aligned with future customer expectations

For many companies, 2023 acts as a symbolic deadline, with many strategic plans working towards that date. Everyone is convinced that the face of marketing and entrepreneurship will have changed profoundly by the time 2023 rolls around. Based on my discussions with experts, literature and my personal vision and experiences with customers, I have compiled an overview of what marketing 2023 might look like.

This blog post summarizes the main elements of the presentation.

The 2023 Consumer

To develop the marketing philosophy of the future we also need to understand the 2023 consumer. Three factors will continue to influence consumer behavior:

1. Full adoption of new technologies: by the year 2023 some 2.5 billion smartphones will be in use. Much more than is the case today, the internet and digitization will be the most natural thing in the world.

2. Transparency: the continued adoption of technology will make the world even more transparent. Consumers will be perfectly aware of which companies are doing well and which aren’t. As a result, consumers will demand better service. Instead of simply comparing companies with the competition, they will compare them with class-leading companies. This will raise the bar considerably.

3. Selectivity: technology will become even more effective at shielding consumers from commercial messages. New media will enable consumers to be very selective about which companies he or she is linked with. Gaining access to the 2023 consumer will prove extremely difficult.

The video below describes the 2023 consumer:

Extreme customer centricity as the central philosophy

A score of 7.3 out of 10 will not be enough to win the heart of the 2023 consumer. Only extreme customer centricity will guarantee success. Extremism may not be a good thing where politics and religion are concerned, but in marketing 2023 it is an absolute necessity.

Going extreme means facing several challenges:

Extreme in the basic aspects: extreme customer centricity is often associated with exotic ideas but such ideas only work when the foundations are solid. Step one consists in compiling an inventory of all the annoying little customer frustrations and dealing with them one by one. A top-notch basic experience is the cornerstone of extreme customer centricity.

It’s all about ‘influence’, not ‘influencers’: Every customer exerts influence. The illusion that a few select influencers determine the perception of an entire industry belongs to the classical school of thought. Treating all customers the same is exactly what brings about structural positive conversations. Focusing solely on ‘influencers’ may even have the opposite effect. Remember what happened with Yoep Van ‘t Hek and T-Mobile.

Symbols of extremism: once a company exceeds expectations with regard to basic service levels, that company needs symbols of extremism. They are ideal conversation starters because they give satisfied customers something concrete to use when recommending your product.Zappos’s 365-day return policy, e-retailer Coolblue’s offline stores and KLM’s 30-minute reply policy to tweets are examples of such symbols.

Developing this philosophy amounts primarily to reevaluating customer processes. It boils down to optimizing the functional relationship. The additional challenge in this regard consists in adding a personal touch. Even the most expertly executed process feels impersonal without a smile.

Friendly people can give a personal touch, and so can smooth communication and the occasional ‘random act of kindness’. It’s not hard to come up with but all the more difficult to implement properly.

And finally, extreme customer centricity is not about online presence or online customer service, although this is obviously part of the package.

In the meantime, it is clear that 80 to 90% of your online success depends on your offline behavior. In 2023, a successful company will no longer differentiate between online and offline channels.

Technology integrated in marketing & service

Extreme customer centricity is a conscious investment on behalf of a company and technology can be of help on three different levels:

Further improving the customer experience: new technology can enhance the customer experience. Technology can bring stunning innovations. For instance, Disneyworld is currently testing new Mickey suits. The suits are interactive and the guests can talk to Mickey. The suits create a new customer experience for the young and old.

Increasing efficiency: technology can streamline certain processes. For instance, technology can help service evolve towards a self-service environment where the customers themselves can solve problems more quickly and efficiently. As a result, customer satisfaction goes up and costs go down. Ordering hamburgers at McDonald’s via the interactive screens is another example: waiting times are shorter and McDonald’s needs fewer staff.

Generating more profit: Amazon adjusts its prices several times a day and this process is fully automatic. This perfect price strategy adds turnover and customers know that Amazon offers the sharpest prices 24 hours a day.

‘Data’ will obviously be one of the buzz words for marketing 2023. Compiling customer data will help companies achieve each of the three goals described above. Data will become the new oil, as it were.  The richest company will be the one with the best data and the ability to use that data to maximum effect.

The future of selling will be selling without actually selling

Snagging consumers will become more and more difficult. Today, consumers go looking for interaction with no more than five brands. Technology is making it increasingly easy for consumers to shield themselves from commercial messages.

Being extremely relevant is the only way of keeping the consumer’s attention chúng tôi first dimension is the rise of inbound chúng tôi bank recently reported that 95% of customer interactions originate with the customer. In other words: the pull model has already replaced the push model.

Data are absolutely invaluable in order to be relevant. Your company will need to create the perfect personalized message on the basis of data if it is to earn the consumer’s attention.

It’s quite funny, really: the foundation of marketing 2023 was described in the 80s, back when CRM and direct marketing were hot. Today we can finally execute what was described back then. The philosophy is sound and modern technology makes it possible.

A second dimension consists in offering relevant content. Content tells a story and gives people something of value.

It’s less and less about your own product and more and more about what consumers can do with that product. The new sites for Kraft and Coca Cola already carry out that message. In both cases, the product itself has been pushed to the background and both sites look more like a digizine than a website. This is selling without selling.

Four principles are essential to success:

1. Invest in your own media: link your content to your own media instead of letting it float around on the internet. Try to lure consumers to your own platforms to consume content.

2. Content as bait for data: content is a bit like baiting the hook when going fishing. Many companies are simply throwing worms into the water: a fish comes along, swallows the worm whole and it’s gone. By attaching that bait to a hook, customers get hooked in when trying to take a bite out of the worm. Use this metaphor in your content marketing and capture data through your content.

3. A mix of big and small stories: sharing stories on a day-to-day basis is part of the 2023 marketing philosophy, but take care to alternate between big and small stories. Red Bull are the undisputed masters in this respect. They come up with amazing stunts from time to time, but they also maintain a content flow that suits the brand. Both aspects are important.

4. Design, design, design: content should be relevant but, more than anything, it should be well-designed.  There’s a phenomenal difference in impact between a classic story and an engaging story. Designers will become increasingly important in the years to come.

Three dimensions to benefit a ‘bigger’ cause

Even a company that excels in each of these three dimensions (extreme customer centricity, technology and selling without selling) has no guarantees of success in 2023.

First of all, you need a personal touch (see above), but you should also identify a common goal for the consumer and your company.

Pampers has chosen to tackle a few nasty diseases with the consumer’s help: for every Pamper sold, a child in a developing country is inoculated, thus creating a common objective for consumer and company to work towards. As for Triodos bank, the company leaves its customers with no doubt what their money is invested in. Triodos only invests in projects promoting durability.

This kind of ‘bigger cause’ appeals to consumers. A global study by InSites Consulting clearly showed that consumers expect three things from a company: 1. Do good for your own customers, 2. Make a profit and thereby do good for your own staff and 3. Do good for society.

How does your marketing department rate on these three dimensions?

Ask yourself the following questions: How does my own marketing department rate on these 2023 dimensions? How many companies do I know today that do well on each of these three dimensions?

And then, of course, there’s also the key question: how do I rate on these three dimensions?

Video Marketing Statistics To Know For 2023

Video is a highly effective form of content and its popularity has gone hand-in-hand with the rise of social media. Despite the fact that so many of us consume online videos on a daily basis, many marketers still aren’t using video as part of their digital marketing strategy or aren’t seeing the best results.

In order to inform your marketing strategy and help you get the best possible ROI from campaigns, we’ve compiled some video marketing statistics that could help you get to grips with video.

92% of marketers say it’s an important part of their marketing strategy

In 2023, 92% of marketers say that video is an important part of their marketing strategy. This has grown from 78% in 2024, showing that the importance of video is only growing.

So what is it that makes video so important? Well, according to 88% of marketers, video marketing provides them with positive ROI. When you consider that only 33% said the same in 2024, it shows that consumer sentiment toward videos is much stronger now.

People will spend 100 minutes a day watching online videos in 2023

As well as more brands looking to utilize videos, consumers are now watching more videos than ever before. It is estimated that the average person will spend 100 minutes every day watching online videos in 2023. This is a 19% increase compared to daily viewing minutes in 2023, which stood at 84.

99% of marketers using video will continue to do so in 2023

With the ROI of online videos increasing along with the amount of time consumers are spending watching them, it’s hardly surprising that 99% of the marketers who are currently using videos will continue to do so in 2023. On top of this, 95% of these marketers expect to increase or maintain their current spend on video marketing.

In terms of those marketers who aren’t currently using videos, 59% expect to start doing so this year.

While this shows that video needs to form part of your digital marketing strategy, it also means there will be a lot more competition to deal with. In order to stand out from competitors, you should make sure you understand consumer expectations around video, as well as the big video marketing trends for 2023.

48% of consumers want videos to reflect what they are interested in

As well as being entertaining, videos can form an important part of a consumer’s decision-making process.  However, in order to get a customer to convert after watching a video, you need to ensure you are meeting their expectations.

In terms of the ideal qualities that consumers look for in order for videos to be valuable to their decision-making process, 48% want videos to reflect the specific products and services they own or are interested in. A further 43% want interactivity, with the ability to decide what information they want to view and when they want to view it.

However, extreme personalization isn’t really sought after, with just 12% saying they want videos to use their name and information within the content.

Video marketing isn’t just B2C-focused

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It’s also worth noting that 22% of B2B organizations are interested in exploring the opportunities provided by podcasting and live streaming, suggesting that there may be opportunities in these areas too.

66% of US teens watch online videos every day

Online videos are particularly of interest to younger demographics with 66% of teens (13-19-year-olds) and 56% of tweens (8-12-year-olds) in the US reporting that they watch videos online every day. This represents huge increases in video viewing for these age gaps compared to 2024.

Not only do these age groups watch videos online a lot, but they also enjoy the videos they watch, suggesting that video content has improved. However, this also means that there is a lot of competition for those marketing to these age groups.

57% of marketers use live video

The rise of social media has meant that there are more types of videos to share than ever before. As a result, 57% of marketers now use live video within their strategies. Over a third (34%) of marketers are making use of Facebook’s live streaming options, creating in-the-moment videos that allow viewers to react in real-time. Instagram is the second most popular option, with 13% creating live videos on the platform.

Live videos are an effective way to create conversations and build a community around your brand. However, they may not be effective for every type of business, so it is worth assessing what your competitors are doing and researching what your audience wants.

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