Category Archives: Marketing Strategy

Tablets: Disrupting the Way we Consume Media Since 2010

Tablet related statistics and predictions have tremendous implications for marketers, such as “20% of tablet owners claim to have shopped less in brick-and-mortars since purchasing their tablet,” and “tablet makers are on track to sell 110 million units in 2012 alone.” If, as a marketer, you believe that you must reach your audience in the places they populate, consider adding the tablet to your collection of canvases.

How? You ask.

Revamp your search strategy. Tablets are expected to reach 670 million in number by 2017, helping to generate over $12 billion in mobile search advertising spend within the same year.

Users have unique search habits and expect different results when they are on various mobile devices. If I Google “gas” on my smartphone, I’m probably driving on empty, looking for a nearby gas station and am minimally interested in a Wikipedia page, gastrointestinal advice or articles on gas price surges in the results that I might see on my laptop. This mindset must be reflected in an online marketer’s strategy. The same applies for tablets; we need to consider where and when people are using these devices and define our marketing strategy around what the user needs at those points in time.

For example, like most tablet users, I wouldn’t be caught dead without my tablet at the airport. And I travel a lot. Just a few weeks ago, I was at an unfamiliar airport and learned that my flight was delayed by two hours. I wanted to know what kind of options I had for food, so I Googled the airport name. The first thing to come up was a search ad (with promotion) for a restaurant in my terminal. As a proponent of digital marketing, I rewarded the restaurant for its crafty paid search efforts by eating there. As an average search engine user, the immediate connection coupled with the promotion prompted me to bypass two other restaurants en route to my destination. The power of digital advertising!

Establish cross-device marketing campaigns. More than 50% of media interactions span two or more screens. Research indicates that tablet users are feeding information absorbed from television into their search queries onto tablets in real-time. Also, users are continuing to read the results from their computers’ and smartphones’ search queries on their tablets, adding to their shopping baskets while using a tablet and then making the actual purchase on their PC.

So many factors affect this process. I might browse LOFT.com during my lunch break at work and then convert from a device at home. I also might prefer to recline on the couch that evening rather than sit upright, thus influencing my choice of device at the time of purchase. Marketers must consider these and many other factors when developing their strategy.

Engage with your customers. Our Q3 report found that consumers are spending 30% more time surfing the Internet on their tablet than their PC and are 20% more engaged online than PC users. Marketers: it’s time to get creative! Consider the best ways to really connect with your audience. Whether that translates to personalization, enhanced content, pop-ins, etc is really determined by your business needs and the product or service you are marketing.

It took years for companies to recognize the business potential in e-commerce and developing an online brand presence, and a little less time to recognize the importance of creating sites that make sense for mobile. Marketers today don’t have the luxury of time. If they want to be competitive, they must adapt with this shift in technology.

Think it’s just a fad? The industry is telling you it’s not. 37% of tablet users say that they will be purchasing a new device in the next 12 months and tablet prices are falling, making them more readily available to more groups of people. Three years ago, only techies and high-income households had tablets, much like the demographics of smartphone users in their infancy – and look at them now! Next year, we are going to see a lot more people on trains, planes, and buses (as well as cars, living rooms, bedrooms – the list goes on!) with tablets. Make sure you are maximizing your online marketing presence on these devices in order to stay ahead of the curve.

Planning for the Holiday Season with an Unexpected Change in Consumer Behavior

This holiday season is expected to be more competitive in the e-commerce space than last year. It might even prove to be the year of the savviest shopper. Consumers are now armed with more knowledge of retailers’ deals and strategies during Q4 than ever before. Research also suggests that the purchasing process will take ten days longer than last

year, indicating that people are shopping smarter and comparing goods among competitors. With the asymmetric information gap closing between consumer and retailer and the development of the more patient, knowledge-seeking consumer, retailers need a way to finesse this nouveau consumer behavior into their Q4 Search Engine Marketing strategy.

The key factors to help leverage the new consumer behavior in Q4 2012 are:

1. Understanding your assist data
2. Identifying changes in product trends
3. Using on-site data to gauge category interest

Understanding your assist data will help you leverage your budget during the holiday season. This is particularly important as the consumer will be extending her purchase latency. It is plausible to have keywords in your account that drive a lot of traffic, but do not convert, especially earlier in the season. However, since your ad appeared early in the purchase cycle, the consumer is likely to return to your site from a different media or search engine marketing keyword. By attributing credit to keywords and media that occur early in the path to conversion, you can justify staying competitive on terms that may not be the last click before the conversion.

Identify changes in product trends by using Google trends. Whether you are introducing new products for Q4 or trying to gain a fresh perspective on the products that you already have, it is important to understand how the consumer is searching for, viewing and shopping for your product. This differs from the standard search query report, as you are able to see the full picture of how people are searching rather than looking only at terms that triggered your ads. If you type in an exact match term that matches one of your products, Google Trends will show the growth over time, allowing you to anticipate what the demand will look like during December. It will be important to leverage the top and rising terms by placing them into your account. What this will do is put you right in front of the consumer demand you are looking to capture and help to assess any competitors that may be outperforming you.

Using on-site data to gauge category interest is the most important aspect of planning for Q4. Category interest groups can be tracked by IgnitionOne after a consumer clicks on your ad and navigates your site. The interest groups indicate which category or product the user looks at during the session, in order to understand the consumer’s intent and the interplay among the products you offer.

For example, a consumer queries “youth jeans” with the initial intent to shop for their teenage daughter, however, they see there is a category which interests them to shop for themselves. It is this type of on-site activity that is important to gauge in order to finesse consumer conversions rather than forcing a behavior through arbitrary sales. Identifying trends in related category interests and putting together meaningful sales and/or messaging towards consumers will aid in achieving this outcome. This tactic is similar to the in-store Black Friday sales, where you put a particular item at a deep discount in order to attract sales in other sections of the store. This works better online because we have data to confirm that the people who are converting on clothes for their children are also buying a new coat for themselves. Strategies such as serving the consumer a message that reads “Buy any full-priced junior item and get 50% off of one women’s apparel item,” will encourage consumers to act and allow retailers to gain conversions on highly competitive items by bundling them with something else of interest to the consumer.