Bob Dylan couldn’t have put it better when he wrote those lyrics back in 1964.
And the times certainly are changing if you’re an internet or retail marketer; a change so profound that the entire way in which you engage with your audience is shifting beyond all recognition.
Content is King and Why Context is Queen Bee!
Here’s a great quote from fellow IBM Futurist, Martin Jones:
“Social is how customers hear about you, search is how they find you BUT content is how they’ll remember you”
And that’s not all, according to London based consultancy Olapic, 76% of consumers view content posted by other consumers as more honest than advertising.
As consumers, we are seeking ever more personalised brand experiences. We want brands to engage with us, not broadcast to us.
Data: The New Oil
Not only that, new data is being created on an unprecedented scale.
You might be familiar with data being measured in gigabytes – such as the amount of gigabytes of space left on your smartphone and how you’re always running out.
According to Citrix, by the end of 2016 there was more than a zettabyte of data in the world. To put that in context, to view 1 zettabyte of data in HD video would take you 152 million years.
And by 2020 it is estimated that there will be 44 zettabytes of data in the world.
And much of this is being created by consumers, not brands.
Consumers know brands better than they do themselves and they want a slice of it. We want to influence and shape the world around us like never before.
Each and every day, we are putting out our digital footprint or signature for anyone to capture.
And we expect brands to be doing so.
This is why Content is King but Context is Queen Bee.
Content needs to engage, excite, inspire but if it’s not in the right place at the right time and targeted in the right way it is wasted.
Personalised, targeted content is now the most critical element of a brands’ marketing campaign.
In the same research from Olapic:
“86% of young millennials (aged 18-24) share brand photos to express product appreciation with friends”
Today’s Consumer Journey
There was a time when marketers could plot the consumer journey with reasonable accuracy; not any more.
What once was awareness, consideration & then purchase is now a jumbled minefield much akin to 3D snakes and ladders where we shift, backtrack, change channels, seek positive peer reviews, research in many different ways.
This is leading brands to realise the value of content in its many forms whether it be text, video or images.
We want to have our lives enriched and immerse ourselves in a brand and its products in ways never before imagined.
And that’s not all, we want to feel we have the ability to influence those brands with our feedback and comments.
Timberland is a great example of a brand which realises this and seeks to engage its customers with great content.
Through partnerships, influencers and celebrities they seek to ‘amplify & enable the lifestyle”.
Content is King
Influencers are the new media
For great content – find an expert
Always remember – Context is Queen Bee!
Andrew Busby is Founder & CEO of Retail Reflections and an IBM Futurist