The World Wide Web is an advertising battlefield – it is easy for your business to get lost amongst all the other websites vying for the attention of users. Having an online marketing strategy can mean the difference between your business booming or blowing up in your face. You need to keep up with digital world because at the end of the day, but exactly how do you do that? FourthSqure.com has all the answers.
The digital world is evolving at a blistering pace, which means understanding not just an audience, but, importantly, the purposes different platforms serve and therefore how brands and advertisers can react, is vital.
In order for brands to keep up with the continuous evolution of technology and in turn customer behaviour, they need to step back and learn a lesson or two from small businesses. Although an overused term by almost every sector out there, operating in an agile manor will be the advantage brands have over their competitors. Ultimately, if they aren’t thinking in a nimble way now, they should reassess their strategy.
Brands need to be able to analyse, assess and react immediately for either a reactive or planned campaign – a couple of recent ads from Specsavers spring to mind. During the European Championships this summer they had ads in the papers within two days of a controversial decision from the linesman when England played Ukraine. Again, following the North vs. South Korean flag incident at the Olympics, they proved they are relevant, have a personality and are quick to respond to what is happening around them.
With consumers more connected than ever and distractions coming from multiple screens – mobile phones, tablets, PCs and the TV – they are saturated with content from every angle. If they want to be noticed, advertisers must push boundaries and challenge the industry by thinking creatively and doing something different.
Mobile and online advertising provides opportunities for innovation and creativity. Take Samsung for example: when launching their new Galaxy S III smartphone this year they took out ads across all Microsoft platforms, from the MSN homepage to the Skype Mobile app. Although not new platforms, mobile and online are estates that we know and understand in perhaps more detail than gaming. This means that advertisers and brands can push innovation to the limit and excite audiences with new ways of communicating.
Another platform that has great engagement potential and is at the forefront of minds is TV. In its current form, the standard 30 second spot is a passive experience and one that has remained relatively unchanged for decades. With the advent of TV on-demand and the array of channels that broadcasters provide these days, it’s easier than ever to skip ad breaks. Brands need to think of new ways to keep viewers glued to the screen.
It is here that Microsoft is truly leading the way. With the introduction of NUads (natural user interface advertisements) on Xbox LIVE to the market this autumn, the 30-second ad spot will be changed forever. Viewers will be able to engage with TV advertising like never before.
Unilever brand Lynx is the first to take advantage of the platform in the UK, creating an ad that asks whether or not the ‘Lynx Effect’ should be given to women. Using Xbox Kinect’s gesture and voice capabilities, or the standard controller if preferred, viewers can interact with the ad, while advertisers will receive real-time data based on their choice. Whether the viewer takes part or not is entirely up to them; if they are not interested the ad will continue to run as normal.
Unilever’s effort is just a taste of what NUads has to offer. While polling is just the first format Xbox LIVE Advertising has released, the future possibilities for NUads are endless – think ordering a pizza without lifting a finger, placing an instant bet on a football match, or sharing content with friends through social networks.
There is no better entertainment platform than the TV. It dominates most living rooms around the world and watching it can be something the whole family shares. We are now seeing a real push towards connected TV, with the global smart TV market expected to reach $265m in the next four years. Research groups like Informa also claim that consumer use of connected TV sets will leap from 82m in 2011 to more than 890m during the same period.
The targeting of consumers across multiple screens is something that is already revolutionising media consumption, giving people what they want, wherever and whenever they want it, without having to leave the sofa.
If consumers are to act on advertising, they want it to be as easy as possible. If an ad on TV catches their eye, the transition to a tablet or smartphone for more information needs to be as smooth and seamless as possible, otherwise they are likely to just shrug their shoulders and forget about it. We hope to share more with you on this topic soon!
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