Following on from part one of our Figaro Digital Winter Marketing Conference roundup, we will share the key insights and takeaways from this next group of presentations. Speakers discussed topics such as brand authenticity, rethinking millennial marketing strategies and providing a concierge experience.
Creating a virtual concierge service to assist in the customer journey is something that Shaun Miller, Digital Strategy and UX Consultant at Codehouse, is a great advocate of. The marketing and sales process can be lengthy, so it is important for the customer to feel like they are being assisted at every juncture of the marketing funnel. Shaun outlines three important facets of providing a ‘concierge experience’; having a thorough understanding of the customer journey, aligning internal teams and using an integrated technology stack. It is key to directly engage with your customer and find out their opinions on your brand, instead of projecting your own ideas about what they do, or don’t, want from your company. Once you have gleaned the relevant information, Shaun explains, it is necessary to ask the right questions and map out the customer thought process. Customers come to decisions at different stages of the buying cycle, so it is integral for sales and marketing teams to communicate and provide relevant help at the right time.
Marketers have many tools to help them do their job more efficiently, but without proper integration of these technologies, they can become a hindrance. Especially when opting for new technology, it’s important to consider whether it will be compatible with the rest of your MarTech stack. Shaun uses Codehouse’s partnership with Colt as a case study to explain how enhancing digital as a sales pipeline and building thought leadership online can contribute to the creation of a concierge experience. For details of how they achieved this watch the video of his presentation linked below.
View Shaun’s presentation here.
By 2020, Milliennials will make up half the workforce and with 84 per cent of them not trusting traditional marketing tactics, it is imperative to adapt strategy to include targeted paid social. Jake Potter, Social Media Manager at Colt, offers some tips to add interest to your B2B marketing and how you can use LinkedIn as a paid social tool. You can get the most out of LinkedIn by establishing a profile of your ideal customers and creating a list of companies to approach who fit this criteria. It’s important to A/B test to see what is the most effective way of marketing to your desired group and adapt your strategy accordingly. Once you have decided on a campaign and set it live it is important to review the results every two weeks. The content which performed best should be optimised and prioritised in future campaigns. As LinkedIn lets you see which companies have clicked on your post, you can use this data and share it with your sales teams to gain potential leads.
However, Jake reveals, there is often a conflict of interest between sales teams who are focussed on gaining new leads, and the prospects who don’t trust the people who are trying to sell to them. Delivering compelling content, in the form of infographics, whitepapers and videos is an easy way to gain their trust. Ungating some whitepapers allows your potential customers to learn more about your company early on without being deterred by the need to share their personal details. Adding LinkedIn IP tracking codes to webpages can enable you to serve up increasingly targeted content.
View Jake’s presentation here.
Discount marketing is an attractive way to encourage customers to buy your product, but consistent offers and sales can detract from your brand story. Cheap prices are more likely to attract one-time buyers, but loyalty is more likely to be achieved by gaining customers who support and believe in your brand message. When Daniel Lennox joined Riverford Organic as their Head of Digital Marketing, he recognised the need to step away from discount marketing and focus on what made their company unique. As part of his strategy to revitalise the business, he concentrated on three major areas; intent, authenticity and being disruptive. His first step was to turn off all the offers and find out the main reason customers chose Riverford. With this information, they were able to create landing pages for their products which reflected the intention of their customers. In regards to authenticity, many major supermarkets use images of farms to promote their product, so Daniel concentrated on producing content marketing that was truly unique and couldn’t be replicated.
Lastly, Riverford created brave and potentially risky campaigns that outlined their brand’s ethical and moral stance. They capitalised on days like Black Friday in a nontraditional and disruptive way, by promoting their lack of discounts and the need to pay farmers a fair wage. Riverford have been able to use their rich brand story as part of their marketing, instead of situating themselves as a discounter and missing out on the opportunity to capture the attention of an audience who are willing to spend more.
View Daniel’s presentation here.
It can be hard to decipher the present reality of AI, as it is a subject so shrouded in speculation. Natalie Johnson, Head of Sales at Phrasee, aims to draw a line between the actuality of AI’s capabilities and the buzzword nonsense that is increasingly becoming part of the industry’s terminology. An important first differentiation to make is between narrow and super AI; the former aids with a specific task, whilst the latter are machines with a higher magnitude of intelligence than humans. Phrasee’s AI uses natural language to generate the most effective subjective lines. It is essential when using a machine to power results, that the language created mimics that of a human. Furthermore, it needs to be educated in the voice of your brand so that it produces an authentic message that aligns with your company’s tone.
Nat explains how their process is driven by two key elements: natural language generation and deep machine learning. It is about removing gut instinct and personal bias from language creation and actually applying data and science through artificial intelligence. Using real life examples to showcase these two features of marketing and language generation AI, Nat revealed to the delegates how you can determine actual AI from fake news with case studies from top brands like Virgin Holidays and Domino’s.
View Natalie’s presentation here.
Millennials and Generation Z are widely viewed as tricky, but invaluable, groups to market to. Georgios Chiotis, Brand and Marketing Director at Scape, asked the audience to reassess their perceptions of these younger generations. Millennials are frequently burdened with the responsibility of killing certain industries, ridiculously blamed for the death of bar soap, diamonds and golf. Companies don’t often stop to think how they can engage with these new generations in a positive way, instead they choose to condemn their actions. As a result, Millennials feel increasingly misunderstood and alienated. Georgios defines Millennialitis as “the unhealthy obsession from brands with reaching Millennials just because they think they have to, without the real desire to add any additional value to their lives apart from their product.”
He offers five simple ways to rethink your purpose and cure Millennialitis. Firstly, marketers need to reconsider loyalty as younger generations are approaching it in a new way. Georgios explains that content needs to be consistently authentic to create genuine engagement with this demographic; 60 per cent of consumers see user generated content as the best way to portray authenticity. It is also important to incorporate text and image in your content so it will appeal to both Millennials and Gen Z.
View Georgios’ presentation here.