Consumers today want authenticity from brands. They are harder to please and harsher with their views when they are unhappy. They won´t engage with brands unless there is a meaningful engagement to be had and the only way to create that level of engagement is by truly understanding your audience first & foremost. The digital economy is the attention economy and to earn attention today we must be bold, interesting, helpful, relevant and authentic. At iProspect we are working closely with our clients on how we can achieve this together and take advantage of the opportunities it presents, when done right.
Inbound marketing or “non-intrusive advertising/native advertising” is rising in importance as a form of advertising in the digital economy due to how it ties into these new expectations of the consumer today. Its purpose is to be relevant and helpful, naturally, in the environment and at the time that meets the consumers´ needs in that moment. The objective is to gently navigate the consumer down a path they are already walking, or take a minor deviation, rather than demand that they turn around and go down an altogether different one. Typically we are talking about native advertising within blogs, social media or search (the original inbound marketing channel).
Today our average attention span is only 8 seconds…..yep, we know, it´s a worry! We are addicted to our devices and the social gratification that the platforms are designed to give us in our lives. Thousands of engineers behind Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat etc are all competing for our attention, feeding our addiction and meaning we can only fully concentrate on one thing for 8 seconds at a time. So the challenge for brands today is significant – meaningfully capture the attention of your audience within 8 seconds.
It´s a tough challenge albeit, but not insurmountable. The key is in understanding your audience deeply and, critically, understanding what they really feel about your brand. Only then can you develop a communication strategy that will allow you to have a conversation with your audience that they feel you are entitled to have with them.
Once you know that, then inbound marketing, in theory should be one of the most effective ways to increase the quantity of quality leads for brands. As with the combination of the right data, automated technology and the content you know is right for your audience, inbound marketing activity should enable brands to leverage an existing interest in a way that feels totally natural and helpful to your audience - ´Lead Nurturing´, if you will.
It´s important to note that our job doesn´t stop there, as we must ensure we have the right measurement in place to monitor the quality of inbound traffic being driven. Typically this is called ´Lead Scoring´ and consists of ranking lead quality by a number of factors agreed up front with the brand, based on the key objectives and quality factors.
Inbound marketing isn´t new in Colombia but certainly it´s a less developed opportunity than in other markets such as Europe or the US. Particularly when the audience in Colombia is very social & mobile first, this feels like a real area of opportunity within the industry. We´d love to hear any comments around any authenticity challenges you´ve experienced as a brand or success stories using this form of marketing. We are here to help!