The skip button, the little x at the top left and the mute button; all of these things are ways people ignore ads. But a few brands and advertisers are figuring out how to make an impression and engage with consumers. In the social media world it’s hard to stay relevant to your consumer, there is a lot of noise out there. But, I think brands who banter with other brands, have engaging content that is relevant to the consumer and brands who use Snapchat are at the forefront of gaining consumer attention.
- Brand Banter:
I love to watch brands that I know talk to each other on Twitter. It humanizes the brands and instead of having an air of competition it feels like they are working together to entertain their followers. This is huge for me, a brand that can put aside that initial instinct to compete with another similar brand in order to create cool content scores major points. “And instances of un-orchestrated, organic social media exchanges have been increasing in the last year or two, 360i President Sarah Hofstetter said. In the case of client Oreo’s exchange with Kit-Kat, the chocolate bar brand started things and Oreo chose to respond. ‘A lot of it is about striking the right match,’ she said. ‘The more that brands see others doing it well, the more comfortable they are”’ (Delo, Ad age http://adage.com/article/digital/9-examples-brands-engaging-social-media-banter/243896/). Brands who are doing this well are really able to use their tone and voice, being playful and entertaining fits really well into Twitter’s image. The platform is quick and witty; brands that play into this are using the platform to its full advantage. I feel like consumers don’t want a static brand that can’t interact with others, interacting with another brand is an easy way for a brand not to feel so corporate or inhuman. And not to mention it’s usually just funny. And who doesn’t like to laugh?
Why is it that "fire sauce" isn't made with any real fire? Seems like false advertising.
— Old Spice (@OldSpice) July 9, 2012
- Engaging Content:
This may seems like a no brainer, but I’ll explain exactly what I mean. I feel like “engaging” is a buzzword in the ad world right now, but I haven’t seen a good working definition. So I will attempt to define what I think is engaging brand content.
First and foremost it’s relevant. Relevancy is also timely. There is a window of time to reply to a tweet, or to tweet about certain things. My favorite brands, and the ones who get my attention are the ones who are on top of what’s going on and have a proper response, watching a brand interact with culture in real life are relevant. Similarly, brands that tweet or post about things that have no meaning to their followers aren’t doing themselves any favors. If a brand like Sour Patch Kids started tweeting about retirement I guarantee they would lose quite a few followers. Unless of course they did it in a fun and sarcastic way that is almost satirical which leads me to,
Second it’s vital that brands have a voice, boring content has a boring news reporter voice. “Engaging”, in my opinion, required brands to know who they are. It may seem silly to say that a brand should have a personality but it really does make a difference. This also helps to differentiate between competitors in the same category. For example, one person might really enjoy Dorito’s and Cheetos, but maybe they only follow Cheetos because they think the content that is being produced by that brand has more personality.
Lastly, brands that have a consistent presence but are not annoying. I have unfollowed many brands (and people) because they tweet or Instagram too much. There is nothing worse than having to scroll down your timeline for 10 minutes because one brand (or person) you follow wont put their phone down. There is a sweet spot of posting just enough to stay in my mind but not annoying me. It’s tough to find that, and maybe I’m just picky, but brands who do this earn my attention.
- Snapchat (AKA share-ability)
I love Snapchat. I love the whole idea of it, I love using it, and I love a brand who gives me good Snapchat content. In my opinion if I chose to follow you, as a brand, on Snapchat you’re doing something right. I think any brand that wants to target millennials (Sigh, I hate using that word) should be utilizing Snapchat. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have a Snapchat so there is a huge viewer base, but it’s also such an active choice to view a Snapchat that you know that your viewer is going to remember it. My favorite brand on Snapchat is Cosmopolitan Magazine, I regularly check out what they have to say, and I can directly interact with the brand and share it with my friends. I think that’s what I like most about brands on Snapchat, it’s so easy to share it with other people. It’s the most powerful form of word of mouth from a brand because I’m sending this picture straight to my Snapchat friends. I also love, love, love when live events like the MET Gala are covered on Snapchat. It’s a great way for an event brand to make people at home feel like they are apart of the action. Especially when it’s an exclusive sort of event/brand, like fashion week or Louis Vuitton (both had snap stories recently).
See examples here: http://cdn.simplymeasured.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/IMG_5346.png
It’s really important to me for brands and advertisers to take me (as their consumer) into consideration before creating content. I will only engage with a brand who has taken time to be relevant and interesting, and bonus points if they are on Snapchat.