Your time is precious and you’re likely hearing about all these new-fangled types of marketing that you need to implement right this second! As soon as you figure out one new type of marketing your startup, another one comes along that is said to be even better, so you begin to implement that, and as soon as you do… the cycle starts again. Just thinking about it is time consuming.
So, allow us to explain interactive marketing and why it might be worth your time.
Interactive marketing is a two-way dialogue between a business and their customers. It’s a method that is based upon the customer informing the business on their preferences so they can be shown content that is more relevant to them and their interests, or if they don’t want that at all. This, essentially, puts the customer in the driving seat of the marketing and advertising they see, making them feel more involved and in control. 65% of brands have said that using interactive marketing has had a positive correlation with the number of sales seen from it.
Nowadays, we are all inundated with stimuli on the internet that we have become desensitised to it, which means we want to choose what we see, and we want what we see to be personal to us. So, when a startup does interactive marketing, they stop pursuing the audience and move on to listening to their audience, opening direct communication channels, and paying attention to their thoughts and comments.
Companies can then use this interaction to inform their next move and take into consideration what their target audience are looking for. Interaction gives real-time data on how well an audience are receiving a marketing campaign, or if it’s something they’re not gelling with and needs to be rethought.
Do you remember that time, a couple of years ago, when adverts online would ask for your name to include it in their adverts? Nutella included this to personalise their jars if you wanted one, and most famously, Channel 4 used users’ names in the adverts for a film. It was spooky, to say the least, to have heard your own name said at the beginning of an advert and then be instructed to ‘Run!’ However, it was highly effective. It made everyone stop and pay attention to what was going on in the ad-break that was otherwise ignored. Those are an intense form of interactive marketing.
A more common, and less frightening, form of interactive marketing is when consumers are shown search engine results for a query. Say you searched for a specific type of shampoo, at the top of the search results page would be an advertisement for said shampoo or other hair care products. Another less frightening form is a company’s website, where a consumer can engage with a startup and their marketing at their own pace, including completing surveys, purchases, writing reviews, and asking questions.
Interactivity allows you to present your content to your audience in layers, meaning they have to interact with your site or page by clicking through to find the information, product, or service they’re looking for. An example of layered content is a quiz to find the specific product that will be useful to the individual user, so they do not need to wade through every product on offer, likely getting bored and leaving the page. A brilliant example of this is Function of Beauty who ask their users questions about their hair type and what they’re looking for when it comes to shampoos and conditioners, leading them to a personalised bottle of hair care that is just for their needs.
Custom emails and suggestions of products is another form of interactive marketing. Consumers are unlikely to read an email of offers if they are referred to as anything other than their first name. This small personal touch makes the recipient feel spoken too, rather than the coldness of being referred to as ‘valued customer’. Personalised suggestions based on previous purchases and visits to your website also help this and makes the user feel like they have been paid attention to. The ticket platform SeeTickets will send their customers a tailored email featuring events on sale that they think the customers will like, based on what they’ve booked on the site previously.
The goal of interactive marketing is to get users to interact with startup. As a result of this, your startup will create valuable experiences for your customers, meaning they will continue to come back to you time and time again. This also does not mean that these experiences are limited to the digital world – some of the best interactive marketing campaigns have been produced in real life, like events and launches.
Lifestyle brand, Refinery29, host an event called the 29Rooms, which they describe as: ‘an interactive funhouse of style, culture, & technology.’ It consists of 29 different rooms that all have a unique and quirky experience inside. One year, their theme was ‘Turn It into Art’ and attendees to the event were encouraged to use the surroundings in each room to create a piece of art. A lot of their rooms are built in partnership with another brand, creating an unforgettable event for both brands that will have people buzzing.
It just goes to show that there is no end to the possibilities of marketing, and interactive marketing has once more opened a whole new world. As long as your interactive marketing method aligns with your startup story and executed to the best of your abilities, there is no stopping your company from reaping the rewards.
If this has convinced you that interactive marketing is worth your time, get in touch with us today and we can help implement this into your marketing strategy.