For years, financial industry marketers like me have addressed consumers with sporadic marketing — sporadic because that’s what worked and it was cost effective to do so. The expectation at that time was that, upon receiving a marketing piece, the consumer would immediately come to our place of business and open an account or buy the financial product we were highlighting. And that expectation wasn’t far from reality.
I can personally remember running campaigns and expecting a 30-40% positive ROI, depending on the channel. At the time, our techniques and measurement capacity were improving, and consumers had fewer media options than they have today so there was a greater chance they’d see and react to the marketing campaign. Those were the days. The easy days.
More engagement options means less attention
Today, consumers have the power. With more channels of communication than ever, consumer engagement has increased exponentially. Ask a room full of consumers how many of them watch TV while using a tablet and having their cell phone nearby. I bet every hand in the room goes up.
What does that mean? It means consumers are engaged in more media than ever, but at a shallower level. According to Hubspot , 30% of Millennials use four or more devices a day. As consumers, we all bounce from channel to channel with extreme fluidity, almost as if we’re skipping across the top of a lake. We never actually dive deep into the water.
Reach consumers where they are
In order to grab a consumer’s attention in this environment, you have to be in as many different media channels as possible. It’s no longer acceptable to just have a TV commercial. What if you get DVR’d and they fast-forward right past it? What if they watch everything on Hulu?
You have to engage people in a conversation using the media they’re consuming — usually multiple ways! If you’re targeting the right consumers and appearing in direct mail, email, digital media, social media, and TV, then you have an actual opportunity to cut through the clutter and create a real dialogue.
Targeting specific consumers can keep costs down
Marketing across multiple channels isn’t as costly as you may think. It's really a question of volume and targeting. It can be extremely expensive if you want to talk to everyone. But if you only want to reach certain people (those who are highly likely to buy your product), you can leverage data to target those consumers. You can find these consumers by using your own data or by purchasing data. By being selective, you can manage your costs very effectively.
Once you have a good group of consumers to chase, the next step is having the right tools to go after them. Look out for my next blog where I’ll help you make sure your tool chest is stocked up with Craftsman® tools instead of cheap plastic toys.