Tag Archives: Cross Channel Marketing

8 Ways CMOs Should Engage Millennials on Social Media

As a marketer, you’ve likely noticed the shift across the industry when it comes to targeted audiences. Millennials are now the primary group that everybody talks about and extensively analyzes on social media.

The reason for this is simple. Within the last few years, there has been a massive wealth transfer between baby boomers and their Gen X and millennial offspring. Now millennials wield a larger spending power than any other generation.

Here are 8 ways you can better reach millennials with social media:

1. Prioritize Visual Content

Millennials are visual learners. They grew up interacting with screen-based technology like television sets, video game consoles, and computers. As a result, they tend to respond best to content that stimulates their eyes. Marketers who want to attract their attention will need to do so with a strong aesthetic design.

Make sure that the images you post are always of the highest quality possible. Reach out to talented photographers and artists for potential collaborations. Also, don’t skimp on videos. It’s predicted that by 2019 about 80 percent of all internet content will be video.

2. Stay Relevant

On average, millennials spend a little over six hours each week on social media. They often use this time to catch up on the latest news, trends, and discussions. “Given the speed that the internet moves and evolves, content that seems old or outdated has a greater chance of being ignored,” says Jonathan Foley, the founder of the popular Instagram pages @Positivity, @Deep, and @Societyfeelings.

“You should constantly monitor social media to keep an eye on what’s trending. If you see a great opportunity to jump into the public conversation – for instance, if there’s a hashtag that meshes well with your brand – then go ahead.”

Exercise a little caution, and do some research first, though. It’s best to avoid highly controversial and divisive topics, or else you might risk alienating your audience.

3. Invite Participation

Millennials are active internet users. Sitting back and passively consuming content gets boring for many of them. They would rather interact with others and contribute their own thoughts and creations.

There are many ways to tap into this inclination. You could ask your viewers questions, or tell them to tag their friends in the comments. Furthermore, you could encourage them to make user-generated content and then feature it on your page. Another good way to invite participation is by announcing a new product without many details. An example is the announcement of Microsoft Office 2019. Many users on Twitter, specifically millennials, made memes of what this product could look like driving product awareness.

4. Don’t Waste Time

There are numerous claims about millennials’ short attention span. Most of them are drawn from dubious research or based on overly negative, unfounded biases. The truth is that millennials are no worse than any other generation in this area. Instead, the real problem is that a large chunk of social media marketing is poorly suited for the medium.

Social media is used more in short bursts than extended periods. This means that users judge content based on quick initial impressions. People will watch a longer video, for example, if the introduction is compelling enough; however, they’ll quickly tune it out if it spins its wheels for too long.

So, in other words, make an effort to get to the point faster.

5. Change Your Influencer Approach

For a while, it seemed as if influencers held the ultimate key to marketing to millennials. Now, perceptions are shifting. Millennials are starting to trust influencers less these days, and the reason is due to a lack of transparency.

Too many brands and influencers are failing to disclose their partnerships. As a consequence, it has shaken their followers’ confidence in their honesty and integrity. While many still might hesitate in sharing this information, being upfront is significantly less damaging than getting caught and called out.

6. Humanize Your Brand

A lot of marketers lose sight of the “social” part of social networks. The main reason so many millennials flock to these platforms is that they wish to talk to other real people. They don’t want their experience interrupted by obvious marketing from faceless businesses.

This is why some brands have found success in adopting more organic, genuine personalities online. Just take a look at the MoonPie account on Twitter. Its unique mixture of self-deprecation and weird humor has won it many followers on Twitter.

7. Support a Good Cause

Generations are reflections of the cultural environments in which they grew up. It’s for this reason that millennials are more socially conscious than their predecessors. Not only do they expect individuals to contribute to society, but brands are expected to as well.

About 75 percent of millennials say they want businesses to give back to their communities and demonstrate social responsibility. That involves working with charities, organizing awareness events, speaking out about important issues, fighting inequality, and helping the disadvantaged.

8. Treat Them Like Adults

Despite how some use the word, millennial is not a catch-all for young people. It specifically refers to adults currently between the ages of 22 and 37. Anybody who still thinks of them as teenagers really needs to update their mental picture.

Address them like you would any adult. Don’t speak in a condescending tone or treat them like they’re still children. Give them the respect that they deserve.

Make sure to also read: 3 Tips To Reach More Millennials With Your Social Media Marketing

4 Little Known Ways to Implement Cross-Channel Marketing

It's a great time to be in marketing because there are so many more channels and outlets to reach customers and prospects. Each channel has different expectations and opportunities to connect with your audience.  You need to know which channels mean the most to your specific audience. Plus, it's important to determine how to leverage them effectively and how to use them together to increase return. It's a cross-channel marketing strategy that brings all those components together.

One way of creating and implementing your cross-channel marketing strategy for business success is to use tactics like these:

1. Have One Script, Many Writers

In a choir, everyone sings from the same sheet of music. Yet, it doesn't mean they all contribute the same thing to the overall sound. Use the same approach in your cross-channel marketing. Be consistent in your messaging and theme across channels. However, don't just copy and paste what you had in your blog onto your social media pages and then make it an email, too. This bores your audience. Eventually, they will stop following you on certain channels and you'll lose that engagement.

Instead, a choir features a soprano, alto, and other distinct pitches. This adds depth to the sound while creating harmony. Likewise, your cross-channel marketing effort can use many writers on the team. They can generate multiple dimensions and narratives for your brand message, resonating with different audience members on various channels. This same harmonious result can be achieved where there are not conflicting messages or redundant content.

Use a content calendar to create your overall themes and messaging. Then, assign various team members or freelancer channels so their voice and unique style put a different spin on your storytelling efforts. Consider rotating these writers across channels so that they work on blogs one month and perhaps email marketing the next.

2. Localize Your Efforts

With cross-channel marketing, it's easy to just focus on the broader set of channels that reach across your entire target audience. To change your approach, consider looking at how to localize one or two of those channels. Select those channels where you know your audience might be inclined to use in conjunction with their local errands and needs, such as social media, SMS, and search. Then, you can adapt your content periodically to address local promotions at certain locations while still maintaining an overall promotion strategy.

Likewise, you can consider this strategy if you plan on expanding into international territories and need to address the subtle differences, cultural attributes, and varied languages of these markets. When implementing this type of cross-channel approach, you'll also need to think about how to adapt taglines, product names, slogans, and other types of content for other languages and cultures. Get local talent to help you achieve this to ensure you are not sending a confusing message to this new international audience segment.

3. Integrate Your Data Across Channels

Cross-channel analytics is an integral part of your strategy that’s often not implemented to the depth it should be to create the valuable insights for greater success. Instead, companies tend to leave their analytics in silos related to each channel. Then, they view the data separately for each channel. The better implementation strategy is to synchronize data across all channels. This uncovers how your audience interacts with more than one channel – and sometimes does so simultaneously.

The results from doing so will provide a way to make sure all the customer experiences and interactions you are creating across all the channels – email, social, mobile, web, and more – are relevant and timely for your audience. Also, it's a way to understand the impact and location of referrals. Additionally, analytics can uncover which channel combinations deliver the greatest conversion rates. That will help you optimize your spend on channel strategies such as paid social media, Google ads, and other tactics that may consume more of your budget.

4. Return to Traditional Channels

What has also happened recently is an obsessive focus on digital transformations, which means that traditional marketing channels are now being neglected. In reality, a large part of the millennial demographic prefers these old school marketing methods, especially tactics like direct mail. Determine how your audience might respond to print ads, billboards, television ads, and direct mail.

For example, a direct mail piece to a targeted local area can drive prospects and customers to your physical location. However, if you add a QRC code, they can also use that through their smartphone. This can connect them with your business through a website or social media page. In this way, your call to action is drawing customers to your online or offline presence and influencing their purchase decision. Also, you can use the traditional channel as the introduction to the new campaign. Then, follow that up with a digital rollout on email or social media a few days later. This reinforces the message and catches your audience on different channels at an optimum time.

Is Text Messaging the Next Frontier of Content Marketing?

Most millennials prefer texting to talking on the phone, and it’s more and more accepted in all generations. For instance, when you fill a prescription, the pharmacy texts to let you know when it’s ready. Text messages can now be used as evidence in deciding legal cases. What I’m saying is that text messaging now has great potential as a marketing channel. 

In the world of marketing, we talk a lot about content marketing. “Content is king!” But what does that mean for text messaging? Millennials demand it, companies are rolling out automated texting platforms to keep customers informed, and text message threads serve as a permanent archive of a past interaction.

So, is text messaging the next frontier in content marketing? Let’s dig a little further.

Delivering a Unified Brand Voice Across Text, Website, and Video Content

Brand voice is the art of empowering your entire team to communicate with customers in a uniform way. When a customer reads content on your website, watches one of your videos on your YouTube channel, and emails or chats with one of your customer reps, they need to feel like they’re interacting with the same company.

Jeep does this by emphasizing adventure at every turn. PayPal does this by focusing on safely empowering businesses and customers to do business online. And Coca-Cola wins by communicating a brand voice that evokes happiness and good times.

Text messaging is probably the last thing you think about when trying to audit and control the consistency of your brand voice. But it shouldn’t be. Consumers have their smartphones within arm’s reach at all times, and according to Pew Research, text messaging is the most widely used smartphone feature. How can you disregard a channel with so much potential for reaching and satisfying your customers?

How Does SMS Fit into the Marketing Funnel?

There are two ways that I use SMS text messaging to delight customers. First, I actually offer it as an option. This immediately separates my online presence from most of my competitors. I’m not forcing customers to use it, but I’ve opened up this new channel of communication. And when it comes to solving client issues, busy customers love the convenience of sending a quick text in-between everything else going on in their hectic schedule.

Sidenote: Best practices (and in some cases regulatory compliance) require you to get formal consent before sending text messages to consumers.

Second, I use my SMS text plan on my smartphone to supplement the on-site chat. If I’m away from my computer, I’ve configured my website’s chat app to forward messages to my smartphone. First, I receive an alert, in case I’m near my screen and keyboard. If I’m away from the office, I can request all messages be forwarded to my phone. This gives my online marketing efforts the added benefit of real-time communication anytime I’m awake.

The Pitfalls of SMS

There are a number of texting mistakes that you’ll want to avoid when interacting with customers over text. The most obvious one is to practice professionalism – you aren’t texting your college roommate. But the one that took me a while to master was the art of quickly replying without getting sucked in.

For example, I’m usually tackling five or six different projects in a given day. A random message ding on my phone is tempting to ignore. But you’ve gotta get your head in the game here. Pause. Read what’s been sent. Then find a way to craft a message that shows you care, while respecting all the other irons you’ve got in the fire.

Here’s an example:

“Hi Eric! Thanks for your message. We can help supply the custom tablecloths for your event planning business. Can you please email a detailed description of what you’re looking for to Bob@FirstRateTablecoths.com? We’ll get back to you with an estimate ASAP.”

This message is a winner because it names the customer, identifies the issue, and tells them what the next step is. It also provides them with what action you’ll take to help them further. Because it hammers all of these points, you avoid getting sucked into a back-and-forth text-a-thon.

This message is also a loser. It’s more than 160-characters. So, for some wireless customers, its content will be split between two separate messages. And worse yet, the email address you are asking them to send content to is going to be broken in half – killing the hyperlink. And if there’s one thing we know from working in marketing, it’s that adding steps to a process is a conversion killer.

Next Steps?

If you want to use text message marketing as a highly-personalized aspect of your marketing mix, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Envision the situations where customers could use a text message to interact with your brand.
  2. Create text message templates – I save mine in Google Keep – that can be quickly customized to handle the most common situations.
  3. Leverage your Twitter skills to hone your messages to under 160 characters.
  4. Commit to quickly responding to messages throughout the day.
  5. Insert call-to-action buttons and notices so that customers can text you with their questions.
  6. Develop a work-flow that allows your entire team to easily insert text interactions into your customer management software (CMS).

There are a variety of ways to streamline this entire process, but we’ll cover those aspects in a future article. Until then, best of luck using text messages to maintain your brand voice and build more personalized relationships with clients.

Personalization at Scale for B2C Companies

It’s become common knowledge among marketers that personalized marketing provides higher ROI and directly benefits consumers in the form of better engagement and more personal brand relationships. Therefore, smart marketers are constantly investing and pushing to make their marketing more personalized. Yet, these same seemingly smart marketers are making a dumb mistake – forgetting to focus on the underlying fundamentals which are the key enablers of good marketing personalization.

In a Harvard Business Review article, Mark Ariker et al. described the importance of integrating three key factors to developing a learning ecosystem for high quality, scalable personalization. They called this the 3Ds – data discoverydecision making, and content distribution. These three must be integrated to deliver on the promise of personalization.  This practical approach is how the Oracle Marketing Cloud helps to bring these capabilities together. 

The 3D Approach to Personalization at Scale 

  1. Data Discovery covers the process of “sourcing and combining traditional and behavioral data to uncover meaningful insights about customers.” Data discovery is often underutilized due to how challenging it can be to coax meaningful insights from a wide range of disparate data. Oracle’s Data Management Cloud uses the Oracle ID Graph to unify data across multiple online and offline channels to easily develop a singular and holistic view of the customer. 

  1. Decision Making can be automated with AI as long as there is a source of high-quality data and the advanced analytic capabilities to recognize and utilize patterns, behaviors, and preferences. Oracle built its reputation on providing easy access to the highest quality data. Oracle’s Data Management Cloud, in conjunction with the analytical models from the Oracle Responsys platform, provides marketers with the data and analytics needed to scale up and deliver high-quality personalization. 

  1. Content Distribution is the next concern for a marketer once you’ve sourced the scalable data and powerful analytics required for personalization.  Today, content distribution seems to be only about getting the right piece of content to the right person. Yet this is insufficient to live up to the expectations of today’s consumer. In addition to the right content to the right person, distribution capabilities must also include delivery on the right channel and at the right time. With Responsys’s advanced content distribution capabilities, marketers can create hyper-targeted, consumer-centric, digital orchestrations for any consumer across any device in real-time. 

Marketers are facing real challenges today in scaling up their personalization, delivering better, richer experiences for their customers while creating higher ROI for themselves. The 3D framework provided by the HBRcan provide a useful approach to understanding how to tackle the key areas which may be limiting your ability to scale personalization today. Oracle’s solutions can help in each of these critical path areas, providing better data inputs, more advanced and automated decision making, and seamless engagement across channels. 

To find out how Oracle Responsys can deliver the right experience for you, click here.

What Smartphone Users’ Mobile Mindset Means for Brands

Feel naked without your smartphone? You’re not alone. That phenomena — and the move to smaller and smaller screens — has pushed marketers to adapt their practices and technologies to provide a mobile-optimized experience. That much isn’t new. But as consumers have grown more and more reliant on their smartphones, a mobile-optimized site isn’t enough. You have to reshape the experience to fit the new mobile-only behavior.

When consumers pick up and unlock their phone, they enter a distinct mobile mindset, where whatever purpose they’re looking to fulfill, they expect comfort and escapism. This new mobile mindset affects the content they’re like to consume on their mobile device, and subsequently, has a huge impact on their buying behavior.

That is the main conclusion of The Truth Behind Smartphone Behavior, Clicktale’s latest research with The Wharton School. Our in-depth analysis of mobile taps, scrolls, zooms, and user journeys of more than a million consumers will bring you up-to-scratch on what guides smartphone buying behavior.

Entertain Me

When users are in their mobile mindset, they don’t want challenging content or want to think too much. Which means that consumers are less likely to engage with scientific content or anything that is simply factual. Instead, they seek entertainment and relaxation. Our research found that, on a mobile device, consumers are 35 percent more likely to engage with feature articles and sports than hard news.

The Need for Speed

Most marketers know that the mobile experience needs to be slick in terms of speed. Google research recently found that 53 percent of visits are abandoned by users if the page doesn’t load within three seconds. Three seconds!

And our research found that the need for speed extends to user journeys and the content itself. The journey needs to be as short as possible. Also keep in mind that fast and functional content on brand websites or apps, including clearance items, coupons, and store locators tended to fare much better in terms of engagement than long-form content, such as Q&As or long features, for example.

Convenience, Convenience, Convenience

Because consumers are in a relaxed (borderline lazy) mobile mindset when they interact with their smartphones, convenience is everything. In fact, it’s so important that nearly a third (31 percent) of consumers admit they are happy to pay more for a product or service if the mobile shopping experience is better. Millennials especially place great importance on mobile experience, with 43 percent saying they would pay more for something provided brands give them a five-star shopping experience. Mobile users are even happy to pay more in shipping fees than desktop users ($3.5 vs $3.3 respectively).

Image that shows shipping cost acceptable per device

Building the Mobile Marketing Mindset

So, the three key takeaways from the research for marketers looking to improve the customer experience on mobile are: Make it entertaining, make it easy, and make it quick. But more than that, the research shows the importance of understanding the intent behind consumer decisions on mobile devices. In my experience, marketers are far too focused on metrics such as conversion rate and cart abandonment to notice what really makes their customers tick.

Technology is partly to blame for that trend. Analytics on conversion rates, page clicks, social media impressions, and the like have been around for years now. The opportunity today is to move to  experience analytics — where it’s possible to gain a much deeper understanding of customer intent through the capture of app taps, scrolls, zooms, pinches, and more — and then use data science to interpret the data’s meaning. Turn the pixelated view you have of your customers into crystal clarity.

Let Your Business Stand Out With Instagram Stories

Ever since Instagram Stories debuted, this feature has been a big hit with Instagram users, enabling them to combine photos and video clips into one coherent narrative in order to share important (and sometimes, not so important) moments from their lives. And now businesses are exploring new uses for Instagram Stories to engage with customers and fans.

Experiment with Stop-Motion Ads on Instagram

One interesting use of Instagram Stories is to create quick, catchy ads to run on Instagram. The one type of ad that Instagram is promoting right now is the stop-motion ad. This type of ad refers to a product that appears to be moving in a series of herky-jerky movements, such as a pair of shoes moving across your screen. This might seem like a bit of Hollywood-caliber special effects magic, but it’s actually incredibly easy to pull off with Instagram Stories. All you have to do is use the “stop-motion” mode on your camera within the Instagram app, and then capture the product moving. Add some text, change the font to match your brand logo, and you’re good to go. All that remains to be done is to save the story and then upload it as an ad within the Instagram ad manager.

Add Creative Touches to Any Story

And there are plenty of other ways that you can be creative with your Instagram Stories.  For example, if you are a fashion brand, you can use the “rewind” feature to take apart an outfit and then put it back together. So, if you are looking to promote your new summer fashion line, you might look for ways to pair different accessories – like a chic pair of sunglasses – with a t-shirt and pair of shorts. And, you can also use the “superzoom” feature to zoom in on a product. Say, for example, that you want to highlight the craftsmanship of a particular handbag – you could easily zoom in on the fabric and stitching, and maybe even add in some funky music. It all makes for a very compelling visual experience.

Instagram is trying to get the word out that you don’t need to be a creative or graphic genius to play around with all the features within Instagram Stories. For example, as long as you have a basic product photo, you can add on stickers and text and turn it into a compelling visual for an upcoming promotion.

Go Behind-the-Scenes with Instagram Stories

For many brands and small businesses, one easy way to tap into the power of Instagram Stories involves simply filming “behind-the-scenes” moments at your business. If you are a restaurant, for example, show what happens in order for a meal to make it to your table – even something as simple as the head chef giving a pep talk to his or her team could be very compelling, and help to bring out the story of your restaurant brand and make every meal more special.

Make Product Demos for Your Fans

Another easy application of Instagram Stories could be a basic product demo. In just a few seconds, you can show how a product works, and maybe showcase a creative use for the product that most people don’t know. Or, you might want to switch things up and have a celebrity or some other prominent person appear in a brief video clip, showing how they use the product in everyday life.

People respond to stories, and every business has a story. And now, using the Instagram Stories features, you can help to bring those stories to life.

*This post originally appeared on socialmedia hq.

Guide to Social Media Marketing

How CMOs Can Leverage Video Marketing

In the mid 2000s, the emergence of online video transformed how marketers reached their target audience. In a time where both video production technology and video streaming technology were rapidly evolving, corporations and their CMOs had to quickly adapt their understanding and approach to video marketing.

Gone are the days of creating one big television commercial a year and running it on broadcast, only to do it again the next year. Today’s CMO must be nimble and quick in creating strategies around and also executing on the production of marketing videos.

Here are four things CMOs should consider when looking to win with video marketing:

In-House Video vs. Outsourced

If a marketing department has multichannel video needs, supports sales with video content, and creates video for internal communications, the demand for video can become very high. And with expanding needs, comes ever-increasing costs.

It’s critical to identify the type of videos that can be done internally and those that need the help of an outside video production company. In general, the critical assets (e.g., top of the funnel Facebook ads, television commercials, and brand videos) should be outsourced to a professional agency.

Consistent needs — Instagram stories, Facebook Live, ecommerce product videos, day-to-day Facebook video content, smaller product launches, etc. — can all be done in-house.

When thinking about executing his production, Adam Boalt, CEO of Passport Renewal said, “It’s clear when you need to outsource and when it’s easily done in-house. I found it’s worth the investment to outsource things like our main company explainer video, but things like our product demos are fine [when done] internally.”

Staffing your internal video team really depends on the video demand internally and the allocated budget. On the small side, you can hire a one-man band who can shoot, edit, write, do motion graphics, and produce the final product. However, more realistically you’ll want to plan for staffing a producer/director, a writer, and an editor with motion graphics skills.

Non-Product Branded YouTube Channel

Video content can be a form of advertising and customer acquisition, and if done right, can be a profit center within itself, particularly when it comes to YouTube marketing. Consider creating a YouTube channel in your niche to educate and entertain your audience. Build it outside of your brand, and through investment and talent, build a following within that community.

If your product serves a market that has a content audience on YouTube, then you’ll have an easier time building a following. If there is little to no traffic on YouTube surrounding the types of products you offer, you’ll need to provide more cross-channel promotion.

In addition to a production team, you’ll need:

  1. A host with an engaging personality.
  2. A writer who is an expert in the niche.
  3. A digital marketer.

Here are a few examples of non-product branded channels around product niches that could spark some inspiration:

  • LaurDIY: A channel on crafts with an engaging host who gives tips and insights on cool DIYs for a primarily female, teen audience.
  • Teddy Baldassarre: A channel on watches and watch reviews that discusses trends and topics in the watch community.
  • Pocket Full of Primary: A channel for teachers by a teacher that shows the day in the life of a teacher, gives best practices tips, and talks about current issues.

These are great examples of channels that could be highly leveraged to drive audience awareness to your products. The channel can be costly, but it can be an asset you own with an audience that is loyal and engaged.

Improve Already Successful Funnels

Video doesn’t always have to be a standalone marketing effort that is independently providing ROI, often it’s a way to augment channels that are already working. Every CMO has one or a handful of successful platforms that are keeping the business alive. Ideally, each platform and marketing channel should have its own established customer acquisition cost. Identify those and integrate video into all parts of those successful funnels.

PPC: If paid search is a proven tactic for you, integrate videos into your landing pages. Test which work and which don’t, and try to drive down your acquisition cost through video.

Facebook: If Facebook ads are driving awareness and conversions, test video ads vs. photo ads in a one-on-one test.

Traditional sales: If your marketing department is primarily supporting your sales organization, and you acquire customers primarily through sales, then identify ways to integrate video into your sales channels.

A/B Test Creative

When creating videos, brands often create just one and hope that the creative approach they chose is going to work. When building out individual videos, create two or three versions of them allowing you to A/B test different intros and creative approaches. Doing this will not add too much budget to the project, either.

This is particularly important for advertising uses on paid search landing pages, YouTube pre-roll, Instagram or Facebook ads. These use-cases allow you to quickly test what’s working and what’s not. If you only make videos with one creative approach, you’ll never be able to understand what creative resonates and what doesn’t.

Integrate these things and you’ll be better set to see success in video marketing moving forward.

3 Tips To Reach More Millennials With Your Social Media Marketing

The social media usage habits of millennials continue to change – and so your social media marketing needs to change also. This is necessary in order to keep up with new trends and the constant search for the “Next Big Thing.” Here are 3 tips to reach more millennials with your social media marketing.

Tip #1: Experiment with More Than Just Facebook and Twitter

Ok, we get it, Facebook is easy and safe. So is Twitter. But that’s not where the millennials are headed these days. If you examine just about any research report on social media habits, it’s hard to ignore a major trend: millennials are leaving Facebook and Twitter in droves for newer platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat.

If you’re looking to court the young millennial consumer, the place to be these days is Instagram. According to the Pew Research Center, 60 percent of all Instagram users are between the ages of 18 and 29. Compare that to Twitter, where the figure is only 36 percent. So, yes, you can still reach millennials via Twitter, but if you want to go where the momentum is headed, your social media marketing needs to embrace Instagram and Snapchat.

Tip #2: Create New Types of Storytelling Experiences for Millennials

One reason for the popularity of platforms like Instagram and Snapchat is the ability for users to apply lenses and filters on top of otherwise mundane content. With Instagram, it’s possible to create Stories. A Sunday summer day at the beach suddenly becomes people want to watch over and over again.

Now brands are getting into the act as well, creating their own stories on social media platforms for users to interact with. The latest trend is the use of augmented reality, or the ability to enhance videos with additional visual elements.

If you want to see where millennial social media marketing is headed, just check out the social media accounts for Taco Bell. According to the company’s CEO, Greg Creed, the goal of Taco Bell is to become “America’s favorite millennial brand.” That means creating new types of raw, unscripted experiences that continually push the envelope. From this perspective, Taco Bell is the “millennial brand” for the cool young kids, while Chipotle is the brand for older adults.

Tip #3: Look for New Ways to Connect with the Right Influencers

Back in the day, the thought among marketing executives was that the best way to connect with consumers was by deploying a bunch of A-list celebrities. You can still see this with the way the big automakers market their cars – they’ll typically use big Hollywood celebrities (that is, if you count Matthew McConaughey as a big star) or famous sports athletes to sell cars.

But that’s not what millennial marketers do – they look for up-and-coming stars in the worlds of music and entertainment. From this perspective, a DJ – say, David Guetta or Calvin Harris – who might entertain crowds at an event like Coachella is way more influential than a traditional big-name music performer. To its credit, Toyota is one of the big brands that is actually recruiting talent from the world of YouTube celebrities for its marketing.

Those are three big macro-trends changing the world of millennial marketing. Every six months seems to bring a new fad – can anyone say #hashtag marketing campaigns? But there are some big themes that are emerging and a growing number of brands – including both Nike and Taco Bell – that are doing social media marketing right.

*This post originally appeared on socialmedia hq.

Guide to Social Media Marketing