The Death Of Distance
A business is only successful when it sells its product or services. That’s the job of marketing - create awareness and meaning in the minds of target audiences. The ultimate objective is to turn that into genuine interest that forces transaction.
The biggest challenge for organisations is to build their businesses so that can work.
The biggest challenge for modern marketers is translating awareness into action.
The JOB of Brand - Put Simply
The company does not own its brand its audience does.
The audience gives permission only if it believes/trusts the messages and meaning it interprets from the work of the marketers.
A brand is created through a variety of means. From television and mainstream media through social media and a plethora of channels. Additionally there’s both two and three dimensional mechanisms to consider. (Print And Experiential/OOH)
Throughout this there’s a significant digital dimension through screens. (Mobile & Beyond). We are bombarded through subtle and integrated/automated digital - programmatic media - as well as the primary advertising media model and associated costs of Google search PPC and Keywords.
Intelligent strategies to exploit all these channels - we call omnichannel.
The Google ‘Cut’ Dilemma
If we take GoCompare’s approach to marketing as a current example.
The only action available to the consumer from brand awareness is to search Google if you’ve remembered the name and trigger. You will search, find a link to an Ad and click through (with luck) to their website that may or may not carry the seamless promise from the Ads.
Google is likely to have benefitted by several ‘clicks’ from these searches. This is the PPC trap.
PPC is an online advertising model in which advertisers pay each time a user clicks on one of their online ads. All of these searches trigger pay-per-click ads. In pay-per-click advertising, businesses running ads are only charged when a user actually clicks on their ad, hence the name. The average cost per click in Google Ads is between $1 and $2 on the search network. (But varies and could be $50.)
Mind The Gap
The challenge (faced by many businesses) is - the more you invest in the brand (awareness) and generate interest - the more (directly proportional) the increase in the cost of PPC.
The aim should always be to cause direct traffic and action from brand spend. The prize is to drive direct activity to a Brands own transactional engine. Remove the ‘Google Cut’ wherever and as much as possible.
This relies on the business being ready to transact seamlessly via the engine. (Website - Cart - Platform - Software).
The majority of businesses are not wired up this way. Therefore unable to take advantage. As a result they rely on traffic indirectly - by consumers resorting to Google searches (hopefully) prompted through recall from the brand advertising.
Countless legacy business systems (silos) still proliferate. Management teams (policies) seem unwilling or unable to force their businesses to reconfigure in order to take advantage of more seamless practices.
Our strategy is to reduce the number of process steps between brand spend and transaction.
Our aim is to ‘activate transaction directly’ in any way we can. Right there at the point of opportunity.
Whether it’s a bus Ad, cross track or POS device we have to enable the consumer to get straight into the transaction and ‘act’.
We would build/inject a mechanism (an online/digital) platform that’s a one stop, ‘act once’ receiver of the interest we cause.
This ‘trigger’ would be caused through powerful single minded offers in the real world.
Each would be fulfilled directly via a digital mechanism of some sort.
The result (transaction) data going straight to the clients own transaction engine (via MAL247) - a slice of that revenue clipped back to us.
Campaigns would be jointly funded 15/85% via MAL and the target client.
Organisations like MVC and similar could well be powerful partners.
The Design and challenges Of The business Model
All the media decisions would add up financially - and work well - if each search resulted in a completed transaction. But that’s far from the truth.
A complete transaction is rare.
In many cases that’s because of the lack of precision and care in the design of the customer experience/journey.
(Great examples of properly designed models are Uber and Deliveroo)
Poor design means that at the ‘point of consumer choosing’ there is neither an easy channel or format available.
The brand has failed the customer at the point of pain or at the point of choosing.
The reason Uber and Deliveroo work is because they have native apps sitting on everyone’s mobile phone and the transaction takes seconds.
We get to our destination and we get to eat.
Many brands transactional processes online or in mobile application are often far too complex.
Some can be described as appalling. Yet more complex.
The challenge for the consumer causes fails - customer lacking the information because the system is asking for meaningless or difficult to obtain data.
Typical processes are fraught with interruptions. This is simply poor execution/thinking by designers.
It shows that there’s been insufficient investment in the design of the experience - between the Advertising promise, the transaction engine user experience and the overall process through to conclusion. (Not so in the Uber or Deliveroo examples)
Most organisations have failed miserably with the end to end joined up experience from awareness to concluded transaction.