Just a few thoughts…
Connection, Uniqueness, Comfort and Variety. These needs vary in importance for each individual and each person’s need can also shift resulting in trading off needs. Example: Connection during holidays might be very important to some….others might need comfort (family close by, familiar places, items, foods, fireplace, cozy items), others crave uniqueness (standing out in the crowd) while others yet might like variety or choices (visiting lots of friends/family, holiday shopping in lots of unordinary places). Every consumer has a different order of needs at different times. SMM provides all four of those needs all the time. Where traditional marketing has only focused on the middle of the curve area…and not worked with consumer NEEDS. This results in the consumer navigating through the world without the influence of marketing.
Consumers have shifted their spending with an awareness using online reviews, social media sites, chats and emails from friends. This puts the reins in their hands, helping them make informed decisions. Meanwhile, marketing budgets have been shrinking making it harder for marketers to create awareness let alone interest in their products. With budget cuts tight, businesses and marketers need to lean to digital as opposed to traditional. Smart Marketers will take that jump using digital to enhance the brand experience with current customers and acquire new ones through “word-of-mouth” marketing.
As 72% of consumers say prior experience has driven their brand loyalty, 58% of online adults say they trust online reviews MORE than any other medium except chat/emails from friends. For marketers to do more with less dollars, they will need to STOP focusing on gaining and spend more with current customers. Those customers will be your “word-of-mouth” marketing campaign.
Also use digital means to enhance how you connect with consumers making your brand responsive and connected to the consumers ever shifting needs.