You would be hard pushed to find anyone who thinks that the landscape of marketing hasn’t changed over the last 5-10 years. Digital is now the central aspect of any marketing strategy and social marketing plays a huge part of this. The majority of sales journeys now start with a web search, whether through a search engine or a social network site, and reviews play a central part in the customer’s decision-making.
So how, in such an uncontrollable digital universe, can marketers get a positive return on their investment?
Perhaps the answer is a paradigm shift…
Currently social media marketers, amongst many others, are scrambling to uncover the best methods of proving ROI for social marketing. However, the fundamental problem with this process is that ROI simply measures the effectiveness of a particular activity, or combination thereof. The real successes through channels such as social media come from the creation of brand ambassadors who help gain you even more customers by posting positive reviews and sharing content on social networks.
This ambassador, or word-of-mouth, marketing is hard, if not completely impossible, to measure the ROI of. You may not know what ambassadors you have, what they are doing to further your brand image or how effective they are at driving customers toward your business. However, research, experience and increased sales all seem to point toward the effectiveness of marketing through ambassadors.
So the question becomes: What new paradigm will see the creation of more brand ambassadors?
Here we would suggest that we shift to ‘delight’ marketing. By this we mean you strive above all else to not just satisfy your customer’s needs, but you delight them by going the extra mile.
This is not a new concept at all. Many service industries are built upon delight marketing as they know every little extra effort counts when you have such tough competition. Nowadays there is tougher competition than ever, with new companies popping up all the time while older, more established companies are suffering a cut in marketing budget. Couple this with the emergence of a user-created and controlled environment, such as social networks, and it becomes obvious that delight marketing is needed to stand out from the crowd.
As an example, we may be contracted to design a client’s website. The client’s median expectation is likely that we will use a brief and some further questioning to define the style and overall content features for their site and that we would then use this information to create something that is generally well-designed and needs only a few tweaks to make suitable.
Accomplishing this general expectation would satisfy our customers, but it wouldn’t create a brand ambassador out of them. However, if we were to not only deliver a well-designed website but also a list of practical tips on website optimisation for social media along with a £500 PPC voucher then we would much more likely have a brand ambassador on our hands leading to both return and referral business.
What is your experience with ‘delight’ marketing? Do you have any tips or practices that you have found particularly effective?
You can always send in your ideas to us on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn