Digital Marketing in the Era of Instant Gratification
By Keltyn Marshall
I think we’re all aware of how the technological era has impacted our lives for better and for worse.
As a 90s kid I had the opportunity to grow up relatively tech free. As a 10 year old, I played the occasional game of Minesweeper on my HP Pavilion 5000, and in Junior High had the joy of chatting on AIM and MSN after school with my friends (who else misses those days?). I got my first cell phone at 11, but was only allowed to use it for emergencies. I sent my first text ever on Valentine’s Day when I was 13. So, yes, technology was present in my life, but it certainly wasn't at prevalent as it is now.
Now, there is the satisfaction of instant gratification when it comes to technology. Hungry and want a poutine? Order from Skip the Dishes. Need a ride to a friend’s house? Get an Uber. Looking for a party date? Swipe through Tinder. Bored? Text every friend in your address book and see who responds first.
We have access to anything and everything almost immediately, and therefore the level of patience that we have has become extremely low. When you are used to having everything RIGHT NOW, waiting even a few seconds longer than anticipated can be the most stressful thing ever.
Ramesh Sitaraman, a professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst did a study to see at what point people begin to leave a Youtube video that loads slowly. He found that after just two second of loading, videos would begin to lose viewers, and that every additional second of waiting marked a 5.8 percent increase in lost viewers. This meant that after 40 seconds or more of loading time, one third of the audience would have been lost already.
So what does this mean for businesses?
While it may seem like you need to be the first and fastest when it comes to digital marketing, what it really means is that constant and steady marketing tactics will help you ultimately win the race.
Instant gratification doesn't just impact us on a personal level. If you are managing your company’s digital marketing campaigns you probably feel the pressure from your boss to get followers, fans, likes, comments, leads, and sales RIGHT NOW.
Sorry to break it to you (and your boss) but that’s not how it works. Digital marketing is a fast moving train, and there are no loopholes that can lead you towards success, not even bots. Why? Head over here to read a great blog post from Later about automation and why you shouldn’t use bots.
How DO you succeed? By creating communities, engaging with your followers, building a strong presence, and setting yourself as an authority. Each of these takes time and a lot of effort, but patience is a virtue.
Here are a few examples of how brands can engage their audiences while both keeping them attentive and bringing in a strong ROI for their digital marketing efforts.
Speak to a Specific Audience
GoPro was able to focus in on their audience to provide them with a solution to their need for live-action video. They centred their images and messaging specifically towards sports enthusiasts and leave zero room for competitors in the market.
Provide Value with Images
It’s been said a million times, a picture is worth 1,000 words. Given that the audience is most likely skimming through the webpage, or swiftly scrolling past a social message, we need to find the problem that needs to be solved, and illustrate it: You want your audience to see why they should care as quickly as possible. Through using images, you are able to instantly communicate a message and help your audience come to terms with the problem that they have, and see exactly how you can solve it for them. You can provide them with more information - should they choose to read it - in text form, as your audience grows more interested and attentive towards your product or service.
Only Take the Information That You Need
Is your Call To Action to get the audience to sign up for your newsletter? Start a free trial? Great, make that sign up form transparent, and easy to fill out. Only ask for the information that you need. Tinder allows new users to sign up with their already existing Facebook accounts and Facebook directly feeds the necessary information to the users’ Tinder profile. With some quick location, and age restriction adjustments, the user can begin swiping for dates pretty immediately.
Focus on Customer Retention
Getting new customers is a lot harder than retaining ones you already have. Given that people nowadays are much less brand loyal then before, you must keep them happy. How? Keep lines of communication open, be transparent, and engage continuously.
Follow the 8 Second Rule
According to a study by Microsoft Corp, we have shorter attention spans than a goldfish.
So how do we combat this as marketers? We try to create content that can be consumed in 8 seconds or less or we lose our audience. Create a hook right at the beginning that grabs the audience and can hold them until you get your required message across, and don’t forget that simplicity is key.
I’ll leave you with one of my favourite videos that touches on the topic of Instant Gratification
If you would like Naheyawin to audit your current digital marketing efforts and provide you with a comprehensive strategy shoot us a message!