This is the second part of a blog based on Mary Meeker’s 2015 Internet Trends report which I learned about from a very good Business Wire blog, Tempo. If you missed part 1, you can click here to get caught up.
As previously discussed, imagery is a critical part of communicating with buyers. Image based peer-to-peer marketplaces such as Esty are enjoying robust growth, outpacing even eBay at a similar point in their life-cycle. Houzz, which combines content, community and commerce to present home improvement ideas recently conducted an interesting experiment by integrating an app that would allow people to visualize how home improvements would look in their actual home. While the development was a significant investment, the payoff was handsome, garnering three to four times higher engagement and increasing purchase conversions by 500 percent. It’s a validation to the power of visuals.
More companies are using social media as a place not just to engage consumers, but also to have real conversations with them. This includes the actual process of facilitating customer service, which is increasingly evolving from email-based communication to Facebook Messenger and similar online portals.
Not surprisingly, Gen Y customers do not want businesses to contact them via telephone and prefer social media or web chat overwhelmingly, however, people born before 1980 still prefer to be contacted via telephone. The older the person you are communicating with, the more likely they will prefer a telephone conversation.
We have had a lot of internal conversations about app development and when it is, or is not right for a client. On average, American users have 37 apps on their mobile device and use about a dozen daily, though only three will account for 80 percent of their usage. The most commonly used apps are Facebook, Chrome and YouTube. Some of our recent campaigns have shown a marked increase in the mobile traffic generated by Facebook ads, which underscores the need for your website to be truly mobile.
The study also indicated that internet advertising is still a great investment based on real ROI, IF you have the right voice and presence. Despite the growth over the past few years, pricing is still relatively low because online is fighting with an ensconced media buying structure and the situation has been further muddied as traditional media moves into digital space.
The study offers a number of other interesting insights, including the possibilities offered as voice recognition improves and the long-term future of the internet. It’s well worth a look. But here are the quick takeaways from the study, no matter the size of your business:
- People digest information from the internet differently than they have from traditional media. You must strive to create relationships. Brevity and relevance are gold.
- Start figuring out how to add media.
- Understand that your customers prefer to be communicated with in different ways. What you say and where you say it depends on who you are talking to.
- Make sure you website is up to snuff in terms of mobile.
- Look at how video can be integrated.
- Examine your ad spend and make sure that it is thoughtfully including online.
- Make sure you are engaging in relationships with consumers, not trying to “sell at them.”
Author Todd Marcum is an Access Cofounder, President and copywriter, contributing concepts and strategies to all Access clients. Working with the creative team, he has been recognized through hundreds of local, regional and national awards. Click here to learn more.