The marketing of the right moment

Monday, 2 april 2018 | Brenda Rodríguez López

Is it just a matter of luck to be in the right place at the right time? Maybe it is on some specific occasions but, as a general rule, those moments are sought, they are not found. That is the great role of Real Time Marketing, identifying those ideal opportunities and take the best advantage of those circumstances that appear before marketers at certain moments. But, how can professionals discover and benefit from these opportunities?

 

One of the great advantages of digital media over the traditional type is its ability to interact with the public in real time. Some actions carried out, for example, in social networks, can generally have a massive impact that also grows exponentially in a very short period of time. The Internet arrival has transformed the marketing world. Now strategies cannot only be measured accurately, segmented by audience types or be personalized, they can also adapt or reinvent themselves according to the circumstances and according to how the masses respond.

Demanding, connected and difficult to conquer

The Internet has opened a digital space where immediacy reigns. The population is increasingly connected and its response is faster. The customer is now more demanding and the "here and now" is stronger than ever. When the masses have the ability to intervene in few seconds, they also want companies to be able to react to their demands quickly. Awakening their interest is also more difficult. The media is no longer a newness. Most companies have presence on the Internet and users are bombarded by a multitude of information every day through different digital channels -infoxication-. This overexposure and hyperconnectivity affects the effectiveness of digital marketing. In turn, this pressing and difficult to conquer audience has a greater weight in the decision making of the brands. It is not surprising when a single comment in a "post" can initiate a  reputational crisis or a retweet can start a message viralization.

In this complex and immediate context, brands are increasingly aware of the power that the choice of a precise moment together with the execution of an appropriate strategy according to the company's circumstances and commercial objectives can have. That is precisely the objective of Real Time Marketing, knowing how to turn a situation around or take advantage of the "here and now" whenever is possible. Controlling this strategy is complicated and requires a process of preparation and evaluation. On the other hand, artificial intelligence and Big Data are the breeding ground that promises that Real Time Marketing has come not only to stay some time, but to have an important role in the future.

Ebay trusts on weather to conquer customers

Choosing an illustrative example of Real Time Marketing is difficult, because there are more and more cases. Perhaps a recent one that reflects well the previous work of preparation that these plans need and how marketers can take advantage of the right moment to reach the right audience is the "weather" advertising of Ebay. Not only there are marketing in real time cases on social networks, although this is their star channel. There are many ways that these strategies can be supported. In particular, this brand has decided to opt for digital outdoor advertising -Digital Signage-.

The marketing professionals who work for this company consider that these Easter holidays period  in UK, characterized by many workers have decided not to risk going on vacation due to the bad weather of the past weeks and most of them have already gotten their monthly payment, can be an ideal time to carry out a campaign. This spring the weather in this area of the continent is more unpredictable than usual and to encourage potential consumers to buy, they have decided to adapt their open air advertising to the weather conditions at the moment thanks to the data that they get in real time from the Met Office. If the day is sunny they advertise gardening items, if it is cloudy or it rains, home improvements or a cupboard renovation.

The marketing of the right moment

Finding and getting benefit from the right moment

Brands like Oreo, Audi and Walgreens have been able to take advantage of unforeseen circumstances such as the blackout of the 47th edition of the Super Bowl or firms like Warburtons and Nissan UK of announcements such as Kate Middleton's first pregnancy. Other companies have promoted campaigns in real time not related to a specific event or news, but with powerful actions capable of capturing the attention of the potential customers at the right time. This was the case of the Guatemalan shoe brand Meet Pack, winner of the 2012 Cannes prize for its "Hijack" campaign. This retail company chose to combine geolocation and gamification to achieve that customers who entered into the competitors' stores got at that precise moment a discount of 99% on products through an app, a promotion that dropped one percentage point to every second that passed by. The result, hundreds of customers literally ran through the shopping center after entering in other stores to end up buying in this shop. The brand managed to turn their weakness into a fortress, being surrounded by rival stores was no longer a problem, but an advantage.

In this digital and hyperconnected age, brands need to react faster than ever to the opportunities and threats that they find on their way. This mission requires an in-depth knowledge of the context, the  correct identification of the right circumstances and moments, and the development and execution of original strategies that manage to capture the attention of the public. The goal is to make our brand standing out from the rest. What are the keys to finding the right moments then?

  • PLANNING: Real Time Marketing must be able to predict what the potential client's needs will be and anticipate them, offering consumers what they need at the right time and identifying the events that may be important for them. It is important that the team of professionals who carry out this work know their functions well and those are well defined. They should plan the actions, find possible opportunities, set key dates in the calendar and design appropriate strategies at each situation. Contrary to what may seem, Real Time Marketing does not consist of answering with an ingenious phrase of a striking image to a post on social networks, it needs a previous planning work.
  • EVALUATION: Professionals must be able to value and respond appropriately to the context, follow current affairs, keep up to date and monitor events and news that may be important. Not only must they identify opportunities, but also threats to reverse the possible negative consequences that they have on their image and reputation. For example, Real Time Marketing can be very effective to combat the spread of fake news.
  • IMMEDIACY: Marketers cannot afford to miss the train. If they do not react at the right time, they will lose the opportunity to make an impact and the repercussion of the message will not be the same, even in some cases, a delayed reaction can be counterproductive for the brand. It is therefore very important to be ready to act at any time.
  • IMPACT: Standing out from the crowd requires a great deal of creativity, ingenuity and, on many occasions, humor. In order to generate an impact, the action must attract the attention of that demanding public that is increasingly impassive when facing the multitude of advertising impacts that they get every day.

At the CEU IAM Business School we are aware of the challenges that the new digital marketing professionals face, precisely because of this, we have designed the Master in Digital Marketing with a blended-learning methodology that makes it possible to combine your education and training with your day-to-day. This is a master's degree focused on our students having the tools and acquiring the necessary knowledge to use the different digital strategies in a sector that has experienced continuous growth and transformation for years.