Why is Digital channel imperative for Retailers?

Today, brands across industries and geographies are employing the use of social media such as Facebook and Twitter to maximise their reach.
Digital Channel

From the first fire to shooting giant space shuttles in the sky, the reason why mankind prospered and evolved so much is because it has always held a curious fascination for the latest.

The invention of the internet generated a somewhat similar interest, making people explore the Pandora’s Box hidden inside. With more and more people embracing the latest technology with the greatest alacrity, the rise of internet and internet-based devices has also resulted in a significant change in the business environment as well the consumer mindset.

Reaching out to this evolved, informed and tech-savvy clutch of customers through their preferred medium, i. e. digital, is therefore the perfect way to influence their consumption behaviour today.

A general strategy adopted by an organisation to market a product two decades ago would have been to flood the billboards and newspapers by splurging cash on massive ad campaigns. Digital marketing has made the approach much more efficient by employing the use of targeted marketing, which is easier on a digital platform. With more sophisticated technology, the marketing approaches have also adapted accordingly with ever changing dynamics of the ‘online’. Digital marketing has an edge over traditional marketing techniques on various grounds. A viewer browsing a how-to page on home decoration is much more likely to buy a decorative lamp set than an old man glancing at bill-boards on his daily walk. In this way, digital marketing has shifted the fundamental approach used to target a consumer in a more coherent way.

Today, brands across industries and geographies are employing the use of social media such as Facebook and Twitter to maximise their reach as the number of active users of these platforms globally is 1.58 billion and 320 million respectively. A research states that if a consumer follows a brand on Twitter, his/herpurchase intent is 72 per cent more than a consumer who isn’t engaged on the social network. This is because by being connected with target markets on platforms that they are always on, brands are able to carve a robust place in their mindscape. Unknowingly, the brand is able to create an image for itself that is more familiar and therefore more reliable in the minds of the customer.

Furthermore, with internet mega-giants mining and analysing chunks of ‘big data’, it has become even easier for brands to comprehend human behaviour and patterns, and then formulate a strategy collectively for better output. It has proved to be better than the previous phenomenon of split testing as it has more detailed data inputs which can be leveraged for personalised marketing. Customer perception can now be analysed at the touch of a single button and they can be then persuaded to buy a product in ways that appeal most to them at a specific level.

Digital technology gives brands the opportunity to express their identities lucidly across a much broader creative canvas. From product superiority, ideas that touch the heart, how-to videos and points of view on environment sustainability and social responsibility, every message contributes to paint a complete creative picture of the brand, which makes it more memorable for the consumers.

The brands that manage to engage customers with reasons apart from business are more likely to gain more consumer loyalty and a better response.

With people always curious for the latest technology, from smartphones to tablets to smart watches, there’s always room for brands to employ the digital platform to widen their gaze looking for innovative marketing techniques. The smartphone revolution has helped brands to create deeper penetration in the minds and hearts of consumers and has facilitated a more targeted approach. It has significantly made customer acquisition, engagement and retention much more effective and cost-efficient and is likely to create even more opportunities in the future to foster more meaningful and impactful customer relationship.

 This article is authored by Ramesh Kaushik, General Manager, Marketing, Grohe India

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