Interactive Marketing Gives Us a Voice
When the Harvard Business Review did a story on the future of Interactive Marketing in 1996, the internet was just gaining steam, social media actually didn’t exist, and direct mail and toll-free calls were still being used to measure customer interest; however, they predicted that “The fact is that there is a reasonable chance that interactive media—including the Web—could transform the way we build brands and communicate them to consumers.” I guess they were on to something!
Interactive Marketing Today
Fast forward to 2017, and Interactive Marketing and the Internet go hand in hand. Very rarely do we see marketing that doesn’t have some customer feedback, even if it is hidden from everyday views. Businesses can gauge interest by hits, views, and likes, and review analytics and other backend data collection. More obvious is that companies ask for feedback and then tailor their message to meet the needs of the customer because they know that buyers want to participate with the brands they buy. Interactive Marketing works because it not only leads to greater customer satisfaction but brand loyalty and ongoing feedback. It is a win-win for both the customer and the company.
We All Have a Voice
Today’s customer expects just as much interaction from the big box chains as from the mom and pop shops. ExpoTV.com completed a survey that states 55% of respondents prefer to have ongoing communications with the companies they buy from, and 89% of respondents feel more loyal to a company if they are invited to provide feedback. When a user asks a question or a statement expressing their appreciation for the brand and is responded to, it offers businesses the unique opportunity to engage customers as an equal partner, without seeming invasive.
Interactive Continues to Evolve
Interactive Marketing has evolved into interactive content, known as content that your target market can not only read but interact with like quizzes, assessments, polls, surveys, contests, and some infographics. More recently, we have seen the emergence of commenting campaigns which are an organized effort to remark on other people’s blogs and social media posts. This relationship between bloggers (businesses) and blog readers (customers) is an excellent avenue to share opinions, ideas, attract traffic, and keep your momentum going.
Think Beyond the Internet
Interactive Marketing makes advertising more dynamic all around. People usually first think of social media or forums, but websites, search engine marketing, videos, blogging, and email campaigns are equally apt to handle this goal. The most effective Interactive Marketing campaigns will be personal, where each experience is unique to each user. In this fashion, customers feel like their opinion is valued and they are being “heard” by the retailer. Businesses gain access to opinions, demographics, and preferences instantaneously and can tailor their message.