Interest and investment in augmented reality and immersive digital marketing is greater than it’s ever been before. Through the journey of evolving brands, we have witnessed the adoption of a mobile-first creative approach. Augmented Reality marketing provides brands with a highly desired tool in their belt when it comes to driving sales and enhancing brand value through mobile devices.
The explosive growth of immersive marketing saw big brand wins during the early days of the adoption of AR in marketing. Because of this, AR emerged as one of the fastest-growing digital marketing trends, alongside voice commerce and the use of first-party data. Industries ranging from e-commerce to fintech and FMCGs raced to leverage AR marketing for their brands.
This growth has been witnessed with Augmented Reality marketing playing a key role in social media marketing as well. While Snapchat was one of the first social media giants to adopt AR, Instagram was quick to follow. Google, too, launched AR powered 3D images in searches for products on various e-commerce brands early this year. This proves that AR can be used in multiple ways for a number of different reasons, whether it’s increasing user engagement or offering interactive elements for consumers.
The first step to creating a space to build AR-powered apps, experiences and campaigns were taken by tech giants like Facebook, Apple and Google. They created platforms like Spark AR, Apple’s ARKit, and Google’s ARCore which made it simpler to leverage AR in marketing and products for any brand.
But the doors for AR marketing only really opened with the conception of Facebook’s augmented reality suite Spark AR Studio. This tool allowed anyone to create their own filters and campaigns which could be utilized for Facebook and Instagram Stories. Free for all to use, Spark AR by Facebook has provided a platform for many brands to create their own AR effects and filters. This quickly launched Augmented Reality marketing to new heights.
While e-commerce brands, specifically beauty and lifestyle, were quick to tap into the feature by allowing customers to try out products, brands also leveraged AR for high impact brand awareness. A prime example of this was Adidas Original’s decision to create a custom AR effect that was in line with the trend of vintage filters and retro photographs at the time. Their filter added a nostalgic look to your stories, including a ‘glitch’ effect. This custom AR effect was extremely share-worthy, very on-trend and was perfect for building brand awareness!
AR marketing witnessed a peak in the entertainment industry as well, with several well-known media giants tapping into Augmented Reality marketing for the launch of largescale projects. Known celebrities and producers used AR in marketing for movies, TV shows, and even new music. This was seen most prominently with Netflix. One of their largest campaigns tied up with the New York Times and Google Lens for readers to scan and discover images that led to a Stranger Things reveal.
The use of Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality is expected to steadily grow as more brands across sectors leverage it to engage their core audience. India is projected to increase both the creation and consumption of immersive media following the global trend. Brands in real estate, media and entertainment, automotive, and retail are expected to showcase the maximum adoption due to clear use cases, as per the Nasscom Graphic: Geetanjali.
By 2022, over $6.5 billion would be the estimated size of the Indian immersive media market, with a higher percentage of it pouring in from the Augment Reality market. Around $5.9 billion is expected, in comparison to the $0.5 billion estimated from the VR market, due to higher costs for creation and execution. The explosive growth of 172% from 2018 to 2022 can be attributed to the easily accessible tools and adoption of Immersive media by top Indian brands.
AR marketing has the capability to improve and create an immersive experience thereby leading to better brand perception if created well. As such, it is essential for brands not to use AR for novelty purposes, but to build a more seamless experience that would provide a positive AR experience while thinking about the long-term benefits of the experience.
Brands like Pepsi, with their #SwagStepChallenge and Lifebuoy, with #LifebuoyKarona, have used AR filters to create hashtag challenges on channels like TikTok to increase buzz around the brand. They roped in celebrities and influencer marketing campaigns to further amplify their AR filters. This helped create a massive awareness of their brand recording explosive cumulative reach of over 85 Billion views on both hashtags on TikTok, without the notion of driving sales or action.
Augmented Reality is often perceived with the restricted utility reserved for selfies or social media filters. However, the Augmented Reality market can stretch further this with the capacity for much larger impact. The ability to allow a customer to try out products without leaving their home or their screen is a level of immersion and interaction that even interactive ads cannot offer.
By creating AR versions of a product or set of products, brands can provide customers with a better idea on the actual look and feel, while simultaneously setting the right expectations for them in terms of the deliverables.
Brands that have most heavily used and relied on leveraging the tool are present in the retail, beauty and lifestyle segments. L’Oréal’s virtual makeup tool was a path-defining AR creation which helped customers across the globe test and try their makeup virtually anywhere. They added another step helping to enhance the marketability - the option to try the superimposed makeup in real-time with the filter, or take an existing picture to upload and have the filter tested on.
On the other hand, providing a vision to home and interiors, IKEA paved a way for real estate companies by allowing customers to view their products in real-time within their own homes. This increased the possibility of purchase with increased visualization, leaving very little to the imagination.
The real estate sector now faces the need to implement AR in product visualisation as well, especially to keep up with marketing during COVID-19. With fewer brokers and agents taking on home visits due to the restrictions imposed by authorities, it has become difficult to meet the existing demand for house hunters. While many have turned to virtual tours, AR can significantly drive sales, during and after this pandemic.
Your core audience is bombarded with a colossal amount of marketing messages every day, making it hard for marketers to ensure their message is heard. Providing your brand with the parachute of AR and adding a layer of immersive marketing can place it above other brands in a consumer's mind.
Making the brand more interactive, healthcare brand Medlife leveraged Facebook Augmented Reality marketing to educate viewers on the CPR procedure. This created deeper engagement for the audience by providing learning and greater rewards to their subconscious mind as well.
For brands who are dependent on the physical store experience to drive business, Augmented Reality provides the potential to amplify this by creating a digital experience simultaneously. A frequent example of this is seen with QR codes and bar codes that can be scanned. Doing so pulls up an AR manual or experience with detailed information on the product and brand.
Two popular examples of Hyundai and Mercedes have showcased how the auto industry has utilized AR to improve customer experiences. While Hyundai created AR-powered manuals for drivers, Mercedes created an app integrating AI to ‘Ask Mercedes’ any questions relating to the product and brand similar to a chatbot.
Augmented reality is a tool which can transform the B2B customer-vendor experience with the help of a single click. Limitations of what a vendor is able to provide, along with the misaligned customer experiences, is eliminated with the help of AR.
Creating dynamic sales presentation material to the customer with AR-powered content can provide a virtual 360-degree look at their product lines, and is one of the most used technologies in the B2B space.
Ever imagined that you could be in two places at once? With the help of a VR headset, this can be achieved. This novelty soon became a reality as the COVID-19 outbreak caused many companies to shift to a work-from-home model. Business continuity is a key focus for organizations while they are also looking to stay home to stay safe, but also want to provide real-time experiences. VR technology plays an important role to achieve this.
Companies like Quess, which is focused on sales-driven marketing and human interaction has their employees getting AI-powered training on their mobile devices. The face-reading AI also provides them with real-time feedback on their voice modulation, tone and facial expressions and key notes to focus on for improvement.
The biggest learning digital marketers can take from this is that it’s time to adapt. Investing in the available AI technologies to maximize your results has become the need of the hour. It is critical for your brand to reach the objective of managing more data effectively and improving your consumer experience.
The creative potential of using AR in marketing can provide your concepts and campaigns with an increased potential for brand awareness and recognition. 2020 is the year to explore immersive marketing to maximize your brand’s potential. At Social Beat, we implement a mixed marketing strategy which includes AR to enhance our efforts and deliver results.
2019 marks the 11th year since YouTube’s entry into the Indian market. To help marketers and creators understand the massive impact YouTube has made in India and its importance in the digital ecosystem today, Youtube hosted the 2019 Brandcast in India.
YouTube currently has over 265M users in the country and this number is expected to reach 500M by 2020. This incredible number is in relation to the increase in the total number of internet users in India that has grown from 15M just five years ago to 100s of millions of users today. Its ability to provide a personalised media experience and offer content in various languages has made YouTube one of India’s most-used platforms.
Over the last 11 years, YouTube has become a platform for storytellers and creators to share content in different languages and reach an engaged audience in rural areas and big cities alike. It has become a success story for numerous YouTubers like ‘Mostly Sane’ who uses YouTube to discuss social issues such as mental health (the channel is currently at 3M subscribers) and more recently Priyanka Chopra, who chose YouTube to extend her audience reach with hew new show ‘If I could do just one thing’.
Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube, says it is the preferred social platform for creators and businesses alike due to its ability to reach out to a large audience pool in a personalised way. When Pepsi ran an ad campaign on YouTube, it saw a 14% increase in sales and 3.3x return in ad spend. Alternatively, Hyundai’s ad campaign had a massive audience reach of 221M. The ability to scale and impact on YouTube can result in business leading results. Currently, vernacular content is taking centre stage and has helped increase engagement across all channels.
Mark Patterson of Group M discussed the video revolution in India and how it has changed the way brands communicate with their customers. Group M is a media advertising company that has had a presence in Asia for more than 2 decades and is responsible for 1 in 2 ads in India.
Mark highlighted the evolution of the media landscape and how mobile video has become a secret weapon for many marketers. One of the main reasons for this is the change in the way users consume content and seek entertainment. They look for three things: convenience, customisation and choice. Statistics show that 60-70% of people in India consume content on mobile video every day.
The digital spends in India remain comparatively low when compared to China where 64% of ad spends is digital while this is only at 18% in India. However, India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world at a 14% GDP and digital ad spends is expected to catch up soon.
Mark Patterson also discussed the three main themes on the why and how of digital advertising in India and how YouTube affects these themes.
1. Driving results across through the funnel
YouTube has allowed marketers to have a mass reach and gain more awareness of their brand with tools such as YouTube Masthead.
2. Unlocking creativity
YouTube allows for personalised messaging that has helped deliver performance. This has resulted in a 20% uplift inconsideration, a 31% increase in awareness and a 900% increase in search queries.
3. Cross channel planning
While this is still a fairly new concept for most media agencies. Group M has taken a step in this direction by integrating YouTube reach data with Group M planning tools. This has helped them optimise maximum reach across multiple devices.
It is no secret that Youtube has become the secret weapon for many marketers to reach their target audience. To take advantage of the immense reach that Youtube offers, Social Beat collaborated with our client Sundaram Mutual to create a masthead ad to promote their new fund. This campaign generated incredible results, proving the effectiveness of Youtube as a medium to reach out to the target market.
Sundaram was launching an open-ended equity scheme and wanted to create awareness around their product within a short period of time. Digital marketing has been proven to provide finance companies with the reach they require so Youtube was the obvious choice when it came to achieving the objective.
Mastheads are usually charged on a daily basis so we used the 24 hour period we had as effectively as we could. To enable maximum viewership we ran the campaign over the weekend. For the entirety of the day any individual that accessed Youtube through their desktop, tablet or mobile device saw the masthead ad at the top of their pages. This helped us increase our subscriber base and drive traffic to the website.
The 20-second Sundaram masthead achieved phenomenal results. Sundaram’s subscriber base grew from 356 to an outstanding 56,000! It has increased since then and is currently standing at 57,000 and growing every day. The video also generated 14 million views in a span of 24 hours.
To achieve these incredible results, we adopted a digital-first marketing strategy to reach the target audience. We were also able to track and measure our results to scale the brand to new heights.
You can read more about our Youtube ad campaign with Sundaram Mutual here.
Ben Jones, Creative Director at Google says that 30% of ROI is driven by media elements and targeting data. The other 70% comes from creative. There are three elements that affect ROI in digital:
Many people assume that with all the content out there, the consumer’s attention span is decreasing but this is not true because people today prefer long-form content to short-form content. What has changed is how quickly consumers reject and accept the content they consume. The content needs to be longer, richer, deeper and grab the attention of the viewer faster.
Another way a brand can improve ROI is by understanding the customers better with more personalised messaging. They should change content according to the target audience and in a way that will allow the brand to relate to the customer better. Statistics show that customisation of the ads specific to the target market can result in a 10% lift in ad recall.
Research has shown that In India 60-70% of content is consumed via the mobile device. Therefore, when creating content, brands need to keep in mind that the shots framed and the stories told are optimised for the mobile user. It is important for agencies to rethink their digital content strategies this way so they are able to get the brand message to the target audience better.
To help agencies adopt the above strategies in their content plan, a new Rethink Council has been created to identify how brands can rethink their marketing and targeting to measure and maximise creativity to connect to the customer.
YouTube Brandcast India 2019 ended with an insightful discussion with world-renowned director Zoya Akhtar. She highlighted the importance of the role YouTube played in her recent film ‘Gully Boy’ and how she was able to discover and do in-depth research for the movie through YouTube. YouTube also played a huge role in promoting the supporting content for the movie such as trailers and interviews.
YouTube has played a crucial role in the evolution of digital media in India and YouTube Brandcast 2019 highlighted the importance of the digital platform and how it has changed the way people consume content in India.
Digital media is changing the landscape for marketers everywhere, especially in the FMCG sector. Traditionally, campaigns for every FMCG product would depend upon determining the right marketing mix of the 4 P’s (Product, Price, Place and Promotion) that would best influence the target audience’s purchase decisions. Today, however, consumers are making buying-decisions differently and with this, strategies aimed at impacting this process need to evolve as well.
Consumers now are exposed to their phone and laptop screens more than they are to traditional media like television, newspapers and billboards. There are also a growing number of consumers who prefer to shop online for FMCG products rather than visit a physical store. According to a report by Google and Bain and Co. $11 billion, or two-thirds, of the total sales in beauty and hygiene products will be influenced through online marketing. In today’s digital era, a strong full-funnel digital marketing strategy is indispensable for FMCG brands
Digital marketing for FMCG companies doesn’t mean retiring the tried and tested 4 P’s which formed the holy grail of marketing for years. Instead, it involves tweaking the marketing mix for FMCG products to bring them into the current era. Digital marketing trends in FMCG allow marketers to not just capture the consumer at the final buying stage, but also to establish a relationship with them from the start, something that was not possible before. This requires marketers to formulate a holistic FMCG digital strategy to not just influence their consumers, but also to personally engage with them.
Incorporating a strong digital marketing strategy in the overall marketing mix offers many clear advantages to brands.
The FMCG sector is marked by a large variety of similar products, which offer consumers a wide range to choose from. One of the biggest advantages of having an effective digital marketing strategy in place is that it helps brands create a unique brand identity. This helps consumers form a strong opinion of the brand, which will ultimately influence their purchase decision.
In traditional marketing for FMCG, the product display was considered one of the most important factors which influenced purchase decisions. Consumers are visual creatures, so the more attractive your packaging, the higher the chance of it being noticed by them. In much the same way, digital marketing for FMCG companies can be approached as a virtual shelf display. It is even more effective than a physical display because it helps you reach your specific target audience, making your overall marketing strategy more cost-effective. This enables top-of-mind awareness, which can influence purchase decisions. Like physical shelves, digital marketing also allows you to position your products contextually. Through tools like AdWords Smart Display, you can showcase your products while consumers browse through similar categories. For example, if you are a skincare brand, you can display your ads next to beauty blogs your consumers are browsing through.
Often, your product's own website is one of the best ways to showcase your brand because you have complete control of a user's experience on it. Anmol, a household name in the northern and eastern regions of India, wanted to upgrade their website. We completely did away with the old, lifeless website and gave it a fresh new look that was as vibrant as their products. Our UX, content and design teams adopted an out-of-the-box approach that had a generation-wide appeal, complete with interactive elements, engaging language and quirky designs.
Read about the full journey here: A Young and Vibrant Website for One of India's Most Loved Biscuit and Cake Brands
One of the biggest advantages digital marketing has over traditional marketing is that it helps you track every facet of your marketing efforts. FMCG brands spend large sums on hoardings, TV commercials, print ads, radio ads and more. However, the results of these campaigns are very difficult to measure effectively. While speculative figures can be produced, there is no way to arrive at a definite conclusion.
Digital marketing, on the other hand, helps you track and measure every aspect of your campaign. With the help of analytic tools, brands can recover information about number of impressions, clicks, conversions and more. It also lets them find out exactly which ad prompted the consumer to make the purchase. Advanced analytics can even let you gain deep consumer insights. This can help you create campaigns and content that your target audience will actually find engaging. With the ease of tracking digital marketing offers, FMCG brands can refine their strategies and make it more cost-effective.
Offline purchases might still form the bulk of FMCG sales but the future belongs to mobile phones. Mobile phones and high speed, affordable internet have penetrated almost every section of the Indian audience. A significant portion of Indian consumers are shopping for FMCG products online through various apps and this number is only going to grow. Digital marketing trends in FMCG need to keep up with the increasing volume of customers who prefer to shop online.
One of the biggest areas of growth in mobile usage will be in tier 2 cities and small towns in India. FMCG brands need to stay up-to-date on the constantly evolving digital marketing trends in these tier 2 and tier 3 cities. Unless brands solidify their FMCG digital strategy now, they are going to witness severe drawbacks in the future.
Digital media offers a number of streams for FMCG brands to market themselves. These various platforms also help brands meet a number of marketing objectives, right from creating awareness and brand building to driving conversions and cultivating brand loyalty.
For a long time, the focus of marketing strategies for FMCG brands revolved around a one-way promotion of their products. Today, however, digital marketing trends in FMCG are shifting the focus to creating user-centric content that brings actual value to consumers’ lives. By creating informative content, you can drive conversation among your consumers and build strong communities. Having a solid community is crucial to developing a loyal consumer base. Digital marketing can help strengthen your brand’s community through a number of innovative content marketing strategies that work.
Clever use of content marketing is essential because it helps establish your authority in the space. For example, Johnson & Johnson created BabyCenter.com, a website for moms to share information and engage through helpful forums. While not overtly a part of Johnson & Johnson, all ads displayed on BabyCenter.com were for the brand. This allowed Johnson & Johnson to build a strong community of moms they could tap into to sell their products. This kind of user-focused marketing is unique to digital marketing and helps brands promote their products more effectively than ever before.
Another facet of content marketing that is essential for FMCG brands is creating SEO-friendly content. Incorporating a strong SEO plan as well as including strategies for content amplification is crucial because it drives consumers to your website, enabling them to become more aware of your brand. Keyword-optimized content also helps consumers find you when they have a query, which goes a long way in establishing your brand’s credibility in that domain.
Facebook is undeniably one of the biggest avenues for digital marketing. Through advanced tools for social media analytics, you can find your target audience, refine your marketing strategy and even drive conversions. The Facebook custom audience tool can help you widen your target audience and reach them through your campaigns. FMCG brands can also use Facebook to get deeper insights into consumer behaviour. For example, Raaga Professionals innovatively used an audience poll on Facebook to simultaneously understand the needs of their consumers as well as advertise their products.
However, your consumers aren’t using only Facebook and as a brand, neither should you. Digital marketing for FMCG brands needs to be integrated over various channels to have the maximum impact. This includes ads which play before a Youtube video, promotions through Twitter, Instagram posts and much more. Effective digital marketing for FMCG even includes SEO-friendly content, so your brand shows up when consumers search for a related need. With an increase in the number of FMCG products showing up online, Google Ads are also another important avenue for FMCG marketing.
Videos have emerged as one of the most consumed forms of content. The massive growth of platforms like YouTube and TikTok are testament to this renewed interest in video content. Because of this, any successful digital strategy for an FMCG brand should include a strong video strategy. One of the main advantages of using videos for your product is the unlimited room for creativity it offers.
For our video campaign for Wonderchef, we broke away from the stereotypical product-centric video formats and instead tried to explore video concepts that could spark a conversation among our audience. One insight that came out was that the kitchen was traditionally considered a 'woman's domain' and a lot of men were unaware of even the basics of cooking. In order to highlight this inequality and to encourage men to take up more responsibilities in the kitchen, we created the 'Dear Man Hold the Pan' campaign. In this video, we asked a number of men in Mumbai basic questions about cooking. Expectedly, most were unable to answer and many gave downright hilariously wrong answers. This video put forth a strong social message in a humorous way and quickly went viral on social media.
Traditionally, FMCG advertisements were a one-way interaction, with brands informing consumers about their products over TV commercials, radio spots and print ads. Advertising was done mostly when there was a new product or service to promote. Buying space in traditional media is expensive and only allows for a one-way communication. This is why brands were unable to consistently engage with their consumers.
Digital media is changing all of that permanently. Digital marketing has a clear edge over traditional marketing when it comes to generating user engagement. Digital marketing trends in FMCG products are aimed towards establishing your brand as a constant presence in your consumers’ lives. Through shareable content, helpful information and meaningful interaction, brands can continue to stay relevant at all times. This helps consumers recall your brand at the time of making a purchase decision. Whole Foods, for example, utilised chatbots in their digital marketing strategy to engage consumers and direct them towards completing a purchase.
Influencer marketing is proving to be one of the most important digital marketing trends in FMCG. Through the use of influencers, your brand can tap into their huge number of followers and increase consumer awareness of your products. Influencer marketing is also very useful for FMCG brands because consumers are more likely to believe in the credibility of your brand when an influencer whom they trust recommends it to them.
A one-size-fits-all marketing campaign is no longer effective for FMCG products. While email marketing in general keeps your consumers updated on latest products and promotions, drip emails in particular are a groundbreaking way to personalize your marketing tactics. Drip emails, also known as automated emails, are a set of emails that are sent to consumers based on a specific set of parameters. For example, there will be one email that is sent to consumers when they first sign up, one that will be sent if consumers add products to their cart but leave without completing the purchase, one that will be sent after a purchase is made and so on.
Drip email campaigns are one of the most effective lead nurturing strategies. These automated mails can target consumers at a number of different stages, ultimately guiding them towards making a purchase. This technique can prove a very effective step in digital marketing for FMCG companies by helping influence the consumer decision making process. Automated emails which are sent when consumers abandon their shopping carts are particularly effective, because it pushes the consumer to complete the purchase. Drip emails also help you retarget consumers who have already purchased your products. Research show that consumers who have purchased your products in the past are more likely to do so again in the future.
While this may sound self-evident, not many FMCG products actually sell their products online. To this day, even if FMCG advertisements are being displayed on digital media, their marketing efforts are aimed at influencing the consumer’s in-store purchase decision. But with the launch of many websites that let you purchase FMCG products online, an increasing number of consumers are beginning to shop online. In this case, even if a consumer has every intention of purchasing your product, they will choose a competitor’s product if yours is unavailable online. FMCG brands can choose to sell products through Amazon and Facebook or similar sites to increase sales.
Selling products online also gives you the advantage of being able to reach consumers beyond a limited geographical location. For example, a local makeup brand can start selling their products nationally by making it available online. This ultimately increases the consumer base for FMCG products, a key factor in eventually increasing sales. With a few simple steps, selling online through Amazon and other sites is a very easy way for FMCG brands to increase their online presence. For example, Raaga Professionals, a personal care brand, sells their products through Nykaa. In this way, their content marketing through blogs can direct consumers to a clear point of purchase.
For most FMCG brands, tier 2 and tier 3 cities offer the next big avenue for growth. At the same time, most consumers in these areas are becoming more digitally connected. While the number of English-speaking users online has more or less peaked, regional language users are only going to grow from here. This has been facilitated in a huge part by the dual penetration of mobile phones and internet connectivity in India’s smaller towns. A study conducted by Google and KPMG estimates that the number of non-English speakers using the internet will grow by around 18 percent annually. Additionally, 99 percent of these users will access the internet primarily through their mobile phone. For FMCG brands, this offers a huge opportunity to leverage digital marketing to attract this new wave of consumers. The growth of regional content online will be one of the key factors that can influence FMCG sales in tier 2 and tier 3 cities.
Cavin’s Milkshake is one of the top-selling dairy-based drinks sold by the parent company CavinKare. These milkshakes are sold in single-serving sized tetra paks, and are known for their delicious flavour variants and high adherence to quality standards. Cavin’s is also one of the best examples for a well-thought out digital marketing strategy. Through the use of creative and engaging posts over social platforms like Instagram and Facebook, Cavin’s was able to successfully utilize social media for their brand building efforts.
Cavin’s Milkshake maintains an active Facebook profile, with funny, creative posts that attract a large number of comments and shares. They also have a very large, vibrant community on Facebook who actively engage with the brand by writing positive reviews on their page and interacting with their posts.
Cavin’s Milkshake is a staple in most school canteens and the product brings back a flood of nostalgic school memories. The #JustHighSchoolThings campaign for Cavin’s stuck to the same theme, by associating the brand with school memories most people have in common. The campaign showcased the most common characters most of us were familiar with in school such as ‘The Geek’ and ‘Cutest Couple’ through Cavin’s Milkshakes. These posts were very popular throughout social media, garnering a high reach and number of audience reactions. What is most noteworthy about these posts is that they have performed well organically, proving that excellent content is the most important aspect of digital marketing for FMCG companies
Cavin’s Milkshake utilized Instagram extensively for brand-building. Through the use of striking visuals, their posts on Instagram were able to generate high levels of engagement from their followers. Their Instagram posts involved the clever use of popular memes, special events and engaging artwork tied in with their products. In this way, digital marketing for FMCG companies can help keep brands relevant by immediately cashing in on the latest trending topics.
Instagram was also an important channel for Cavin’s to rope in their followers and build a strong community. With the hashtag #Cavin’sSuperstar, each month, Cavin’s Milkshake showcased one of their followers and asked them a few fun questions about their love affair with Cavin’s. This was an excellent social engagement technique to foster brand loyalty and encourage participation.
Cavin’s Milkshake was able to successfully utilize influencer marketing to reach moms who would ultimately purchase the product for their children. One of the key influencers roped in for Cavin’swas RichaChoudhary who runs the blog All That’s Mom. As part of the influencer marketing campaign, RichaChoudhary wrote a blog post on Cavin’s Milkshake, along with 2 social media posts on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, plus a short video for Cavin’s. These posts performed extremely well on the blog as well as on social media. Through the innovative use of Cavin’s Milkshake in recipes as well as her posts on how much her child loved Cavin’s Milkshake, the product developed a positive brand perception from her huge follower base.
Apart from macro-influencers, Cavin’ Milkshake also worked with a number of micro-influencers on Instagram. These micro-influencers put up a number of posts where they talked about their positive experiences with the brand, used it in recipes and recommended it to their followers.
Through the innovative use of various social media platforms, Cavin’s Milkshake was able to build their brand identity and reach out to their consumers.
The perfect marketing mix for FMCG advertisements involves a customized combination of digital and traditional media. Developing this unique mix requires a deep understanding of your consumers. Consumers often use their phones and laptops in tandem with other forms of media. For example, they might be browsing on their laptop while watching TV or checking their phone while listening to the radio in their car. This is why digital marketing for FMCG companies also need to develop strategies that effectively blend both these channels. With campaigns and FMCG advertisements that are spread over multiple platforms, brands can develop consumer awareness and influence purchase decisions.
As a ground-breaking development, Facebook is replacing its relevance score -the ad metric that measures the success of your ad campaign with more measurable metrics. Facebook is retiring this score at the end of April and is replacing it with three different granular metrics such as:
Quality ranking: A metric that measures the quality of your ad as compared to other ads intended for the same target audience.
Engagement ranking: A metric that compares your expected engagement rate to other ads targeted for the same audience.
Conversion ranking: A metric that compares your expected conversion rates to ads with the same target audience and optimisation goals.
The relevance score is a metric that tells you whether your ad is relevant to the audience it is going out to. The new metrics that are being rolled out are similar to the relevance score but are a more detailed analysis.
According to Facebook’s official announcement, ”When used together, ad relevance diagnostics will help advertisers understand whether changes to creative assets, audience targeting or the post-click experience might improve performance."
Whenever you run an ad on Facebook, it takes a look at your campaign goal and your target audience to understand what your audience is likely to do after seeing your ad. In other words, the relevance score is based on the expected action of your audience.
Since the relevance score is based on expected performance, it is indeed a vague parameter to measure the success of your ad. It is one of the primary reasons why Facebook has replaced the relevance score with three granular metrics. The greatest advantage of granular metrics is that they give you a more in-depth and focussed view of your ad’s performance. According to Facebook, these metrics will help advertisers offer the best user experience for their audience. Facebook advertisers can get better insights to produce engaging videos to drive traffic and revenue.
Apart from relevance score, Facebook is planning to shut down six other metrics such as saved offers, cost per offers saved, messaging replies, cost per messaging replies, mobile app purchase and web purchase.
The three granular metrics will be rolled out by Facebook from April 30, 2019. It is highly important for advertisers to keep a tab of these metrics as they help with specialised insights about ad performance. This is indeed crucial for advertisers to strategise high-quality ad campaigns and improve their optimisation initiatives for better brand visibility and revenue.
A good digital marketing strategy is one that empowers your brand, but a great digital marketing strategy is one that empowers your consumer. This saying is particularly true if you belong to the jewellery industry – where the customer is queen! Today, digital marketing for jewellery brands is no longer an option – it is a necessity to drive store visits, increase brand awareness and elevate the image of your brand. Read on for fool-proof digital marketing tips to mark your territory in the online space.
Building a household brand name is every marketer’s prime objective and the first step to that is by creating a strong online presence. Jewellery brands need to focus on the following digital marketing techniques that double up as a powerful foundation for future digital strategies:
Whether you have an online store or a showroom, a great website is key to attract more customers and significantly increase your revenue. Opt for a crisp and clean design that helps tell your brand story. Apart from being aesthetically appealing, great design also provides unmatched user experience, creating a seamless transition from an inquisitive lead to a loyal consumer. However, a remarkable design needs to be backed up with great content that keeps your audience engaged. You also need multiple web pages on the homepage that provide in-depth information about your brand and landing pages that behave as e-commerce portals that highlight a particular line of products.
Featured below is the landing page design incorporated for Gehna – an online boutique that specializes in authentic hand-crafted jewellery. The page has a clean layout and enticing images for a pleasant user experience. As you can see, the product is described in a clear-cut manner with no distractions and a relevant CTA.
In today’s digital age, almost every process – right from buying a bracelet that matches your attire to deciding which type of jewellery should be worn for various occasions – begins with a simple Google search. Ensure your brand appears on the first page of the World’s most-used search engine by creating an ultimate SEO checklist accompanied by various link-building techniques and SEO plugins for WordPress. A detailed keyword research and competitor analysis to know what your target audience is searching for is a good way to understand what type of content works.
The one thing that the Internet is known for is tons of valuable information that helps you make an informed decision – and blogging is one of the most effective digital marketing techniques to deliver that. Websites that feature a blog page have 434% more indexed pages on Google which means they are recognised and ranked easily, increasing the probability of appearing on the first page. Jewellery brands need to leverage the reach of informative blogs and go the extra mile with creative infographics, embedded videos and intriguing images that keep viewers hooked. The blogs can cover all aspects of buying jewellery – from tips to keep in mind while choosing a diamond to bridal jewellery looks for the contemporary bride.
Everyone who is anyone is on social media! Reach the very palm of your target audience with a strong social media presence that draws them towards your brand. Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest are great digital marketing platforms to increase the exposure of your jewellery brand. Opt for innovative social media campaigns to create awareness about your brand, promote your products and engage with your followers.
Featured below is a Valentine’s Day campaign we ran for Malabar Gold and Diamonds. We created a series of grid posts on Instagram that utilise the entire screen space on the feed. This drove a lot of engagement on the page that led to a whopping 1500 new followers!
Videos are a great way to tell a million stories in each frame. Connect with your audience and push them further down the marketing funnel with compelling videos that convert. Begin by creating a YouTube channel and attract subscribers through optimised videos that show up on the user’s feed based on the keywords entered. Digital marketing for jewellery brands through videos comes with a lot of creative freedom due to the luxurious and fun aspect of the product. Keeping your target audience in mind, you can create thought-provoking snippets through video campaigns that are guaranteed to draw in more subscribers and build your brand image online.
Nothing is more powerful than an influential source suggesting your brand to a potential consumer. Leverage the power of word-of-mouth marketing through social influencers who have a strong following. Keeping the creative space of the jewellery sector in mind, marketers have a huge potential to tap through bloggers and lifestyle influencers. You can also collaborate with influencer marketing platforms, like influencer.in, to hand-pick influencers who resonate with your brand and reach your target audience in a seamless and hassle-free manner.
Featured below is an influencer marketing campaign implemented by leading online designer jewellery brand Voylla. The brand collaborated with top beauty and fashion influencers including Jhanvi Bhatt, Mrinali Das and Anusha, to name a few. Each influencer shared posts on Instagram wearing exquisite pieces of jewellery from Voylla and connected with their followers in the language and tone that reflected the image of the brand. The campaign greatly contributed to increasing the reach and visibility of Voylla with higher conversions.
Digital marketing for jewellery brands does not necessarily cater to online stores alone! You can drive visits to your brick-and-mortar store by posting your store on Google My Business Listings. Not only will your store show up on a Google Search and drive traffic to your website, but users can also get directions to your showroom and read reviews to get a genuine understanding of your business. As per a MOZ report on factors that help a page rank, GMB listings contribute to 14.7% of the overall influential factors, making it a vital aspect in digital marketing for jewellery brands. Read our blog on the 13 ways to leverage local SEO and Google Maps for your business for more insights.
Since most numbers of searches today are local in nature, an informative GMB listing, like the one featured below for Gehna, will drive more store visits and higher revenue. As you can see, the GMB listing showcases the address, working hours, contact details, directions to the store and images to make it more convenient than ever for consumers to pay a visit. They can also visit the website directly and place an order!
Digital ads play a huge role in helping you reach your target audience and drive more business for your brand. From Facebook ads and Google ads to newer formats like YouTube and Instagram, you can choose your marketing platform based on your objective and the type of audience you are planning to target. Furthermore, if you are selling your product on Amazon, you can also run ads on Amazon and drive more relevant traffic to your e-commerce store. You can also opt for shopping ads that ensure 8 to 10X return on ad spends. Shopping ads run on a combination of optimisation, monitoring and bidding, with a keen focus on increasing average order values.
We ran shopping ads for Voylla – a contemporary jewellery brand with an e-commerce website. We used optimized images, titles and product descriptions that help the ad show up as a Google Search ad. As you can see in the image below, a simple Google search for “gold plated men's ring” shows up a series of shopping ads, out of which the Voylla ad is placed as per the position it was bid for.
When it comes to digital marketing for jewellery brands, it is safe to say that the world is your oyster due to the wide range of creative campaigns and ads you can incorporate in your strategies. You can also read our detailed blog on digital marketing for real estate, finance industry, insurance companies and FMCG giants. It is time to leverage the power of going digital and grow your business!
Looking for ways to create thumb-stopping content for your brand? Then videos are definitely your best bet! Video content was one of the biggest digital marketing trends of 2018 and is here to stay. Thanks to the cheaper data plans available in the market today, videos can easily be streamed online, without any hassle, on screens of all sizes. Furthermore, smartphones have evolved with high-precision cameras, editing suites and a plethora of video-based apps, making videos easily shareable on all platforms. Moreover, with so much content being shared in the digital landscape, brands are looking for newer ways to stand out of the crowd. These reasons have paved the way for videos to be the lever in boosting conversions for a brand.
Now that you are convinced that video marketing is the way to go, let’s take a look at a few fool-proof video editing tips to make compelling videos that increase conversion rates for your business.
Plan your video in such a way that it is crisp, short and communicates your message quickly and effectively. The first 3 to 4 seconds of your video are most crucial. Make sure your brand name and objective of the campaign is communicated within this time. According to a recent Facebook survey, you can expect a 20% increase in the number of people finishing the video by practising this technique. Additionally, it is important to incorporate text on videos since most videos are watched in mute, especially on mobile. You can use text in the form of subtitles or any other medium to keep viewers engaged and communicate your brand story even with no sound.
You can also experiment with short versions of your video instead of treating it as one big aspect. One of the best video editing tips is to cut it down with multiple storylines. You can also add effects and use the multitude of formats offered by Facebook and Instagram to make it interesting. By doing this, you can create multiple videos that target different audiences, widening your chances of going viral. Here is a sample video that we did for a real estate builder:
Emotional content works wonders on viewers, especially when portrayed in the form of a touching video. Increase the visibility of your brand by tapping trending topics that may not directly speak about your products and services but creates a stir because of the emotional quotient. This is one of the most effective video making tips that will help in creating soul-stirring original content which is always a hit in the digital space.
When Sundaram Mutual – one of the top clients in the finance sector – approached us for a video campaign, we decided to go outside-the-box and create a vox pop video. The video was launched on Father’s Day and spoke about the various financial lessons you’ve learnt from your father.
When it comes to video making tips, it is best to tap audiences across all social media platforms to get the most out of your campaign. With most platforms giving priority to content that drives more engagement, videos have the potential to be your trump card to get ahead of your competitors. Leading social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube and Instagram also give users the chance to share your videos, increasing the chances of them going viral. However, it is important to make sure the videos are targeted at the right set of audiences who relate to the product or service being showcased.
With 225 Indian users active on YouTube every month, a lot of brands are making the shift from traditional forms of advertising to YouTube ads. You can choose from a wide range of types of YouTube ads based on various factors like reach, budget and length of the ad, to name a few. Featured below is a YouTube bumper ad of one of our real estate clients – Asta Properties – who leveraged the reach of YouTube ads to introduce a newly launched project.
The ad played in Tamil and English, witnessing an outstanding reach of around 18,000 users with more than 4,000 clicks. The ad was targeted to users who were interested in a real estate investment of Rs. 1.5 crores, within the age group of 35 to 54 years.
Speaking about going across platforms, one of the most important video editing tips is to check the aspect ratio of your video for full-sized viewing on hand-held devices. As per a recent study, 97% of consumers access Facebook through mobile and Instagram has witnessed a 150% increase in video consumption in 2018. A traditional 16:9 video occupies very less space on mobile screens. Instead, change the aspect ratio of your video to 1:1. This will occupy the entire mobile screen and reduce distractions from other posts. Here's a video on how to optimise your video for Instagram and Facebook for more insights:
Just like any other form of content, videos too need to be optimised to be discovered on search. As per a recent study, 74% of active social media users follow brands on YouTube, stressing on the fact that search engine optimisation for YouTube is now as important as ever. Additionally, with voice search emerging as a top trend in digital marketing, ensure your video is optimised with long-tail keywords that answer the public. Create a comprehensive on page and off page SEO strategy with the right meta-descriptions, a custom thumbnail, a click-worthy title and alt text to ensure your video ranks on the first page of search engines. It is also important to add an appropriate call-to-action and social share buttons to push potential consumers further down the marketing funnel. These are the most crucial video making tips that can either make or break a campaign.
For more tips on how to rank your videos, read our in-depth article: YouTube SEO Tips: The Secret Sauce to Ranking Your Videos in 2019.
Landing pages are known to be the weapons of mass conversions and what better way to engage with your potential consumers than an attention-grabbing video? Videos provide a lot more information about your brand with much lesser effort and half as much time. This creates a win-win situation for users being able to get a better understanding of your services and your landing page generating a good amount of high-quality leads for your brand.
We leveraged the reach and high engagement of videos in a landing page for Shriram Properties – one of our top real estate clients. The video provided users with a walkthrough of one of their new projects, giving them a closer look at the property even before the site visit. This, in turn, generated a higher rate of conversions.
Apart from attracting users with engaging content, brands can also generate a list of potential leads who have viewed the video through event tracking on Google Analytics. These leads can then be retargeted and further nurtured until they ultimately convert to your brand.
Influencer marketing is one of the most effective digital marketing techniques that give your brand the visibility it deserves with a word-of-mouth approach. Pick an influencer that resonates with your brand and come up with influencer marketing campaigns across the platforms that are relevant to your audience. Influencers come up with trendy and engaging videos that extend your brand’s reach to their loyal follower database. This, in turn, can open up new opportunities for your brand and boost sales.
We partnered with BioMiracle India to create awareness about their new collagen sheet masks with the help of top beauty and lifestyle influencer Sushmita Agarwal. The video featured on her Instagram handle threw light on how the sheet masks need to be used with peppy background music, driving high engagement and brand awareness. It received almost 8,000 views with profound reach.
With the introduction of cheaper data plans by Reliance Jio and the drop in the prices of smartphones, Internet usage has seeped into the tier 2 and tier 3 regions of India, releasing a whole new wave of consumers waiting to be targeted. Videos are now more relevant than ever, with brands going the extra mile to engage with India’s next billion users. In order to reach India – all of it – it is important to incorporate videos in vernacular languages for increased brand awareness. This is one of futuristic video making tips that will ensure conversions!
We leveraged the power of videos in regional languages for Cholamandalam Finance by creating an animated video on the life-changing financial lessons one can learn from an ant. The video was targeted at small business owners and people in tier 2 and tier 3 regions. The video received around 96,000 views with 3,116 shares. The same video was created in Hindi which received a whopping 2.3 million views and 80,528 shares, proving that the growth of regional content online is here to stay!
Whether you are a real estate company, leading FMCG brand, a top financial organisation or a leading insurance firm, make sure you incorporate these video editing tips and ideas in your next video campaign to increase your conversion rates and boost your sales.
With 300 million active Indian users from diverse backgrounds, Facebook is one of the best platforms for brands to reach their target audience. However, the competition is undeniably high and brands need to constantly look out for ways to stand out. One of the most effective ways for brands to capture their audience’s attention completely in this crowded space is through Instant Experiences. Previously known as Canvas, Instant Experiences offers brands an immersive full-screen experience with new and updated features.
Instant Experiences comes in five templates, each of which is tailor-made for brands with specific goals:
Instant Storefront: Certain to become one of the top social media trends for FMCG and retail brands, this template showcases products in a grid format along with their price. After clicking on them, users are immediately taken to the product page where they can make a purchase. The convenience that this offers can help brands increase their sales through social media marketing.
For D:FY, we used Storefront to showcase the products and direct viewers to the Amazon product page where they can actually buy the product. This led to higher engagement and increase awareness of the brand.
Instant Lookbook: With the artsy aesthetics of magazine spreads, the Instant Lookbook template can help fashion brands bring their looks to life. Users can scroll through each of the looks and click on them to be redirected to the product page where they can explore the product further and buy it.
Read our blog on Design Tips to Create Great Visual Posts on Social Media to get started.
Instant Customer Acquisition: For brands focused purely on driving sales and growing their customer base, Facebook’s Instant Customer Acquisition template can encourage higher conversions. This template can be used to showcase the different features of a product and provide users with a clear call-to-action at the end to compel them to make the actual purchase.
Instant Storytelling: While the 20% rule for text overlays on images has been removed, creatives with less text generally perform best on Facebook. Because of this, brands are often unable to communicate their entire brand story as engagingly as they would like. Instant Storytelling offers a solution to this. Through a mix of images, videos and text, this format gives brands all the space they need to communicate their brand offerings and key differentiators. Your brand can leverage the top design trends for digital marketing to create unforgettable experiences for your audience.
Instant Form: Looking for quick lead generation? Instant Forms drive your consumers towards a clear call-to-action by asking them to fill out a form. When combined with the superior visual appeal and space to showcase your USPs, Instant Forms has the potential to drive higher leads than other forms of advertising on Facebook.
Facebook’s new Instant Experiences doesn’t just give you new ways to appeal to your target market, it also helps you analyse just how effective your techniques were. If you have embedded pixel in your company’s website, it will automatically become integrated with Instant Experiences once you start experimenting with it. This will give your brand valuable data and deep insights into the customer journey. It will show you time spent by each users, whether they engaged with it (such as scrolling through a carousel) and how far they scrolled. This will give you a better understanding of what messaging or visuals appealed the most to your target audience, helping you optimise future campaigns. The pixel will also allow brands to re-target their website visitors, which can drive higher engagement. Instant Experience can even integrate with external tracking codes, such as Google Analytics, helping you paint a complete picture of your consumer’s online touch points.
If you have already used Canvas for your brand, the updated Instant Experiences can provide you with even greater results. But if you have never experiments with these immersive ads, here’s why you should start.
Your audience is more impatient now than ever before. If your ad doesn’t look quickly, users are likely to bounce immediately. Instant Experiences offers incredible speed, loading almost instantly. This can encourage users to stay on your ad and reduce bounce rates.
The digital clutter your audience experiences can prevent them from focusing fully on your ads. However, when they open an Instant Experience ad, it takes up their entire phone screen, blocking notifications, messages and other ads. This makes it easier for your message to resonate with them, enabling better recall.
The multiple templates that Instant Experiences offers, makes it very easy for brands to adapt and use. You don’t need complicated codes or development to get started. Regardless of your budget or resources, you can start using Instant Experiences to engage with your audience.
Instant Experiences has a number of tools and formats that you can use to communicate your brand story in the best way possible. You can use a mix of stunning images, carousels, videos, text and forms to create an ad that your audience won’t forget.
Interactive ads are changing the way brands advertise by compelling users to engage with them more. Unlike ads on the News Feed, which users can easily scroll past, Instant Experiences offers them more information, are more visually appealing and engaging. This can give users a greater incentive to enquire. The Instant Forms format can also be more effective than traditional form as on Facebook.
No matter what your brand goals are, Instant Experiences offers a novel and exciting way to achieve them. Are you ready to start using it to give your brand an edge?
As the saying goes, “Everything old becomes new again”.2018 has witnessed a definite shift in design, setting precedence for the years to come. Graphic design trends from the past are taking centre stage with a new, fresh and modern twist added to them. Few of the major trends include exploring the 3-dimensional realm, rich photography and vibrant colour palettes. We are now at a fascinating turn-point for design, and we are looking forward to experimenting more in this space. Here are the top 7 design trends you can incorporate in your marketing strategy and engage with India’s next billion Internet users.
Gradient or colour transitions, which were already a rage till late 2007, made a huge comeback when Instagram upgraded its logo with a gradient background. This trend has been on the rise ever since. Colour transitions have diverse and modern applications that are vibrant, smooth and flexible to flat design aesthetics. This trend will continue to diversify in its own innovative avatar, with the usage of bright and vivid colours in a combination of textures – like the ones featured below.
With the increase in the number of users accessing the Internet through their mobile phones, designing your web assets with a mobile-first approach is more of a necessity than a luxury. Responsive design is one which adapts to all screen sizes. However, since the logo of a company is one of the smallest elements on the screen, creating a mobile-responsive logo without losing the visibility of all its elements is one of the main challenges faced by designers. The ingenious solution to this lies in making versions of logos for different screens. Logos have become adaptive, with different versions for mobiles, tablets and desktop devices. Featured below are few logos and their mobile-first versions.
Retro modern illustrations have made a huge comeback in 2018 with generous usage of the 80’s and 90’s colour palette. From pretty pastels to electric hues, age-old visuals have taken a modern route with a semi-flat design. Today, a lot of brand leaders and influential personalities belong to the generation of the 80’s and the 90’s. Additionally, these generations also form a large pool of key target audiences, making this trend an easy way to trigger nostalgia and create engaging posts that boost social engagement.
These illustrations combine modern, sleek lines with throwback colour palettes. The characteristic feature of this style lies in its fluid yet crystal clear messaging. It is truly the best of both worlds. Few designs with retro modern illustrations are displayed below:
Typography for the digital space is more than often an extension of its print counterpart. This trend has just gotten bigger, bolder and better! The only limitation to your typography style is your imagination. Contrary to popular belief, typography is never seen as a minuscule part of the design, but a form of design itself, coupled with an artistic twist. While usual sans serifs fonts remain as fashionable as ever, you can also get creative with designer, artistic and hand-made fonts.
We are also likely to see the comeback of the serif fonts since Google has such an impressive collection for web design. In a quest to stay in sync with design elements across all media, designers usually stay away from serifs as a thumb rule. However, as the acceptability of this font is increasing online, it is only a matter of time for the font to make a complete comeback. Scroll down for interesting ways in which typography is used as an element of design.
A very interesting trend that marks the beginning of the next era in design is 3 Dimensional styles – from 3D still photography to 3D typography. Seeing that there is no limit to innovation and imagination, you can also experiment with a mixture of 3D and 2D.3D capabilities have grown to such an extent that the intersection between virtual and reality have been blurred out and indistinguishable.
Another growing trend is isometric projection which is an interesting method to visually project a 3-dimensional object in a 2-dimensional space. It is safe to say that this type of projection is one of the leading design trends of 2018, used in all kinds of visual mediums including photography, 3D design and illustration, to name a few. Additionally, this trend helps in creating great visual posts on social media. Few of them are showcased below:
An interesting design style for those with nimble fingers and an eye for detail is using paper cut illustrations. This trend uses actual paper cutting, stuck using double sided tape to give it depth and a semi-flat finish. The illustrations end up looking very surreal and can help in telling brand stories through various layers. Featured below is a brilliant amalgamation of hand-made crafts made with the help of our design tools.
Claymation – a process of using clay modelling in animation – is one of the leading trends in stop-motion design. From the main character to the background, claymation gives the advantage of making each aspect of design deformable because of its malleability. This creative and innovative trend is used extensively for gaming animation and in Hollywood productions. As you can see below, though it is a little tedious and time consuming the output is generally worth the effort
Cinemagraphs, or animated photographs, are an evergreen trend in both social media and websites. The best part aspect of cinematography is that they can elevate any kind of page to another level and you do not need to be a leading fashion brand or a design studio to use them.
Cinemagraphs can grab the user’s attention and keep them hooked to your page for a longer time, thus increasing engagement for your page. These animated images work best on product pages where the important aspects of the product can be highlighted from a different angle. They also load faster than videos, making them the perfect fit for light websites.
Now that you know what the top design trends of 2018 are, it is time you implement them in your brand strategy and attract potential consumers. Whether you are a real estate developer, a top FMCG brand or a leading financial organisation, add these design trends to your marketing approach and grow your business.
The most important factor that will compel consumers to choose one brand over the other is not the actual benefits of one, but the existing relationship they have with the brand and their perception of it. The most effective digital marketing strategy for FMCG brands is to consistently engage with their customers by reaching out to them through social media platforms. With consumers spending more time on social media than ever before, digital has been driving FMCG sales in India. The Google India Search Insights 2018 revealed that by 2020, $45 billion of FMCG sales in India will be influenced by the internet. Households who have internet access spend 2x more on FMCG products, making them very important for brands. But effective social media marketing goes deeper than merely posting a few updates. Here are the top social media trends that are taking the FMCG sector by storm.
Customers don’t respond well to generalised messages. They want to feel like a brand truly understands their needs and is personally speaking to them. This is why brands need to communicate to their consumers as individuals and not as a homogenous group. Social media offers brands a number of ways to create personalised messaging strategies. Brands can target specific psychographic segments and developed specialised content for them. Retargeting allows brands to showcase products that consumers have already expressed interest in along with similar products. This offers customers a curated selection of products which can improve the quality of leads generated and increase conversion rates.
The biggest advantage digital marketing has over traditional marketing is that it allows brands to have a two-way conversation with their customers. Doing this humanises a brand for consumers, which helps them develop a more meaningful relationship with it. For brands to encourage a conversation with their customers, they need to be active on relevant social media platforms and keep a close track of all brand mentions. Many times, consumers will specifically mention brands they are currently using or ones that they love. Responding to these consumers will help them feel closer to your brand and will encourage brand loyalty, which is crucial for the FMCG sector.
However, not all mentions are positive. When your consumers have a negative experience with your brand, they are very likely to speak about it on social media. Ignoring these instances can do even greater harm for brands. Instead, brands can turn this into an opportunity to improve their brand image and retain customers. By responding to negative brand mentions, offering compensations or special goodies, FMCG brands can change perceptions and turn negative comments into an opportunity for relationship building.
While personalising your marketing strategy is undoubtedly important, the challenge for brands is to do this while talking to thousands of customers. With rapid improvements in AI technology, chatbots have become one of the most popular tools for brands to interact with their customers. Chatbots can instantly respond to customer queries, gain information about them and even guide them towards making a purchase. In the realm of online shopping, chatbots can act as personal shoppers, helping customers finding products related to what they’re looking for and suggesting others that they might be interested in. With chatbots now available on Facebook Messenger, it has become easier than ever for brands to implement them on their pages.
Instagram Stories are one of the most useful features brands need to take advantage of. While the concept of ‘ephemeral content’ first originated on Snapchat, Instagram Stories has quickly overtaken it to become the more popular medium for it. Staying active on Instagram Stories helps you engage more with your customers, tell your brand story in a creative way and promote your products. A key feature which makes Stories more valuable for brands than Snapchat is that it allows you to tag and link to pages. This can help FMCG brands drive traffic to their website or shop for products. Stories can also increase user engagement through polls, contests and user-generated content.
Influencer marketing is one of the most powerful avenues for FMCG brands to explore in 2018 and beyond. It helps brands build credibility, widen their consumer base and even drive sales. A study by Nielsen found that 92% of consumers trust earned media (such as recommendations from influencers) over brand communications. By promoting your product through a network of relevant influencers, you can build awareness in a more organic way.
When Himalaya launched their new facial wipes, they activated a large pool of influencers for their campaign #WipesOnTheGo. These fashion and lifestyle influencers posted extensively about the facial wipes on their social media channels. Bloggers also wrote reviews of the product so their followers could learn more about it. By using influencer marketing, Himalaya was able to build awareness of the product among their target audience in a very short period of time.
A rise in disposable income along with the widespread penetration of affordable smartphones and mobile data have made consumers in tier 2 and 3 cities increasingly important for brands. While these cities have always been major markets for FMCG brands, especially those in the lower and middle segments, traditional marketing for these brands have always focused on traditional mediums like television and print. But as more of these audiences come online, brands will need to reach them through digital platforms as well. A Google and KPMG report found that almost 90% of rural users are more likely to respond to digital ads that are in their local language. Communicating with these users in the language they understand best also helps brands build trust.
One of the best examples to illustrate how powerful bi-lingual content can be for FMCG brands is Kovai pazhamudir Nilayam. With almost all their marketing efforts targeted towards audiences in tier 2 and 2 cities and towns in India, Patanjali has made extensive use of regional content. This could be an important factor in their dominance of the Indian FMCG market.
While brands have primarily used social media for brand building and awareness, the role of social media today extends far beyond that. FMCG brands can now use social media to directly drive sales. Reducing the amount of time and steps required for a consumer to purchase a product can motivate them to complete a purchase. In the traditional marketing process, consumers would gain brand awareness and recall through social media and then decide on whether to purchase the product at a later stage in an offline store. By making products easily available when promoting a product, brands can speed up a consumer’s decision-making process and compel them to actually make the purchase.
Facebook has enabled brands to showcase products used in a video or post along with a link to where users can purchase it. When users click on the link, they are shown a description of the product along with an option to purchase it on the website. Instagram is also rolling out a new ‘Shop’ feature that can help users purchase products that are tagged just by clicking on them. Making your products easily available on digital platforms is crucial for a complete social media strategy.
Videos aren’t just the future of marketing, they’re an important tool brands should start using immediately. For FMCG brands, in particular, video content could directly translate into sales. Surveys have shown that around 74% of users who had watched an explainer video about a certain product, eventually purchased it. Videos can be one of the best ways to help your audience understand your product better in a very short period of time. If you are selling your products online, creating videos is even more important. 57% of consumers have responded that they were more confident about purchasing a product online after watching a video about it.
But it isn’t just explainer videos that convert. Videos with humour content perform extremely well on social media as they connect with consumers on a personal level. They also help you build a relationship with your audience that goes beyond just your product offerings. One of the best examples is On1y, a premium spice brand with a signature grinder to ensure you get maximum flavour. They chose to speak about their product USP in an unusual way and effectively use humour to capture the attention of their audience.
Brands have for a long time kept a safe distance from social issues, for fear of alienating a large section of their consumer base. Doing so today, however, might not earn brands any benefits. Millennial consumers, in particular, are more likely to have a positive perception of a brand if it takes a stand on pressing social issues. According to a study by Sprout Social, around two-thirds of consumers want brands to voice out their opinions on social issues. Showing support for a social movement can help build a brand’s personality and help them form an emotional bond with their customers.
While getting involved in political issues can still be tricky, there are many social and environmental issues that brand can and should take a stand on. But this doesn’t mean that brands should voice their opinion on every social issue that crops up. The key here is to ensure that your message is in line with your brand offerings and that it doesn’t seem opportunistic. Nothing can alienate consumers faster than a brand that appears to be using a social movement for profit. You don’t have to look further than Pepsi’s controversial video that trivialised social protests to understand how insensitive communication can backfire on a brand.
If a customer’s relationship with your brand is on a purely transactional basis, then they are unlikely to develop any loyalty or emotional connection to your brand. These social media trends can help brands create a personalised, user-centric marketing strategy which will help create a lasting connection with consumers.
The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) in association with the Retailers Association of India, recently published a report that highlights the trends in Indian retail. As the world’s leading advisor on retail strategy, BCG has evaluated India’s high-value opportunities in the retail market. Partnering with RAI, the unified voice of Indian Retailers, the report aims at formulating solutions to key challenges faced in the market. The following is a brief summary on the findings.
Retail in India has taken a remarkable transformation over the last two decades. Rising income levels, urbanization, and changing consumer behaviour has given an optimistic outlook to the retail sector, promising an undoubted growth in the future. The digital medium has influenced retail with a powerful strike, reshaping customer behaviour and expectations. To summarize, retail business are in a constant need to retrospect their strengths, reinvent their offerings across the purchase pathway, and rewrite their approach of retail economics.
Based on research and some stringent analysis of data, the report captured key trends across the following broad categories.
1). Certainty of Growth
A promising growth forecast is one of the primary findings made from the study. The Indian retail sector is projected to double from $600 Billion to $1 Trillion, by 2020. This rapid growth will be determined by factors such as Income Growth, Urbanization, Nuclearization, and Attitudinal Shifts. Modern trade is also expected to grow 3 times, with Rapid Consumer Evolution, Supply-side Evolution, and Positive Regulatory Environment, being the drivers that will materialize this growth. As a key implication from this finding, Indian retailers should sharply identify the emerging opportunities and customer segments and be clear about what to not go after. Retailers should also re-adjust propositions to remain relevant and also allow room for experimentation, though it might not always turn out to be successful.
2). Reality of Digital
The E-commerce market in India is expected to quadruple to $70 Billion, over the next 5 years. With the rapid increase of smartphone users, competitive costs for connectivity, and expanded reach, internet users are expected to reach a mark of ~600 Million. Customers are attracted to superior value propositions like broader assortment, higher discounts and greater convenience. Indian retailers should conceptualize digital strategies with clarity and leverage on social media to create brand awareness. They are also expected to deploy a seamless and connected customer journey, as shoppers migrate across channels. It will also be a lot more seamless for e-retailers to sell across multiple offline & e-commerce market places.
In our view, digital will increasingly drive offline retail sales as well. It is already easy to track phone calls to the store or to track the number of people looking for store directions. Retailers will become more sophisticated (along with measurement tools from platforms like Google, Facebook, etc.) to attribute offline sales to a specific digital marketing effort.
3). Challenge of Capability
Omni-channel business is becoming increasing relevant. Customers expect a seamless experience and do not tend to distinguish between online and physical channels, while shopping. Traditional strengths are insufficient here. In addition to being omni-channel, a well conceptualized talent management strategy is critical. It has been noticed that retail businesses suffer from high attrition rates and limited capabilities in the middle and top management, as a result of inadequate specialized training and experience in the sector. Supply chain also needs an evolution, as the market is viral with long lead response times and infrastructure challenges. It’s high time that Indian retail businesses develop a comprehensive omni-channel offering and adopt a targeted approach to employee training, appraisal, and retention. It is also very vital for businesses to build a demand-driven supply chain that is equipped with a real time flow of information.
4). Importance of Economics
Several economic challenges plague Indian modern trade. Please find them listed below.
On the demand side:
- The level of processing is not high enough, as the Indian consumer gets used to modern trade.
- Pricing and promotions are poorly executed , not leveraging on customer willingness and purchasing power.
On the supply side:
- Inflating costs of real estate and rentals.
- Increasing costs due to low bargaining power with suppliers due to limited scale.
- High cost incurring supply chain due to poor connectivity, excess and deficit inventory.
- As an immediate implicative measure, the throughput problem should be address first. The other cost and margin issue will fall subsequently.
5). Need for Transformation
Fundamental transformation is the need of the hour. Businesses should avail the growth opportunity and serve digitally empowered consumers. As mentioned earlier, they should also build capabilities in quality omni-channel experience, talent management, and supply chain optimizations. This requires working on four pillars simultaneously. They are as follows.
Fund the journey – Generate quick cash from existing operations by relooking at the core of the business.
Win the medium term – Identify the winning consumer proposition formula for the next 6-8 years.
Take measured bets - Invest in emerging but important trends.
Enable the transformation – Invest in people and technology to improve efficiency, productivity, and morale.
The latter part of the report is its most credible engine, bringing perspectives from over 20 CEOs of top retailers in India. Some of the most thought-sparking lines have been quoted below.
“In times when the economy is tight, we face the brunt of lower discretionary spend. But right now, we are feeling very positive about the future and our industry.” - Ajay Kaul, CEO, Jubilant
“There is some form of a lack of supplier assistance to modern trade: somewhere they will have to accept that this is the way forward.” – Randall Guttery, CEO, Reliance Retail
The future of retail will compose of 3Ds: Daulat (wealth sharing within the retail ecosystem), Depth (in channels and category execution) and Digital (significant part of the operating model).” – Shailesh Chaturvedi, CEO, Tommy Hilfiger
The full report on Indian Retail 2020 can be found here.