Creating Consumer-Centric Digital Strategies

What do we mean by consumer-centric?

And our brand’s campaign actually consumer-centric or brand-centric?

Today, a lot of consumers are becoming increasingly selective about brands they listen to online in terms of ads (organic and inorganic) and brands that win the major share of voice are those who have been able to put their consumers as priority, create stories they can easily relate to and be a part of the public conversation.

Hence, a consumer-centric digital strategy is a strategy that is designed with the consumers in mind

This might seem like *oh, we do this already*, but it actually is not, what we have most days are brands working without data and churning out online content that *they* feel are cool. They impose what the brand likes on their primary TA.

Traditional content most times strive to put their brands in the spotlight, while aggressively chasing brand awareness and customers, having a consumer-centric strategy will help achieve all these and even more, while doing it passively.

There have been scenarios where some brand execs turn down ideas, just because the ideas do not appeal to *them* or look like they will get massive sales, or maybe just because they want to play it safe. Most times, when those strategies sessions are held, data showing exactly what the primary TA wants are not used.

What does your consumer want to see?

Brands with a consumer-centric digital strategy create content, online ads and showcase a culture that are conceived as great to the consumers. They do not appear *salesy* to the consumers, nor are they asking for the consumers to do something to grow the brand, however this greatly helps them with the acquisition of new consumers while keeping churn rate very low.

For example, we have the Nike’s ad that they ran with Colin Kaepernick. Colin has fast become the face of player protests against racial injustice and police brutality. While it may seem that some segment of their TA were against the campaign and burning the Nike items in protest, they realized that having an ad that speaks to the sporting community (represented by a lot of blacks) would cause major controversy, but will also put them in a good light with them, with the black community invested in buying.

What if they had played safe? What if they did not approve the campaign, simply because of the controversy they knew it would cause.

After unveiling the ‘Just Do It’ campaign with Colin, according to Edison Trends, Nike’s online sales actually grew 31% as compared with a 17% gain recorded for the same period of 2017. What was the secret? Watch Ad below

So how can brands ensure their digital strategies and their online assets actually speak to what their consumers want and not what they feel their brand should look like, while ‘securing the bag’

1. Understand & Focus On The Consumer

Get data and build a consumer persona. Your consumer persona are representation of people you are looking to sell to, down to where they stay, what they consume online, what they like and dislike and the trends they are talking about, you can create as much as 6 or even 10, depending on how large you TA is.

Now after this is done, you need to get data on this people and ensure that your content/ads speaks to them, talk about what they are going through and let them know you stand with them. Basically find their pain points, and share it with them.

2. Give Value, Without Asking For Anything In Return

Knowing our audience, we can specifically know what would be of value to them, now give. Give without asking them to do anything specifically for your brand. Give emotionally, mentally. There is something I always live by, when you give value, it always find a way of coming back to you. Do not let your brand content be all about selling the brand.

A lot of brands do this, they believe that by selling the quality of their brands, you will buy. But you can actually give your consumers something they value and it will create doors for sales in return.

The Nike’s Just Do It campaign is a great example

3. Employ Storytelling

Tell stories that engages people. Create, honest, believable stories around your brand that people can connect to. Stories last longer in people’s mind than spilling facts consistently about your brand.

However, in the bid, to create emotional and engaging stories, do not tell outlandish ones that sounds just unbelievable, it always have a way of showing through, lol

I totally love this storytelling ad by Aviation Gin and I do not drink vodka. Watch Ad here

4. Ensure Your Brand Can Easily Be Found Online

While you do not want to appear salesy to your consumers, you still need them to find your brand online. So employ the use of SEO and SEM, use keywords that resonates with your consumers (you should know this from your consumer personas). Optimize your online content. Keywords can be researched using Adwords Planner and SEMRush

In conclusion, your consumers are king, so build content around them, engage them and gain a long-lasting relationship

Tega Edwin-Ajogun

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