Let’s talk about the real situation in digital marketing today. Every business has a website. Almost every business has a social media presence. Yet not every business is thriving. The ones that are understand a fundamental truth about today’s customer: they’re not just shopping, they’re looking for a good time.
The Experience Driven Customer
In the brick and mortar ‘real world,’ business owners know and understand the value of the experience. That’s why no retail shops look the same. It’s why restaurants carefully craft the ambience in which their food is served. It’s the reason customer service is such a priority. If our customers don’t have a great time that entertains and engages them while they’re doing business with us, we know they won’t come back.
The quality of the experience is even more important online. There are almost 1.8 billion websites out there. Customers are searching for the one that feels like it was made for them. To accomplish this, you need the right combination of imagery, copy, and your brand personality, presented in a compelling fashion that works perfectly on every device – especially smartphones and tablets.
Great News for Small Business
Digital marketing has leveled the playing field for today’s small business owners. When we look at the top performers in the luxury, apparel and accessories field, for example, we consistently see smaller brands outperforming the larger companies. It’s proof positive that a smart comprehensive strategy, consistently applied, using the most current experiential elements today’s customers value, will result in increased market share, greater brand visibility, enhanced customer engagement and loyalty, and most important of all, sales growth.
Catalog sites, by comparison, are returning flat or diminishing results. These sites present a very complete picture of your products and services, but they lack the emotional punch an experiential site delivers. They’re just not fun.
Think of a catalog site as a children’s playground: it has all the elements needed to have a good time, but it takes work to have fun. Experiential sites are the amusement park equivalent, designed to delight the customer at every turn. People line up and pay top dollar to go to amusement parks, while today’s playgrounds languish empty and unused. Kids will play there when they’re the only choice – but as soon as there’s an alternative, this is what you’ve got: