Small business owners rely on marketing campaigns to drive business. You have to really know your customers first before you can generate a successful marketing campaign. Choosing marketing channels based on your familiarity with them or successful experience in the past is not the best way to drive revenue. First, get to know your customers. Then, choose the best marketing channels to attract business.
Getting to know your customers
You probably think you know your customers, but you don’t. In fact, research shows that about 80 percent of businesses don’t have the right customer data upon which to build a great marketing campaign. You may be using past purchase behavior to drive marketing, but there’s a better way.
Go beyond these basic insights and demographic data and look to data that also provides information about channel preferences, household composition, behavioral data, and social data. Then, build a campaign around those insights.
Driving business through marketing channels
Use recent research to inform the construction of your marketing campaign, including the channels upon which you’ll build a program. For many businesses that rely on traditional marketing channels like a newspaper or TV ad, these results may be surprising. Use them to turn your marketing campaign on its head, if necessary, or just add new channels to target the right consumers.
Through the ages
It turns out, the age of your primary customers matters a lot. Older generations tend to put a lot of trust in traditional media channels, like TV or print, while younger generations favor social channels. In general, social channels (namely Facebook) scored high on the spectrum of trust. It ranked at the top, with a score of 4 out of 10 (with 1 being the most trusted). Print publications (newspaper and magazines) came in second, with a score of 4.4, while email and TV came in third, scoring 5.3 each. Here’s a closer look at how various channels scored:
- Facebook: 4
- Newspaper/print: 4.4
- Email: 5.3
- TV: 5.3
- Special interest or news website: 5.5
- Instagram: 5.9
- Pinterest: 6.2
- Twitter: 6.3
- YouTube: 6.5
- SnapChat: 7.6
- Blog: 8.1
Marketing channels by generation
These results show the overall ranking, but a closer look at the data reveals even more. For example, when it comes to a social channel like Facebook, the breakdown of how much trust the generations place in the platform is telling:
- 29 percent of consumers ages 18 to 22 trust Facebook.
- 32 percent of consumers ages 23 to 30 trust Facebook.
- Only 16 percent of consumers ages 52 to 68 trust Facebook.
As you can see, it’s highly important to know the age of your average customers. If your clientele is largely made up of consumers over the age of 50, a social campaign is probably not the most important channel in your arsenal, but you’ll still want to use it to attract new, younger customers.
It’s important to identify the marketing channels consumers trust, but it’s also pertinent to know how effective the advertising is for new customers. Consumer responses to the question of whether or not a customer tried a new service or product as a direct result of a particular marketing campaign can offer additional insights.
Here’s how many consumers made a purchase after viewing an ad on:
- TV: 57 percent
- Print: 38 percent
- Social media: 34 percent
- Email: 31 percent
- Direct mail/coupon: 27 percent
- YouTube: 15 percent
- Online news site: 14 percent
- Blog: 10 percent
- SnapChat: 1 percent
Again, the age of your customer should dictate how to analyze these results. In general, older customers respond positively to traditional ads (like newspapers or TV) and will try a new product as a result of watching them. However, younger customers prefer social channels or digital media.
The next time your team holds a marketing meeting, pull out the results of this study and compare them to your current campaign strategy. Understanding the needs of your customers and where they place their trust should drive the result of your next marketing push.