Big Buzz has been working in the dental marketing space for over ten years and from what our team can tell, 2019 aims to be the largest shift in marketing that we have seen to date. For years we have written topics discussing the future trends of the industry; 3D printing, online review management, AI, consumer behavior and more. Yet now, we are seeing the “trends to watch” have become fully integrated into the marketplace.
Whether It’s Cross-Channel, Multi-Channel or Omni-Channel, It Comes Down to Capturing Micro-moments
What is a micro-moment? A micro-moment occurs anytime someone has a specific question or interest in a piece of content relating to your product or service. We can break these down into four main types of micro-moments:
- I want to know… seeking further information about a topic.
- I want to go… local business, travel, booking.
- I want to do… YouTube, how-to videos.
- I want to buy…best products and services, reviews, features and specs, comparative.
With the mobile explosion, people are seeking information on the go, in many environments influenced by a range of stimuli. This means we as organizations have to rethink the user journey from the first touch point to the final conversion. Savvy marketers will need to capture potential patients earlier in the decision-making process through content that targets users during these micro-moment interactions.
Artificial Intelligence Will Streamline Everything
Marketers are leveraging Artificial Intelligence to automate a range of tasks, gain and improve consumer insights and streamline workflows. According to Salesforce, over 50% of marketers currently utilize AI technology with 27% expected to incorporate it into their technology by 2019. AI is transforming marketers from reactive analysts to proactive planners by assisting them with more efficiently planned campaigns in segmentation, tracking and keyword/ content tagging. For example, AI could stitch together an editorial calendar with the right images based on increases in demand for particular subjects. While the human element will always be necessary, AI aims to significantly cut down on production times and automate a large portion of redundant tasks so that marketers can focus more on creativity and less on administrative tasks.
Move Over Millennials, Gen Z is Here
Gen Z was born just after Millennials, between 1996 and 2010. It may be easy to complain about the “overly sensitive youth on their phones” who seem more interested in experiences than saving money, but the truth is, they are shaping the future. According to the International Business Machines Corp. and the National Retail Federation, over 70% of Gen Zers influence their families’ spending. Some things to know about the Gen Z audience:
- They are more emotionally intelligent than previous generations.
- They rely more on image- and video-based experiences than text.
- Gen Zers latch on to social media influencers.
- The want you to care about what they care about.
- They want authentic, easily digestible content. Quickly.
- They want to experience things.
Gen Z would seem like a gold mine of a target audience. They are emotional, connected, glued to their devices and they crave a life full of new and exciting experiences. However, they interact and digest content much differently than generations past. To effectively target what could be the most exciting generation for marketers yet, we have to take the time to understand how and why they seek out content.
You Need More Than a Brand, You Need a Brand with a Personality
New data suggests that nearly 95% of purchasing decisions are subconscious. If you want to be successful in marketing to your patients, you need to first personify your practice and connect with your target audience in a meaningful, memorable way – on a positive emotional level. When marketing a product to a consumer, it’s most effective to target the subconscious mind versus the rational mind. Below is information taken from Sprout Social regarding social media platforms and brand personalities. Facebook and YouTube were clear winners for platforms on which organizations can showcase their personality
Below is a chart of consumer sentiment based on the type of social media behavior.
Brand personality is unique and therefore a clear differentiator from competitors when it comes to how consumers perceive your brand. This doesn’t always translate into farfetched or radical personalities either. Looking at the graph below, the top behaviors that determined consumer purchasing behavior were honesty, friendliness and helpfulness, followed then by humor and trendiness. Sometimes consistency pays dividends over outlandish antics.
“Consistent brand presentation translates to 23% average revenue increase.” (Source: Lucidpress)
For more information on brand personality, you can check out this great article by Sprout Social, Consumers Aren’t Looking to Buy From Brands That Are “Cool” on Social.
Live and Ephemeral Video Content Is the Gateway to Authenticity
Instagram Stories now account for over 300 million daily active users. That’s 60% of Instagram’s total daily active users and nearly double that of Snapchat’s 188 million. Facebook accrues more than 8 billion video views per day with a huge uptrend towards live streaming. Since its launch in August 2015, Facebook Live has seen a 330% increase. Why? It’s simple: Authenticity. According to Livestream, 80% of people would rather watch live video from a brand than read a blog, and 82% prefer live video from a brand over social posts. With the rise of fake news, people demand authenticity and interaction more than ever. Ephemeral videos are a great example of this, as they show only a short clip or “story” before vanishing. This increases the urgency and anticipation of the content but more so gives the viewer an organic glimpse into the lives of someone else.
Final Takeaway: The True North Metric
In dental marketing there are really only two questions we should be asking. What is it that the practice wants to achieve? And, what is it that the patient wants to achieve? The sheer amount of data and evolution of AI-assisted tools and technology has muddied the waters when it comes to marketing metrics, overloading it with insights, analytics and trends. This is why many organizations have embraced a true north philosophy, choosing only a few KPIs that correlate directly with the goals and vision of the practice and their target audience and focusing solely on the achievement of such. Don’t get lost in the noise. Embrace changes in consumer behavior, technology and content preferences. Remain focused on who your organization targets and what the goals of your organization are. Shifts in the marketing landscape happen rapidly but understanding how to adapt and survive can keep your organization from becoming the wrong colored Peppered Moth, working against its environment.