There are some straightforward but highly effective steps you can take to help your brand messages emerge from the digital noise in 2016.

1. Ensure your brand is mobilise

The vast majority of digital transactions and interactions now take place via mobile. Brands that don’t allow for swift, super-easy, minimal-click purchases on mobiles, or those that have not yet fully made the transition from laptop/desktop, will lose out. High quality, shareable, social-specific video content should also be at the forefront of a brand’s online presence with a strong call to action at the end. 

2. Focus on customer experience

Online and offline worlds must be coherently aligned. Often customers who physically shop in-store use their mobiles to ‘research’ the desired item prior to or even while in-store, so the physical/digital worlds need to be fully joined-up to supply continuity to the customer’s shopping experience. Furthermore, with channels like Facebook and Twitter being used to broadcast brand marketing messages and to deal with customer complaints and queries simultaneously, the voice of the customer relationship manager needs to be consistent with marketing messages. Through aligning customer service with marketing know-how there exist great opportunities for reinforcing brand personality and establishing good PR. 

3. 1-click purchases

Big brands like Amazon have made the purchasing experience even easier: the customer looks for, clicks on and purchases the desired item without going through a protracted payment process. Acknowledgement is received by email. By optimising the user’s journey and supplying secure forms of payment like Paypal, ApplePay and Samsung Pay, there is no need to depend upon prolonged security-checking processes to make a purchase.

4. Data rules

All successful marketing activity is underpinned by robust data, otherwise expensive creative content is too easily wasted and marketing messages are lost. How data is captured, used and analysed will build a deeper understanding of customer behaviour, allowing for flexibility and relevance to the user. Secure data-driven insights are the backbone to quality content creation which forms the infrastructure to any content plan.

5. Keep it personal

Algorithms are making advancements in directing relevant ads to individual buyers. At the moment content is served based on cookies and user preferences are indicated through ‘likes’. Information has become increasingly targeted, presenting the user with what’s most likely to appeal to them, for instance via effectively directed ads that are relevant and don’t intrude on the user’s journey. E-newsletters might remain abundant, but it takes a very strong call to action to get the recipient to open one. Rather, younger people will elect to track down deals online or in response to a call to action at the end of a video.