Agency and marketing leaders from across Western Europe visited day 2 of Imagine London in the Microsoft Cardinal Place offices. Whereas yesterday the common theme was around the importance of storytelling today the focus was on the audience and how we connect with it. How brands can use technology to connect with their consumers. The day closed with a dazzling amount of stats from a futurologist.
Research: The Five W’s for the Digital Age
Natasha Hritzuk -Senior Global Director of Insights and Analytics, Microsoft Advertising- emphasized the importance of understanding what relationship a consumer has with the different devices this consumer uses, where the audience is in their consumer journey and what kind of character they are. This knowledge should inform your targeting efforts.
The five ‘W’s’: Who, What, When, Where and Why of communication are still key. ‘Hurrah!’ so far so well-known. Natasha reminds the audience that advertisers should keep the five W’s in mind to ensure they tell a full story and adapt this communication rule to the digital age. Who is your audience, what do they do and where should you engage with them?
Different Types of Consumers
Your audience is likely to consist of a variety of people which may roughly be categorized in one of the following groups:
- Enthusiasts – 71% like sharing & using new stuff.
- Socials – 60% say technology enables them to connect with others.
- Media Centrics – Primarily interested in technology around media consumption.
- Productives – Have busy lives and seek solutions to increase productivity.
Outside the auditorium there was plenty of opportunity to find out more about the products & research discussed at Imagine London. Linda Liberg, Senior Research Manager (right)
Meet the Screens - Use devices based on what your audience wants from them
You find these audiences at different times on different devices. The relationship people have with each of these devices is different. To explain this they’ve been aligned to Jung archetypes. Tim Jones, Head of Insights and Analytics EMEA has just published a great blog post on this – have a read!
When you know how your audience feels about devices you can make a more informed decision on with what sort of content you’re likely to engage them. It is not so much about what is technically possible with each device but what would make sense taken what your audience wants from the technology (relaxation from TV, information and advice from the PC, something personal from their mobile etc.)
Phases in the Consumer Journey – What content is looked for when?
There are also different phases to consider in the consumer journey (brought to live by Natasha’s narrative about the ‘Hunt for better Hair’):
- Pre-trigger (admitted dissatisfaction, tuned into the topic)
- Trigger (confirmation)
- Pre-shopping (commitment)
- Instore (filter/analyse)
- Usage (internal/external validation)
So – as Dennis Buchheim (GM, Scale Display, Microsoft Advertising) summarizes it: ‘to move a story forward you need quality, measurement, connection and creativity to get truly engaging ads which are targeted effectively. Multi screens offer the opportunity of sequential storytelling. Now how will you thread and sequence them over time?
LEGO – A Social Story
Peter Espersen , Global Community Lead at LEGO was announced with the light quaking noise of ducks. To the delight of some in the audience there were LEGO ducks on the chairs to play with (‘@VilliersDeBoer @MSAdvertising I want a duck!! #ImagineLon’, ‘@dancall1: I'm at #imaginelon playing with Lego!’’ At #ImagineLon trying to figure out ways to get paid for building LEGO's stuff..’)
@DaanSimonis's Imagine London Duck
Peter shares many interesting social media examples with the audience but admits that whatever clever idea he has come up with himself, ultimately the content the community comes up with is genuine and passionate. The community is best at telling & sharing the LEGO story (Go on watch this clip from Eddie Izzard ‘Death Star Canteen’ before you read further). Another unexpected advocate has been David Beckham - when asked about architecture on a talk show he kept mentioning he bought a LEGO Taj Mahal: sales increased by 700%.
LEGO communities around the world can appoint an ambassador who represents the group and is then being kept informed, the ideal way for the business to amplify their news to 65,000 registered worlwide members. ‘It’s about a snowball effect, celebrating fans and connecting the dots in the community. Showing the masses what fans have done with LEGO’ says Peter.
Some basic social rules from Peter:
- Set expectations
- Be respectful
- Ensure win-win
- Be inclusive
- Be reliable
- Ensure transparency
- Limit secrecy
- (meet and celebrate the fans)
What does the future behold?
Steve Clayton is Microsoft’s official story teller and he sees a couple of trends that will be transformative:
- The Cloud
- Ecosystem of devices
- Displays everywhere
- Explosion of data
- Social computing
- Connectivity everywhere
He explains that we have an enormous amount of data around us and that this data will be brought together and made to merge into the background by giving it intuitive user interfaces, the voice navigating many of them. We will start to connect with technology around us in a different more natural way. Devices themselves will be much more intelligent and connected.
Watch here how people will get things done at home, work and on the go in 5-10 years.
Next and last up was David A Smith, a futurologist and Chief Executive of the Global Futures Forum. I can’t remember anyone throwing baffling stats at me at the pace he did but then again I guess there is a lot of future and he was only given a certain time to speak. So true to the staccato way we heard facts at Imagine:
- Post-recession: we’ll see innovation, product development & new business models across almost all sectors.
- Winning strategies: 'The winners will be companies who knew how to identify opportunities in the downturn'
- The size of the world economy will triple over the next four decades as emerging market economies wield power.
- We're living longer lives. Dr.Aubrey thinks human life expectancies have the potential to reach 500 or maybe even 1000. He thinks that the first person to live to 1000 might be 60 already.
- By 2020 the internet will have 5 billion users, connecting 3 billion people mostly in emerging markets.
- 28% of people will use smart phones to find information.
- TV channels are dead - we want granular content.
- Nobody will want to live in the Midlands, everyone wants to live in the West Country, some people will favour Scotland and the South East.
Mari-Kim, Senior Director Global Marketing at Microsoft finished the day ‘great storytelling is about connecting the dots. We are passionate about putting these dots together. Hopefully you enjoyed Imagine. We organized it because we want to be partners’.