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Digital Marketing trends are essential to follow, and it is also necessary to understand these trends and see how they may positively impact your digital marketing plans. Therefore, we have compiled these articles explaining the power and use of “Micro-Moments.”
Have you heard? The days of a linear, clear-cut path to purchase are long gone.
Today’s consumers are working their way through a far more complex web of small, smartphone-enabled steps—each one inching them toward the “buy now” button over many weeks or months.
As a marketer, you’ve no doubt noticed this shift. But did you know there’s an official name for it? Google refers to these steps as “micro-moments” and says they have tremendous impacts on digital marketing.
Ready or not, micro-moments are transforming marketing as we know it. Here’s a quick introduction to the trend and its implications for your team.
Micro-moments occur when people reflexively turn to a mobile device to explore, discover, research, and buy. They are high-intent moments when preferences are shaped, and decisions are made. For example, think of those times when a shopper will whip out a smartphone to compare prices and check reviews after seeing a product on a store shelf or ask a voice assistant to locate nearby shops and restaurants.
It’s happening more often, as people increasingly rely on their mobile devices to get things done. One in five American adults now rely solely on smartphones to stay connected, and 52.2% of worldwide website traffic is generated through mobile devices.
According to Content Strategy Director Mark Traphagen, micro-moments tend to fill one of four immediate needs:
- I want to know when someone is exploring or researching a product or service but is not yet in purchase mode
- I want to go when the consumer is looking for a local business or considering buying a product from a nearby store
- I want to do when someone needs help completing a task or trying something new
- I want to buy when a shopper is ready to make a purchase but needs help with the “where” and “how.”
As Google explains it:
“In these moments, consumers’ expectations are higher than ever. The powerful computers we carry in our pockets have trained us to expect brands to immediately deliver exactly what we are looking for when we are looking. We want things right, and we want things right away.”
In other words…
The more you can maximize these windows of opportunity, the more likely you’ll be to increase conversions, sales, and revenue.
So, how do you capitalize on this massive shift and harness the power of micro-moments in your marketing?
As a first step, you’ll need to change your mindset.
In the days before smartphones, it was pretty typical for people to be inspired by traditional marketing: The TV ad that drove them to visit a store, the radio jingle that caused them to pick up the phone.
That process has become far more complex. Rather than responding reactively to marketing messages, consumers are proactively looking for inspiration and ideas—at all times, on a wide variety of devices.
The question to ask is: Which micro-moments are people using that could lead them to your brand? What’s influencing them, and how can you become a part of that process?
- Brainstorm with your team: What might lead your ideal customer to your product or service? What do they need to know at that moment? Are they looking for videos, photos, reviews, or helpful content?
- Ask your customers: Conducting short, simple online surveys is one of the best ways to understand exactly what people need and expect from you and is used far too infrequently.
- Think small: Most marketers have gotten good at creating content for the “big” moments but spend far less time on the little steps that lead the way. For example, rather than building an entire budget around product-specific paid search ads, the micro-moment marketer would also factor in all those times consumers are using search phrases that include words like “ideas” and “inspiration.”
If there’s one thing we know for sure, it’s that the micro-moment movement is here to stay. If you haven’t headed down this road yet, now’s the time to start. Until you incorporate more mobile experiences into your marketing strategy, you could be missing out on significant wins.
Not sure where to start? That’s what our micro-moments webinars are for. For this four-part series, we teamed up with experts from various industries to share best practices for content, social media, brand reputation, and more. Each episode features actionable tips you can use to strengthen your micro-moments marketing strategy—all in 25 minutes or less. It’s one of the quickest, easiest ways to stay ahead of this fast-moving trend.
Consumer behaviour has changed forever. Today’s battle for hearts, minds and dollars is won (or lost) in micro-moments—intent-driven moments of decision-making and preference-shaping that occur throughout the consumer journey. Read more about this new mental model for marketing.
As mobile has become an indispensable part of our daily lives, we’re witnessing a fundamental change in the way people consume media. What used to be our predictable, daily sessions online have been replaced by many fragmented interactions that now occur instantaneously. There are hundreds of these moments every day—checking the time, texting a spouse, chatting with friends on social media.
But then there are the other moments—the I want-to-know moments, I want-to-do moments, I want-to-do moments, and I want-to-buy moments—that matter. We call these “micro-moments,” and they’re game-changers for both consumers and brands.
Micro-moments occur when people reflexively turn to a device—increasingly a smartphone—to act on a need to learn something, do something, discover something, watch something, or buy something. They are intent-rich moments when decisions are made and preferences shaped. In these moments, consumers’ expectations are higher than ever. The powerful computers we carry in our pockets have trained us to expect brands to immediately deliver exactly what we are looking for when we are looking. We want things right, and we want things right away.
- Of leisure travellers who are smartphone users, 69% search for travel ideas during spare moments, like when they’re standing in line or waiting for the subway. Nearly half of those travellers go on to book their choices through an entirely separate channel.
- Of smartphone users, 91% look up information on their smartphones while in the middle of a task.
- Of smartphone users, 82% consult their phones while they’re standing in a store deciding which product to buy. But, unfortunately, one in 10 of those end up buying a different product than they had planned.
- Of online consumers, 69% agree that the quality, timing, or relevance of a company’s message influences their perception of a brand.
Why should marketers care?
This concept of micro-moments is a game-changer for buyers and marketers.
If you’re like most brands, you probably have your marketing efforts planned out in a buyer funnel with dedicated content for the awareness, consideration, and decision stages.
But this linear funnel concept is going in the direction of the dinosaurs.
The consumer journey has fractured into hundreds of real-time, intent-driven micro-moments with our increasing dependence on smartphones. Each one is a critical opportunity for brands to shape our decisions and preferences.
When we act on our needs, our expectations are high, and our patience is low. This makes the quality, relevance, and usefulness of marketing more important than ever.
Since our preferences and purchases are shaped in these micro-moments, the brands that do the best job of addressing customers’ needs in each moment – notably on mobile – will enjoy a substantial competitive edge.
- Many consumers aren’t brand committed. 90% of smartphone users are not sure of the specific brand they want to buy when they begin looking for information online
- You get a shot at your competitor’s customers. For example, 1 out of 3 smartphone users has purchased from a company or brand other than the one they intended to because of information provided at the moment they needed it.
- Your presence can drive brand awareness goals. For example, more than half of smartphone users have discovered a new company or product when searching for their smartphones.
Ultimately, showing up gets your brand in the game to be chosen, not just seen.
By being there at these “moments,” your brand has the chance to address consumer needs at the perfect time and help move them along their decision journey.
Think about it. We don’t just rely on long sit-down sessions at our keyboards to make purchases anymore. Instead, we reach for our phones and make informed decisions while chatting with our colleagues during lunchtime or lining up for our morning coffee.
And though mobile is driving this change, this phenomenon has implications far beyond mobile. It affects the entire consumer journey across screens, devices, and channels.
Take consumer behaviour at retail stores as an example: foot traffic has declined, yet customers are spending more when they visit.
That’s because they’ve done their research and made decisions before ever walking in.
The same goes for consumers visiting websites on a computer. They typically spend less time per visit but convert more often. In many ways, micro-moments have become the footsteps that lead people to your store or desktop site.
We hope that this article has provide insight into Micro-Moments and how they may be used to enhance your overall marketing plan.
Article compiled by hughesagency.ca
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