The Zero Moment of Truth.
Addressing the growing importance of the mobile phone, social media, and personalized content will be three of the main focuses for marketers in the year 2013. When marketers interact with a customer, there exists a moment in which that customer makes a choice to embrace or reject the product. This moment is known in marketing circles as the Zero Moment of Truth. This is the moment where the customer chooses to interact and move forward or not. A lot of the time when a customer is viewing a webpage there are certain intangibles around the experience. Does the page have pleasing aesthetics? Does it feel good? Is the home page and landing page relevant? Is there a relevant message? Is the image displayed well? Is the content clearly organized? These are the factors that contribute to the customers decision during the Zero Moment of Truth.
One of the best ways to enhance the user experience is through agile marketing. Agile marketing takes inspiration from agile development. It means responding to change rather than following a plan. For marketers this requires short range planning and execution. It is an ongoing, highly adaptable process that is not overly resource intensive. Besides agile marketing, another type of marketing that is emerging as relevant for 2013 and beyond is content marketing. It is the new way of advertising, specifically from a business to business perspective. Content marketing means creating and sharing content that will catch the attention of the customer. Content marketing can also be used for brand awareness, customer retention, thought leadership, website traffic and lead generation. It can take the form of blogs, social media, case studies, e-newsletters, microsites, e-books or webinars.
The Expansion of Social Media.
As social media continues to expand and become more relevant, there will be a shift from passive to active content marketing. Another notable shift is that at some point in 2013, mobile devices will overtake PCs as the most common web access device worldwide. Mobile sales are exploding, while PC sales have been stagnating. An optimized mobile customer experience has gone from something that is nice to have, to something that is vital and necessary. Businesses need to be able to get in front of users while they are mobile. If a user is searching for a certain product, businesses must make it so that users can pull up a map of nearby locations where that product is being sold. The same principle should be applied to the stores themselves. Users need to be able to know where the nearest location of a certain store is.
Responsive Design Across Devices.
Mobility is an important factor to consider. Chances are if a user is accessing a site from their mobile device they are moving around. Limiting the number of choices a user has on a mobile device makes for a better user experience. A mobile site needs to be straightforward and easy to navigate. The best way to ensure a mobile page is easy to use is by using a responsive design. Responsive design is an approach to web design in which the site is crafted to provide an optimal viewing experience on a wide range of devices. The idea behind responsive design is that there will be minimal zooming, scrolling and cropping. Proper responsive design means the page is easily, and clearly viewable. Responsive design means that a page can be viewed on a tablet, desktop, or mobile phone and on each one the page will be just as navigable.
Increasing Credibility Through Social Media.
One of the more surprising recent trends is that businesses now need to worry about pages besides their own. As social media continues to expand and increase in relevance, many companies are now driving traffic away from their own pages and instead trying to get customers to view their company’s Facebook page. One of the main advantages of getting customers to a social media site is that it increases credibility. Exposing potential customers to what current and former customers have to say about products is a great way to increase conversions.
The Need for Personalization.
Increasing conversions can also be achieved through personalization. Just as an optimized mobile experience has evolved from something nice to have to a necessity, personalization is an issue marketers can no longer ignore in 2013. Personalization, when used correctly increases relevancy, loyalty, and engagement. Personalization is an ideal email marketing solution. One marketing study revealed that personalized emails increased response rates by 500 percent. Combined with social media, and an optimized mobile experience, personalization will improve the user experience throughout 2013 and beyond.