Real-time marketing is loosely defined as the creation of content to engage audiences relevant to a specific current event. This aspect of marketing has gotten a bad rep over the years, as it can be seen as a way for brands to promote their product or to start discussions with other brands. However, at the heart of a successful real time marketing strategy is a way to engage with your audience. Matchstick has had a huge amount of experience as to which types of posts work for individual brands. From our experience, here are our best practice recommendations:
- Speak to the right audience at the right time
While real-time marketing may be separate from your other marketing plan, it should not steer away from your marketing objectives. This means that aspects like speaking in the right voice, and portraying audience-appropriate content should always be the main goals. A good example of this would be our client, Canadian Club’s, post on Father’s Day. It’s directed towards father’s but it stays with the clear and simple messaging that Canadian Club is known for.
- Don’t jump on the bandwagon
While some brands are clearly connected to events and holidays, it may be a far stretch for others. Each brand needs to make sure that they are choosing the right events to start engaging their audiences with. Good examples would be that Banff Ice Vodka is often targeted towards males who like extreme sports, especially winter activities such as skiing. So promoting during the Olympics or other sporting events is a good time for this brand. It would not, however, be wise to promote the brand during family-day or the Oscar’s. This may seem like an obvious point, but some brands try to hop onto as many events as possible, to widen their reach, which brings us to our last point…
- Be engaging
Don’t get us wrong, it’s great to reach a large amount of people, but this shouldn’t be the only number coming into play. One of the most famous real-time marketing posts was Oreo’s “Dunk in the Dark” post, which appeared right after the lights went out at the Super Bowl. Jerry Daykin, the owner of Oreo, stated that the reason this post did so well was engagement with fans, not reach. Remember that real-time marketing is about engaging your fans with content that will spark some sort of emotion. Make sure that each post has an end goal in mind of either engaging your current audience, or reaching new consumers.
Each brand will need to experiment with their voice and content to ensure that they are creating a successful real-time marketing plan for themselves. A good strategy can have huge benefits to companies, such as increased customer engagement, improved customer experience, and increased conversion. As with any good marketing strategy, practice makes perfect!