During the past few years, the industry has seen a significant shift towards cross-channel marketing behavior. In fact, an eMarketer study shows that over 70% of marketers agree on the importance of delivering a streamlined consumer experience across channels and devices. With election season upon us, political advertising is the latest example of the trend, and a great moment in time for every marketer to glean important insights into the factors that drive cross-channel marketing strategies that create a holistic and relevant experience that connects both brands and politicos with their target audiences.
Actionable, applicable data is the cornerstone of effective cross-channel marketing, whether it be in the political sphere or any other industry. According to Experian’s 2015 Digital Marketer Report, nearly two-thirds of marketers cite their top marketing challenge as collecting and managing the various flows of data available.
With consumers switching between so many devices and channels, data has become increasingly difficult to parse and make sense of. By leveraging this type of data, marketers are able to translate a collection of numbers and percentages into targeted media strategy, an important factor in creating cohesive agile marketing.
In the political world, we see this trend magnified, most notably in leveraging data through social media. Back in 2012, Barack Obama effectively leveraged democratic voter data to interact with his target audience through social media, focusing his attention on the younger generation of voters. After Blue State Digital built an app on his behalf, tens of thousands of young people downloaded voter-registration forms on Facebook and invited his point of view directly on to their devices.
As with all marketing strategy, creating a quality customer experience is an effective means of aligning key messaging with key audiences. When consumers feel involved in the conversation, they are more likely to be receptive to advertisements that resonate with them. Being able to leverage data to measure sentiment and identify key current issues in political campaigns presents an enormous opportunity for brand advertisers Knowing what voters care about and crafting messaging that makes them feel understood is the first step in building that relationship.
In Q4 2015, Ted Cruz’s presidential campaign invested aggressively in cross-platform voter-targeting during the Iowa caucuses, going as far to drill down into detailed psychological profiles to sway voters. During this period, while Donald Trump was the talk of the nation on TV, radio, the Internet and social media, Cruz was still able to surge in the polls and emerged as a frontrunner in the crowded Republican race.
By fully understanding your target — whether voters or consumers — marketers can connect to experiences and align messages seamlessly across channels to ensure audiences receive the same relevant and resonating advertisements from one device to another.
Real-Time Moment Experiences
Real-time data and agility go hand-in-hand, as being able to activate on crucial moments is an essential part of agile marketing. As we know, consumers value experience far more than any other aspect of a brand’s ad or media strategy. By utilizing real-time data, brands and politicos are able to leverage these moments, and deliver campaigns based on what’s happening in those moments. By making real-time data and execution a rule, marketers are able to scale and appeal to the digital consumer across mobile, social, video and display, precisely when those individual channels are more accessible and/or relevant to the viewer.
In advertising, political or otherwise, consumer mindset-in-a-given-moment should always be a central hub that connects to and guides the creative and messaging that’s delivered over the individual spokes (i.e. channels). By developing strategies rooted in an understanding of the target market, advertisers can serve effective and meaningful campaigns to receptive audiences across all channels.