For marketers that gain much of their impact through social media, the impacts of algorithm changes can have a significant effect. So much so that close to two-thirds (65.7%) of the respondents to a survey from Bynder and OnBrand Magazine listed this as the largest threat to digital brand engagement.
This algorithm angst has also been seen in other research, with roughly 6 in 10 B2C content marketers listing SEO/search algorithm change as one of the most important issues they are facing.
The other two key threats highlighted by brand marketers in Bynder and OnBrand Magazine’s research are indicative of wider consumer trends. Ad-free streaming is cited by some 57.3% of respondents as a threat to their digital engagement, reflecting the fact that significant numbers of consumers now pay for ad-free TV and music subscriptions. Another threat to brand engagement is the rise of ad/pop up blockers (52.9%), which are especially popular with Gen Z consumers.
So what can help break through the noise?
While marketers aren’t often thought of as being responsible for handling complaints or serving customers directly, the top cited method for breaking through to consumers in a crowded digital landscape is providing excellent customer service, with 3 in 10 (30%) brand marketers listing it as their top response.
By comparison, that’s almost double the next-most cited tactics coming in joint second at 16% – content personalization and running innovative campaigns.
A possible reason behind this finding comes from the fact that the top tactic for influencing buyer behavior is listed as social media (30.9%).
Social media is a channel that can make brands accountable to a chorus of consumers’ voices. More than half of social media users have called out brands for both complaints and corporate social responsibility issues.
As a result, it makes sense to place an emphasis on customer service, as the absence of this could potentially cloud any efforts on social media platforms.
Past research from Salesforce has shown that marketing and customer service departments are becoming increasingly intertwined, reflecting the fact that consumers only see single brands and not the siloed departments that might otherwise be present.
Confidence in Creating Personalization is High
With content personalization ranking high on the list of what is breaking through to customers, brands are confident in their ability to personalize the experience or product that customers enjoy. In fact, 47.5% of brands are very confident in their ability to personalize while 47.1% are somewhat confident. Only a very small amount (3.6%) are not confident.
In the consumer’s eye, personalization equates with customization as well as services suited specifically for them. Brands are attempting to personalize through several avenues. Some of the most effective methods include targeted marketing and advertising campaigns, customized digital experiences, localization- based marketing and product customization, according to the report.
Despite the high confidence in their ability to personalize, brands still face certain challenges. One-quarter (25.7%) said that ensuring the right personalized message reaches the right audience was one such challenge.
Technologies like predictive analytics, AI and chatbots have proven effective in personalization, however, brands are still concerned that they do not have the right technology for personalization purposes. Some 23% of respondents felt that having the right technology to support personalized content was one of their top challenges.
To read more, find the report here.
About the Data: Results of Bynder’s State of Branding 2019 were compiled from responses from 501 marketing decision-makers within organizations sized from 500 – 10,000+ across the United States and the United Kingdom.