Marketing Unplugged

Digital is everywhere. It’s a fact, particularly in the marketing world. It’s easy to forget that things were not always seen through a screen. Once upon a time brands engaged with audiences in the real world. In this brave new digital era perhaps the real world matters more than ever. Considering the events of the last year, it’s more important than ever to remember that there is real value in engaging with audiences and connecting with each other outside of digital technology. 

It’s National Day of Unplugging, so we thought we would get our heads together and share our thoughts on why it’s important to consider more than just digital when it comes to connecting your brand to your audience. 

Whilst digital is important there is more to marketing than just digital.

Digital platforms and technology should be seen as a channel to be used as part of the wide range of channels that are available. For effective communication, irrespective of the channel the core marketing principles remain:

Understand who you are talking to, what you want to say that will resonate with them, how you are going to reach them effectively and how you are going to measure if it’s working.

Why it’s important to consider other means to reach your audience.

Digital has extremely effective targeting and measurement capabilities, that much is undeniable. 

However, to motivate, mobilise and inspire, there can be more effective mediums and selecting the right mix is crucial for the success of any campaign. Often digital can convey a message but it does not replace the face to face opportunities that the likes of experiential marketing or events allow. Whilst digital can enhance many marketing initiatives, digital technology alone would struggle to replace the immersive experience of a young child seeing an 18 metre T-Rex or a Disney character in real life. 

For brands communicating specific messages to audiences, digital can’t always engage on a grassroots level or in a situation where a brand needs to show a certain level of personal care and attention for their customers. The slightly anonymous nature of digital now becomes a weakness where it can’t always express the personality of an organisation without very specific content considerations.

Additionally, in product relevant environments, digital just cannot convey the message needed i.e the flavour of a new beer.

Often, brands will rely on digital to do a bit of everything, but if used in conjunction with other techniques, it can have an enormously positive impact on marketing effectiveness. However, there is no getting away from the fact that it still requires a strong underlying marketing channel mix to do that.

What can the real-life experience do that digital just can’t!

Experiential can bring a brand to life using all of the customer senses; sight, smell, taste, sound and touch. Digital is only two-dimensional sight and sound. Even when we look at new applications in AR & VR, they cannot yet replace a truly multisensory experience. A well-executed real-life customer experience should do 3 things:

Excite, Engage & Educate

The importance of real-life experiences.

Never has there been a deeper need for brands to be brought to life. For a year now most of our experience of a brand has been almost solely through digital channels.

People are crying out for experiences, especially where young children are involved. This presents a huge opportunity for brands. 

Shopping centres and city centres need to work hard to bring people back into their venues and to give them an experience that makes them want to come back. This is going to need more than just the allure of retail stores as the convenience of online shopping will have undoubtedly slightly eroded the need for real-world shopping, so retail centres, city centres and councils need new ways to engage us!

Digital is important, we know. But we also remember the buzz of being at the races compared with watching TV. The electric atmosphere of a capacity crowd in a sports stadium and a meal out compared to a meal in.

We are real people and real experiences are valuable to us. Those brands that provide great experiences will be the winners.

We are an integrated creative agency of thinkers, creators & doers. Give us a shout and let us help you really connect with your audience and be unforgettable!