Social Samosa spoke to a cross-section of industry experts, deep-diving into digital marketing trends, this festive season.
Despite the current economic slowdown, India’s M&A industry is buoyed to spend an average of 8-12% more than the last year keeping the investments between INR 25,000 – INR 28,000 crore on the marketing and advertising front, this festive season. The reduction in the corporate tax rate from 30% to 22% comes as icing on the cake. In the background of such projects, we take a look at some prominent digital marketing trends.
While TV and print have witnessed a high volume growth as far as AdSpends are concerned, digital is no behind. Industry experts peg the digital spends to grow by 12 – 15 percent this festive season.
Social Samosa takes a look at a few digital marketing trends marketers are betting big on this festive season.
1. Be the first to speak on Social
The festive season is a time when brands focus on ROI driven activities. It’s their expected spike for the year, but it’s also a time where competition is fierce. How do brands break the clutter?
According to Mitchelle Rozario Jansen, Regional Head Operations (West), WATConsult it’s not just about grabbing eyeballs, but doing it first, and then maintaining recall. In terms of messaging, brands incline towards nostalgia, social causes or humor, to be able to strike a chord with the consumer.
Brands like SaReGaMa Carvaan and Big Bazaar have optimally sensed the consumer sentiments and curated campaigns over the years that transcended beyond the festival season.
Rozario added, “The strategy is simple, be the first to speak to the consumer and speak in the language that they understand, be it offers, deals or emotions”.
2. Maximum Discounts and E-shopping
It’s that time of the year where consumer brands witness almost 30% of their annual sales. It is observed that not only in metros but in non-metros as well, there is a major jump in online shopping specifically during the festive period.
“With Indian retail industry comprising of over 10% of our country’s GDP and consumers today preferring to shop via online marketplaces more than offline retail store, it is increasingly becoming challenging for brands to get the share of voice during the buzziest time of the year,” shared Siddharth Khanna, Co-Founder & CEO, Brand Visage Digital.
Also, there is generally an air of conscious spending by consumers across categories today. With Ecommerce annual sale season starting soon, Ashit Chakravarty – Vice President, Dentsu Webchutney shared that there will be an air of festivities and we will be witnessing deep discounting by marketplaces and brands.
The sector will witness a surge of consumers with clear buy intent. Equipped with festive offers marketers will be spending frugally caching in on consumers sending strong purchase signals though things like Google in market or cart abandonment etc. Chakravarthy noted, “Digital spends should be consistent if not more during this period because in a slowdown demand creation is a necessity, however, every advertising dollar will need to work harder”.
Apart from various measures a brand can take during the festive time, they cannot neglect the fact that in online, consumer loyalty is majorly inclined towards a platform where he gets the maximum discount or the best deals. How with CRM tools and loyalty rewards, brands need to bring back the shopper on the same platform and incentivize the not so loyal consumers.
“Given the rising search and purchase volumes, harping on the search trends and content consumption pattern, brands must leverage the fact that each campaign can be customized based on different user groups and affinity cycles for pure performance campaigns,” Khanna quipped.
3. Digital First Marketing
It is one of the ‘high purchase seasons’ for customers across India. The key to keep the buzz going and be relevant and present where the customers are. There is a sizeable population that consumes and expresses on the go and the Digital First marketing outreach has been shaped with this in mind.
Sandeep Tewari, President Marketing, Usha International opined, “Digital platforms today allow for customized outreach, creative expression, and two-way communication, all of which help engage and drive home the brand value extremely effectively. Having said that, this does not mean that offline is any less important. Brands need to have a well-balanced marketing strategy to address consumers across demographics”.
4. Of Memes, Moment Marketing, and online engagement
As per Mayank Shah, Sr. Category Head, Parle Products, digital initiatives and moment marketing generated around festivals help immensely and is one of the major digital marketing trends this year.
Majority of the content revolves around films and memes, over and above that a festival like Diwali would be generating content on gifting. Brands in e-commerce or marketing space would be utilizing their own assets on digital media to sell gift packs and taking a step forward by creating personalized gift packs with recipients’ name etched or signed by the brand.
Shah added, “One of the reasons companies are initiating digital campaigns is that during the festive time there is a typical surge in buying and that is something we are seeing around the events and occasions every year. There is higher propensity to buy around festive times – from regular to premium items”.
Hence, companies would like to take this opportunity and maximize their selling or improve their top line, by providing additional incentives to customers and giving additional reasons to buy.
5. Influencer Marketing and Brand Stories
While there are many strategies which brands can adopt, Influencer Marketing and targeted content across platforms make for the significant ones across social platforms.
Khanna thinks that Influencer Marketing is one of the best ways to collaborate with content creators and spread the message across be it product launches, tutorials, brand promotions or reviews.
E-commerce giants such as Amazon, Flipkart, and Myntra have often leveraged celebrity and other influencers to keep the buzz around their sales going.
Consumers don’t want to be only fed by pushed branded content, so when influencers with relevant followers talk about a product or a brand, the purchase inclination also increases as it gets labeled as earned media.
With increased shopper awareness Tewari foresees an increase in consumption of festive content on social media platforms, more engagement on customized local content from region-specific audiences, splurge in online searches/ queries for the products that customers wish to buy, and increased share of YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram in a big way.