Digital marketing is constantly evolving. If you want to grow your brand, you have to know and understand your consumers. They decide what’s good, what should be shared and what deserves a click through.
“The brands that are winning are the ones who understand people the best,” says Shaunna Keller, a digital and social account supervisor at Brand Content, a communications agency.
Keller works with a team of strategists, community managers and analysts who are responsible for understanding people well, studying their behaviors and then building digital roadmaps for brands seeking to connect with those people. They make sure consumer’s desires are heard and their needs are met.
“A lot of this work involves helping clients to think about what matters now and where the focus should be. It’s no longer on their brand, it’s on consumers,” she says.
Before Brand Content, Keller spent most of her career accelerating the content program at Skullcandy, a lifestyle and performance audio brand. She re-imagined Skullcandy’s global social media strategy, putting consumers at the heart of it.
DELIVER PERSONAL EXPERIENCES
“Smart brands understand that it’s not enough to simply exist on digital platforms. They need to deliver really personalized and relevant experiences in order to connect with real people,” she tells HER Magazine.
At Skullcandy, Keller helped the brand double its Instagram followers, attract 2 million Facebook fans and triple sales from social channels.
“When I was growing Skullcandy’s audience, it was a very different environment. Organic reach and engagement were very much the focus. Now the environment has shifted to a paid model, where algorithms curate our world view,” she says.
Keller finds value in social ads because brands can reach people where they’re already spending their time. You can find out what a specific audience likes and needs and create content that is personal and helpful to them. “Your success is earned by mastering proper targeting,” Keller says.
CHANGE YOUR APPROACH
The focus used to be on creating different content for different platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Now brands need to take that to the next level by creating content for different audiences within each platform.
“You must keep learning and be willing to change your approach and experiment with each new platform as it emerges,” she says.
Keller, who also contributes to the strategic direction of Brand Content, says her entire team is made up of all women. Her team works on almost every project that comes through the agency and since digital is always evolving and based in the future, their number one job is education.
“People will be skeptical of what you’re saying and you will be required to prove the value of your recommendation at every turn,” she says.
PAY ATTENTION TO PRIVATE MESSAGING
Keller’s team is also focusing on helping clients stay ahead of the digital curve. One area they are paying close attention to is how people are connecting online via messaging apps.
Over 1 billion people use WhatsApp, the instant messaging service, to stay connected with their family and friends. In September, the company announced they will be testing new features to make it easier to for people to get in touch with businesses.
Keller says Artificial Intelligence (AI) can dramatically impact the connection you have with a consumer through mediums like messenger and voice. (Think virtual agents or chatbots who use keywords to answer consumer questions.)
“I think that is the next evolution of social media, this addition of a private ecosystem, where we’ll see a transition from a high frequency of conversations happening in public to most of the conversations occurring in messaging apps or private group chats.”
There has been a shift in how people connect online and Keller plans to keep a close watch.
“It will alter social media, as we know it now, which is fascinating. We’ll be helping our clients stay ahead of the digital curve, which will continue to be both challenging and very rewarding,” she says.