Thursday, July 9, 2020

Lessons from Mobile Matters: Creating a Digital Experience Your Consumers Enjoy

Whether you want to admit it or not, your life largely revolves around mobile. I am willing to bet you don’t go anywhere without your phone, and when you can’t get to your phone you probably check your Apple Watch. In your house you probably have an Alexa that you talk to when you want to know what the weather is, and I bet you now do most of your shopping online. I am wrong? If I am, I applaud you for resisting the temptation of technology, but if I’m not, don’t feel bad most of the world is right there with you. So with this many people on mobile all the time, it is time that your brand expands marketing into mobile channels and creates mobile experiences for your users. Josh Kroo, Senior Vice President of Brand Marketing and Digital Strategy at Crayola, shares some tips of how Crayola creates digital experiences that best serve their customers and how they market them to a wide audience in his Mobile Matters episode.

One Channel Isn’t Enough

Imagine you are in a three-legged race, and you and your partner keep taking steps in the opposite direction. Do you think you will do very well? No, you will keep fighting each other to go the direction you want and in the end you will end up getting nowhere. This is what happens when you have a disjointed marketing team. If everyone on the team has different goals for different channels, your marketing strategy will never work. Instead you need to bring all your channels together (email marketing, mobile marketing, social media, content, etc.) and start having conversations as a team. Consumer behavior has shifted, and there is now a higher expectation that marketing should provide real value to consumers. It is no longer enough to send out mass emails to a large group of consumers and call it a day. You need to have coordinated marketing happening on multiple channels that give your consumers a worthwhile experience, and provides real value to them.

Create a Digital Experience Users Feel Good About

So there is this constant battle around screen time these days, and Apple isn’t making it any better by reminding us how much time we spend on our phones on a weekly basis. But at the same time everything is digital  so it’s hard to fight the urge to be on your mobile phone. The solution? Create a mobile experience that users actually feel good about using. Crayola does a phenomenal job of this by creating mobile apps that foster kids’ creativity while also making the app enjoyable. It is a digital experience kids’ can have fun with, and parents don’t have to feel guilty about letting them use it. It’s a win-win!

Also, when you are implementing new technology into your brand, that technology should always serve as a tool to support your overall mission rather than distract from the mission. Having your brand go through a digital transformation is important to keep your brand moving forward but can be a slippery slope if you get distracted by the “shiny objects”. Always make sure the technology you are implementing, whether it be wearables, voice, augmented reality, etc., will better serve your mission and will provide customers with an experience they feel good about using.

How to Market to Different Audiences

Josh shines some light on why it’s so important to adapt to different audiences when marketing. At Crayola, they need to appeal to both children and their parents. Obviously children aren’t going to respond to the same messages parents respond to and vice versa. This is a challenge that many brands face, so it’s important that you know how to market to different audiences, and how to do it well. So here is a general guideline of how to do it. Start by identifying your target personas (Spoiler alert – your target persona isn’t “everyone”). You then need to think about what message that persona wants to hear, and then think about what channels they are present on. Once you have thought through those three things you will have a better idea of who you are targeting, how you will target them, and where you will target them. It is okay if you have to slightly change your message for different target personas (it is more likely than not that you will have to), but just make sure your messaging is consistent with the brand’s mission and doesn’t contradict itself.

Bringing your brand into the digital world can be a challenge, especially if you have been around as long as Crayola. But trust me, it is possible and necessary if you want to stay relevant. If you want to hear more mobile lessons from Josh Kroo you can watch his full Mobile Matters episode here!