To kick-off the new year, we asked some of our smartest guest writers to reflect on the past year and look to the upcoming year. This post is by Rick Jensen, Senior Vice President, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer at Constant Contact. Rick oversees the company's sales and marketing functions. He joined Constant Contact in May 2011, bringing with him more than two decades of consumer and small business marketing and sales experience, a passion for small organization success, and a strong track record managing high-growth organizations.
We live in a world that’s more social and more interactive than ever before. For marketers, this brings a tremendous opportunity to tap into new tools and more opportunities for engagement to help build long-lasting customer relationships. As a result, separating yourself from the crowd and respecting the relationship you have with your audience is more important than ever. So, you’re probably asking yourself this question – what can I do in 2013 to help build these important customer relationships?
One of the biggest trends I see this coming year is the emergence of SoLoMo (the convergence of social media, local merchants using location-aware technology, and mobile device usage). This evolution lets marketers more effectively tailor messages and content like deals and offers to individual customers, greatly increasing the opportunity for engagement. Let’s take a look at what lies ahead for SoMoLo in 2013:
So – Social Media as a Key Approach for Marketers of All SizesMarketers’ adoption of social media over the last five years has varied depending on the size of the business. Larger brands embraced social media marketing with open arms fairly early on, while small businesses have been more cautious about including social in their marketing mix. In 2013, we’ll see a significant transition as small businesses start to catch up to larger brand marketers and approach social media as a critical business activity.
Lo – The Local Offer Done Right
Consumers are demanding personalization like never before and expect marketers to tailor content to their individual preferences. This is especially true in the deals industry; we are inundated with deals and consumers are tired of getting “personalized” deals sent to them that are simply not a fit. In 2013, expect that to change. We will see marketers become more savvy about the types of deals they run to meet consumer needs.
Mo – Potential Customers are Searching On-The-Go
Millions of consumers are shopping by browsing the hundreds of directories, web sites, and mobile apps that provide local business information. In fact, a recent study of more than ten million storefront views from SinglePlatform from Constant Contact found that for the first time, mobile storefront views surpassed web views in the fall of 2012. Marketers have no choice but to embrace this trend and distribute their information across the most popular apps, while also featuring mobile-optimized websites so potential customers can view their information easily. Restaurants have been ahead of the curve on this front, but expect to see other vertical categories to follow suit in the coming year.
2013 will bring innovation that will make it easier than ever for marketers to get engaged with your audience and drive real, measureable results. And embracing SoLoMo in the coming year can help accomplish your 2013 marketing goals.