I think we can all agree that marketing has changed a lot over the last few years. Not only have we become a fast-food generation desiring content to be delivered to us at a fast, easy-to-digest rate, but we have also become a generation that is desensitized to ads. A recent survey by pagefair.com estimated that over 198 million people use an ad block program on their computer. This statistic proves that we are tired of getting hit with so many BUY NOW messages. We don’t want to be yelled at. Our lives are lived in the fast lane, and it is important for marketers to realize that while traditional marketing channels still hold some value, they can no longer be the only avenues for brand promotion.

In a recent survey of over 350 Branson, MO, visitors conducted by the Clear Marketing team, data showed that the #1 marketing tool that influenced travelers’ booking or purchase decisions was word of mouth. What does this mean? It means that marketing has changed 100% in the last few years, yet nothing has changed at all. Sound confusing? Let me explain.

Of the 350 people polled, over 87% still view word of mouth as a marketer’s most influential tool. That part has not changed. Consumers value what others say about your brand more than what you say about your brand. A recent article posted by influencer-marketing.com suggests that 90% of people view content shared by other people as more influential than content from the brand itself. If you are the best, you should not have to scream that message. Others should be saying it for you. Your branded content should act as a consistent voice to remind the consumer what people are already saying about you. Nothing new, right?

The part that has changed is how we engage with that information. Consumers are constantly seeking and sharing brand information on a variety of online platforms like their favorite social media channels, review sites, and blog subscriptions, and it is our job to be there when they come looking. At Clear Marketing, we desire to connect a brand’s message with consumer touchpoints along their decision journey. Google calls these micro-moments. The more positive interactions (brand engagements) you can have with a consumer before, during, or after they experience your product, the more likely they are to book (or re-book) with you. In time, a consistent and engaging message will motivate a consumer to connect with your brand and move them toward further brand loyalty and advocacy.

Our team is passionate about combining the latest strategy, creativity, and technology to engage travelers in a relevant and compelling way. We feel that relationships which nurture a strong brand connection and motivate word of mouth brand activism result in a higher ROI (Return on Investment). A good brand engagement strategy needs to consist of at least five main components: Reputation management monitoring, a creative and engaging social strategy, a calculated SEM campaign, an attractive website (mobile friendly of course), and a consistent email marketing program, all of which are supported by a clear and relevant visual identity. If you have to force a steeply discounted offer down the consumer’s throat to get them through the door, then you are already losing the battle. As a marketer, your goal should be to create a culture of engagement and conversation around your brand fostered by easy access to brand information.

If your brand or business is struggling to engage customers in a meaningful relationship that encourages word of mouth promotion and drives results, then give us a call. Our team is passionate about two main items: Top of minds and top of Google. Those are the two most important areas for your brand to live.