People discover new products and services through their social networks and experiences from their friends; this type of communication has a great impact on their consumption decisions!
Consumers are increasingly turning to social media to look for trusted recommendations and opinions posted by their friends online. According a Trendwatching analysis, there are five key ways in which Friends, Fans and Followers influence consumer purchasing decision. Named as the F-Factor, the trend acknowledges the ways consumers are discovering new products, looking for ratings and reviews, and asking for validated feedback. Fueled by new tools available to both consumers and brands, and by the sheer numbers of people now using and contributing to these platforms, the F-Factor is paramount to monitoring consumers’ decisions. However, as we will highlight, the F-Factor only works if you have a great brand, great content and the right people using it.
In our blog article The Like Economy we discussed how social media marketing is changing the way people ‘like’ brands. New technologies and social networks empower consumers, who are increasingly more informed and demanding. But how do you best monitor what people are saying about your brand on social networks?
Today, social media is driving a lot conversations about brands as users are actively commenting on, and sharing information, purchases and experiences with their network, as well as giving consumers tips on saving time and effort in discovering the best products and services. Brands that are constantly engaging their fans and followers in positive discussions can lead and control the conversations and add more value to the social experience.
However, if you want to develop real relationships with your consumers online, you need to provide real interactions with added value and personality. A research by Keller Fay Group revealed that 94% of brand conversations comes as a result of face-to-face conversations, while 6% of word-of-mouth conversations about brands occurs online. In addition, the study has found that UK adults talk about brands 78 times per week, which translates into more than 3 million brand impressions via word-of-mouth each week.
Experiential marketing has a major impact on the F-Factor trend as it can give people a meaningful brand experience and trigger positive word-of-mouth around your brand. It is all about making people Feel good by using experiential activities to showcase your brand personality and create intensive two-way conversations with your consumers. When you show that your brand has the Feel good-Factor through a personal experience, you are giving your consumers a reason to engage with your brand and ultimately share their experiences with others.
Hotcow’s experiential campaign to launch the LG 3D smartphone exemplifies the Feel good-Factor perfectly. In three months of intense off-line and online activities, more than 190,000 people were actively interacting with the product in a fun and playful way. When asked, 63% of people were likely to purchase and recommend the product to their friends. Other great example of case study is the Honey Monster Campaign. The experiential campaign for the cereal brand was designed specifically to reinforce the fun elements of the brand; people got to immerse themselves in the world we created by choosing to have a photo with the brand’s iconic character, taking a product sample from the giant cereal box or play our “waffle wacker” game to win a prize. The campaign achieved high brand awareness and talkability.
Recommendation from friends carry a lot more weight than other advertising strategies to promote your brand. People are constantly sharing good deals and ‘must have’ new products and services. Therefore, helping people to create a unique brand experience for themselves is an excellent mechanism to extend the influence of your product or services. Hence, experiential campaigns can provide great quality of content, which will give people a reason to talk about your brand with their friends or share your content on their social networks.
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In the meantime, we’d love to hear your thoughts on the best ways to influence friends, fans and followers on consumer purchasing decisions. Please leave your comment below or tweet us @Hoctcow.
Hotcow is a multi-award winning brand engagement agency specialising in experiential marketing. Our mission is simple: to help brands understand the power of “experience-based marketing” and offer expertise in how to develop, plan and execute campaigns in the right way to get the right results. For more information or a free consultation contact us.