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If you want brand growth, use Experience Driven Marketing

Gone are the days when a great product alone drove profits. Marketers today need to consider every way that people encounter their brand. Great experiences creating real value for people build advocacy, which leads to acquisition, as well as retention and increase in share of wallet.

Forget the 4 or 5 P’s and embrace a new approach – Experience Driven Marketing. Can you draw a pie chart of where you are investing in your brand? Yes, that’s easy! Now, can you draw a pie chart of how people are experiencing your brand?This is the question we ask Marketing Directors.

How do you know if what you push out in advertising is picked up? What proportion of owned and earned media are people experiencing? What does that pie chart look like?

We are overloaded with data – it’s coming from our call centers, our websites, our retail partners, our media agencies. Yet in spite of being awash with data, we have a data black hole. We’ve got GRPs, click-throughs, Likes, Share of Voice to help us to measure marketing activities but this leaves us with a dizzying array of metrics where we are comparing apples and pears.

We don’t have a way of connecting the different data sources easily, we look at everything in silos. The marketing team looks at ad recall and media spend. The trade marketing team works with retail partners. The customer experience team pays attention to the call center and CRM metrics. Who is looking at everything from the perspective of the experiences that our customer is having? And isn’t this fundamental?

More and more marketers are becoming attuned to the power of experiences. Whether this is about creating a seamless customer experience, the power of experiential touchpoints or linking with people’s passions. We believe you need to understand every experience or encounter with your brand, whether this is a momentous experience in being offered your first mortgage or a fleeting glimpse of a poster.

And in almost every sector, there is a real focus on getting back to the customer. We need understanding from a human-centred perspective. We need to understand how sectors and brands fit in with the rest of someone’s life, with their passions, when they are busy, when they have time to listen to us, what will help them achieve their goals.

We need a new marketing framework, new data and metrics to help us.

We need a human-centred marketing approach that puts the customer center stage. We call this Experience Driven Marketing. It’s based on learnings from capturing experiences over the last 12 years and our proprietary Experience Model and Metrics.

Why does Experience Driven Marketing grow brands? Because great experiences create real value for people, build advocacy, which leads to acquisition, as well as retention and increase in share of wallet.  We urge you to embrace our Manifesto for Experience Driven Marketing:

  1. Take responsibility for every brand touchpoint – even those you don’t control.
  2. Measure Share of Experience, not Share of Voice.
  3. Emotion matters. Insist on Engaged Reach.
  4. If Content is King, Context is Queen. Use it.
  5. Experience is a journey. The destination is not purchase, but customers meeting their goals.
  6. If our customers buy experiences, we need to organize around them. Not products, functions or channels.

Once you look through the customer’s eyes and experience your brand as they do, it will transform your decision-making. Pepsi discovered that experiences in bars, restaurants and pubs as well as KFC TV ads featuring Pepsi in the end shot, made people feel closer to Pepsi. Packaged goods clients found that cheery TV ads at the beginning of the day enhanced people’s moods whereas for financial services people start to engage after 6pm on the commute home. For electronics, seeing the product in someone’s home significantly impacts on brand consideration. One client found that a retailer ad featuring their brand was as engaging and persuasive as their own brand advertising – this changes where to invest for the greatest return.

With Experience Driven Marketing you will uncover new, unexploited touchpoints to activate, you will be faced with negative ones you need to minimize, you will understand which are helping customers to achieve their goals and ultimately to build enduring brands in their minds.

Author: Fiona Blades, President & Chief Experience Officer, MESH Experience

Photo by Kira auf der Heide on Unsplash

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