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Five new-age marketing tactics fuelling marketers’ festive season gameplan

From conversational media marketing to podcasts, and more, brands are not leaving any stone unturned to woo their customers this festive season

During the festive season, almost all brand communications end up looking similar. Brands are inundated with pitches and ideas for engaging with the audience. Families coming together, happy faces, lights and parties, discounts and offers, love and laughter are some common narratives brands use during the festive season.

Overwhelmed with many pitches and ideas, multiple times brands end up resorting to old-school marketing tactics like regular TV and newspaper ads, radio spots, and outdoor hoardings.

But one can definitely figure out unique ways to tell a story, to stand out from the clutter and try something different and offer something fresh to the consumers.

Experts share with some new-age marketing tactics that are trending among marketers this festive season.

WhatsApp marketing

Niraj Ruparel, Head of Mobile and Emerging Tech at GroupM India, highlighted the necessity of WhatsApp marketing in the current time.

He said in Mar-tech, WhatsApp marketing is an extremely relevant trend. In a world that is moving towards privacy and cookie-less space, WA marketing helps brands to build first-party data and have personal, private conversations with consumers at scale. It is the new "email marketing", as per him.

Ruparel suggested how marketers can use WhatsApp to build engaging conversational journeys with customers. He said that WhatsApp has now allowed promotional notifications and supports voice input, payment use cases, think location check-ins, scan-and-initiate conversations, photo uploads, and singing a message to a chatbot. This lends a very unique opportunity to the brands and marketers.

Citing an example of this, Ruparel said, “The first full-stack payments use case on WhatsApp went live on Monday during the Jio annual general meeting (AGM). The catalogue and cart features are extremely smooth. It doesn’t even need NLP capabilities and is fully GUI-driven.”

Conversational media marketing is being eyed by brands and marketers

According to data from Bobble AI, out of 600+ million smartphone users in India, 570+ million people use either Whatsapp, Messenger, Wechat, Telegram or any other chat messaging platforms and more than 75% of them are sharing some form of content like stickers, GIF, emojis etc. daily. This is where a huge opportunity lies for brands to be a part of these conversations.

Conversational media marketing is all about finding interesting content in a format that the consumer finds interesting and identifying those platforms where people are spending their time. Explaining this, Ankit Anand, Strategy Lead at Bobble AI. said that their platform is using AI to personalise and enhance people’s conversations by offering them the right context.

Brands will benefit from this and will have the first-mover advantage but now all of those platforms have cluttered users, Anand added.

Short-form videos, AI chat boxes, and GIFs gaining in popularity

Short-form videos, AI chat boxes, and GIFs have become more popular due to the increased penetration of smartphones and the internet. The main reason why brands engage in new-age marketing is to leave a lasting impact on their target audience's mind, as per Ankit Anand, Strategy Lead at Bobble AI.

He added, “The ads created for the audience should be contextual. Based on the keywords and the users’ real-time intent, a user persona is created on their platform. To provide users with the appropriate content, Bobble AI felt the need to first determine the context in which they are using the chat. The information is related to all of their interests and the searches they are displaying.”

Podcasts are ‘in’

Podcasts with their ability to attract and engage young audiences and retain them for long periods are a great option to push brand messaging, according to Aditya Kuber, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Ideabrew Studios.

Moreover, within podcasts, a brand can associate with shows that already have a good audience or invest in creating a show that helps push their message further, said Kuber.

The targeting podcasts offer today goes beyond just gender, age, and location. There are some very tactical opportunities available that can match a listener’s location and occasion to serve an ad.

Kuber highlighted that one of the key takeaways for brands associating with podcasts is that 67% of listeners who hear a brand message in a podcast take action.

The rise of personalised ads, AR and customised messages

Personalised ads, AR in the festive and gifting space, and customised messages will be the new ways which brands will use to create delight in the customer’s eyes, according to Umang Puri, Creative Director, North Agency at FoxyMoron.

However, messaging platforms don’t have the concept of "trending" posts, while social media offers a good channel to drive traffic to them. Once the user journey is complete on the messaging platform, the user should be given an incentive to take action to post about the engagement and with enough traction, it can turn into trending posts, suggested Ruparel on how brands can increase their shareability.

Depending on the user's stage in the sales funnel, a personalised video delivered via cookie-less re-engagement can effectively fast-track a user along the funnel to closure, thus directly impacting the brands’ bottom funnel and conversion metrics, Ruparel said.

A recent example of this was #NotJustACadburyAd campaign by Mondelez with actor Shah Rukh Khan.

“Using Video + Voice synthesis tech, Mondelez is enabling customers to create an advertisement for their local stores. Using AI, Machine learning and Video + Voice Synthesis, users can create a personalised video with SRK by giving details about their store and category and SRK recreates the personalised ad by repurposing this information.”

Moreover, Ageas Federal Life Insurance used AI Video Regeneration Tech to recreate an 11-year-old version of legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar.

Ruparel went on to say, the process involved four months of AI training and dozens of technical and artistic experts across India and Spain. No photographs or videos of young Sachin existed, so the team performed painstaking archival research to find AI training material.

Apart from this, Anand cited an example of how a brand awareness campaign done through AI helped Dairy Milk Silk. He said the campaign ‘How far will you go for love’, done around Valentine's Day leveraged the younger generation’s most loved language of communication – visual stickers, digital avatars, GIFs, and emojis on WhatsApp and other chat messaging apps.

The campaign resulted in an increase of around 13-14% in brand awareness and about a 20% increase was noticed in user purchase intent.

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