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Real time marketing and the importance of brands being reactive

You’ve built your brands’ social media following, are publishing regular content and have a steady flow of traffic to your platforms. So how do you take your activity to the next level?

With the fast-moving pace of the internet and new content being uploaded every second of every day, users want instant gratification and expect to receive information in record breaking time. When you have an audience who is online and ready to connect with your content, real time marketing can help you strengthen that connection with the consumer.

What is it I hear you say? Real time marketing is the social media response to current news or events that has been receiving a lot of attention. Implementing this strategy means that you are catering to what’s trending in the consumer’s world, not just your own. By doing this, you have a better chance of developing a brand personality consumers will relate to.

One of the most memorable example of real time marketing was during the 2013 super bowl power outage, which saw Oreo generate more exposure from its reactive tweet than the expensive half time adverts.

When Balenciaga released a £1,600 bag that was incredibly similar in design to Ikea’s classic ‘blue bags’, the Swedish company wasted no time in responding. Ikea’s tongue in cheek post pointed out the similarities in the bags, and more importantly the differences in the price.  Its response went viral, appearing on social media platforms and in news outlets across the world. But the best part of this campaign is the fact that it started with the consumer. Ikea simply took note of what was being said, before turning their efforts into a specially generated advert.

While some real-time content is unplanned, that doesn’t necessarily mean sitting by your computer waiting for something to start trending on Twitter or go viral as planned real time marketing can be just as effective. You can bet brands were coming up with creative ways to acknowledge the recent royal wedding as soon as the engagement was announced.

Marks and Spencer was a brand that capitalised on this particularly well, rebranding its Windsor store to ‘Markle and Sparkle’ and changing their usual roast chicken sandwich to be called ‘The Proposal’ in their honour.

Ultimately the goal of engaging in real-time marketing is not to try and sell a brand’s product or service, but to seek to form relationships with a brand’s target audience. The success of this depends on the cleverness and relatability of your content, proving that a well-crafted tweet that goes viral has the potential to produce a larger impact than that of a paid for advert.

If you need any further information or fancy a chat about how we can work together to create a real-time marketing strategy, get in touch on 0121 454 9707 or send us an email at gary.hebbelthwaite@hroc.co.uk.

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