This is Part IV of a week-long series that explores the seven core attributes of successful brands in the Digital Age. Amie Dowker is a Digital Strategist at 360i.
Today’s consumers are digital. They shop online, play online and socialize online. This creates more opportunities and touch points for a brand to connect with a consumer than as ever possible before. Amidst the clutter of all things digital, brands can get lost or they can be discovered.
What it means to be discoverable
To be discoverable, a brand needs to align its digital footprint with the consumer journey. In practical terms, this means that the brand meets people where they already are online. Regardless of whether they’re searching, socializing, or seeking entertainment or inspiration – the brand is available when and where consumers are looking to engage.
Why does this matter?
Each brand’s footprint is a canvas for discovery. Gone are the days when brands could rely on a search strategy alone to ensure discoverability online. Search will always play a critical role in ensuring digital shelf space and getting more eyeballs on content, but if people can’t encounter the brand content and experiences in their go-to digital channels, brands will not be able to secure any meaningful mind space.
Kraft Foods, a 360i client, is one example of a brand that has enhanced discovery by engaging consumers where they live online. As Pinterest first began to emerge as the number one digital destination for visual inspiration, we knew Kraft Foods’ target would be increasingly utilizing the site for recipe inspiration.
To meet our audience there, the brand launched a Pinterest community from which it could share content with everyday consumers and influencers alike. Today, Pinterest is the highest third-party referral source for traffic to KraftRecipes.com, a hub that sees millions of unique visitors each month.
Three keys to being discoverable
1. Ensure your brand’s footprint aligns with your consumer’s mindset. Assess your gaps by understanding where your consumer’s journey and your brand’s current digital footprint are misaligned. Staying on top of website analytics is critical to uncovering the right insights — if a brand is seeing above-average mobile referral traffic and very low time on site there is a mobile-optimization gap that needs be addressed.
2. Determine that emerging behaviors and platforms that are relevant for your brand. Track innovations across the digital landscape and evaluate opportunities that bubble up early and often. A test and learn approach can humanize a brand’s approach to discovery.
3. Know the role that influencers can play.Research existing conversations being had about your brand online and understand who is talking. Ideate around the relationship between your brand, potential influencers and pop culture to think of new ways for your brand to get noticed.
Cover photo via Flickr