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3 Tips for Balancing Right-Time Marketing with Brand Relevancy

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At OMMA’s Social Media Insider Summit this week, Matt Wurst, Director of Social Marketing at 360i, argued that “real-time marketing” as we know it should actually be called “right-time marketing” since it’s really about creating the right content, for the right consumer, on the right platform at the right time.

Brands and agencies have been concocting their own recipes for how to successfully execute “right-time” marketing campaigns and many new practices have come into play as a result. For example, “war-rooming” has come into vogue, designed to allow brands to push out content at a moment’s notice.

We’ve also seen predictive strategies, in which brands anticipate scenarios and produce content in advance to pull the trigger should those scenarios take shape. Tide for instance, created Vine content in response to other advertisers’ Super Bowl commercials as they aired. Content around these predictive initiatives can be further amplified by secured sponsorships and ad placements.

Beyond having the right vehicles or resources in place to respond in real-time with clever content to current big-ticket events, influencers, or social happenings, marketers must also be relevant at the right time, in the right place and with minimal risk to the brand.

Here are three tips on how to effectively balance real-time with relevancy at the right time:

1. Be relevant when it’s undeniably authentic to your brand. Sit out when it’s not. Finding the right way to be a brand that makes fans laugh, a brand fans want to follow and, most importantly, a brand that fans remember during an event that arguably has nothing to do with their product is not as simple as creating content at the right time. The content, the brand and the event should be intrinsically linked. Arby’s response to Pharrell’s hat – tweeted during the Grammy Awards – was a perfect example of a prime opportunity to act on for their brand where all three pieces act in harmony. While 360i client OREO decided to sit this year’s Super Bowl out and still made it onto several publications’ like “Best-Time Marketing Moments” of the game lists by doing so.


 

2. Be original while staying in the lines. Don’t be a copycat. It can be argued that when it comes to creating content, everything is a remix. There are certain elements that will always be true for successful real-time event marketing and can be copied. But it’s the brands that make the tried-and-true methods seem new that stand out from the rest at the right time. 360i client Toyota for example, took a partnership with The Muppets to a whole new level of integration by letting the Muppets live tweet from the @Toyota handle during the Super Bowl. Through a partnership, big-ticket event, and Twitter they were able to deliver an unexpected and entertaining brand experience at the right-time.

3. Be relevant without breaking the law. Legal is your friend. It is possible to execute great “real-time” content without putting your brand at risk. Remember that responsive messaging should be tied to a campaign and permissions from celebrities should be obtained before posting content so that endorsements are not implied with any property or celebrity on behalf of a brand.

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As marketing strategies continue to evolve around real-time events and changes in the cultural conversation, the one element that will always be a key to success is nailing how to be the most relevant at the right time, risk-free for your brand.