Hunt & Capture: A Brand's Guide for Using Analytics and Incentives to Ensure a Productive Digital Dialogue with Modern Moms, Part 2
In a two-part column, Q Interactive's "Women's Channel" a pioneer in understanding women's behavior reveals how to build a digital relationship with modern mom. This second article takes on "the capture." Once your ideal target is found online, how do you develop an authentic relationship?
In "real life" - the best way to start a conversation is either to ask someone about themselves, or to offer them something. Simple enough, but, sometimes marketers forget these time-tested truths. Moms have high expectations of brands these days, and savvy moms do not easily give away money or their email addresses without getting something in return. Incentives can come in varying formats from coupons and social gaming points to newsletters, recipes and sweepstakes. To be most effective, brands need to realize what mom wants, and when and how to tell her about it.
Don't assume it's over for email. A survey conducted by Q Interactive* revealed that email remains the most popular online activity for women:
- 33% spend the majority of their online time "simply checking email"
- About 50% receive 1-4 brand newsletters
- That's because 74% like "special deals, discount codes or coupons"
- And 53% "trust a brand more when they receive a brand's newsletter"
* Stats from "Women to eWomen: Conquering the Digital Disconnect", a study compiled by Agency.com and Q Interactive
Email remains a highly effective informational channel. While some brands have over-emailed or provided too little value within their emails; brands doing it well have built trust and earned repeat business. Exclusive deals for subscribers (like discounts, early sale notices, sweepstakes, etc.) add value and are worth the exchange of a private email address.
Multifaceted campaigns that are announced to the brand's Facebook fans and via email aren't necessarily a turn-off to moms these days. She figures if she doesn't catch the sale announcement on Facebook or Twitter, an email will be sent to her inbox as well.
Social Media: Where the moms are
Social networking activity continues to rise, and while email is still a powerful marketing tool, social media - when done well - can be a compelling two-way conversation, beneficial to moms and brands alike. Here are some interesting statistics from a study* conducted with over 2,000 female respondents:
- 54% of moms visit social networking sites "at least once per day"
- 75% are "more active on social networking sites than last year"
- Brands capturing mom are engaging them with conversations, not one-way sales tactics
- Women express a desire for relevancy and transparency, with a high willingness to answer surveys for more custom communication.
* Stats from "The Rise of Women, Social Gaming & Brand Engagement," compiled by Social Media World Forum and Q Interactive
Moms are players and proudly so
Social networking sites have a niche where brands can befriend mom and that's in gaming. From Farmville to Mafia Wars, moms are grateful to brands who give them a little boost (with points to advance in their games or virtual currency to spend) via branded offers. A recent study* discovered moms' love for social media games:
- A whopping 42% of moms consider themselves "gamers"; and 7% say they're "obsessed" with games
- 67% believe 1-5 hours per week of social media gaming is "socially acceptable"
- More than half (57%) "earn/spend virtual currency daily"
- 97% "prefer to earn virtual currency through either winning more or accepting a branded offer versus paying for it with real' money"
The social gaming / virtual currency space offers a unique opportunity to capture mom while she is doing something she loves. To date, too few big brands have taken advantage of this opportunity to "capture" (or captivate, perhaps) their ideal consumers with opportunities to earn virtual currency by doing things such as simply signing up for newsletters.
The lesson here for brands is that there is an emerging opportunity to capture mom while she is gaming. Offer her a hand and she may find something of value about your brand!
* Stats from "The Social Graces of Gaming for Women" conducted by Engage! Conference and Expo and Q Interactive.
Statistics are from three recent proprietary studies by Q Interactive and its partners.