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How to Be More Relevant to Your Audience with Performance Creative

Today, marketers have more opportunity to connect with an audience than ever. However, the challenges involved make it harder to create those connections. Consumers are bombarded with marketing messages everywhere they turn.  So, assume that every minute of the day, they are distracted, overwhelmed, and overloaded. To be more specific, as you are reading this, 150,000 emails were sent, 3.3 million posts statuses were uploaded on Facebook, and 500 hours of content was uploaded to YouTube in the last 60 seconds.

There are many different ways that marketers approach reaching people, but the surest way is through hyper-relevancy. Today’s consumer is too savvy to be fooled or misled into engagement by mass-marketing and too-good-to-be true promises, clever ads, and catchy taglines. People will only pay attention to and respond to marketing messages that feel relevant and specific to them.

What is hyper-relevance?

Hyper-relevance is how you convey “just for you” in marketing. There are three components to achieving it: 

1) Audience relevance - knowing who you are speaking to, what they need, and how to motivate them.

2) Purchase path relevance - showing an understanding of how ready the audience is to purchase and what the best form of engagement is.

3) Individual relevance - recognizing the communication moment and delivering real-time interaction that is relevant to it.

This post will explore audience relevance and how to achieve it through behavioral analytics. Understanding who you are communicating with and what that person’s passions and motivations are allow you to deliver effective positioning and messaging. Today’s ubiquitous data provide a tremendous volume of audience insight, so you can understand not only traditional demographic information (age, sex, income, and education levels, etc.) but can get a snapshot of their life situation (wealth and net worth, household composition, homeowner data, etc.) in order to better understand needs.  Behavioral data (what brands they like and dislike, purchase behavior, media consumption habits, etc.) provide invaluable insight into what they do. Finally, you can understand audience attitudes to give perspective on their future, saving and spending habits, and impact of outside influence on decision-making in order to shape your messaging. 

By creating this 360 degree view of the audience, your creative team can better understand who you are speaking to and what to say to motivate them to act.

There are many ways to gain audience insight.  Surveys, first- and third-party data, etc. can all be called upon to gain a more complete picture of your audience.  You should then focus on presenting that data in a manner that is easily communicated throughout the creative team.  Below is an example dashboard that compiles a significant amount of data into a digestible format.

Performance Creative Hardworking Striver audience

However, these insights alone do not create relevance. Insight must be transformed to create relevance.  From your understanding, you then must define exactly who you are communicating to, against whom you are competing (typically competitors and inertia), why the audience should want to engage with you and why not, which are the barriers to action. With this context in mind, the creative team can determine the “what’s in it for me?” from the audience perspective.

Finally, identify both the emotional and rational drivers for your audience. The emotional driver is typically appropriate for upper-funnel communications when looking to engage early in the path to purchase. On the other hand, the rational driver comes into play lower in the funnel, when the audience is ready to convert. It is important to lay out key messages that need to be delivered in your communications to support your emotional or rational drivers. This is your start to knowing what to say and breaking through the massive clutter of today’s marketplace.

Want to learn more? Reach out to me at [email protected] to find out about Merkle’s proprietary tools for relevant creative messaging.

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