Listening Marketing that drives results and builds relationships

Consumer marketing, influencer marketing, social marketing, digital marketing and mobile marketing – the list goes on and on.

And with such an extensive array of marketing channels and tools available, how does a company determine what is going to be an effective marketing or ineffective marketing strategy?

How do they ensure they reach the bullseye and change, entice or convince a customer to purchase one product or brand over another? As a digitally enabled world, customers now have the tools and accessibility to shop around, compare, share, discuss, respond and react. They can make more informed decisions about what it is they purchase or consume, immerse themselves within, become part of, actively participate in, endorse, promote or ‘dislike’ and reject.

The secret weapon is ‘listening’. Or what is now commonly dubbed as ‘listening marketing’. It is a simple formula that is proving to be a successful marketing model for brands to attract and engage with its target audience – listen, assess, generate, curate and engage.

While some marketing platforms may perform as standalone solutions, there are those that provide a complimentary mix of options for brands wanting to reach their target groups in a different space, at different times and with different messages. However there is one thing in common for all marketers in today’s complex and volatile market – demonstrating return on investment and driving actual purchasing. The evolution of social media has altered the way consumers interact with brands but it has also changed the way in which we listen to consumers.

For any business ‘listening’ requires time, effort and resources and does not translate into an immediate or tangible outcome. Therefore they continue to ‘talk at’ rather than ‘converse with’ those that ultimately drive their bottom line. The reality is that customers have some form of ownership over the brand, so if businesses and companies aren’t listening to the brand owners, how do they intend to compete, survive and amplify as a brand.

Customers are our brand custodians. These brand custodians fall into different categories. You have your curators, critics, joiners, enablers, collectors, spectators and those that choose to stay inactive or silent. Understanding how a company or brand is perceived, what people feel about a brand and how they interact with it is fundamental to knowing how to connect with these brand custodians.

To put it in really simple terms, when we listen we access information and data. That data can be assessed or analysed and generated into actionable insights. These insights are then translated into pinpointed targeted communication, with content that is tailored and curated to ultimately engage with the brand custodian. At the end of the day it is about developing and nurturing sustainable relationships.