The digital consumer of today

The evolution of technology has enabled the marketing environment of today to communicate in a faster way, over distance, and both in the mobile and 3D worlds. Therefore, consumer behavior is changing rapidly. If a company fails to engage, maintain, and fulfill the expectations of a selected community, customers can be lost very quickly. In today’s fast-moving marketing environment, it is important that content converts into memorable experiences. Content which emphasizes services, products, ingredients, packaging, or price is often monotonous, boring, and easy to forget. In contrast, emotional experiences which are attractive, interesting, and creative overcome the filter against irrelevant ads, which consumers have developed over the years. Every touchpoint that a consumer has with a brand should be consumer-oriented and correspond to their lifestyle to enhance the overall experience. In this way, certain communities engage physically, mentally, emotionally, socially, and spiritually before, during, and after the purchase of a product or service. By the end of the day, purchase decisions (also B2B) are made by people; people make decisions based on logic and feelings, and feelings arise from experiences. Therefore, 98% of consumers tend to make a purchase after an experience. Making an experience memorable is the main challenge which marketers face today. But to find out how these expectations can be fulfilled or even exceeded, one has to understand the digital consumers and the trends they are following.

THE SMARTPHONE GENERATION IS ACCESSIBLE ANYWHERE AND ANYTIME!

With the beginning of the internet, new styles of communication and interaction emerged. Gen Y grew up with the internet and replaced the TV generation (baby boomers). Therefore, possibilities of self-directed learning increased, and values such as independence, autonomy, and free expression gained higher importance, which is also reflected in their consumer behavior. Gen Zers, born in 1995 or later, were actually the first ones born into a digital world and grew up with high-speed internet, smartphones, and social media. This world also gives the marketing industry opportunities to virtually integrate and engage with its target audience. If we look for common demands of the “internet” and the “digital” generation, one can say that this community wants mobile, simple, and personalized solutions.

Most Gen Zers agree that human interactions with smart devices are bound to increase in the future. They also believe in values such as convenience, portability, and efficiency which will drive the future market. People have to be easy to reach everywhere, and that’s why mobile optimized marketing campaigns are essential in today’s age to engage their customer base.
This statement is underlined by the 10-fold overall increase of mobile marketing spending between 2013 and 2018.

CATCHY CONTENT GOES VIRAL THROUGH SOCIAL NETWORKS

Another trigger that leads to a higher usage of mobile devices is the social pressure which people feel within the social networks. In the marketing environment this is nothing new as consumers have always been vocal. In the time of digitalization, they talk to each other on a real-time basis in peer reviews, social networks, or online forums to tell their community about their experience with a certain brand. It is stated that 33% of consumers gather information about a product or a service through social media.
Furthermore, it is conducted that a strong online presence on social media increases the brand credibility massively, not just for younger generations but also for other demographic groups. Additionally, the time of big data offers companies a huge amount of information about their customer base. Therefore, more personalized services and tailored ongoing relationships can be created.

One has to understand that the power of social media is just effective for the brand reach when the content is interesting and engaging. According to statistics, 70% of marketers acknowledge the importance of content marketing by recognizing that it actually increased brand awareness. This, again, leads to more traffic in different time zones and brings new followers.

COMPLETE EXPERIENCES THROUGH OMNICHANNEL MARKETING

In order to improve customer experiences, it is more and more important that marketers identify appropriate messaging strategies and ensure message consistency through all the different devices and channels existing today. Many gamification researchers pointed out that a higher number of channels increases engagement. Omnichannel marketing follows a customer-centered focus, providing a comprehensive experience on every touchpoint of the customer journey. Call to actions within different touchpoints, channels, and devices raises awareness, generates support, and motivates for action. The electronic word-of-mouth that emerged with interactive digital media has already the power to raise donations or create political changes. In order to enhance customer engagement via a synchronized cross-channel experience, it is essential that all the different channels work well together to bunch out as a unique brand.

Many experts emphasized the importance of the inclusion of smart devices in these gamified omnichannel strategies. The fun, the interactive features, and the portability that mobile technologies have can lead to a higher usage and, consequently, to long-term loyalty. Further technologies that boost the connection between different mediums are A/R and V/R integrations. The effect of an improved technology-empowered experience enhances the brand image additionally.

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The digital consumer of today 2

Evidently, the right combination of all these different trends converts into memorable experiences. Content which focuses only on services, products, ingredients, packaging, or price is not a successful strategy anymore. In contrast, attractive and creative emotional experience overcomes the filter against irrelevant ads, which consumers have developed over the years. Every touchpoint that a consumer has with a brand should be consumer oriented and correspond to the client’s lifestyle to enhance the overall experience. In this way, certain communities engage physically, mentally, emotionally, socially, and spiritually before, during, and after the purchase of a product or service.

Summary

The evolution of technology has enabled today's marketing environment to communicate faster and reach specific audiences everywhere.

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