We took a deep dive into our own creative ad agency work and that of similar marketing shops to review 2019 campaigns, strategies and their results for a handful of eCommerce clients. With the rapid advancements in technology and ongoing changes in consumer preferences, it came as no surprise that our marketing strategies have evolved, too.
Have you been questioning what it’s going to take to kickstart your eCommerce business in 2020? Well, you’re in the right place because we’ve got the answer.
2020 is going to be about more than just your standard Facebook and Instagram advertising or basic email marketing. Overwhelmingly, we’ve found that to thrive in 2020, your business will need to focus on powerful branding and strong creative that converts. You can have the best ads strategy, targeting a highly segmented audience in the right place at the right time, but find those strategies fall flat with the wrong creative.
On its surface, this can sound like common sense, but consumers are becoming more and more influenced by the content of creative they are presented with. They want to connect to a brand on a deep level that goes beyond simply liking their product. And if your creative is tapping into that messaging, look, feel and connection that your audience is craving, then that can mean huge things for your business.
Below, we’ve outlined some of the insights gleaned from our research to help you grow your eCommerce business in 2020.
STRONG CREATIVE TEAM
Before scheduling a three-hour-long brainstorming session to start throwing out ideas for new creative, you’ve got to have this one thing first — the creatives. Strong creative is the goal, but you can’t have strong creative without a strong creative team. Leave it to an experienced creative team to come up with your next hard-hitting campaign idea. Why? Because that’s exactly what they’re trained to do. From copywriters to graphics designers to videographers, these professionals are specialized in their craft and know how to make creative magic.
You might be thinking, what if I don’t have a creative team? The time and resources needed to put one together is daunting, to say the least, but a full service digital marketing agency like Evestar will have a creative team already ready to go and at your service.
While you’re not putting together the creative yourself, as a business owner or head of marketing, it helps to understand the creative process and how you can best support your creative ad agency from the start of a concept to its final execution. The following sections will walk you through that process.
We mentioned earlier how important it is to get your messaging right, and once you have a creative team in place, the next step is to understand your audience. Of course, every brand has done this when first launching their business, but this is an exercise that needs to be revisited on an annual basis at the very least. People are constantly changing and growing, and so it would only make sense that your strategies to reach them should change and grow, too.
In this stage, we need to find out about our audience’s desires as well as their pain points. How do we do this? With extensive audience research using a little tool we like to call copy mining. Take a look at the various copy mining methods we use below.
- Conduct Customer Surveys – Utilize your email list by sending a survey that asks consumers why they buy or have bought from you in the past, what they would recommend for improvement, if they have bought from any of your competitors, what they thought about the competing products, etc. Note: in order to get a good response with this, you may need to offer something in return like a percentage off on their next purchase or free shipping. To regularly receive customer insights, you’ll want to set up a post-purchase email flow in Klaviyo, Mailchimp or any other email service provider.
- Scour User-Generated Content – When it comes to getting into the heads of your audience, dedicated forums and discussion boards are a gold mine. Whether it’s a Facebook Group filled with the audience you’re after or a niche website where those people hang out and share ideas, you can learn A LOT from these conversations. The best part, they don’t know you’re looking. So what they’re sharing here is often honest and unfiltered.
- Read Reviews – Whether on your website, your Amazon listings or any other third-party seller’s page, read through the reviews of your products. When a customer has taken the time out of their busy day to sit down and write something about your product, they probably mean it. Take it one step further and read the reviews your competitors have received, too. Try to determine what they like and don’t like about competitor products.
- Comb Through Relevant Books – Type your industry into the Amazon search bar followed by “books” and just see what comes up. It will be a list of the top things your audience is interested in spending hours and hours reading about. It will be helpful to look at the topics of these books, the breakdown of chapters and what they cover as well as the reviews. This way, you’re leveraging hundreds of hours of research done by the authors while also tapping into the interests of your audience.
Put all the data gleaned from these exercises into one, cohesive spreadsheet where you can analyze the trends. Things to look for include common questions, common words and phrases, common likes/dislikes. All this copy mining research will give you insight into not only what to say, but how to say it. Speak the same language as your audience, and you’ll be surprised how well they respond to it.
In addition to reading user-generated reviews on your competitors’ sites, it pays to take a look at the creative your competitors are running.