Content is King
Internet users in 2019 are consuming content at an increasingly historic pace. In any given minute of the day, internet users across the world post 49,380 photos and over 473,000 tweets. Since 2012, each person’s average daily time interacting with social media has increased by 52 minutes per day, and is increasing consistently year over year. Every brand must have a strong content marketing strategy to be successful online in 2019. Content is truly king.
How are Brands Using this Knowledge of Increased Content Consumption to their Advantage?
Fresh, relevant, and consistent content on their social channels – an important element of strong SEO. However, as more brands, creators, and influencers utilize the power of consistent content, the more saturated the average social media user’s feed can become. The sheer volume of content being consistently generated can be overwhelming for the average social media user. In this cluttered social media environment, brands will find it increasingly difficult to get their message noticed. This is where real-time, reactive marketing through social media comes into play.
What is Real-Time Marketing, and How Does it Help Brands get Noticed?
Real-time marketing or reactive marketing is marketing performed “on-the-fly” through adapting to breaking news or real-time events.
Real-time marketing presents an opportunity for brands to capitalize on events that are already generating buzz, and utilize the event to increase their own brand equity and recognition. This article presents two real-time marketing opportunities. First, Kawhi Leonard’s game-winning shot and Gatorade’s missed opportunity. Second, Starbucks’ slam dunk response to a Game of Thrones mishap.
Gatorade: The Missed Opportunity
After Kawhi Leonard’s game 7 series-clinching shot versus the Philadelphia 76ers, Kawhi, while celebrating with his teammates, screamed with his mouth wide open. This moment created one of the most famous photos from the shot, seen above. The interesting part of the shot is how visibly blue his tongue is from the blue drink (presumably Gatorade) that he was drinking in the timeout just before the shot. This is a signature element of Gatorade – everyone knows your tongue turns the colour of the Gatorade you’re drinking.
Gatorade as a brand missed the boat here on an easy real-time marketing opportunity. It would have taken a single Instagram post in response to the shot the day after the game, captioned “Gatorade – the drink of choice for all-time greats. #winfromwithin”. The photo would be Kawhi with the background slightly faded, while the blue on his tongue was highlighted. Boom, viral. There could even be PR/earned media opportunities, where Bleacher Report or other similar sports media outlets would pick up the story. Come on Gatorade, this one was easy – Consultus Digital can help you with your real-time marketing solutions and digital marketing strategy. Hit us up.
Starbucks: Real-Time Marketing Success
Game of Thrones season eight, episode four. If you’re a fan of the show, odds are you’ve seen Daenerys’ stray Starbucks coffee cup that made it into a live shot of a feast right beside her. This drew a huge amount of social media attention to the brand because of how incongruous the cup was to the setting of Game of Thrones. This was not a paid ad – HBO admitted it was a mistake. Opportunities like this are massive for a real-time marketing approach from Starbucks. Starbucks’ opportunity was like a ticking time bomb – in 24 hours the buzz will die down significantly, and in a week’s time, no one will be talking about this coffee cup anymore.
TBH we're surprised she didn't order a Dragon Drink.
— Starbucks Coffee (@Starbucks) May 6, 2019
Starbucks released its response on Twitter within 24 hours. “TBH we’re surprised she didn’t order a Dragon drink”. Brilliant. As a brand, Starbucks was keenly aware of social trends and was flexible enough as a marketing entity to come up with a witty response the next day. They did this all while promoting one of their new drinks, which ironically enough, has no relation to Game of Thrones despite being called the Dragon drink. 22k retweets and 79k likes later, Starbucks had successfully adapted its social media strategy in real-time. The story and response from Starbucks picked up steam in the news, with Forbes, CNN, and Buzzfeed all running the story. Huge ups to Starbucks for promptly capitalizing on this opportunity and creating content that stands out.
1. Be Socially Aware:
Being attuned to the latest news, events and the general social media buzz is paramount for brands to create content that cuts through the clutter that is 49,380 photos and over 473,000 tweets every minute. Be on the lookout for real-time marketing opportunities constantly – they are rare but incredibly impactful if executed correctly.
2. Employ a Dynamic Posting Strategy:
Having flexibility as a brand or creator to create content on the fly to adapt to ever-changing trends online is key for customer engagement and brand loyalty. The faster brands can respond to current news, events or buzz, the larger the viral opportunity.
3. Respond as soon as possible:
What is relevant today might not be relevant tomorrow, and most definitely will not be relevant next week. Viral opportunities exist for a short period of time and must be acted upon ASAP.
I hope you enjoyed our discussion of real-time marketing on social media and the mini-case study of Gatorade vs. Starbucks. Have you come across any intriguing real-time marketing cases? Let us know in the comments below!