This month’s blog post was written by Becky Bui, one of our founding members and an advisory board member in Austin, TX. Becky is VP of Strategic Alliances at Social Native, whose platform automates the process of creating high-performing branded content at scale for marketers. Prior to Social Native, Becky spent six years building and leading teams within Facebook’s Global Marketing Solutions group.

When it comes to advertising, one-size doesn’t fit all. Technology limitations of the early advertising space required a mass market approach. No longer. Gone are the days where one product image can be used across all marketing channels for all audiences.

Social media has brought people back into the equation: giving them a voice, access to the brand, and ownership of the conversation. Advertising stopped being a one-way communication the second consumers had the power of information at their fingertips.

Marketers have already begun to adjust to the ever-changing social media landscape, but the evolution is continuous, so we must stay on our toes. Below are some recommendations for successfully navigating today’s digital-first world to build brand awareness and achieve business goals.  

Personalize the Message

Today, Facebook and Instagram connect you with the people who matter to you most, so you can deliver personalized marketing at scale.

Nielsen Digital Ad Ratings found that there are more than 2 billion people on Facebook and 700 million on Instagram. These users are actively engaged, sharing demographics, interests, locations, connections, etc. Thanks to this insight, we now know so much more about who consumers are and what content — including advertising — they’re likely to be interested in. This not only allows you to target on Facebook and Instagram with precision, but also to tailor the message that will resonate with each audience.

You can no longer go with your “gut” when choosing marketing messages that’ll resonate with your consumers. With access to big data and cutting-edge technologies, such as artificial intelligence and robotic process automation, you’re now able to make strategic decisions that deliver measurable results — even when it comes to something as seemingly subjective as your creative.

Modern consumers are increasingly demanding advertising experiences tailored to their lives. Brands that turn the needle are the ones that are willing to break barriers to go beyond these expectations.

Design for Mobile

With the explosion of social media, there are more ways to reach an audience than ever before. However, given the sheer amount of branded content in the average social feed, capturing consumers’ attention has never been more difficult.

Across all mediums, but especially on mobile, people make fast decisions about what content they want to engage with. The goal is to develop creative that will stop users as they scroll through their feeds.

According to a Gallup Poll Survey, 81% of people have their phone near them nearly every waking second. That said, it makes sense to reach consumers where they’re already spending their time glued to their screens. So, what are the keys to success in this new, always-on world? The answer lies in creating ads that are unobtrusive and native to the mobile experience.

For example, it is no longer enough for brands to simply repurpose TV ads for Facebook video. Facebook recommends telling a concise story in under 15 seconds and ensuring the message can be delivered with or without sound. The seismic shift to mobile is forcing marketers to think outside the box to create content that’s optimized for social and built for the devices it will be used on.

Relinquish Control

To retain relevance, more brands are allowing consumers to play a role in driving content. Rather than 100% owning the message, savvy brands are finding ways to invite consumers in and let them tell their story.

Most of these consumers work from their phones, creating high volumes of authentic branded content that performs well on social. What’s more, they do so faster and more cost-efficiently than traditional channels are capable of. No more spending months to craft the perfect message. Marketers must be much more agile to keep up with digital demands.

By blurring the lines between consumers and brands, social media is reimagining how content is created and media is distributed. The transition to truly personalized, native, dynamic advertising is happening now. Are you ready?

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