Achieving Success by Engaging Customers

Events such as the Super Bowl, Academy Awards and World Series have always provided brands with opportunities to reach many customers at once through advertising and onsite activities.

Today, through social networks and online promotions available on consumers’ smartphones, tablets and laptops, the possibilities are even greater for companies to not just reach their customers but to engage them in meaningful experiences surrounding big events.

For years, the primary vehicle for advertisers to reach the huge Super Bowl audience was a 30-second television commercial that appeared during the game.

The same spot today does much more than provide an entrée to the Super Bowl audience of millions of viewers. It serves as the gateway for connecting a brand to more people, more often through the Super Bowl conversations taking place before, during and after the big game.

For example, Coca-Cola made it possible for the public to decide the outcome of its Super Bowl commercial, which featured a desert race between cowboys, showgirls and “badlanders” speeding toward a bottle of Coke.

Viewers decided the winner by online voting and followed the commentary on Twitter about the race as it unfolded. Doritos let online viewers choose one of its Super Bowl commercials by voting that took place on Facebook.

Interest — and likely viewership — in these commercials was heightened significantly because of the pre-game hype and during-game buzz generated by these campaigns, especially among those consumers participating in the contest.

You don’t need a Super Bowl–sized budget to engage prospects

High-profile Super Bowl campaigns demonstrate the importance of building communications programs that broaden reach and foster engagement with customers. The good thing is how multi-million-dollar budgets for Super Bowl marketing programs can be scaled down and applied to most marketing programs.

You can do that in your business by choosing multiple ways to deliver your message to customers or prospective customers multiple times.

You can also use different platforms, such as Twitter, Facebook or YouTube, to expand your reach to different people within your target audience.

Some who might not have otherwise watched the Super Bowl commercials may be more likely to tune in for the Coke spot because they participated in the online contest, even if they don’t care about the game.

For businesses, the point is to come up with creative ways to get your audience’s attention and then get them involved with your firm through social media and other online opportunities to foster a deeper and more meaningful engagement.

Figuring out how to reach your target market in today’s multimedia world puts you halfway down the field. Getting the attention of your audience and creating conversations that lead to action will help take your marketing program across the goal line.