In this opinion piece, Spredfast market director Adrian Mottershead (pictured below) says modern digital marketing is about having a list, knowing the offer and establishing a campaign. Something he handily calls the LOC method…
Marketing has changed more in the last two years than it has in the past 50 with marketers now feeling ill-equipped to meet the challenges of digital and keep up with the pace of change, all without being able to see what is working. And it all boils down to the fact that contemporary marketing is now dictated by two things – being able to understand consumer behaviour, combined with formulating new ways to meet their growing expectations.
With all this in mind, it is clear that while the traditional model of the 4 P’s of marketing – product, price, promotion, and place – is a helpful framework for bringing a product to market, digital marketing campaigns require a methodology that’s more tangible, more actionable, and more simple. Enter, ‘L.O.C’ – List, Offer, Creative.
L is for List
List is your audience, target, segment or whatever you want to call it. It’s essential to start here. It’s the most important element of the framework because everything a marketer does should be defined by who they are targeting.
Without knowing who the marketer is writing for, how will they know what to say? How will they know where to find their audience? How will they find out how to distribute content to them? Distributing a message without a targeted audience will not only fail to have an impact, but will also be a waste of valuable resources.
Even for businesses who do not have a deep and thorough knowledge of their audience, finding out what they care about, their daily habits, and their preferences may be easier than initially thought. Marketers can ‘List’ a segment of website visitors, or a business in a target vertical; the possibilities go on.
Despite the enormity of the ‘digital’ pool, it is carefully crafted of specific demographics and sectors. So it’s extremely important for marketers to continue to segment their audience pools until the can accurately List their most targeted and refined audience. But no matter where marketers choose to craft their audience pool from, List is, and will always be, a digital marketing campaign’s most crucial starting point.
O is for Offer
The second-most important element of the digital marketing campaign framework is the Offer; what marketers are offering to their List.
Offers should be thought of broadly; is it a discount? A whitepaper? An event invitation? The message? (Quick tip: Make sure your offer is actually value to your audience. Is this something you wanted to check a box that you shared or is it truly valuable?)
Even the greatest Offer will fall on deaf ears if it is not appropriately aligned with its audience. If marketers are only thinking about the content and not the audience as well, the content may not perform well and they’ll be left wondering why. It may be the case of the wrong type of demographic, or even the wrong time during the customer’s journey.
I recently encountered an Offer ‘fail’ during my last trip to London. After connecting with Heathrow Airport Wi-Fi, I continued to receive discount offers from stores within the International terminal, months after my trip. My most recent offer was “Something for the kids this half-term”; not an offer I’d jump up considering my children do not attend school in the U.K., nor do we even live there. For a place that receives high volumes of ‘transit’ customers, offering proximity-specific discounts is a clear sign of misalignment between marketers’ Lists and Offer.
Ensuring that the content distributed is appropriate to the audience will allow digital marketing strategies to achieve success.
C is for Creative
Although design is an important element in marketing campaigns, it is redundant without a solid List and Offer. No matter how beautiful and inspiring the Creative is, audiences will have no reason to click on an ad if the ad is not meant for them. The Creative is like the cherry on top on the entire digital marketing campaign, bringing it to visual life. But without the support of the List and Offer, even the most strategic Creative will fail to execute.