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The Marketing Unleashed Podcast – How can you command your customer’s attention in the digital age?

Joel: Welcome everyone and thank you for listening. In today’s show, we’ll be talking about how you can command your customer’s attention in the digital age. And with me is Jamie and Rachel. And as we all know, we are living in the world of computers and in digital devices, smartphones, everything like that. I want to talk about how brands can break through the clutter and all the white noise and gain the customer’s attention. I’ll start it off. Actually, Rachel, if you want to start us off, you have any thoughts on how they can really break through that?

Rachel: Well, I think that they need to be on multiple channels. You just, you have to be out there in print, web, social media just all over the place.

Joel: Okay. And Jamie, what do you think?

Jamie: Yeah, I agree. Because you can’t just focus on one channel. You’ve got to be out everywhere because in today’s fast paced world, everybody is on everything and they’re looking on their tablets, they’re looking on their mobile phones and they’re looking on the web and on TV. And you’ve got to be across all channels because they’re not looking on just one spot and you can get overlooked so easy. And not only that, but because you can get overlooked so easy is kind of people, you’ve got to start thinking outside the box. You’ve got to start thinking, all right, what else can I do? It can’t just be something static. You’ve really got to start thinking about experiences and creating something new and different. And that’s where all of these new, involving the consumer and the customers in these campaigns have been coming into play. You know what I’m saying?

Joel: Yeah, yeah. All right. It’s out there that the average person’s attention span in the year 2000 they, I don’t know exactly how they do this, but they do the test, it was 12 seconds. Now it’s been reduced to eight seconds.

Jamie: I believe it.

Joel: You don’t have a lot of time to grab people’s attention and then whenever you do, how do you keep it? Basically the first step is to be everywhere. All right? Right. Be on all the social networks, be on the traditional media. Be anywhere and everywhere people may be looking. Now how, let’s kind of look at how we personally take in information. Do you two read magazines?

Rachel: I do.

Jamie: Okay. This is so funny because I used to love my magazines. There were several, I used to get at least I think there were four and I loved getting them and now that I started to just kind of not read them when I get them and then I just let the subscription lapse and now I’m down to two. And now I just, I don’t even read them when I get them.

Rachel: Yeah. I guess I’m kind of the same. I still get two, but I just kind of flip through real quick.

Jamie: Yeah, I flip through real quick.

Rachel: When I used to thoroughly read all of them.

Jamie: Oh my gosh, it’s so weird. It’s I could read all this stuff on the internet. And I’m like, oh my God, I really used to love and read this cover to cover and it is, it’s so weird.

Joel: Yeah. Okay. But all right, so you don’t really read magazines anymore.

Jamie: No. And I hate that i don’t enjoy it as much as I used to. I really do.

Rachel: I know. I feel like they’ve also gotten thinner too.

Jamie: Yeah. They’ve gotten thinner. They’re still chockfull of ads.

Rachel: Yeah, it’s pretty much all ads, few articles that are not even really worth reading sometimes.

Joel: That you can probably find online after.

Rachel: It is. Or it’s usually a lot of the same stuff. If you read their magazine’s website? I’ll go on, and then my mom gets People magazine. She’s like, “Here, do you want it?” I’m like, “Oh I already read that story online a week ago.”

Jamie: Because I get Eating Well and I like it for the recipes. Because it’s right there and printed, which is useful. But I know, I hate that i don’t enjoy it as much as I used to.

Joel: Yeah, I used to get Entrepreneur and EEK magazine and then I just, I started following them on Facebook and then I’d see the articles. And I’m like, I can just read it on my computer. I don’t need to pay you. There’s no paywall to get the same information online. I was just kind of like, all right.

Jamie: I do enjoy it when I’m on an airplane though.

Rachel: Yeah or sitting at the pool or something.

Jamie: Or on the beach.

Rachel: Yeah, I do like to look at it then.

Joel: But okay, so magazines, at least in our case really isn’t a big way to really grab our attention. Now radio, I personally hate local radio, terrestrial radio. I listen to Sirius because, I don’t like the commercials on the regular radio. And I think they just loop the same song every hour basically. Are you guys terrestrial radio folks?

Jamie: I do.

Rachel: Me too.

Joel: Okay. And do you, so whenever a commercial comes on, do you skip around?

Jamie: Oh yeah, I can’t stand commercials.

Joel: You hit the radio dial every time or the presets, every time a commercial break comes on.

Jamie: Yep.

Joel: And this is kind of where I’m getting at is that, the traditional ways of hitting everybody, were finding ways around it. We have DVR so we could skip through commercials. I rarely watch a TV show live. I rarely watch sports live. I usually will do something else for the first hour, hour and a half, and then I’ll start it. And so by the time I get through the commercials and all the breaks and everything, I’m basically catching up to live time at the end of the game. And I’m not really missing anything because I’m still seeing it pretty much live. I’m still watching it while it’s happening.

Jamie: Yeah. We have our work around so we can skip through those commercials.

Joel: Right. How do we get through that? How do we break through it? And I think like Rachel said, you have to be where people, where you can’t really break through it right now. Social media, there’s no way to get around ads.

Jamie: Well they’re even coming in, you’re watching YouTube and they will interrupt your video with a 15 second ad. I was like, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. What is going on here? I was lik, not cool.

Joel: Well and I wonder when is it that streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, well Hulu may already do this for the non-subscriber, non-paid subscribers. When are they going to start doing that type of stuff where it’s not, it’s random. It’ll be, traditionally TV you have nine or 10 minutes and then a break and then you have nine or 10 minutes and a break and then maybe five, six minutes and then the last break. It’s very broken up into clear segments. And so they know how to film. Where Netflix and all these, the streaming originals, they don’t follow those formats all the time.

Jamie: But I don’t have Netflix. I know, I know.

Joel: What?

Jamie: There are no advertisements or anything like that?

Joel: No. There’s nothing on Netflix that advertise. Not before a show. Not after a show. Not during a show.

Jamie: Wow.

Joel: At least none that I’ve found yet.

Jamie: I would think it’s just a matter of time.

Joel: Yeah. Because at some point, especially with Netflix, every time I go on there, there’s something new. A new original movie, a new original show. I don’t know how they’re coming up with all this cash to make all the stuff. They’re going to have to start bringing in some type of ad revenue at some point. That’s how TV networks work and radio stations.

Jamie: What I think they could do is whenever you pause something, there could just be flashes of ads, like a screensaver.

Joel: Maybe. Yeah. There could be.

Jamie: Because I have direct TV still. I know.

Joel: Yeah.

Jamie: And that’s what they do.

Joel: But that’s somewhat new. That’s relatively new though. Because I’ve noticed that it used to, whenever you pause, yeah, it goes to, usually they’re promoting another show or something that I see. But, I could totally see brands starting to get in there. But it used to just be whenever you paused it was just a still image of whatever show.

Jamie: Or TV logo.

Joel: Yeah. Or yeah. Well at first it was the show and then it would time out. And then it would go to the direct TV logo where it would kind of move around the screen.

Jamie: And now they’re promoting other shows and stuff. screensaver, landscapes and stuff. And I was like, oh that’s new.

Joel: Yeah. Yeah. But I could totally see where brands are going to start getting in that and being like, hey, why don’t we show this.

Jamie: And that way it’s not so intrusive.

Joel: Exactly. Yeah. Because you still get the brand recognition out of it. I think that there is something though that I think consumers are becoming more untrustworthy of just everything. Whether it’s the media, whether if it’s, local news, national news or brands, because there’s a lot of nonsense out there. There’s a lot of fake fake, fake news, fake media, fake, or not, I shouldn’t say fake media. Fake promotion out there. I think people are getting wise to, and we talked about this in a previous discussion about all the diet and weight loss scams How people can make themselves look like they weigh more than they do just by doing certain things.

Jamie: With Photoshop.

Joel: Yeah. Photoshop and there’s ways that you could do it physically too.

Jamie: Or it’s a different person.

Rachel: Are you wearing your pants differently?

Joel: Right, right.

Jamie: With the big data breaches that have been going on in the past, people are just very untrustworthy of organizations and brands.

Joel: Yeah. Well, and I’ve read an article within the last six months about all these people who post their lives on social media and their lives look perfect. Nothing’s ever going wrong. They’re always smiling. The house is always clean looking. Everything is that they look like they’re living the perfect life. But in reality they’re not. And I think the article was specifically talking about moms. How moms will post pictures of them out and about what their kids and everybody’s all joyous and happy, but nobody sees that the temper tantrums that the kids are throwing and nobody sees the fact that mom has gum in her hair and all these nasty, ridiculous things that happens whenever you’re dealing with real life and children. That was the specific thing about this article. But I think a lot of people try to live that. And I think a lot of brands try to do that too.

Jamie: Yeah. And did you hear about the one, it was based off of because that was happening so much and he did it as an experiment. He made himself look super rich in all of his Instagram photos through Photoshop and it was all just fake. He would Photoshop all these expensive Gucci bags in his hand and made himself look like he was traveling in all these exotic locations and made himself like he was in a private plane and all the stuff like that. It was totally Photoshopped and fake.

Rachel: People believed it.

Jamie: People believed it. But, and then after I think maybe 10 photos, he was like, this is all fake.

Joel: It was just a social experiment?

Jamie: Yeah.

Joel: Interesting. Yeah. I think the biggest attention grabber is whenever you have that relationship. And I know, it seems like we always talk about relationships, but really that’s what it’s all about. Whenever it comes to marketing.

Jamie: And that builds customer loyalty.

Joel: Right, exactly. Yeah. Not just brand loyalty but customer loyalty, customer trust. You have to think about it like you’re cultivating your own friendships in a way. Whenever you meet somebody new, there’s always that I was try to think of whenever you move into a new house, you don’t always go over and be like, “Hey, I’m so-and-so. This is my life. How are you doing? What’s your life like and all that?” You kind of start with maybe a nod in a wave.

Rachel: You work your way up.

Joel: Yeah, exactly. You work your way into it. Maybe you’re both out mowing the yard at the same time, or you kind of ease into it and it has to develop. Sometimes it develops very quickly and sometimes it takes forever. I’ve got a neighbor that we’ve been nodding and waving at each other for four years now.

Rachel: One of these days.

Joel: One of these days we’re going to speak. And then I got other neighbors that were pretty close. It just depends. But I think it’s the relationship.

Rachel: I was thinking about how with my Etsy shop, whenever I get a sale I always send a personal thank you message and just letting them know because I think, it sends them a generic message but then I still go back and individually send people a note, say thank you. It’s on its way. And then with their order, I print out the sheet and also write a handwritten thank you on there just to build a relationship with the customer and hopefully they come back and sometimes they have come back.

Joel: Wait, wait, what you should do is you should get studio photos made, headshot, like an actress.

Rachel: And include it in their package.

Joel: Include it, sign it and include it with, because who knows, some of these Etsy shops, could be yours. It could be somebody else’s. They’re the next big brand out there. They’re just starting on Etsy. I don’t know if there’s any big brands out there now that started on Etsy, but at some point, one of these Etsy makers is going to be huge and, or they already are. And it could be Designs by Rachel, who knows. Wait, what do you call your Etsy shop?

Rachel: Rue Spot Art.

Joel: Rue Spot Art.

Rachel: That’s a plug in for it.

Joel: #RueSpotArt.

Jamie: Go look it up.

Joel: Yeah. Yeah. I think whenever you’re sending those personalized messages you’re sending things for a way to connect. I think that’s really you’re grabbing their attention. And next time they’re going to say, “Oh, I’m looking for a t-shirt or a gift for somebody, I really liked,” do you have your name in there somewhere?

Rachel: Yeah. All my stuff has a tag with my info on it.

Joel: Yeah. They’ll be like, oh, I like Rue Spot Art stuff so I’m going to look at her stuff first. Anything else in any other ways that brands can really kind of push through and get out there in the digital age?

Jamie: Well, like we were talking about, different ways of thinking and different ideas of what, I found a lot of great examples of ways that brands are thinking differently. Augmented reality is a really big thing right now and brands like Wayfair and a lot of these furniture type companies, they’re doing these things, especially with their apps where you could see the furniture in the space using their apps. And that’s kind of a real big thing. And so augmented reality, that’s going to be really big. Trying to utilize those type of things, getting the customer and the consumer involved, that’s going to be big and kind of like Warby Parker and Zenni you can actually use their app and their website to see the glasses on you.

Joel: I was actually going to to say where I buy my glasses online, they let you upload a picture of yourself and you can kind of see what they look like.

Jamie: It’s totally cool. And then you can do the same thing, I forgot the name, I think it’s Madison Reed. It’s a hair color. And you could do the same thing and you could see the hair color actually on you and it’s in a way where it’s live so you can move your head around and you can see the hair color on you. It’s really cool. A lot of these augmented reality, virtual reality things are a really neat thing.

Joel: Yeah. Well, and it’s doesn’t Instagram, Instagram’s the one that has all those filters that can add dog ears.

Jamie: Snapchat.

Joel: Snapchat. That they add dog ears and stuff to people’s heads and all that. Which that’s basically augmented reality in the social media platform. But I think you’re right. Someday Etsy may say, “Hey, we’re going to offer this,” or they may already, where people can upload a picture of their living room and they can see what Rachel’s pillow is going to look like on their couch.

Jamie: Right. And it’s also creating experiences for the consumer. It’s not just like I said, a static, here’s an ad for a sale. It’s creating experiences around your brand. Think about back, Red Bull did a good job of this back when.

Joel: Great job.

Jamie: They did that skydive from the highest spot in the atmosphere, from space. That was really cool.

Joel: Well and it was cool whenever they also did, I don’t know, they may still do this, but you create these, it was it’s basically these little vehicles that go off a ramp and it was like a contest. The Doritos Superbowl commercial. That’s a great way that they’re trying to, it tied into traditional media, but it got everybody involved. It activated their consumers to go do something.

Rachel: Make it fun.

Joel: Right. Yeah.

Rachel: A big thing. And I was reading something about how, well vinyl is really popular now. People are going back to collecting that stuff. Even just collectible stuff now or when you, if you go to a game and they have the giveaway stuff.

Jamie: What are those little dolls that are really popular? You know what I’m talking about?

Joel: Oh, with the big heads that now, yeah. I don’t know what they call them, but yeah, they’re out with the all the Star Wars characters and all that.

Jamie: Yeah, because they were everywhere when I went to Comic Con, St. Louis Comic Con recently. I forgot what they were called.

Joel: I don’t remember what they’re called.

Jamie: Because everyone was trying to collect all the Avengers ones and there was a character for everybody.

Joel: Yeah. They look like, I don’t know if they’re bobbleheads or not, but they kind of look like bobbleheads.

Jamie: I can’t think of the name.

Joel: Yeah. But yeah, I think creating an experience is also a big way. You can’t go to a concert or a sporting event anymore without some type of brand influence in an experiential environment.

Jamie: Yeah. And even customer loyalty programs.

Joel: Yeah, no, you’re right. Yeah, yeah. Customer loyalty programs. Yep.

Rachel: Yeah. You can’t go anywhere now without them asking for your email or phone number.

Jamie: Those are still big and people are finding different ways to utilize them. Patagonia has, you could turn in because their whole thing is like their stuff never, it lasts forever. And so you could turn in old, they call it worn wear. You can turn in old stuff, trade it in or they have, it’s kind of like a Goodwill of just Patagonia stuff because it lasts so long.

Joel: Really?

Jamie: Yeah.

Joel: I didn’t know that. I’m not really in the market. It’s hiking stuff, right?

Rachel: Yeah. Not really out there in the outdoors as much.

Jamie: It’s outdoor stuff.

Joel: Yeah. I camp in hotels.

Rachel: Hampton Inn.

Joel: They don’t appreciate the bonfires, but that’s okay. Yeah. Yeah. Make little s’mores on the microwave. All right, well anything else that we want to talk about?

Rachel: I would say just, not forget about the traditional ways of marketing as you’re still including all the new social stuff. Still remember all the old ways because they still work.

Joel: They do. Yeah. Yeah. And it’ll be interesting to see how they evolve. Again, I think going back to the direct TV thing, whenever you pause, they have to figure out a way to get their brand in front of people because let’s face it, reality is that people are skipping commercials more often. They’re not paying attention to the commercials or they’re just fast forwarding through them.

Rachel: Have you noticed how, they’ve already started to get around this. Anytime there is a movie trailer, they’ve made it so the name of the movie and the data comes out is constantly at the top. Whenever you are fast forwarding it, you can still see the name of the movie and the day that it comes out at the top of the screen.

Joel: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Rachel: They’re getting around that.

Joel: Oh, also product placement. Binge shows, in the content, within the content. And whenever it’s organically done, not in that.

Jamie: It’s never just organically done. It’s sponsored.

Joel: No, no, no, no. But what I’m saying is, so sometimes it’s just organically there. Sometimes, you’ll see a can of Coke just sitting on the table because it’s there. It’s intentionally placed there and I’m sure Coke’s paying a hefty fee for it. But there’s a scene in Wayne’s World where he’s drinking a Pepsi and he actually, he’s like, he turns to the camera and talks about it. He did it for a joke, but there are times when that actually happens. When they’re like, oh, I’m going to use my American Express card. It’s obvious whenever it’s being done.

Jamie: Oh yeah. Because it happens a lot in movies because Mercedes sponsored the latest Jurassic Park because every car was a Mercedes. And it’s very obvious.

Joel: And Audi. Audi had…

Jamie: Twilight.

Joel: And Ironman. Ironman. Yeah. Yeah.

Rachel: The Twilight I think he drove a Volvo. It was the whole thing.

Jamie: They do that with movies because yeah, it’s very obvious because every single car is going to be a certain make.

Joel: Right. Yeah, I think product placement.

Jamie: Yeah. But I was reading an article about, I forgot what show it was, but Microsoft I think was the sponsor of everything in that series because anytime they were on the computer they were saying, oh, just Bing it, instead of Google it. They were using the Bing search engine.

Joel: Was it a techie kind of show?

Jamie: No, I think it was something on the WB or whatever, free form, something like that. It was just some show. But Microsoft was the sponsor.

Joel: Yeah. Can you imagine?

Jamie: You couldn’t Google anything, you had to Bing it.

Joel: Yeah. Well, and can you imagine if you just didn’t know what Bing is, can you imagine, what the hell is that?

Rachel: And then you’re going to go look it up.

Joel: They’ll Google what’s Binging?

Jamie: Yeah, exactly. Product placement.

Joel: I wonder if Google would be like, it’s nothing. Don’t worry about it. Stay with us.

Rachel: Right. It’s interesting. Yeah.

Joel: All right. Cool. All right, well, I don’t have anything else. Any last words?

Jamie: Well, attention is the currency in the digital space, so and the digital space is the future.

Joel: Yeah. Oh, yeah. It’s the present and the future. All right. And Rachel, that was Rue Spot Art.

Rachel: Yeah. and on Etsy.

Joel: A shameless plug. All right, cool. All right, well thank you. And we’ll be right back with, can’t let it go for this week.