DIG­I­TAL

We’re not as dig­i­tal as we think we are, says Si­mon Len­drum. So when it comes to online ad­ver­tis­ing, it pays to tar­get the many, not the few.

New Zealand Marketing - - Contents -

We’re not as dig­i­tal as we think, says Si­mon Len­drum

IN AN­TIC­I­PA­TION OF THE Mar­ket­ing As­so­ci­a­tion’s Dig­i­tal Day Out, we wanted to take New Zealand’s dig­i­tal pulse in a study that repli­cated JWT re­search con­ducted in both the US and the UK. And it turns out the dig­i­tal rev­o­lu­tion is in progress but by no means com­plete, with the ma­jor­ity of New Zealan­ders firmly in the ‘Dab­blers’ camp.

Most ac­tiv­ity that is now more com­mon online than off is dom­i­nated by util­i­tar­ian ac­tiv­i­ties. We have swiftly adopted bill pay­ments, prod­uct re­search and mes­sag­ing. A nod of ap­pre­ci­a­tion to the bank­ing com­mu­nity is prob­a­bly war­ranted here, be­cause the in­vest­ment in online bank­ing fa­cil­i­ties has ac­cel­er­ated the trust econ­omy amongst New Zealand con­sumers, mak­ing it the norm to lean to­wards the speed and con­ve­nience of the online chan­nel.

How­ever, even amongst the more dig­i­tally ac­tive seg­ments, there’s plenty that we’re not re­ally do­ing online. Much has been said of the rel­a­tive im­ma­tu­rity of e-com­merce in New Zealand, and our sur­vey backs that up, with the ma­jor­ity of con­sumers choos­ing to con­tinue shop­ping on high street over online al­ter­na­tives.

What is per­haps most strik­ing is the paucity of ‘Hard­core Dig­i­tal’ con­sumers in New Zealand. Their be­hav­iour is marked, but their num­bers are very, very small. This group rep­re­sents a scant one per­cent of the mar­ket, and al­most all of them are in Auck­land (though sam­ple size pre­vents me from get­ting too ex­cited about this fact). A quick glance at this seg­ment would get the di­gerati very ex­cited. It watches no tra­di­tional tele­vi­sion, con­sumes all its news and the ma­jor­ity of its mu­sic online, and it even does the ma­jor­ity of shop­ping online. There’s no doubt it is a grow­ing group. It’s just grow­ing from a very small base.

And here’s the rub: much of the dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing ac­tiv­ity that we pro­duce as an in­dus­try ap­pears to be aimed to­wards this group, or as­sume that this group is more sig­nif­i­cant than it re­ally is. Be­fore you leap to over-in­vest in the dig­i­tal chan­nel, you need to be clear in your ob­jec­tives. If you’re try­ing to as­sert your po­si­tion as an in­no­va­tive brand then go for broke. But if you’re look­ing for hard re­sults from online ac­tiv­ity, you need to en­sure you’re tar­get­ing the right peo­ple, in the right place, with a

IF YOU’RE TRY­ING TO AS­SERT

YOUR PO­SI­TION AS AN IN­NO­VA­TIVE BRAND THEN GO FOR BROKE. BUT IF YOU’RE LOOK­ING FOR HARD RE­SULTS FROM ONLINE AC­TIV­ITY, YOU NEED TO EN­SURE YOU’RE TAR­GET­ING THE RIGHT PEO­PLE, IN THE RIGHT PLACE, WITH A MES­SAGE AND BEN­E­FIT

THAT IS REL­E­VANT.

mes­sage and ben­e­fit that is rel­e­vant. This means un­der­stand­ing why we’re online, what driv­ers are at play, and how we can ap­peal to those driv­ers.

Our re­search iden­ti­fied the ma­jor­ity of New Zealan­ders choose to be online be­cause it’s faster, eas­ier, con­ve­nient and cheaper. Con­versely, when we choose the phys­i­cal over dig­i­tal, it’s be­cause it’s a bet­ter ex­pe­ri­ence, more au­then­tic and more mean­ing­ful. So when we talk about de­liv­er­ing a great online ex­pe­ri­ence, we’re most of­ten talk­ing about a seam­less, easy to use func­tion­al­ity; the ra­tional stuff. When we talk about de­liv­er­ing a great ex­pe­ri­ence off­line, we’re talk­ing about emo­tional con­nec­tion.

There’s no doubt that dig­i­tal needs to be a core part of your mar­ket­ing mix. Al­most all prod­uct com­par­isons and re­search is now done online, even amongst the proud­est of lud­dites. So you need to ad­dress this. But what our study sug­gests is that if you’re feel­ing a lit­tle be­hind in the dig­i­tal space, you’re prob­a­bly in step with your con­sumers. In­vest, yes, but do so in a calm and con­sid­ered man­ner be­cause the con­sumer is play­ing catch up too.

For a full copy of the re­port ‘Dig­i­tal New Zealand’, email si­mon.len­drum@ jwt.com.

Writ­ten by SI­MON LEN­DRUM Len­drum is man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of JWT NZ. si­mon. len­drum@jwt.com

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