Ecommerce is becoming more and more competitive. As a result, businesses are getting more creative with their eCommerce marketing, and the top brands are now exploring unusual ways of promoting their products and services to stand out in crowded markets.
Marketing has evolved from being a mere promotional tool to being a bridge from the business to consumers. Strong ecommerce marketing strategies allow brands to establish and maintain relationships with their customers, and the most successful brands are those that manage to create content that addresses user needs and speaks their language.
Before we discuss how top brands do their ecommerce marketing, let’s find out why your ecommerce marketing campaigns need to adapt to stay fresh and relevant.
Why your ecommerce marketing needs a do-over
Having an online presence is no longer enough if you want your ecommerce business to attract customers and keep them loyal. Your current and prospective customers are constantly bombarded with messages through email, social media, and other marketing channels. Much of that content is likely to come from your competition.
There’s really nothing you can do about that. Instead, you need to focus on what you can do: strengthen your presence, add value to the products you offer, and show your customers that they’re in good hands with you.
Your ecommerce marketing strategy should keep a particular focus on retaining your existing customers. Why? First, finding new customers costs a lot more than keeping current ones, and can often require multiple follow-up attempts before you get any sales. Second, when you connect with your existing customers consistently, they are more likely to do repeat business with your brand. Finally, a great customer experience can turn buyers into unofficial brand advocates.
The language you use in your content plays a factor in customer retention. Using an inclusive language glossary can help all your customers feel included, valued, and happy to be doing business with your company.
These are just some of the main reasons you need to come up with creative ecommerce marketing content that keeps your customers engaged, helps them get the most out of products they purchase from you, and entices them to keep coming back for more. Read on, and we’ll give you some creative content ideas that you may incorporate into your own marketing strategy.
Ecommerce blogging is very different from the way it was practiced even a few years ago. Back then, many businesses didn’t even have blogs. Now, marketers have seen the value of blogging. Aside from improving your company’s search engine optimization (SEO) profile, it helps you connect to your customers by giving them useful advice and insights.
In exploring the relationship between COVID-19 and online sales, experts have noticed blogs playing a major role in increasing online revenue for businesses. Blogs help drive traffic to your site and can help convince your website visitors to become newsletter subscribers, convert them into customers, and keep them loyal to your brand through helpful, relevant content.
Unfortunately, a lot of ecommerce blogs look unprofessional or hastily put together. They’re often full of grammar and spelling errors that can easily be fixed with the use of an online grammar checker. Businesses must invest in professional design and great, well-written content for their blogs. We love the “online magazine” style of blog post that is becoming increasingly popular:
Men’s wear retailer Mr. Porter (pictured) stands out from the competition because of its blog, known as “The Journal”. At first glance, it doesn’t look like an ecommerce site’s blog. It closely resembles the online versions of well-known men’s magazines such as GQ or Esquire, providing an intuitive layout and well-written articles.
The Journal takes its content marketing seriously. Its producers follow a specific editorial standard, and instead of actively promoting products, the content is presented as a “how-to”guide or as an “editor’s pick”. The blog even has its own editorial director and style director, just like a regular men’s fashion magazine, which makes it even more credible as an arbiter of what’s in style.
Everybody loves a good tune, and using musical content for your brand, whether or not it was composed specifically for an ad campaign, increases customer engagement. Music makes a brand more memorable to customers, especially since it can stay in the listener’s mind hours after the advertisement ends. It also sets the tone for the viewer’s relationship with the brand.
Aside from using music in advertising, you can also partner with the musicians themselves to promote your brand. These musical influencers connect with their fans and build deep, emotional relationships with them through music. When your brand partners with a musical influencer, you gain almost important exposure to the artist’s fanbase, who come to associate your brand with music they love.
In the example above, Burberry worked with musical influencers to produce a series called “Burberry Acoustics”. Burberry has long been known as a luxury brand, but working with musicians helped introduce the company to new, diverse audiences who would otherwise shy away from it.
Over more than five years, musicians from different backgrounds performed stripped-down versions of their songs while wearing Burberry clothing. The message? Burberry is for the musician looking for that one big break, and also for the person on the street who wants to look good and feel confident about themselves.
Native instructional content
Native content is digital marketing content that matches the function and form of the platform it appears on. It doesn’t stand out much from the rest of the other content in the platform, which makes it look “native”. The only difference is that it will be tagged as “Sponsored” or “Branded”.
Instructional content works very well in native advertising because it doesn’t actively promote the business, but instead offers advice that even non-customers can find value in.
This video from Salesprocess.io, a SaaS marketing provider, often appears in my Facebook feed. Compared to the company’s other (non-sponsored) videos, it has a lot of reactions and engagements. That’s probably because it has a section utilizing screen sharing that shows exactly how the content creator does things. This makes it highly actionable and useful. Even if it’s not the most polished promotional video, this ad is very effective because it offers helpful information with a definite timeline for results (30 days).
There are other forms of native content, like advertorials, sponsored posts, and collaborations with content producers. You could even start a podcast if you feel like sharing your ideas with people who’d rather listen than watch. But whatever form your native content takes, it should offer something useful to the reader or viewer.
User-generated video content
Aside from sponsored content, user-generated content (UGC) is one of the most powerful marketing tools you can use to promote your brand. You may consider UGC a vote of confidence for your brand because your followers are essentially becoming ambassadors for your company or product. When you use UGC on your own website or social channels, it makes your audience feel involved and increases their confidence in you.
Aside from giving your brand a lot of exposure, UGC is also considered more credible than any other type of content. Close to half of millennials and over 1/3 of baby boomers in a recent study indicated that they trust UGC, compared to just 25% of both demographics who sponsored content.
Finally, UGC is fun, especially when it shows your products being used in unusual contexts. When people think of the GoPro camera brand, for example, they normally associate it with extreme sports, like surfing or skydiving. But as the example above from GoPro users Tyler Sams and Elise Wright shows us, a GoPro can also record all the work that goes into making a pumpkin pie!
Offbeat videos like the example here show us that UGC is anything but traditional. It is anything that your audience wants it to be, and it opens you up to new markets and new audiences thanks to your audience members’ creativity. It also gives your existing audience a fresh new lens through which they can view and engage with your brand.
With all the shopping options available online, it’s easy for your customers to get overwhelmed. A crowded niche makes it hard for your brand to stand out. Creating a buying guide will help confused customers make informed decisions. It will also help draw traffic to your business.
A product buying guide is an article that gives ecommerce tips to customers when they’re looking for a specific item. These articles can list differences in features, prices, appearance, and so on. Some buying guides come with recommendations for specific customer segments. Others tell you which products go well with each other.
You can use a buying guide to promote the products that you carry or collaborate with other brands that complement yours. For example, if you sell clothing, why not partner with a company that sells shoes and create a buying guide that shows users which shoes should be worn with each of this season’s dresses?
Your buying guide doesn’t have to be all text. In fact, you can make infographics (such as the example above) to make your buying guide more interesting and to illustrate different product features in a way that’s easier to understand. Humans process visual information faster than the written word, and incorporating infographics into your buying guides helps catch and hold your customer’s attention.
The ideas we’ve given you are only just a few of the many things you can do to put your ecommerce marketing into overdrive. As you keep promoting your brand, working with influencers in your niche, and drawing inspiration from your audience, you’ll discover more ways to represent your business creatively.
All you need to do is to take that first step. Ecommerce marketing is a long (and often frustrating) process, but it is also highly rewarding when you see the results of your creative campaigns.
We hope that our ideas give you all the inspiration you need to jump-start your marketing. So what are you waiting for? Let your creativity loose!
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