The Brand Innovators Summit in Atlanta this year was pretty awesome. The event was held at the Porsche Headquarters – which aside from being a beautiful and unique venue, afforded us the opportunity to satisfy our need for speed on the Porsche test track after lunch! Doing donuts at 120mph in a Porsche 911 is a thrill I won’t soon forget.
Brand Innovators attracts a strong assortment of marketing leaders from a variety of industries, all with a unique perspective on digital marketing for their individual brands.
This year, our own Judy Chan, Senior Product Marketing Manager for our mobile wallet marketing platform, Reach, presented some of the many use cases for leveraging mobile wallet as a new marketing channel, piquing the interest of many in attendance, from quick service restaurants (QSRs) to travel to loyalty executives.
This year’s overarching theme was the future of consumer engagement, and driving traffic with digital. So what were my key takeaways from what I heard from presenters and fellow attendees? There were three big ones:
1) Staying relevant in an ever-changing world.
Consumers are more averse to traditional marketing than ever. It’s important to find ways to reach them in their moment of need – at the right time, with the right message and on the right device. Technology is essential for bridging this gap – whether it’s AI, AR, mobile wallet coupons or other means, and harnessing data to ensure tech is used properly is important.
2) Even winning teams need to find new ways to connect with their target audience.
Senior marketers at the Atlanta Hawks and Jacksonville Jaguars showed the ongoing challenge of boosting attendance and cultivating brand loyalty for their teams – and how a combination of segmentation, customer level analytics, prescriptive technology stack, word of mouth, brand remarketing and a little bit of hip-hop can create a movement for current and future fans.
3) It’s all about customer experience.
Even a beloved brand like Cinnabon can evolve and grow based on customer preferences. Their team talked about making upgrades to the onsite bakery experience, tweaks to packaging and positioning, and insights from crew members that have helped the brand evolve. But they’ve also relied heavily on technology and business intelligence advances to help them better serve their loyal customers. Social also played a key role in branding efforts, culminating in viral PR that couldn’t have been planned or crafted any other way.
It may not be earth shattering, but it continues to be true: staying on top of new mobile, digital tools and channels, (like mobile wallet, smart-home tools and devices like Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa, etc.) plus leveraging user-level data to deliver better, more personalized experiences continue to be the keys to success for marketers.