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Stuart O'Brien

Cash-strapped Gen Z wants brands to recognise social issues

Gen Z expect brands to demonstrate purpose beyond profit, even in the face of economic instability, as they report the highest concern (90%) of all generations about social issues, which has a clear impact on their purchase decisions.

That’s according to Dentsu’s 2024 Read the Room: Pursuing Happiness report, which finds that 75% of Gen Z are more likely to buy from brands that give a portion of their sales to charity and 70% say they prioritise brands that demonstrate emotional intelligence in their advertising – both findings are the highest of all generational cohorts.

The research also finds that Gen-Z donates the highest proportion of their salary (5%) to charity compared to other generations. That’s despite more than half (57%) of Gen Z reporting that they are extremely anxious about their finances in the immediate future. An additional 78% agreed they would be more likely to purchase from a brand that makes its products sustainably.

The research delves into the influences behind buying decisions across a wide range of generations and industries – from Boomers to Millennials to Gen Z – to give brands insights in consumer mindsets in 2024 and beyond.

It finds that Gen Z, those born between 1997 and 2012, view charitable donations and social activism as a core pillar of their personalities, with brand identity linked to personal value systems. Gen Z want to buy from brands that are actively doing good for society, not just through words, but through authentic action.

Even among Boomers, more than a quarter now prefer to buy from a brand exhibiting a strong sense of purpose. Consumers will ultimately move away from brands that fail to back up sustainability and social initiatives with evidence. Brands must gain deep knowledge of their customers’ value systems, and then communicate clearly how they are delivering on those values. In doing so, brands can create new consumer demand, unlocking new value in new spaces.

Angela Tangas, UK&I CEO dentsu, said: “In another economically challenging year, a people-centered   focus must be a priority for brand strategy and business growth. Our insights reaffirm that understanding both consumer and customer behaviours, anticipating their needs and creating new ways to meaningfully and authentically connect is critical. We can clearly see that consumers, especially Gen Z, expect more from brands in terms of environmental sustainability and social impact, at a time when technology is enabling new experiences and cultivating new behaviours. The demand for purpose means authenticity is paramount, which will be key to unlocking wins today and preparing for tomorrow.”

Photo by Zana Latif on Unsplash

Just 6 weeks to go until the eCommerce Forum – Register today!

This event provides an excellent chance to connect with innovative, budget-friendly suppliers for your upcoming eCommerce initiatives, network with industry peers, and stay updated on the latest industry trends and insights.

Your free pass grants you access to insightful seminars by top speakers, including Rachel Aldigheri, Managing Director of DMA UK, & ConversionWise, who will be presenting “Destination, Conversion: How to Turn Clicks into Customers.”

Click here to request the full seminar programme.

Confirm your place via our online booking form – you have the option to attend for a full day or a half day, depending on your schedule.

If you’re unable to attend, could a colleague join in your place?

If you specialise in Brand Monitoring solutions we want to hear from you!

Each month on Digital Marketing Briefing we’re shining the spotlight on different parts of the print and marketing sectors – and in June we’ll be focussing on Brand Monitoring solutions.

It’s all part of our ‘Recommended’ editorial feature, designed to help marketing industry professionals find the best products and services available today.

So, if you specialise in Brand Monitoring and would like to be included as part of this exciting new shop window, we’d love to hear from you – for more info, contact Kerry Naumburger on k.naumburger@forumevents.co.uk.

June 2024 – Brand Monitoring
July 2024 – Web Analytic
Aug 2024 – Conversion Rate Optimisation
Sept 2024 – Digital Signage
Oct 2024 – Brochure Printing
Nov 2024 – Creative & Design
Dec 2024 – Online Strategy
Jan 2025 – Content Management
Feb 2025 – Lead Generation & Tracking
Mar 2025 – Email Marketing
April 2025 – Digital Printing
May 2024 – Social Media

Photo by Alexander Shatov on Unsplash

SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT: Top tools for every marketer’s toolkit

There are a plethora of social media management tools are available, designed to streamline workflows, boost engagement, and unlock valuable insights. Let’s explore some of the most popular choices amongst marketing professionals…

The Big Three:

  • Hootsuite: A veteran in the social media management space, Hootsuite offers a comprehensive suite of tools for scheduling posts across various platforms, managing multiple accounts, and monitoring brand mentions. Its strength lies in its user-friendly interface and robust analytics features.

  • Buffer: Known for its user-friendly approach and focus on scheduling and publishing content, Buffer is a favourite amongst smaller marketing teams and social media beginners. It excels in content queueing and offers browser extensions for seamless content sharing from various platforms.

  • Sprout Social: A well-rounded platform catering to larger marketing teams, Sprout Social boasts powerful social listening capabilities alongside scheduling and analytics tools. It shines in its ability to manage customer relationships through social media channels, fostering better brand-customer interaction.

Rising Stars:

  • Later: A social media management tool specifically designed for visual content, Later prioritizes scheduling posts for Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok. Its visual calendar and drag-and-drop functionality make it ideal for creating a cohesive visual social media presence.

  • SocialPilot: Known for its affordability and ease of use, SocialPilot offers scheduling, analytics, and basic social listening features across various platforms. It’s a valuable option for startups or solopreneurs looking for a cost-effective social media management solution.

  • Sendible: A feature-rich platform catering to large agencies and enterprises, Sendible offers advanced social listening capabilities, team collaboration tools, and in-depth reporting. Its strength lies in its ability to manage a vast number of social media accounts and complex workflows.

Choosing the Right Tool

The ideal social media management tool depends on your specific needs and budget. Consider these factors when making your choice:

  • Team size and needs: Larger teams might benefit from advanced collaboration features like those offered by Sprout Social or Sendible.
  • Focus and budget: Visual content creators might find Later particularly useful, while budget-conscious teams might prefer SocialPilot.
  • Platforms you manage: Ensure the tool integrates with the social media platforms you use most frequently.

Beyond the Tools

Remember, social media management tools are powerful allies, but they’re not a silver bullet. Building a successful social media strategy requires:

  • High-quality content: Captivating content remains key to engaging your audience.
  • Social listening and audience engagement: Understanding your audience and responding to their comments and messages is crucial.
  • Data analysis and strategy adaptation: Regularly analyse your social media data and adapt your strategy to optimise performance.

Social media management tools empower marketing professionals to navigate the complexities of social media marketing more effectively. By leveraging these tools, marketers can streamline workflows, gain valuable data insights, and ultimately achieve greater engagement with their target audience. Remember, the most effective social media strategy is a collaborative effort, combining the power of technology with creativity, audience understanding, and a commitment to building relationships. So, choose your social media management tool wisely, focus on creating engaging content, and watch your brand thrive in the ever-evolving social media landscape.

Are you looking for Social Media Management solutions for your organisation? The Digital Marketing Solutions Summit can help!

SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT: Taking marketing managers beyond spreadsheets and juggling acts

Managing multiple social media platforms, scheduling content, and engaging audiences can feel like a constant juggling act. But specialist social media management solutions are here to help. These platforms offer a comprehensive suite of tools to streamline workflows, boost engagement, and gain valuable insights – all essential ingredients for a successful social media strategy. Let’s explore how senior marketing professionals can leverage these solutions to elevate their social media presence across various sectors…

Simplifying Content Management

  • Scheduling and Publishing: Schedule posts across various platforms for optimal timing, ensuring consistent and engaging content delivery. Pre-populated calendars allow for strategic planning and campaign management.
  • Collaboration and Approval Workflows: Facilitate seamless collaboration between marketing teams, allowing for easy content creation, review, and approval processes before publishing.
  • Content Libraries and Asset Management: Store and manage brand assets like images, videos, and templates within the platform, ensuring brand consistency and easy access for content creators.

Enhancing Audience Engagement

  • Social Listening and Monitoring: Track brand mentions, industry trends, and competitor activity across social media platforms. Gain valuable insights into audience sentiment and identify opportunities for engagement.
  • Community Management: Respond to comments, messages, and reviews promptly and efficiently, fostering positive brand interactions and building stronger customer relationships.
  • Social Contests and Promotions: Utilise built-in tools to run contests, giveaways, and polls, generating excitement and boosting audience participation.

Data-Driven Decision Making

  • Analytics and Reporting: Gain detailed reports on post performance, audience demographics, and engagement metrics. Use this data to identify what resonates with your audience and inform future content strategies.
  • Competitive Benchmarking: Compare your social media performance against competitors to identify areas for improvement and learn from successful strategies.
  • ROI Measurement: Track the return on investment (ROI) of your social media efforts, demonstrating the value of social media marketing to stakeholders.

Examples Across Sectors

  • Retail: Schedule product launches and promotions, showcase customer reviews, and engage with influencers to drive brand awareness and in-store footfall.
  • Travel and Hospitality: Run captivating destination photos and videos, respond to guest inquiries, and manage online reputation through social listening tools.
  • Professional Services: Position yourself as a thought leader by sharing industry insights, engage in professional discussions with relevant communities, and attract potential clients.

The Future of Social Media Management

The future of social media management solutions is exciting:

  • Integration with Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI-powered tools can help create and schedule content based on audience preferences and optimise posting times for maximum reach.
  • The Rise of Social Commerce: Social media platforms will become increasingly shoppable, allowing brands to sell directly within the platform. Management tools will integrate with e-commerce platforms, streamlining the social selling process.
  • Focus on Personalisation and Social Listening: Social media management solutions will leverage advanced algorithms to personalise content delivery and further refine social listening capabilities, allowing brands to tailor their approach to individual audience segments.

Empowering Marketing Success

Social media management solutions are no longer niche tools; they’ve become essential for senior marketing professionals. These platforms empower marketers to streamline workflows, engage audiences more effectively, and make data-driven decisions. As technology evolves, so too will social media management solutions, offering deeper insights and automation capabilities. Remember, in today’s digital age, a strong social media presence is crucial for brand awareness and customer engagement. Social media management solutions are the key to unlocking the full potential of social media marketing and achieving success across various sectors.

Are you looking for Social Media Management solutions for your organisation? The Digital Marketing Solutions Summit can help!

Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

Digital marketing trends in retail that drive sales and engage Shoppers

The retail landscape is constantly evolving, shaped by advancements in technology and shifting consumer behaviours. Staying ahead of the curve is vital and businesses need to leverage the latest digital marketing trends to remain competitive and relevant.

Expert advice from director-led performance marketing agency outbloom draws insights from industry research and their own expertise, identifying key digital marketing trends that are shaping the retail sector in 2024.

Digital marketing plays a pivotal role in driving sales and engaging shoppers in the retail sector. By embracing innovative strategies such as personalised shopping experiences, social commerce integration, omnichannel marketing, and more, retailers can stay ahead of the curve and thrive in today’s competitive landscape.

Julia Symonds, Co-Founder and Lead Consultant at outbloom, says: “Customer behaviour is constantly changing in retail due to trends, external events, or simple curiosity. Many retailers must embrace what the latest technology has to offer to reach more consumers on digital channels to generate sales, boost conversion and encourage recurring purchases. With more ways to shop than ever before, retailers must innovate to meet consumers’ constantly evolving, lofty expectations.”

So, what can retailers and consumers expect to see in the foreseeable future? outbloom has curated a list of some of the emerging and ongoing trends that will impact the retail industry in the coming years.

1. Personalised Shopping Experiences

Personalisation has become a cornerstone of successful digital marketing strategies in retail. Today’s consumers expect tailored shopping experiences that cater to their individual preferences and needs. Retailers can leverage customer data and advanced analytics to deliver personalised recommendations, product suggestions, and promotional offers. By understanding their customers’ behaviour and preferences, retailers can create targeted marketing campaigns that drive engagement and foster loyalty.

2. Social Commerce Integration

Social media platforms have become powerful tools for retailers to connect with their target audience and drive sales. The integration of social commerce features allows consumers to make purchases directly from their favourite social media channels, streamlining the buying process and reducing friction. Retailers can leverage social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok to showcase products, engage with customers, and drive traffic to their online stores. By tapping into the vast reach and influence of social media, retailers can expand their customer base and increase sales.

3. Omnichannel Marketing Strategies

In today’s omnichannel retail environment, consumers expect a seamless shopping experience across multiple channels and touchpoints. Retailers must adopt omnichannel marketing strategies that integrate online and offline channels to create a cohesive brand experience. Whether shopping online, in-store, or via mobile devices, customers should have access to consistent product information, pricing, and promotions. By delivering a unified shopping experience across all channels, retailers can enhance customer satisfaction, drive sales, and foster brand loyalty.

4. Interactive Content and Immersive Experiences

Interactive content and immersive experiences are increasingly becoming key drivers of engagement in the retail sector. Retailers can leverage technologies such as augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) to create interactive shopping experiences that captivate and engage consumers. From virtual try-on tools to immersive product demonstrations, interactive content allows consumers to experience products in a more engaging and memorable way. By embracing interactive technologies, retailers can differentiate themselves from competitors and provide unique value to shoppers.

5. Influencer Marketing Collaborations

Influencer marketing has emerged as a powerful strategy for retailers to reach and engage their target audience authentically. By partnering with influencers who align with their brand values and target demographics, retailers can leverage the influence and credibility of social media personalities to promote their products and drive sales. Influencers can create authentic content that resonates with their followers, helping retailers to increase brand awareness, generate buzz, and drive traffic to their online stores.

Photo by The Nix Company on Unsplash

SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT: From one-size-fits-all to personalised engagement – Where next?

For Marketing Managers and Community Managers the days of juggling multiple platforms and struggling with rudimentary scheduling tools are fading. Social Media Management (SMM) solutions have undergone a dramatic evolution, offering a more streamlined, data-driven, and audience-centric approach to social media success…

From Scheduling to Strategy

Here’s how SMM solutions are empowering marketing and community teams:

  • Unified Platform Management: Gone are the days of logging into individual social media platforms. Modern SMM solutions offer centralised dashboards to schedule posts, monitor engagement, and analyse performance across various platforms.
  • Data-Driven Insights: Today’s SMM solutions go beyond vanity metrics. They offer in-depth analytics, allowing teams to measure campaign effectiveness, identify target audience demographics, and optimise content strategies for maximum reach and engagement.
  • Content Calendar and Collaboration: SMM solutions provide powerful content calendar tools to plan, schedule, and collaborate on social media posts, ensuring consistent brand messaging and streamlined content creation.
  • Social Listening and Influencer Identification: Modern SMM solutions allow teams to monitor brand mentions, track industry trends, and identify key influencers within their target audience, fostering stronger brand communities.
  • Engagement Tools and Community Management: Engagement features like social listening tools, sentiment analysis, and automated response capabilities empower teams to respond to comments and messages efficiently, fostering positive community relationships.

The Future of Social Media Management

The UK market for SMM solutions is constantly evolving, with exciting possibilities on the horizon:

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML): AI and ML will power features like intelligent content creation, automated ad targeting, and personalised audience segmentation, taking social media management to a whole new level of personalisation.
  • Social Commerce Integration: SMM solutions will seamlessly integrate with e-commerce platforms, allowing for easier product promotions and in-app purchases, driving sales directly through social media interactions.
  • Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR): AR and VR functionalities will be incorporated into SMM platforms, allowing brands to create immersive social media experiences that increase engagement and brand recall.
  • Focus on Employee Advocacy: SMM solutions will focus on empowering employees to become brand advocates, amplifying brand messages and building trust with audiences through genuine employee voices.
  • Micro-Influencer Marketing: Identifying and collaborating with micro-influencers – those with smaller but highly engaged followings – is likely to become a key feature of SMM solutions, allowing for targeted brand promotion with higher conversion rates.

Beyond Scheduling and Posting

Social Media Management solutions have come a long way. By offering data-driven insights, automation tools, and a focus on audience engagement, they empower Marketing Managers and Community Managers to create targeted campaigns, build stronger brand communities, and achieve greater social media success. The future of SMM solutions promises further innovation, with AI, immersive features, and a focus on employee and micro-influencer engagement playing a key role in the evolution of social media marketing strategies. Remember, social media is a dynamic environment. The most successful brands are those that can adapt their strategies and leverage cutting-edge tools to build lasting relationships with their audiences.

Are you looking for Social Media Management solutions for your organisation? The Digital Marketing Solutions Summit can help!

Photo by Marvin Meyer on Unsplash

Multilocal integrates with Onetag for high-quality inventory

Programmatic specialist Multilocal has completed a global integration with AI-powered curation platform Onetag, enabling its clients to access the latter’s supply of premium publisher inventory.

Onetag’s smart curation programmatic platform uses impression-level traffic shaping to eliminate low-quality media in the programmatic supply chain. DealCurate provides significant operational efficiency, with full and immediate control of supply-side deal creation, and can be activated directly in all leading Demand Side Platforms. Its proprietary semantic engine accesses 100m data points, enabling contextual targeting at a highly granular level, and at scale.

The partnership is live now and is effective around the world, with the UK, Europe and US as key markets.

“This partnership between two major players in the curation space cements curation’s place as a key component of the programmatic ecosystem,” says Multilocal CEO James Leaver. “Curation is intrinsically agnostic and opens up increased options and scale for both buyers and sellers. This integration is proof of its increasing importance, and will make it easier for Multilocal’s clients to tap into its many benefits.”

Onetag founder and CEO Daniel Pirchio, adds: “This is a great example of interoperability in the market. Partnerships such as this one are driving technological solutions to shape traffic and remove low-quality inventory, for the benefit of both advertisers and publishers.”

“Our AI curates high-performing inventory based on media quality data, filtering out wastage to deliver only viewable and uncluttered inventory, contextual relevance and engaged users. Our aim is to provide effective digital advertising for the open internet via intuitive, intelligent programmatic curation technology, and together with Multilocal, we are doing that at scale.”

Rub shoulders with the industry’s best at the eCommerce Forum

There’s a place reserved for you to attend the eCommerce Forum, which is taking place in July. This unique event has been created to help you source new solution providers, attend educational seminars and network with peers at an exclusive mixer.

2nd July 2024 | Hilton London Canary Wharf

Click Here To Register

After the event comes to an end, why not head to Rocket, Canary Wharf for the The eCom Mixer, & enjoy an evening of informal networking & drinks, from 5pm.

The event serves as a place to bring the eCommerce community together for good.

👋 Networking with breath taking views
🥂 Music, drinks, and merriment on the terrace
🤝 Make new connections, friendships, and collaborations

If you would like to find out more information, please contact us here, or visit our website

If you specialise in Social Media Management we want to hear from you!

Each month on Digital Marketing Briefing we’re shining the spotlight on different parts of the print and marketing sectors – and in May we’ll be focussing on Social Media solutions.

It’s all part of our ‘Recommended’ editorial feature, designed to help marketing industry professionals find the best products and services available today.

So, if you specialise in Social Media management and would like to be included as part of this exciting new shop window, we’d love to hear from you – for more info, contact Kerry Naumburger on k.naumburger@forumevents.co.uk.

May 2024 – Social Media
June 2024 – Brand Monitoring
July 2024 – Web Analytics
Aug 2024 – Conversion Rate Optimisation
Sept 2024 – Digital Signage
Oct 2024 – Brochure Printing
Nov 2024 – Creative & Design
Dec 2024 – Online Strategy
Jan 2025 – Content Management
Feb 2025 – Lead Generation & Tracking
Mar 2025 – Email Marketing
April 2025 – Digital Printing