In Brazil, 105 million users access Facebook every month and in Instagram, 35 million accounts are active in the Country. YouTube has more than 1 billion users worldwide. The numbers disclosed by the platforms impress, even if we don´t mention access to Twitter and Linkedin, other two networks of equal importance in the digital world. With the arrival of the social media, which made communication easier and democratized access to information, not only the consumers started expressing differently, but the brands had to adapt to a new way of relationship as well.
While people started using social media to communicate, the world observed the consumers´ behavior, who changes their habits, became more selective and started demanding a new position from the brands. “Used only to emit the message in the communication process before, the brands had to learn how to dialogue with their consumers in a more humanized way, with transparency as focus in this dialog”, Lisandra Maioli, specialist in UX (user experience) and social media, explains.
Before so many changes, the consumers were not satisfied only with products, services or information by traditional means, such as advertising campaigns, anymore. Nowadays, they want much more from the brands: they want to be perceived as unique. “They want to relate in a human and genuine way, and we know that the base of a good relationship is dialog. There is nothing more efficient to establish this process than social media, where the brand is one more “friend” in your network”, Lisandra says.
Relate in this environment is not one of the easiest tasks, as, differently than some brands imagine, being present is not just publish content. Furthermore, even if the brand does not have a fanpage or an account on Instagram, someone is speaking about it somewhere in the world. Therefore, being present is important, but not sufficient. The recommendation is to be present consistently, but honestly and transparently.
For a real relationship, Lisandra suggests a lot of interaction and an active dialog. Another very common error in these channels is to omit or want to minimize your errors. “This is the time, when crises start in social media. Earlier than it is imagined, the consumers will find out, investigate and spread the information and the facts and will demand a position. Therefore, I reinforce the importance of transparency once again”, she says. And does further. “Don´t try to lie, mislead or minimize issues, which are important for the consumers. They need to feel that the communication is humanized and they will perceive if the messages are automatic or very generalized. In this process, it is important to exercise active listening and really hear the consumer”, she indicates.
Do you want an example to be followed? “Netflix has done an incredible work, because they understood clearly that social media are conversation platforms. In addition to relating in a genuine, honest and transparent way with their consumers, there is also confidence to relate with other brands, always aligned with the brand´s sound and voice”, she says.
Empathy and transparence (again)
Be real, transparent, have empathy and a purpose are the main cares a brand has to have in the digital universe, according to Clarissa Machado, marketing, digital and communication coordinator at Grupo Ornatus. She mentions the most recent example of the ‘Reposter’ campaign by Skol for the International Women´s Day. The brand invited six illustrators to recreate old posters under a new look, because the old posters that stamped a female body did not represent it anymore. “The brand was transparent to assume that there were errors in the past and empathy to correct these errors in the present”, Clarissa thinks. There were more than 80 thousands views of the video on YouTube, 34 thousand comments, 216 thousand likes and more than 56 thousands shares on Facebook.
The same Skol, which now is seen with other look by the consumers, in 2015, was subject to numberless critics for using posters, which would be encourage violence and lack of respect to the women, generating thousands of negative comments for the brand in the social networks. Therefore, purpose and transparency and empathy are equally important.
If nowadays, it is not news that relationships between the brands and their consumers shall be much closer and more transparent anymore, in a near future, they shall be even more personalized and shall promote memorable experiences. The strength and the growth of the digital universe demand these characteristics from the companies more.
At the end of the 2000s, the market identified new behavior. While the consumers watched the news on TV, a reality show or had lunch, they also accessed the social networks on the mobile phone, viewed a news portal or an electronic commerce site. The “multi-screen” consumers were born. Before this situation, the brands felt the need to be where they were, regardless of the platform. “If the consumer does not pay the same attention to traditional media as before, such as TV or a magazine, I have to be where they are at that moment. And thus the brands can dialog more assertively with each consumer”, Clarissa explains.
The relationship of the Morana chain, one of the largest accessory chains in Brazil, with the consumers is very close, and Clarissa explains how and why. “Women love Morana a lot, and the brand retributed with almost personal relationship with the consumers. This is a equal-to-equal language that brings them even closer.”
Understanding these behavior changes and looking at its consumers demands, Balonè Fashion Bijoux also used something very modern and with strong impact in the digital environment. A powerful team of influencers, all internet phenomena and alert to the fashion world starred the 2017 Winter campaign.
Nah Cardoso, Mariana Sampaio, Camila Senna and Bruna Unzueta form the team which will present the brand launch throughout the season and will give their own tips about how to coordinate accessories and combine them with the very different styles, acting as a media vehicle.
The brand´s proposal is to serve the consumers, who are always connected and seeking innovation. The presence of influencers helps personifying Balonè´s versatility and the care for providing a fashion consultant to its consumers as well.
Compared to the traditional media, the advantage of the digital is to be able to reach the exact focus, as there is opportunity to segment the communication to the niches of interest. “You work in your favor, and you can track conversation with different niches. This makes the brand become a content editor, a specialist on the subject, an institution, which appropriates given subject in the digital”, Clarissa completes.