Where does micro-media fit into your PR and marketing strategy?

Yesterday, we discussed the advent of micro-media formats like Vine, a mobile app that lets you create animation-like 6 second videos. One of the comments among digital marketers has been, “What use is a 6 second video?” along with frequent refrains about lack of tracking, no conversion opportunities, and questionable (if any) ROI. How do these new micro-media formats and mobile formats fit into your overall digital marketing and PR strategy?

If you’ve never studied influence and how people make decisions, influence is a cumulative effect. Human beings make decisions based on what’s bouncing around in our heads, and the more that we digital marketers and digital communicators can get our stuff into other peoples’ heads, the more they’ll run into us when they’re making a decision. Look at your own experiences, look at what impressions have been made in your own mind. For example, what products come to mind when you see these words?

  • Brand of car
  • Brand of smartphone
  • Brand of soft drink
  • Brand of social network

The cumulative number of interactions and impressions a brand has had on you influences what you think of when you see these descriptive phrases. When you see soft drink, you may think of Coca Cola, you may think of Pepsi, you may think of niche brands like Jolt, but the reason you do is because you have experiences (direct or indirect) with these brands. You know of them through the ways they communicate with you, from logo placements to commercials to Facebook Pages that your friends inevitably Like to direct product experiences of your own.

How do services like Vine come into the picture? They’re yet another source of impressions, another way to add more presence of mind into the audiences you’re looking to reach. There doesn’t necessarily need to be a conversion opportunity at every interaction with a consumer as long as you’re reinforcing the brand with them. The more you reinforce your brand, the more present of mind you will be when the consumer makes a purchasing decision.

So how do you value or measure something like a Vine? The short answer is that you measure any form of communication in the most direct way possible: ask people when they come to do business with you how they heard of you and what made them choose you. If they respond that they remembered you because of a Vine video you did, then you know it made an impact. If they respond that they saw a post that a friend shared on Facebook, then you know that your Facebook Page is having an impact. Ask at every purchasing opportunity what their thought process was, and you’ll understand the cumulative power of all these impressions you’re making on people in every form of media – even the 6 second kind.

(of course, if you do need conversion, you can always try putting a scannable code in your Vine video. See our example up top)

Christopher S. Penn
Vice President, Marketing Technology


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