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5 Themes from Interactive Day San Diego, 2015

Ah, Interactive Day. The one day a year when Southern California’s best, brightest and most innovative digital marketers convene to remind each other just how behind the curve they are. It is a day of inspiration and excitement and anxiety and terror: how do I institute this philosophy at my agency…how do I make these trends tangible enough to sell to my clients…when does happy hour start?

The Jacob Tyler team attended several insightful sessions throughout the day and identified a short list of the most prevalent themes discussed by leaders in the industry. Below are key takeaways, implications and points of inspiration from each theme.

1. Millennials (2015 is the peak year for marketing to millennials)

THE SCOOP:

  • This coming-of-age generation, now 18-34 years old, is the largest generation in the workforce.
  • Well educated and socially mindful, expect a growing annual spending power and influence among peers
  • A stronger connection to brands provides trust and relevance

PRO TIP:

  • Don’t be afraid to evolve with this audience and use a dynamic marketing approach. Be where they are, use their preferred media platforms, you won’t reach them otherwise. (Next Up: Gen Z)

INSPIRATION:

  • Lowe’s Fix In Six (#lowesfixinsix) campaign uses Vine to provide low-budget, clever improvements to make life at home a little easier. https://vine.co/Lowes

2. Personalized Content (Your content – whether text, images, or video – should be personalized and relevant for the audience)

THE SCOOP:

  • Ensure your campaign matches the data behind what your audience cares about.
  • Engaging experiences are made through personalization and relevance to the platform being used.
  • Content should be the start of a two-way conversation (talk to them, not at them).

PRO TIP:

  • Include descriptive and informative messaging that is helpful for the audience. It’s not only about the visuals.

INSPIRATION:

  • Top performing pins on Pinterest provide instructions and tips as well as a beautiful image — brands recognize that pins are about planning and information, not just aesthetics. https://www.pinterest.com/categories/popular/

3. Augmented Reality (Creating a near-real experience with a brand in a connected world)

 THE SCOOP:

  • Consumers today have made their purchase decisions well ahead of an in-store visit.
  • Augmented reality transports the consumer to a branded environment for a fully immersive experience. It can live anywhere your consumer lives, and become interactive through a variety of devices (smartphone, wearables or anywhere in between).

PRO TIP:

  • Start simple: how can my prospects see themselves using my product? Build a simple experience reflecting that, then test, and grow, and test, and grow.

INSPIRATION:

  • Always ahead of its own curve, the IKEA catalogue took augmented reality to an innovative (and still approachable) space: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vDNzTasuYEw

4. The Internet of Things (So much more than using Nest to create a connected home)

 THE SCOOP:

  • Speaking of wearables…the next generation of personalization and automation provides efficiency to living and working lifestyles.
  • Let technology learn more about you to improve day-to-day tasks and challenges through data.

PRO TIP:

  • Focus on how your brand and the information it gathers can simplify your consumers’ lives, and invest in the technology to build that connection.

INSPIRATION:

5. Live Interactions (Streaming video can be used to create a real-time, shared experience)

THE SCOOP:

  • Consumers crave real-time access to events as they unfold.
  • Live, user-influenced content creates an immediacy and shareability to brand experiences.

PRO TIP:

  • Listen to and know your audience, then build events and stories that invite them in as a live participant.

INSPIRATION:

  • Watch Gisele fight back to negative comments as the new face of Under Armour. http://gisele.underarmour.com/

How do these trends come to life, and how to they apply to your brand (or your clients’ brands)? What success stories have you seen, and what pitfalls should brands avoid?

Jacob Tyler | Branding Agency in San Diego

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