A theme that we’ve discussed in both MIS 5603 and MKTG 5606 is that an effective digital strategy must focus on the user journey. Digital transformation is ultimately about meeting your audience where they are and communicating your message through engaging content. A memorable factoid from Daniel Rowles’ Mobile Marketing is that 80 percent of people will be using another device while watching TV during key TV viewing times. Meanwhile, a new social platform seemingly pops on the scene every month, so how do marketers keep up?
The key is to orient brand communications around the customer, not technology or platforms. What message do you want to communicate and to whom? The “how” should flow from this central question. If your target customer isn’t on TikTok, then you don’t need to be either. What I like about the PESO model is that it blurs the lines between paid, owned, shared and earned media and puts the focus on storytelling. While storytelling has been around since cavemen and campfires, it’s taken on a heightened importance in this digital era because a good story is engaging, shareable and memorable. To illustrate this point, here are a few brands that masterfully interweave media types to tell a communicate stories, and ultimately, deliver value to audiences:
Dove: A pioneer in cause marketing, Dove champions real beauty and self-esteem in all brand messaging. The company uses different channels and platforms to tell that cohesive story in different ways. For example, in 2018, with Cartoon Network to boost young girls’ self-esteem through the hit show ”Steven Universe.” The partnership produced short films, an original song and an educational eBook. In other words, Dove found a lot of paid, earned, shared and owned avenues to communicate its core message to a target audience.
GoPro: GoPro is a video recording company, so it should come as no surprise that its content strategy focuses on videos. However, where GoPro particularly excels is user-generated content. For example, the brand’s Creator Series invites influencers to use GoPro as a medium to tell their own stories and amplify GoPro’s adventure-driven message in an authentic way. The entire GoPro blog is a prime example of how “owned” content can still be external and shared.
Peloton: After initially focusing its marketing efforts on the functional benefits of its products, Peloton realized that its real value stemmed from the community it was building. Peloton understands that in this digital era, everyone is an influencer, and it taps into this word-of-mouth potential in various ways and channels, from high-dollar partnerships with big-name celebrities like Beyonce, to its instructors that double as spokespeople and brand ambassadors, to Facebook groups like “moms of Peloton.”
Rowles, Daniel. Mobile Marketing. 2nd Edition ed., Kogan Page, 2017.
Ifeanyi, KC. “Dove Partners with Cartoon Network to Boost Young Girls’ Self-Esteem.” Fast Company, Fast Company, 4 Apr. 2018, www.fastcompany.com/40554348/dove-partners-with-cartoon-network-to-boost-young-girls-self-esteem.
McKinnon, Tricia. “8 Facts about Peloton’s Marketing Strategy You Need to Know.” Indigo9 Digital Inc., Indigo9 Digital Inc., 17 Aug. 2021, www.indigo9digital.com/blog/jpelotonmarketingstrategy.