In order to stand out, you need an outstanding marketing strategy. But with the abundance of advertisements people see every day, from online ads to billboards and posters, how do you distinguish yourself from the competition? This article takes a look at the different types of noise in marketing and how your brand can rise above marketing noise.
What is noise in marketing?
Marketing noise is anything that distracts customers or leads away from your brand’s core message. Noise in marketing takes different forms.
The first type of marketing noise is when an ad is overloaded with text, graphics, numbers, or other content. The “noise” or clutter then distracts your audience from seeing or understanding your message. If there are too many words in a poster ad, for example, the audience might be confused about which text to read first, and what you are actually selling. Putting too much information on an ad can overwhelm your prospects. Remember that your audience’s attention span is limited. So, you only have a few seconds to catch their eye. But even if you do manage to captivate them, a cluttered design will waste precious moments and hinder them from finding your core message immediately. In the worst case, you’ll lose their attention before you’ve gotten your message across.
The second type of marketing noise is a message that sounds too similar to your competitors’ messages. If your product or your tagline is too similar to your competitors, your audience will find it difficult to distinguish your business from the rest of the crowd. While this may seem like a benefit for small businesses that can boost brand awareness because of similarities with established brands, this often proves to be disadvantageous in the end. Why, you ask? Prospects will inevitably compare you with your more popular competitors, and most of the time, they’ll choose popular brands over yours.
Last but not least, marketing noise also comes from other companies. Similarities in you and your rivals’ marketing campaigns in terms of colors, messaging, graphics, and medium of communication are unavoidable. In fact, in the online world, companies fight to be seen far and wide on social media ads, websites, and YouTube videos.
So, to recap, here are the three most common types of marketing noise:
- Noise from your own cluttered or overloaded ads
- Noise from similar products or marketing campaigns
- Lastly, noise from competitors’ ads
Tips to cut through the marketing noise
Have you noticed how many ads play before the video you clicked on YouTube or Facebook plays? The increasing number of ads on social media is proof that companies are more eager than ever to spend on marketing their products and services. This means that you’ll need to work doubly hard to get noticed. But if you play your cards right, you’ll get to the top without spending too much time on trial and error.
Below are 4 tips for cutting through the marketing noise.
Tip #1: Tell an authentic story
What makes a brand? You might immediately think of logos, taglines, and packaging designs, but there is more to a brand’s identity than just letterheads and business cards. And we’re not just talking about having a unique brand voice either.
Your brand stands for everything that you do, from the moment you create your products to the time that customers use them and until the moment they stop using it, for one reason or another. When customers think about your brand, they will think of all these aspects. That image can seem boring if your brand has no story.
So, be sure to associate your brand with a story.
For example, you can talk about how your brand started, or how your business has helped consumers in their daily lives. Storytelling is vital in human communication. Stories can showcase your brand personality and let customers know more about you than your name, offerings, and tagline. Bonus tip: create engaging videos to tell your story instead of relying on articles alone.
If you haven’t figured out your brand’s story yet, it helps to get to know your customers more deeply, which leads us to our second tip.
Tip #2: Know what your customers value
Researching the wants and needs of your customers is a basic step in developing your marketing strategy. But you can take that research a step further by understanding how marketing psychology works. If you know what your customers are like, then you can reshape your advertising strategy into the form that best appeals to them.
Speaking of marketing psychology, it is a widely known fact that humans are social beings and they would do almost anything to fit in. Hence, appealing to your target customers’ community is a sure way to catch their attention. Communities often share common values, and as a business, speaking to those values will help you build a relationship with your prospect community.
Knowing what your customers value also extends to keeping up with trends. Generally, consumers in the millennial generation and Generation Z look for brands that are ethical and environmentally friendly. So, if your product is geared towards that crowd, you should probably take steps to ensure that you are sourcing from ethical suppliers, and your packaging is eco-friendly.
Telling stories that resonate with your audience’s values can help your business relationship flourish.
Tip #3: Be active and deductive in digital marketing
When choosing a digital marketing channel for your business, it is important to consider factors such as the demographics of your audience as well as the nature of your business. For instance, if your business involves art or design, you should use photo-sharing social media networks such as Instagram. But there are some marketing channels that are “must-haves” for every business, like a website and an email.
Being active in digital marketing means being knowledgeable about the latest changes in search engine optimization (SEO), constantly updating your website to ensure a smooth customer experience, and posting news and behind-the-scenes pictures and videos on your social media pages.
Meanwhile, being deductive means looking at the data from your website, social media, and email marketing campaigns. Which ads got the most clicks? How many clicks translated to purchases? What type of people liked your ad? Analyzing data from previous campaigns will help you build better ones.
Tip #4: Give your customers a remarkable brand experience
Don’t stop at aiming for higher sales. Aim to be the go-to company for clients who need your products or services. Having an excellent product won’t be enough. It is also important to assess and address any inconvenience that might make people doubt their decision to purchase. The decision to buy your product should be easy and simple. Having a functioning and intuitive website is one way to ensure this. Another is to train your customer service team and even employ the latest technologies. E.g., chatbots, to make sure that your customers always have someone to talk to when they need assistance or guidance.
Remember that you are building a client-customer relationship, and first impressions last. More importantly, a good impression will lead to repeat business and word-of-mouth referrals.
Your brand competes with noise from your own cluttered ads, an undistinguishable marketing message, and your competitors’ ads. Cut through the marketing noise by telling an authentic story, knowing your customers, being active and deductive on various digital marketing channels, and giving your customers an excellent brand experience.