Modern Franchise Magazine August 2013 - Page 62

franchise business breadcrumbs - the trail you leave each time you use the Internet. Traditional market research such as representative sampling and surveys are still very useful but are becoming subservient to big data. This is because unlike traditional market research that just represents consumer behaviour, Big Data IS consumer behaviour. It’s the factual and accurate measure. No guesswork or margins for error involved. So, why is content so important? Content enables you to measure your audience’s behaviour. It is the trail of breadcrumbs you leave out for your audience to nibble on. When someone samples your content you can measure their actual interaction with it, what they do once they interact with it and how their behaviour reflects on your business - if they become customers, how they share their experiences and so on. It becomes your own private Big Data and market research resource. It is also your lead generation tool, your digital sales person and your value to your audience. Facebook’s new features are showing us integrating one to one marketing with traditional mass media planning techniques, like reach and frequency is now possible. When you also add social endorsement to the mix, you begin to achieve something extraordinary. Smart marketers are now adopting a Social Media empowered customer relationship management and advertising system that embraces multiple social networks, traditional marketing and advertising to create a master customer communications grid. Without valuable and informative content, this grid can’t exist. Content has become the most important weapon in your marketing arsenal. Regardless of the technology or the platform, I can’t see this changing anytime soon. So if you aren’t already creating content with purpose, sharing and measuring it, then you’re already behind the eight ball. The Relationship Between Service, Trust and Purpose Marketing has only ever been about one thing. That is service. Providing valuable information to your audience is a service you provide. The better your service, the better your audience reacts, the more customers you win, the more valuable you become to your customers and the more you can charge. It’s a no brainer really. This service also has one very important benefit for your business. It builds trust. The more valuable and informative your content is, the higher the levels of trust you build. But what else matters if there's not a decent world for our children? In a connected digital age, changing attitudes embracing greater social responsibility have prompted a new age of transparency and consciousness around values and behaviours of organisations. Good marketing means embracing this responsibility and accountability throughout your entire organisation. Some people might define this as your Brand. Others might just call it good business practice. 62 | Modern Franchise Magazine maxiom