For years branding and performance marketing have sat squarely and begrudgingly at the opposite ends of the marketing spectrum. Branding, with an air of magic – unmeasurable and unknowable, intangible but essential – has held its place in Big Agencies. At the other end of the spectrum, scrappy direct response marketing has been fetching results for decades – trackable, quantifiable, and feeding an ever-growing pile of big data – it has done the heavy lifting of conversion in the hands of clever marketers. Now, as technology accelerates, it looks like these opposites can be harmonized, and thus close the circle on the marketing spectrum.
Social media and mobile marketing have brought branding down to earth and into the hands of consumers, and in doing so, have given us the opportunity to merge branding messages with conversion points. However, many marketers continue to debate how to align the two.
There’s a reason branding and performance marketing haven’t always played nice. The demands of branding – messaging, engagement and awareness – are well suited to telling a story. In mobile, this is leveraged through apps, social media, and video. Performance marketing is purpose driven. Facilitating the conversion takes priority, which means messaging and creative are bent to those goals. This has historically been accomplished through TV, radio and (eons ago) print.
The thing is, with your customer holding the power to purchase literally in the palm of their hand, there’s no reason that your branding shouldn’t include a DR hook. In fact, with the data and ROI measurement available – it’s soon to be an expectation. At the same time, performance marketing gets a lift from the creative power of branding. The trick is creating a seamless interaction from brand engagement through purchase – and repeat purchase.
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