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Many brands have resorted to using digital media to reach their target market or even get new audiences on board. With organizations competing in the same platforms for the same people's attention, it's not surprising that people automatically zone out when seeing posts by brands. As a business, you need to create content that customers would like to see. One of the ways to do that is leveraging moment marketing for your efforts.
What is Moment Marketing?
Moment Marketing, also known as Trend Jacking or News Jacking, takes advantage of moments and trends and creates marketing communications or collaterals out of them. Doing so inserts a brand in the ongoing conversations and becomes relevant.
Trend jacking works because customers are already in the news cycle, even outside of news websites or publisher platforms, due to the rich content available today. People are always just a few taps away from finding and sharing the latest content. If you are a brand utilizing moment marketing, then you are within an audience's radar.
How to leverage moment marketing?
Creating moment marketing opportunities from your brand are primarily categorized into two: the planned and unplanned. And the way your business responds to each can be proactive or reactive.
Planned moments are events, activities, or agendas that are set in stone or anticipated, such as occasions, holidays, and the schedule of sports games.Proactively, planned moment marketing involves thinking about what you can do with a specific event. You can do this way in advance without compromising its impact. For example, Black Friday discounts for your business, congratulatory posts for the winning team in the Super Bowl, or creative use of iconic movie elements and mixing it with your brand to join the discussion on an upcoming sequel are possibilities you can explore.
On the other hand, planned moments can be done reactively in response to the planned moments you created. However, it's only effective if you can execute before it becomes a thing of the past or gets overturned by a newer trend. For example, when a competitor engages in friendly banter, it creates an opportunity for both of you to milk the reach out of both your audiences. But it only makes sense if you can reply to this and prolong that conversation before everyone forgets that it happened in the first place.
Unplanned moments are unscheduled, unexpected, or spontaneous events, news, activities, or fads like memes, current topics, and breaking news.Proactively creating opportunities means preparing for an upcoming moment that would still be relevant in a few days. It isn't considered planned because it may or may not happen, but you are ready for either result. It's also the type of news that doesn't expire immediately. For example, preparing for a "proud of you" post for a first gold medal in the Olympics or a "we support you either way" post if you don't get it. You create both types and only use one of them, depending on the scenario.
Reactively, this is when you pounce in a shorter timeline because for moment marketing to work, it requires tasteful, creative thinking and fast response. The first one to leverage an unexpected opportunity usually gets the most attention before every other company does it, and it's no longer special or entertaining. At some point, people will lose interest, and that's what makes it a fad. You want to be there before they get fed up, and that can be as fast as a few hours.
Notable trend jacking opportunities by top brands
Oreo's "You Can Still Dunk in the Dark" tweet during the 2013 Super Bowl is one of the most successful real-time trend-jacking efforts to date. They leveraged the massive power outage in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans with just the following message:
The day after, Huffington Post proclaimed it as "one of the most buzz-worthy ads of the Super Bowl on Sunday wasn't even a commercial – it was a mere tweet from Oreo during the blackout." Imagine the amount of free reach you get from that moment which may be equivalent to thousands of dollars in value.
When Game of Thrones was one of the most talked-about series, Häagen-Dazs joined the bandwagon and made good use of the fans' collective obsession by using the show's inside joke to grab attention and create virality.
Remember the time when iPhone 6 Plus bending problem? Samsung had a different approach to that international news. It may not be a good strategy to pick off a fight with every brand you encounter, but when an opportunity presents itself, it's something to consider. Just remember to be ready for consequences if it comes to that.
If you find a moment that may be something on-brand for your business, then use it to your advantage. These instances help brands earn press coverage and seed PR articles to their benefit. But keep in mind that using buzz to create your marketing moments will only be a great advantage if you do it correctly. Because this type of marketing initiative can also sometimes do you more harm than good. For example, below are brands who made moment marketing a nightmare for their PR teams.
In 2013, telecommunications giant AT&T inserted a product placement into the image to remember the 9/11 tragedy. People died, and many families were mourning. Needless to say, it was a massive mistake.
When Star Wars legend Carrie Fisher died, Cinnabon had a creative idea of using its buns to replicate the iconic hair rolls that she sported. They got called out and got publicly shamed for using her death to promote their product.
There is such as thing as tasteless marketing. It can be creative, but it can also be considered unethical or insensitive and even taken out of context. Remember that your brand's reputation can be easily destroyed with one mistake, so aside from making sure it aligns with your business' core values, practice caution when latching on trends.
Where do you find moment marketing opportunities?
Newsjacking opportunities don't always fall on your lap. Some things you leave with fate, but otherwise, you need to exert the effort in looking for them. Here are four places where you can:
Your personal interests
Things you like and your personal consumption of social media and news can lead to hidden occurrences that bring your brand more organic reach than paid ads.
Holidays and events
Occasions like Christmas, Fourth of July, or even fictional ones like Star Wars Day are all possibilities that you can plan for ahead. If you are a chocolate manufacturer or distributor, then Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, and Christmas are no-brainer trend-jacking opportunities.
Going through viral posts and hashtags as part of your routine can be just as fruitful as planned events.
Subscribing to Google Alerts helps you monitor the web for interesting new content. All you need to put are keywords relevant to your brand or even potentially topics that you want to own.
Leveraging marketing automation
Learn more about your users over time and see what interests them using marketing automation. Use the way they behave and the data you've stored to serve them the type of content that can compel them to take action.
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