Ahead of this week’s Dmexco 2016, Graham Moysey, head of international at AOL, explains why content marketing needs a new approach.
Think back to the last time you watched something online. Can you remember what motivated you to watch it in the first place and how did you feel afterwards? Were you inspired by Simone Biles’ gymnastic prowess at the Rio Olympics or entertained by the latest viral video doing the rounds on social media?
Or what about this very article you’re reading now? I would hazard a guess that the reason you clicked on this story was because you have an interest in media and marketing, but so often our motivations for engaging with specific topics or types of content are dependent on spontaneous, intellectual or emotional behaviours.
Analysing consumer behaviour in the digital realm has never been so important. In an era where online media is developing at a rapid pace, it’s essential for marketers and advertisers to understand what factors help to drive consumer patterns online.
This is a key theme for this month’s Dmexco conference as myself and 50,000 others arrive in Cologne to experience the latest trends and innovations that are driving the digital marketing economy.
We know that online consumer behaviour is key to fuelling the ‘digiconomy’, yet the existing data and insights required to analyse this behaviour do not always give us the complete picture. Advertisers and marketers have traditionally used audience segmentation and demographic targeting to attract consumers. But as useful as this methodology is, it doesn’t always reflect the way in which content is approached today – usually with a click, swipe or tap, performed within a split second and often on-the-go.
In order to create both useful and authentic conversations with our audiences, we need to understand more than what consumers are engaging with but why they’re engaging with it.
With that in mind, Anita Caras, head of international research and consumer insights at AOL is set to share her findings at Dmexco in the ‘Girls Lounge’ area about ‘What Drives Females to Consume Content?’, a topic which is just as much relevant to male and female audiences if we are to understand what piques consumer interests online.
Understanding the nuances between male and female behaviour online
New global research by AOL has identified eight universal behaviours, or ‘Content Moments’ that pinpoint the need for advertisers and publishers to strategically target consumers based on their psychological and subconscious preferences in order to create a better quality and engaged user experience.
Analysing 55,000 online interactions with content, AOL’s Content Moments study explored consumer motivations in markets including the UK, USA, Canada, Brazil, Japan, Italy, Spain and Germany.
Our results found that it’s clear that consumers want to be inspired and be ‘in the know’ (two of the ‘moments’ our research identified) when online. Content moments for consumers in these eight global markets did vary across the board. For example, consumers in Japan registered high with ‘feel good’ and ‘inspire’, while consumers in Germany led with ‘entertain’.
“When it comes to device preference, women are more likely to use handy and easily accessible smartphones or tablets”
Comparatively, looking at the gender contrasts proves user experiences are not a case of ‘one size fits all.’
When analysing each of these eight key moments, women tended to engage more with Inspire and Social moments, whilst men scored significantly higher for ‘connect’. This suggests that women are more likely to seek fresh ideas and relax within their social groups, whereas men aim to connect with fresh, visual and shareable content.
When it comes to device preference, women are more likely to use handy and easily accessible smartphones or tablets, while their counterparts are 5% more inclined to use a PC and 25% more likely to be on a games console.
The importance of developing consumer experiences
On average, our Content Moments research found that consumers around the world are spending 13 minutes on average in a ‘moment’ consuming online content.
It’s a simple fact that clearly demonstrates how important understanding the consumer is to the digital advertiser and publisher. As more and more brands invest in content as their way to interact with consumers, it’s essential they take the best approach to their audiences to ensure their interaction is relevant, meaningful and useful.
By understanding how someone interacts with different types of content at any given time, with any given motivation, with different outcomes in mind, marketers, creators and agencies can build their content with the confidence that they are addressing specific needs and wants of their desired audience: ensuring that we in the industry are providing the best service we can and help to rebuild consumers’ faith in us.