Online Consumer Behaviour – Content Planning for Different Digital Touch Points

Consumers behave differently at different digital touch points. The reason why they visit a brand website, and why they follow a brand on twitter can be very different. Planning content by clearly understanding the visitor’s mindset at different digital touch points can help to establish a meaningful connect with them and fostering a long term relationship. Here’s a quick guide to the Internet user’s digital media psyche:

Online Consumer Behaviour

Users on different digital touch points consume content in each for different reasons

The Website Visitor
Is proactively seeking info in your brand domain

  • This visitor has landed on the website primarily when searching for content or seeing a relevant recommendation or post that links to your website, or has come to the website knowing the url (may be a repeat visitor).
  • Is seeking immediate answers if the visitor has come from a search engine, or is curious to know more about you if the visit is not via a search engine. Repeat visitors come for a specific purpose of information seeking or engagement (such as dabbling with an online app or engaging in a forum).
  • Can engage further in the website if her query is addressed and there is relevant and/or engaging content.
Facebook Logo

Users on Facebook Chance Upon Updates

The Facebook Visitor
It Is The Brand That Is proactively reaching out to this user

  • The consumers here are hanging out to check latest updates from friends, family and acquaintances.
  • Chances upon brand updates, comments and likes if relevant, shares when compelling. Sharing happens when the content is Fun/ Informative / Relevant to immediate circle
  • Clicks to know more, visits the URL when relevancy or engagement is meaningful and there is a ‘need’ for such further engagement
Blog Sites

Blog Readers Want Expert Opinion

The Blog Reader
Is proactively seeking an informed opinion of another consumer or expert

  • Reads up a post when she is searching for information, and/or has subscribed to a favorite blogger’s feeds
  • Prefers a second opinion and usually would scan 2-3 blogs before deciding whose opinion is best suited.
  • Would usually scan blog comments before deciding / making the final choice.
  • Is usually someone to whom word-of-mouth or recommendations counts the most.
Forums

Forum Users Seek Peer Opinion

The Forum Subscriber
This user wants mass opinion, what peers have to say.

  • Usually visits a forum via search, may frequent thereafter
  • Possibly wants to ask a question, get opinions.
  • Reads discussions by others
  • May get answers or make an opinion/choice even without posting a query
Twitter

Twitter Users Follow For Updates

The Twitter Follower
Is proactively following to be updated in the subject

  • Twitter has many inactive, and equal number of hyper active tweeple and the occassional users.
  • There are some who are on twitter with a specific agenda: Save time by following people whose tweets give quick relevant updated information
  • Tweeple usually follow more than one area of interest
  • Reaching them is not always easy due to the rapid updates in tweets

However, visibility on twitter can be enhanced by following trending topics, being crisp and juicy, getting the right people to follow you with relevant hashtags, and targeting the right follows.

Linkedin

Linkedin Users Seek Career Advancement

The LinkedIn User
This consumer is seeking ONLY career or business advancement

  • The LinkedIn user is very specifically looking at making a career advancement, getting deals, networking, improving visibility
  • Will join groups that will give relevant networking opportunities or content that will better their career in some way.
Youtube Logo

Youtube Visitors Seek Visual Info/Demos

The Youtube Visitor
Wants entertainment, visual explanations, demos, how to’s

  • Users watching videos online are likely to have opted for video content when searching for related information
  • Or has been forwarded the link
  • Or is specifically seeking video content directly on Youtube for visual relay of similar information that has been read, unless it is entertainment related.
Search Engines

Audience Is Searching For Domain-related Info

The Search User
Proactively seeking your domain information

  • Is specifically seeking information
  • Tries out 2-3 links or more on first search results
  • Finds different combinations of keywords to refine searches till she gets a satisfactory answer
  • Is likely to spend more time searching for the right information, than done on looking up that information!
  • Is also likely to explore related information and content
Mobile Search

Mobile Search Users Are In A Hurry

Search Users On Mobile
Is in a hurry!

The context of searching on the mobile phone is usually on the go, urgent and also a matter of convenience.

Mobile & Tablet Users
On the move, wants quick info, utility tools & engaging apps

  • More savvy users, and the ones with smart phones use the mobile phone for everything: FB, Twitter, Search, Email, etc.
  • Such users also install and play around with applications that are useful, fun or relevant.
  • The tablet owners, smaller in number, but a significant group and an influential audience does all of the above on tablets.

If you plan to use multiple channels on the web to disseminate your brand information, then customizing or fine tuning your content by understanding the customer mindset in each of these channels can help in the forming of long term engagement and loyalty, as well as recall. And remember less is more!

Website Design – How Consumer Experience Can Convert Visitors Into Customers

With social media and search marketing, both trending in the digital news, website design and consumer experience have taken a backseat in mind space. However, these are critical and a first step to getting your digital strategy right. And here is why.

Almost every client we have worked with since end-2004 when we first made our website, has wanted to hire our services because they liked what they saw on our website.

BCWebwiseoldhomepage

BC Web Wise Website launched in end 2004

In 2004 we had very little content that we could showcase as a portfolio. So we put up what we thought we were good at, ideas that looked good and could engage the audience as a part of our user experience design (UED). It worked. Anyone who visited the website instantly fell in love with the fish n cat animations that we had as a part of the UED.

So when we revamped our website in 2011, because our previous site could no longer hold all the content we had, we ensured that the endearing two – the Fish and the Cat continued to be the highlights.

What happened before we had our website?

The clients we acquired before we made our website, and these included India’s Top 500 companies: Hindustan Unilever (corporate), Yahoo on behalf of Pepsi, and ITC (Foods business) sent in their enquiry to us primarily because they saw the website for a few brands we had worked with at that time ‘Sunsilk’ (the avatar before Sunsilk Gang of Girls activation), Close Up and a few others.

Essentially what they saw online helped them decide that we could deliver the goods. Other than HUL, both ITC and Hero Motocorp did not even call for a multi-agency pitch.

So what is the point we are making here? The impact that your website can make with your audience via your website is significant and can be decisive for a visitor.

Convert Visitors Into Customers

  • Fortune Cooking Oil

    UED for Fortune Cooking Oil

    If you are a B2C company, then the visual impact, information dissemination, positioning statement, and windows for engagement that you provide for your audience can completely influence the choice they make at the store shelf where your brand hobnobs with competing brands. Adding rich media content, contextual content, using intuitive information architecture, doing usability tests with the actual consumer are all steps to getting your consumer experience right.

SSA Solutions Consumer Experience Design

Website Design – Management Consultancy SSA Solutions

  • For a B2B company, the impact you make on the website with visuals, information dissemination, positioning statement, can be further enhanced with customer testimonials, case studies, etc. These can actually help your customer make their selection. They may decide to not even call in a multi-vendor bid. If they have to as a process, influencers can create considerable buzz within their company’s evaluation team based on what they have already seen demonstrated about you on your website.
Farelabs Website

UED – Food Analysis & Research Firm – Farelabs

Your Website Is Your Showroom

Window Dressing: One of the key triggers that makes you decide on whether to enter a showroom or not, or choose from an array of showrooms one next to each other is what you can see from outside the store. If the store is not welcoming from the outside, however incredible its products may be, the likelihood of you having entered it is negligible. Exactly the same principles applies for the first landing page of your website.

Vardenchi Custom Motorcycles

Website Design for Custom Bikes Maker Vardenchi

Trained Sales Force: You are comfortable in a store where the sales staff treats you in the ‘contextually’ appropriate fashion. They are there but don’t overwhelm you with their help and assistance, or they are there presenting one engagement ring after the other, and may be much more then you asked for because you want to be showered with the attention at this point in time. Similar contextual information dissemination and engagement windows need to be built on your brand or corporate website.

BBC's Website for India Sales

BBC’s Website for Advertisers in India

Product Showcase: If its games that kids love, then highlight these with brand placement in them. If it is hair styling then give rich media content they won’t find anywhere else. And if it is just statistics that work, then forget the imagery, and give them the facts, present it with tasteful copy. In other words if you are a company all about services that do not involve a product photograph, explore the key USPs that you can highlight creatively: Team, Offices, Clients, Certifications, etc.

So in the race to address the multiple channels of the digital domain do not forget your website design, and the criticality of consumer experience. Planned consumer experience can help turn your domain into the most cost effective marketing and sales vehicle.

Adobe_Award_bcwebwise

Adobe Award

About BC Web Wise & Consumer Experience: In early 2011, Adobe recognized BC Web Wise and awarded us with a beautiful trophy for ‘Excellence in Creating Consumer Experiences’. The other three companies that they awarded with us, were TCS, Infosys and Cognizant. Getting awarded along with organizations that are multi billion dollar companies was the highest honor that we could get, and is one of the most cherished awards we have ever got.

How The New Facebook Timeline Can Affect Your Brand Page

Another Facebook update and this one can send brands into a tizzy. You have a whole lot of re-learning to do. The guidelines get updated as we speak. Some content was last updated on February 29 2012, and some other on March 6 2012.

We have tried to simplify it here. Read on.

The Welcome Page No More

When a new interested and potential fan lands on a brand page it is currently a Welcome page with a ‘Like Us’ call for action. Once the user hits `Likes’, he is auto-directed to the next landing page, or the wall as per a brand’s preference.


The new Facebook Timeline brand page does not have a Welcome landing page option. This might become a single largest deterrent to how many new fans you are able to generate. Of course only time and new creative means will actually determine the nature and extent of impact. BC Web Wise has just shifted our own Brand Page to Facebook Timelines.

The New Brand Page

By default, whether or not a visitor has liked your page, they can view your brand’s wall content when they land on it. So not just the header but all the content they can view below it becomes important now.

"facebooktimelinebrandpage"

bcwebwise brand page on facebook timeline

The Welcome Tab

The welcome page is a small tab below the main header and can be missed. Further when opened, it no longer opens in the same Facebook layout grid that it used to. So you will now have to reposition how you have the ‘Like Us’ call for action positioned there. But disappointingly for the visitor once they have liked your welcome page there is no transition that happens, so they will wonder why they reached there. You may want to consider doing away with the Welcome page now, or using it more innovatively with much more content that! Check the way Coca Cola has used it

Coke Welcome Page on Facebook

Customized Welcome Tab renamed as Home by Coca Cola

Cover Photo – Key Branding Area

The Welcome page is now replaced with a static header on your brand page. You can put a Cover Photo here. This is the area that can be used as creatively as one can. The key objective should be how you can use it to get visitors to like you and follow you without saying as much, because Facebook Guidelines have strictly specified you cannot have such messaging on the cover photo.

Contests & Applications

So now that we do not have a Welcome page, you may want to use the new header area to do this promotion. The Facebook guidelines (as updated on 6, March, 2012) do not specifically comment on whether you can do this or not. So we can safely assume that a static message talking about an application or contest can be done so long as all the other Facebook guidelines are adhered to.

However, the area that needs to now be most creatively used is where the tabs appear. The 135 x 95 pixel jpg file will now become very critical. It is here that you can generate a fan following as the user has to ‘Allow’ your application to access their profile to use the application.

bcwebwise brand page tabs

bcwebwise brand page tabs

The Status Updates

The earlier vertical update of latest status messages had its own advantages of being simple to view and follow. The new page layout, now allows for better graphic display, it does look much better visually therefore it encourages multi-media in the form of videos or photographs. So get ready to use your image and video bank.

More Features

There are more features that are still to be tested thoroughly. There is an option to ‘Highlight’ certain status updates or wall posts, so they are larger in size than the others.  There is an option to ‘Pin’ certain posts so they will stay on top of the page.

There is also an interesting feature from a user perspective. When they visit your brand page, they can see the significant activities or post around your brand made by someone from their friends list. This is good for brands with existing followings that are large. But those that have fans that are fewer in number the number of such interactions may be very less or non-existent.

To Sum It Up

The key thing we do not like about the new Facebook Timelines for brands is that it does not allow you to prompt fans to like you, and second that it does not have a rich-media option for the cover photo.  But as change is a constant Facebook should be addressing some of these concerns that will benefit its users and advertisers.

The brand pages on Facebook are going to change on March 31, and that is very little time to try and test everything on a new page particularly with guidelines that are getting updated as you read. So get set go!