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Taking the Driver’s Seat to Accelerate Audience Engagement With Creatives

What does it take to drive the first click? This question is on the mind of all marketers because audience engagement is the central first step to capturing prospects, and moving them through your holistic marketing funnel toward conversion. 

In a discussion for the How Agencies Thrive podcast, we’re joined by Denis Melnik of JC+CO Growth Accelerants Inc. to discuss innovative ways in which marketers can drive the first click on their creatives. We dive into uncovering engagement tactics, creative strategy, and catering to the right audience segments to provide insight into how to accelerate that first audience interaction. 

Read on to learn three key insights from our discussion, or listen to the full episode, here

Understand Your Pain Points 

There are a few challenges marketers face when it comes to audience engagement. And according to Denis, it’s important to know and understand what these pain points are if you’re going to address (and overcome!) them. 

Denis says the three main pain points that marketers face are speed, messaging, and testing. He explains that being able to implement ideas sparked by data or gut feelings quickly is key for tapping into opportune moments. Then, marketers need to be able to craft a variety of angles when it comes to messaging. These angles should cater to 2 to 3 main customer segments as well as various points in the customer journey. Finally, you need to ensure you are testing enough formats, platforms, and channels in order to find what works best for a product, brand, service. 

To overcome these challenges, Denis says that marketers should always keep in mind the general objectives of their ad creatives, and then mind-map 2 to 3 of their key segments to uncover how they can best achieve that objective when targeting their ideal audience. 

Think about how people should feel when they view the ad, and consider how the ad can communicate the value of the product. By understanding who the target audience is, you can untangle the complexity of identifying the right objectives, stages, formats, and messaging for your creatives.

The Value of Experimenting

When marketers talk about A/B testing creatives, the testing tends to focus on making aesthetic changes to the creatives, like varying colours. But according to Denis, testing variable messaging, and prioritizing messaging that is going to drive that initial click in the best way possible is important too.

Denis explains that a true experiment is sometimes misunderstood. Rather than only thinking about experimenting as an aesthetic test, we should focus on creating different angles with messaging. According to Denis, there are 7 types of creative that will drive impact, and knowing these buckets can help you to craft different messaging and angles.

  1. Spokesperson content: Present a celebrity, founder, customer, or another relevant person.
  2. Lifestyle demo: Creates affinity between a brand or product and a lifestyle, to resonate with the audience.
  3. Product in use: Showing the product in use, to demonstrate its benefits and value to the customer. 
  4. Unboxing: A fun and engaging unboxing video builds consumer trust. 
  5. Case study: Create a visual case study to show the functional benefit of your product.
  6. Social proof: By highlighting user-generated content, you can tap into the basic human instinct to follow the actions of others, building trust and credibility,
  7. Content piece: Tell a story with your content by sharing takeaways. For example, formats that share “3 reasons” work really well.

These types of creative will help in building consumer trust. And when you measure their return on advertising spend (ROAS), you can understand which types are performing best. Rather than experimenting just by aesthetic, experiment with these different buckets of content to explore whether different approaches lead to conversion better than others.

Key Tips for Driving Audience Engagement

Denis has some helpful tips for marketers who want to drive more audience engagement with their creatives. He says that to start, you should create a model that projects desired business outcomes through paid, organic, email and any other channels you’re using. And ahead of running a campaign, make sure you have the tools to measure performance properly, so that you’re able to know the impact of your ads.

From there, build segments and take the time to understand who your customers are. Then, build a creative package made up of at least a few of the 7 creative types that Denis explained above. He says that it’s important to diversify the combinations of creatives that you use. Be willing to test and try different things! Finally, Denis emphasizes that following creative best practices and keeping the goals of your ad in mind is always important.

Listen to How Agencies Thrive For More!

Denis says that right now, marketers measure the success of creatives through one metric: clicks. Clicks are an integral metric because they are measurable, and they signal the start of a customer’s journey. This is why when building creatives for campaigns, clicks should be the main type of audience engagement that you optimize for. 

To hear more of what Denis has to say about driving first clicks with creative, tune in to the latest episode of How Agencies Thrive!

Listen to How Agencies Thrive on Apple Podcasts.
Listen to How Agencies Thrive on Spotify.

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