We’re All Veruca Salt Now: Why Micro Moments Are Your Brand's Golden Ticket

Digital Micro Moments

Remember Veruca Salt? She was that petulant pre-teen traipsing through Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory constantly demanding to have everything NOW (most famously an Oompa Loompa). Well, I’m disheartened to report that this cautionary archetype has become our mobile selves. We’re all Veruca Salt now – at least once we grab that smartphone or tablet. No amount of sweets can mask this bitter reality.

Now before your head nearly explodes like Violet Beauregard’s after sneaking a forbidden piece of bubble gum (Note: this metaphor only works if you’ve seen the 1971 film, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory), I don’t mean to imply that we’re all self-centered brats. What we are, however, is impatient and demanding, at least when it comes to mobile brand experiences. Quite simply, if we want an Oompa Loompa, we want it NOW! And it should come as no surprise that Google understands this better than anyone.

I Want It NOW! Google’s Micro-Moments
Ok, forget chocolate for a second (I know that’s hard). Instead, ponder this question: How often do you check your phone each day? If you’re like most people, you’ve probably given it very little thought. And who can blame you? In some ways, pondering a question like that is like wondering how many breaths you take each day. The answer is simply “a lot.” And a lot is right. According to recent reports, the answer is somewhere around 150 (phone checks, not breaths). More telling still, when people do use their phones, they do so in short bursts, with the average mobile session clocking in at a mere 1 minute and 10 seconds long. Many of these daily mobile bursts result in what Google calls “micro-moments,” tiny windows of time when consumers are open to the influence of brands. As marketers, we have to be ready for them.

Think of micro-moments as times when consumers turn to a device (a smartphone or digital search assistant) to find something they need or want right away. These “I Want” moments (I-Want-To-Know, I-Want-To-Go, I-Want-To-Buy, I-Want-To-Do, I-Want-An-Oompa Loompa) comprise the new fronts in today’s mobile marketing battlegrounds. To earn the trust and consideration of customers, brands must win micro-moments like these by being there, being useful and being quick.

Brand Have To Be There
They say that 90% of life is just showing up – this is undoubtedly true for brands as well. When customers are open to engagement, brands have to be there. This means that brands really have to know their customers and the journeys they are likely to take before making a purchase. Brands have to start thinking about how and where their current and prospective customers are searching for them, and they have to be front and center once they do so. While this can be a daunting task, the good news is that merely being present can often trump brand loyalty in today’s in-the-moment purchasing environment.

Brands Have To Be Useful
Once brands have grabbed attention, they have to be relevant to customers’ needs in the moment. This involves connecting customers with helpful and valuable information in bite-sized chunks that ultimately guide them toward a purchasing decision. It’s no longer sufficient to simply have an online presence; once discovered, brands have to act as useful resources for their various audiences.

Brands Have To Be Quick
If a brand’s website or mobile app doesn’t allow customers to accomplish their goals in a hurry, it’s over. This is why optimizing a website for mobile is so vital to marketing success. In today’s on demand world, customers expect seamless experiences across all device types. They also expect today’s brands to quickly respond to inquires, whether that’s through online forms or by engaging in conversations on social channels.

The Sweet News? Your Brand Has A Golden Ticket
The days of the linear customer journey are long gone. Instead, the omnichannel journey with short bursts of digital activity (often mobile) is the new normal. Brands that are there when their customers initiate “I Want” micro-moments will truly earn that golden ticket.

At Rhythm, we’re continuing to see many of our clients experience resounding success by targeting mobile micro-moments. In fact, a recent paid search campaign for one of our financial clients resulted in mobile phones driving 99% of conversions to just 1% for desktop!

Today, all of our paid search clients have ads displaying on mobile devices. And an increasing number of our clients are expanding well beyond Google search campaigns and banner ads to cover other target rich micro-moment environments like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pandora, and Hulu. After all, micro-moments can be unpredictable, but they aren’t entirely elusive. Brands that know their customers and anticipate their needs can develop successful engagement strategies that make the most of every micro-moment.

Interested in a micro-moment strategy? LET’S TALK.

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