By Neena Dasgupta
Ordinarily, individuals are exposed to multiple avenues or channels with varying characteristics. Brands have devised ways to appear or effect messaging on these avenues to address their marketing objectives. In doing so, they are adhering to a commonly known ‘Rule of Seven’ — to make a decision, a consumer ought to have seen a product or company advertisement at least seven times.
Cross-media marketing, an effective tool, is used to encourage users to react to a message and extend that interaction on a different medium. The crux, however, lies in the fact that different media channels are used to fulfil a very specific objective within the overall media campaign. Cross-media marketing not only allows for enabling communication and interaction for brands as immediate goals, it also provides options for ensuring that a brand is in consumers’ consideration sets in the long run. There have been recent campaigns where interactions across avenues have been implemented to communicate social messages as well.
Lego, for example, with its physical, digital and movie presence, has an expansive and all-pervasive footprint. Its Rebuild the World campaign, started in 2019, is a prime example of how cross-media promotion can provide results, eventually leading to social change. The campaign has successfully addressed complex topics such as gender bias.
In September, 2021, on the occasion of International Day of the Girl Child, Lego invited parents to showcase their children’s creativity against a predefined AR backdrop featuring the words ‘Get the World Ready for Me’. This was to promote inclusive play by encouraging girls to engage in creativity, which is generally associated with boys.
Closer home, Britannia executed a cross-media campaign during Cricket Asia Cup 2018, by engaging with two million live viewers, on the occasion of its 100-year milestone. For every high point in the match, creative ad banners were shown on mobile apps used by viewers of the match. The display ads led the viewers to a video celebrating Britannia’s century. The average click-through rate was found to be four-times higher than the industry average.
Media behaviour has gone through a sea change during the pandemic. Brands seem less confident than ever in getting the right balance between their online and offline spends, indicated by a decrease in cost effectiveness. On the other hand, it has also nudged brands to utilise digital media in innovative ways. Digital media is more cost effective in brand building, compared to offline media.
A major challenge in utilising this approach is the lack of proper measurement. Globally, there have been substantive attempts by the World Federation of Advertisers to specify detailed guidelines in ensuring there is an end-to-end measurement of media content. However, the implementation has been in progress for quite some time.
Continuous innovation in the delivery of content and messaging is a healthy trend. This will only be possible if the successes are highlighted, so that the approaches and methods can be adopted and improved. For instance, a recent technology-enabled cross-media promotion by Cadbury to include Shah Rukh Khan in promoting local businesses proved to be a great move. However, to measure the effectiveness of the campaign, it was important to highlight the success of the campaign. During or after the campaign, no metrics were highlighted of how many local businesses actually used the website for promotion. If one visits the URL now, it mentions that the promotion has been stopped. Wouldn’t it be more effective if it highlighted how many local businesses from different geographies used the interactive platform to promote themselves?
The author is CEO and director, Zirca Digital Solutions
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