My brand experience, new ways in customer engagement, retention and acquisition.

By Gilbert Kumpukwe

I always wondered, as many of you probably have too, what it’s like to be featured in an ad; as a celeb.

The glory of seeing your face on a billboard doing something serious, looking stern yet seductive… in a professional suit… and an aura of James Bond…Black!

You know what I mean…

So, the other day I got a call from my gym, the excited trainer told me I had been chosen for their October ad campaign. I thought to myself…oh yeah! Fame here I come…

I told all my friends and of course, all the premature and overly exaggerated comments followed: “Yes, this is the beginning for you, watch as agents start calling you now”

…my sister: “Wow, we have a celebrity in the house”… my mom saying: “Well done son, are they paying you for this”

I know she was thinking, I being part of the campaign would automatically bring in more customer sign ups to the gym, as if I had that power of allure the late Heath Ledger had in Casanova with the women.

Or…

The muscles of The Spartan army in the movie: “300”, where their biceps had biceps and muscles in places you never knew muscles existed(not what you’re thinking)

She was of course mistaken to think there was such charm infused with Brawn…well…only slightly mistaken.

But to get to one point I’m alluding to here is the fact that brands are changing, they are learning new ways to engage with consumers and by placing them in ads, addressing the two concerns in the process:

Trust in a brand and how much they truly value their clients through:

1.   Trying to develop a better relationship with their existing customers by placing them in ads, to show they value them above celebs and their own self-interest.

2.   They help build trust in the fact that the brand believes it can entrust their consumers enough to be brand ambassadors even as ordinary day-to-day people, so to speak.

3.   In a digital age, they understand that social media conversations are insightful particularly around their brand. Ad participants will probably post and share the ad they were in and will get people talking, through social listening, using social tools to track conversations via Tweetdeck(Twitter) or a simple ORM like Hootsuite, they can engage with possibly new prospects.

It is becoming common in fact to see at least one of your friends or someone you know who was featured in an ad whether it be; print, TVC, or radio and there’s a lot of engagement around it if brands leverage it in with their online lead generation goals.

Have you noticed the change in ads lately? Or maybe you’ve been in an ad too?

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