Captivation occurs when a brand's interest and relevance to a consumer results in the consumer's desire to engage that brand in meaningful ways. Reaching this intersection requires a three-stage journey:
Let's talk about brand activation. You know who you are. You know what you need to say. Now, you need to know how and when to say it.
Orbital Socket is Your Brand Activator Companion
At Orbital Socket, we have all the tools to let your audience know how relevant you are to them. We employ a specific set of tools for brand activation which bring out your brand's uniqueness.
First, we outline your short-term and long-term objectives. Establishing these objectives correctly and early will serve as guideposts for every step of the journey by offering focus and resolve. These are the building blocks of your communications strategy.
Creative expression is incredibly important for your brand. It's what defines your brand beyond its products and services. It gives you your voice and the platform for how you will express yourself. In the long-term, it's the thing that will connect with the hearts and minds of your audience and build lasting resonance for your brand.
Brand Strategy, Framework & Content Strategy
The strategy and framework are where we get down to brass tacks. Here we design everything that goes into your marketing campaign and serves as the brand activator. This document can include the technical tools we're using; email marketing, online advertising, or influencer marketing. It can also include the design templates for different ads and even the ad copy itself.
This is your blueprint. Think of it as a spoke and wheel system. Everything you produce will find its origin in this document, and every execution or creative expression will expand the depth and breadth of your narrative. The brand activator is the pebble that will create ripples in the pond and keep working its way outward to your various audiences.
Yes, this process is deliberate and sometimes even tedious. But it's worthwhile. Because when you know who you are, and what you want to say, and how and to whom you want to say it, you'll have the confidence to grow your brand.
At Orbital Socket, we're ready and waiting to help you get started.
Every brand (just like every human being!) has something special and unique to offer the world.
Our last blog discussed the first step of captivation: the brand clarifier, an internal process of self-discovery to help your brand determine its strengths and value. Clarification identifies the DNA of
The next step in captivation is the brand differentiator. This is the process of articulating what distinguishes your brand's unique strengths from your competitors AND makes it worthwhile for your audience(s). Jump on any smartphone or tablet or any app and find yourself served with countless ads seeking to promote products ranging from sneakers to sleep aids. With so many choices and SUCH a cluttered marketplace, consumers struggle to identify key differences across brands. That means less consideration for any given brand. It also means consumers are less likely to experience the products
and services that best meet their specific needs.
That's why at Orbital Socket, we seek to act as brand differentiators. We want consumers to hear
those things that best articulate your brand, generate an emotional connection, and result in engagement. When consumers see you in the right light, your brand identity becomes more potent
and enduring. Your brand becomes an experience replicated with consistency, resulting in consumer relationships built on trust and dependability.
So How Does Differentiation Work?
It starts with positioning: your brands' perception among its peers. Our goal is to help you find the
paces where your brand's strengths best meet consumer needs. And then we want you to champion those spaces.
Core messaging is at the heart of differentiation; It's the thesis and the oomph that drive your
distinction. Core messaging describes why your brand can serve your audience(s) the best and why
you can provide the experience they desire and require.
What differentiates a brand from the others is how it builds its narrative. A story is far more effective
than a simple soda can or piece of furniture. If someone can associate your story with your brand,
they've already got a personal connection with you. With Orbital Socket's brand differentiator, your company will send out that message of a great story and keep telling it in fresh and exciting ways.
Remember that work of clarification? At Orbital Socket, we help you with internal discovery to reveal
your strengths. We often find that companies tend to overlook their best assets because their
employees are too familiar and too close to the process. What's routine for you is often impressive to outsiders. We build messaging points that authentically reflect who and what our partners' brands are. And these simple messaging points combine to create powerful and lasting communications.
Once you know who you are, the next step is telling your audience. At Orbital Socket, we'd love to help in introducing you to your brand and then the world to you!
Whether you are a brand that sells frozen yogurt or athletic footwear, it’s important for you to know who and what you truly are. And, it’s just as important for your audience to know you as well. It’s simple enough in theory, but many brands struggle to articulate their identity.
At Orbital Socket, we won’t tell you who we think you should be or try to make you into something you’re not. We’re not looking to project our preconceived notions of brand essence on our clients. Instead, we will engage with you, your partner, to develop a relationship and get to know you. We want to journey in discovery alongside you so the brand clarifier process can work its wonders.
This process doesn’t just involve getting to know your audience but your ecosystem. Since the world is an entire ecosystem of systems, brand clarification consists of figuring out your place in each system. This process involves getting to know your business inside and out.
At Orbital Socket, we will seek to discover all the beauty and creativity that you may often take for granted. Fresh eyes and a fresh perspective can do wonders to outline what makes your company so unique. If your organization were the Galapagos Islands, think of us as explorers on the H.M.S. Beagle ready to gather and document data about your ecosystem.
What Do You Need to Do for Brand Clarification?
Brand clarification with Orbital Socket is a future-based perspective, shining light on what your brand is now and what it wants to become in the future.
Exploration and Data/Research Overview
It begins with research. It’s essential to research who your audience is, what your audience loves, and what meaningful service, product, or feeling you are giving to your audience. Your brand identity is composed of what you create and how your audience resonates with your creation. During this step, you might discover that the preconceived notions of your target audience and brand identity might not be a reality.
Research produces key insights that define your brand. These insights work as building blocks for a formal communications plan rooted in data and relevant to all stakeholders in your organization.
Targeted Audiences and Personas/Target Audience Motivations and Behaviors
Defining specific audiences (the people best-positioned to engage with your brand) and brand personas (the behaviors of your particular audiences) allow your organization to create momentum, clearly defining your niche in the marketplace. A well-articulated brand mingles with its audience in the most relevant and meaningful spaces in their lives. Consumers begin to understand your brand, setting the journey to captivation in motion.
Give Orbital Socket a call today. We want to help you clarify and discover your brand so the world can experience it.
Imagine you're looking out from the top of the highest peak in the world. With the right pair of binoculars, you could probably see even beyond the horizon. Everyone and everything would be visible to your eyes, whether above or below.
That's the natural evolution of digital marketing. It's called captivation. Captivation is a ten thousand-foot view that puts everyone and everything in your scope. And just like a mountaineer looking out onto the horizon, you see everything as clear as day. That's a huge asset for digital marketing today.
Everyone and Everything Is Relevant
The Internet has connected the various systems of the world. Chaos theory, which says that a butterfly flapping its wings can cause a tornado, has never been more accurate. A tweet, a post, or an event thousands of miles away can affect everyone on earth. That's why captivation involves accepting the relevance of everyone and everything.
Everyone and Everything Is Interesting
Today, content pours like torrential rain onto our devices. Whether it's memes, videos, posts, articles, etc., we browse through gigabytes of information every day, resulting in everything under the sun gaining a niche following on the Internet.
You may not find the culinary history of Florence very interesting, but thousands out there do. You may enjoy first-person shooters, while others may prefer indie titles and side scrollers. The point is, there is a forum, group, or page for almost every topic or niche under the sun.
The advent of social media has made it possible for people worldwide to aggregate together based on shared interests. Brands that wish to remain effective cannot ignore this new development. Captivation acknowledges that everyone and everything is interesting.
Let's go back to the ten thousand-foot view analogy. Think of yourself looking down at hundreds of different groups gathering down on the ground. Each has its reason to discuss, celebrate, and compete with each other. What one is doing may not be attractive to the other, and vice versa. However, within their niche, those topics have become interesting. That's why everyone and everything is interesting.
Everyone and Everything Is Not Always Engaging
A final distinction to make is that everyone and everything is engaging, at least not always. More critical than expressing how exciting something is, is how you represent it. Today's Internet culture rewards entities that embody their identity in more relevant and exciting ways.
Toddlers zoom-bombing work meetings and pictures of empty shelves in the toilet paper aisle catch netizens' attention. A Netflix show like Bridgerton offers an escape for ordinary people to transcend barriers of race and gender. Engaging content, wherever found, excites and entices people and provides relevance to their setting.
Captivation is about combining these three traits – interest, relevance, and engagement – and putting content forward into the world.
THE THREE FACETS OF CAPTIVATION
• Be Relevant – related to and adding
value to my world.
• Be Interesting – pique my curiosity and
keep it moving.
• Be Engaging – real connections and
involve me in the process.
That's what is required in digital marketing today, and that's what we do at Orbital Socket. Give us a call today at 704-931-3529, or shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to helping you #seewhatspossible.
One of our core beliefs at Orbital Socket is The Human Exchange of Ideas: the phenomenon whereby ideas move from person to person and group to group. No matter how much we inject technology into marketing and the concept of activation, its essence will always be human. Humanity is the center of it all, and captivating brands understand this.
People's needs and wants are what drives marketing all around the world. We cannot dismiss the fact that people want to be dazzled, surprised, and stimulated. People desire for their needs and wants to be met in ways yet imagined and places yet ventured. They want to be surprised and delighted, AND then they want to tell their friends about their new conquests and discoveries. They want to post it, share it, and engage with it. They want to make it part of who they are and their community, too.
There needs to be a two-way exchange of ideas between brands and their audience. Brands desire to gain insight into their consumers' needs and wants, and consumers desire to know what brands stand for. Are they environmentally friendly? Do they give back to their local community? What is their essence?
Exchanging Ideas Through Excitement
Since the dawn of time, humans have been exchanging ideas. They've been exchanging ideas about something as small as a book or a film or about a product. And, the fastest exchange of ideas occurs when there's excitement involved. If a company manages to get someone excited about their product or service, that person will spread their excitement, either through word of mouth or through reviews.
Customer reviews are the perfect example of The Human Exchange of Ideas because they reveal the consumer journey. People like to know what their peers think about a particular service or product. If that experience is positive, their peers want to be part of it, too. As excitement grows, the new momentum allows the communication of ideas to other people through the conduit of happiness and joy.
Brands want customers to become advocates for their product because good reviews can be more effective than simple advertisements. Peer endorsements are authentic representations of consumer experiences – the endorsement is not based on monetary gain but reflects customer satisfaction. The endorsement builds trust because it comes from someone using the product or service and someone a consumer feels like they can at least identify with or know.
Exchanging Ideas Through Technology
Technology has allowed The Human Exchange of Ideas to become much faster and more ubiquitous than before. Chat apps, social media, calls over the Internet, etc., have allowed ideas to spread faster. Therefore, someone can simply look at a product or a service and send it to their friends on social media. Also, people have formed groups, page chat forums, and subforums on their most beloved topics. They aggregate around those ideas more than ever before. The Internet is today's fireplace, watercooler, and pub.
However, it's not just about tapping into these data transmissions. It's about looking deeper and figuring out why those transmissions occur. The core is still the same, no matter how much the medium has changed. The people who get excited about a streaming service today were getting excited about TV shows decades ago. The same people who love gaming consoles today were lining up to play in arcades years ago. It's not that The Human Exchange of Ideas has radically changed; it's that technology has allowed the exchange to grow and multiply.
Brands must also realize that while people can share the good, they can also share the bad. Once again, customers want to know what your brand stands for. Knowledge of the good you are doing (environmental stewardship, community involvement, etc.) will be celebrated and shared. Knowing what you aren't doing (or at least what the public perceives you aren't doing) will be questioned, challenged, and shared in consumer communities.
At Orbital Socket, we still know that at the heart of it all are people. It's just a matter of understanding your customers and finding those shareable moments that will gain traction with your audience and their friends and community. The Human Exchange of Ideas. It's essential in the world of captivation.
Captivation includes the concept that everyone and everything is both interesting and relevant. But there's an additional component to be considered. Not everyone and everything is always engaging. The reason for this is simple: relevance and interest combine to become engagement. The two, when separated, are far less potent than when together.
Captivation is More than Targeting a Niche Audience
Captivation occurs when lots of specific triggers combine to generate an authentic response. In today's culture, the only responses rewarded with consumer engagement are those that combine relevance and interest. Whether phrase, meme, or soundbite, communications must be received in proper context. Is
the information helpful or exciting in a given time or space?
Context is vital. We may categorize consumers into niche audiences, but that doesn't mean they will always respond to niche advertisements. Content must always be relevant and interesting. Someone interested in buying a mattress may not necessarily respond to every mattress ad. But what if that person wants something convenient, affordable, or innovative? Proximity to home, special deals, and discounts
or product features are all examples of messaging that may pique consumers' interest.
Geico is an excellent example of a brand using interest and relevance to generate engagement. Insurance services are not top of mind, but saving money is. The brand uses pop culture references to generate buzz. Images of Tag Team singing about ice cream and Dikembe Mutombo blocking cereal boxes in the grocery aisles evoke humor, nostalgia, and interest. The message of saving money gives the consumer a reason for relevancy. A call to action to spend fifteen minutes and save provides a reason to engage.
Whether mattress-maker or insurance provider, brands must understand the behaviors that motivate their consumers. Brands that offer timely, interesting, and relevant information will captivate their audiences.
Captivation Means Engaging Your Audience in Interesting and Relevant Places
Your audience can access the most exciting topics in the world in various ways. There may be a general overlap like a show everyone watches or an app everyone's using. However, depending on a consumer's location, age, gender, class, etc., interests, and the way those interests are accessed, can vary wildly.
Despite our differences, there is always a niche where interest and relevance meet. It's a brand's job to discover that intersection. Perhaps three people are captivated by a single show but want to enjoy it in different ways: one via smartphone, another via laptop, and a third on television before bed. Brands
must be ready and willing to supply content to audiences in the channels that are most relevant and interesting to them.
How a brand conveys its ideas is just as important as the idea itself. Using the media that we have control over today and understanding how the technology landscape can shift is paramount. Marketing depended on endorsements a decade ago, but today influencers rule the roost. Social media is supplanting television as the platform of choice. And new platforms continue to emerge every year. Successful brands will not only speak to consumers in relevant and interesting ways, but they will also operate in platforms that are relevant and interesting to consumers.
At Orbital Socket, we believe every brand is interesting and relevant. It's just a matter of discovering the messaging and placement that will help consumers see your brand's relevance and interest in their own lives and engage with it in meaningful ways. This journey is called captivation. And we're ready to set sail whenever you are!
The term “multicultural consumers” was defined by the US Census Bureau to encompass Black, Latino, American-Indian, Asian, and Pacific Islander populations. Multicultural populations contributed to 92% of total US population growth from 2000 to 2014, and projections are that these populations will become the US majority by 2044.
What is the Multicultural Consumer?
Multicultural consumers represent much more than just diverse populations. Multicultural consumers arise because cultures share their experiences, resulting in more varied interests and creating a diversity of thought and diversity of race and culture. Multicultural consumers also have lots of micro-consumer groups. Despite the titles we give them, such as African-American or Hispanics, they are a very diverse group within the larger groups. These micro-consumer groups are interested in the same things regardless of nationality, gender, sexuality, race, culture, etc. Thus, one approach to connecting with multicultural consumers is to understand them through the lens of micro-consumer groups. Looking at them through this lens allows you to acknowledge the overall group and the commonalities among them. It also allows you to recognize and speak to the micro-consumer groups' unique compositions, behavioral patterns, and preferences.
These micro-communities hold tremendous buying power and have enormous marketing potential and monetary value for today’s brands, products, and services.
Why Should Companies Cater to the Multicultural Consumer?
Let’s talk about the facts before we talk about the various ways in which marketing to micro-communities can work. A 2019 report by the Alliance for Inclusive and Multicultural Marketing (AIMM) reports that 5.2% of marketing spend caters to multicultural efforts. Minimizing the importance of this ever-growing segment is bad business.
Multicultural consumers make up 40% of the US population. According to the Multicultural Economic Report from the University of Georgia, they have a buying power of $3.9 trillion. In addition, the World Bank estimates that the LGBTQ+ community has a collective buying power of $1 trillion. That’s more than the GDPs of several countries combined! Together, both these figures are nearly $5 trillion - a third of the current US GDP. Too often, businesses ignore this massive and influential market.
Why Should Businesses Care About Marketing to Micro Communities
In the past, companies have used social media tools and messenger apps to cater to micro-consumer groups. Popular avenues for micro-consumer groups include Facebook Groups, Slack, Discord, Private Instagram Accounts, and Facebook Messenger. These avenues become places where people can talk about specific topics, contribute to discussions, and feel accepted and safe. These communities can talk about everything from video game memorabilia to history to obscure anime, etc. Very few brands have taken it upon themselves to improve engagement in these communities. While a few are trying to foster and nurture micro-consumer groups, there is ample room for improvement. Here are a few examples that other companies ought to follow:
The Korean makeup manufacturer Glow Recipe launched a digital sampling program in April 2020. Co-founder and co-chief executive Sarah Lee has said that the community has been the source of many great insights.
Ludovic de Saint Sernin
The French fashion designer Ludovic de Saint Sernin has over 94,000 followers on Instagram. However, he has a private account that has nearly 35,000 followers. There, he engages with a more serious, more niche community.
Micro-consumer groups can be beneficial for both consumers and businesses alike. These engagements allow participating companies to cater to niche consumers personally, resulting in more meaningful interactions and creating relevant, interesting, and engaging communications.
What do Millie Bobby Brown, Rick Astley, and policymaking in the EU have in common? The answer is relevance to your brand. You may not see it, but seemingly disparate subjects can significantly impact how people see your brand and connect it to their lives. That includes their interests and their hobbies.
Millie Bobby Brown fans may love 80s clothing and listen to 80s music, including Rick Astley songs. EU policies can affect everything from local supply chains to product development to environmental health. That also affects different brands and businesses. It’s a brand’s job to see all this connective tissue and insert itself into the mix. That’s why everything is relevant in captivation.
Captivation Means Communicating Relevance
With no shortage of access to interesting and relevant topics on the Internet, new niche audiences are emerging every day. Social media has allowed billions of virtual enthusiasts to gather on a single platform and share their interests. And while you may not see them, their influence is massive, and their relevance is apparent.
Reddit has been an innovator in connecting and giving voice to niche audiences. With its Button Experiment, Reddit’s homepage employed a single Button that would keep changing color. When users clicked on the Button, they were assigned a color. Soon hundreds of thousands of users were split into different groups separated by color, creating a sort of civilization. While the Button simply disappeared one day, it showed how easily something could induce tribalism amongst people, even on the Internet. And in just the past few months, the world has been introduced to the power of Reddit community members who were able to influence the stock price of GameStop.
Perhaps at this very moment, Millie Bobby Brown and Rick Astley enthusiasts are creating a seismic cultural shift in their social forums! Wouldn’t it be great if your brand had an impact on their journey?!?
For brands to be relevant, they must do the work to discover the topics and platforms relevant to their consumers. That’s where we come in. At Orbital Socket, we’re ready to help your consumers recognize your brand’s relevance (and interest!) to their daily lives.
There are loads of things which interest people all around the world. You and I may be interested in the latest trending web series, but the person next to us may enjoy reading instead. Someone sitting behind you in class may enjoy playing on one gaming console, but you may enjoy collecting retro games.
Interests can vary as wildly as our DNA. They develop over decades and subtly influence our behavior beyond what can be gleaned from a conversation. However, gauging these interests is exactly what is needed to captivate someone today.
On the flip side, having specific interests is precisely what makes everyone so unique and appealing. That’s where the value is for a company; recognizing the particular interests of their audience. That’s the central concept behind everyone, and everything is interesting.
Captivation Means Everything is Interesting
There are groups, subgroups, forums, pages, and chat rooms about every topic under the sun today. And the activity in these groups is evidence of the fact that these are exciting topics. That’s what gives weight to the concept that everything is interesting.
The topics are made interesting by virtue of the people interested in them. The number of hits, likes, views, impressions, shares, etc., all come under the umbrella of engagement. It’s just a matter of delivering or conveying those interests in a digestible and engaging manner.
The fact is that it’s only a matter of getting those people to notice what they’ve been missing. Whether a company targets one niche or the other is not important. What’s essential is reeling in their audience. That’s why captivation is so vital. It funnels audiences to businesses and helps them realize their true value.
Everyone is Interesting in the Digital Era
Today, nearly every person has a digital device, whether it’s a smartphone, tablet, or laptop. Even a feature phone, a pager, or a gaming console is a data point, and every data point is a hub of activity. They are communicating with the Internet and pulling and pushing information for the majority of the day.
The best use of this activity is captivation. All businesses have a particular inherent value. It’s bringing it out in the digital era that turns the value into something tangible. Today, there are hundreds of ways to attract niche customers to your brand and your services. There are hundreds of marketing tools and campaign strategies that can get you to the top. However, all of them involve recognizing that our customers or audience also has an inherent value.
Approaching an audience in a way that they are made aware of your interest in their lives makes your company’s value real. And that’s where we come in. While the literal interpretation of everyone and everything is interesting may not have seemed possible before, it is now.
When you think about businesses marketing to an audience, the words engagement and relevance always come to mind. However, you would rarely think of captivation. That’s because captivation typically refers to something that catches your attention and doesn’t let go.
Captivation is a way to understand your audience deeply. It involves the compound effect of relevance, interest, and engagement.
Knowing Your Audience Inside Out (Relevance)
You don’t just need to know your audience's gender, class, age, or race. You need to know how they behave as well. This metric indicates what your audience will like, what they will choose, and how they are willing to spend their money. It includes mapping out their beliefs, likes, dislikes, inhibitions, and passions. Everything from what they use to commute to work to what they order for lunch is essential. What your audience listens to while they work out is just as important as what they choose to drink at parties. Which app they use to talk to their friends is just as important as which phone they use. All these small choices make an amalgam of what a human being is. To appeal to your audience, you need to understand your audience to the core. It’s the only way you’ll be relevant in their eyes.
Giving Them a Reason to Look Further (Interest)
When you understand your audience, you need to give them a reason to look at you. There are millions of brands and businesses out there. Our attention spans are diminishing, and gigabytes worth of information is coming at us every minute. To captivate someone, you need to appeal to them in a way they would prefer, to really interest them. This could be a story that they like, or a statistic that convinces them to give you a try. Some people prefer a long-winded pitch, while others would like you to get to the point. The way you present yourself to a customer is critical. Otherwise, you may lose their attention after a few seconds.
Involve Them in the Process (Engagement)
After you’ve captured the interest of potential customers, you need to engage them. That means you need to give them a way to participate in your world. Whether that’s an app, a discount, a contest, or a social media poll, it is up to you. All you need to know is that engaging someone in your business, even in the tiniest way, means success. However, you need to do it in a way that they prefer. All the knowledge you’ve gained from relevance and interest will help you tremendously here. With all that said and done, it seems like a pretty simple process. However,
the thought that goes into it is anything but simple.
At Orbital Socket, we’ve engaged millions of people for hundreds of businesses around the world. Let us show the world what you have to offer. Let Orbital Socket captivate your audience for you.