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Digital Brand Marketing and Engagement

October 25, 2011

There is a fine line between innovative, entertainment focused digital marketing and deceptive practices, and even the Federal Trade Commission is confused on where that line should be drawn. Entertainment, specifically music, combined with pioneering online brand marketing strategies has become a new frontier of enormous possibilities for agencies, providing a personal connection with a teen focused audience.


Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is a strategy that aims to increase brand awareness via television, radio, mobile media, online media, social media, and any other form of digital media available at the time. Digital marketing is interactive, engaging, can be integrated across many advertising platforms, and is incredibly effective.


At the core, digital marketing centers around the internet, whether it’s mobile use, laptops or desktops, the internet is what facilitates the personalized engagement. Digital marketing is instant, satisfying, and is database driven, which allows marketers and advertisers to obtain massive amounts of user generated and user obtained data.


Digital Marketing Data

One of the most exciting aspects of digital marketing is its ability to collect instant data, and obtain instant results. When implemented successfully, brands can instantly sell a product, while at the same time instantly obtain a wealth of information about that consumer’s online habits. Digital marketing also allows for extended brand awareness and amazing brand engagement, which also gives brands amazing insight into the behavior, demographics, and purchasing power of their audience.


Digital Brand Engagement

The key to digital marketing is brand engagement. You could have the most revered graphic designer create an amazing banner ad that speaks to the masses and is advertised on every targeted website on the internet, however it that ad is not engaging, does not have a strong call to action, and does not create interaction between brand and audience, it will be unsuccessful.


In order to engage your digital audience, brand marketing must be extremely targeted, extremely relevant, and extremely personal. There are some aspects of brand marketing, whether in it’s the digital realm, print, on TV or radio never change; the brand experience creates brand advocates. With that said, when it comes to digital marketing and online engagement, the audience experience must be absolutely unique, memorable, innovative, and custom-made to fit each audience segment. As a brand, you want to create Fans, not just customers, and creating a digital experience like no other will obtain that goal.


Deceptive Practices

As we pointed out yesterday, one of the problems with digital brand marketing is how deceptive it can be, which is also one of the reasons why it can be so effective. As PepsiCo and the Frito-Lay corporations face the FTC over deceptive marketing practices, it’s important to step back and analyze why they’ve gotten themselves into hot water.


One aspect of the complaint that was recently filed states that “Frito-Lay collects users’ personal information “without meaningful notice and consent” and “uses viral marketing in ways that violate the FTC endorsement guidelines.”” As we’ve mentioned, data collection is one of the highlights of digital marketing, and yet if it’s conducted without the knowledge of the audience member, it can be consider deceptive.


The problem that we run into in this particular FTC complaint is the marketing focus on teenagers, an extremely touchy subject for not only parents, but the federal government.


“Frito-Lay disguises its marketing campaigns as entertaining video games, concerts and other immersive forms of entertainment, thus making it more difficult for teens to recognize them as marketing and to be skeptical about the messages they present,” wrote Angela Campbell, an attorney at Georgetown University Law Center’s Institute for Public Representation, in the filing.


While digital marketing can be incredibly effective, if implemented deceptively your brand will probably want to look into some reputation management.