Is Your Brand Sticky?

You’ve worked for months to develop a digital content and marketing strategy focused on retaining customers and growing their business with your brand. Right when you’re about to hit the “launch” button on that 2018 strategy, you come across a news article announcing changes to Facebook’s Newsfeed.

“Recently we’ve gotten feedback from our community that public content — posts from businesses, brands and media — is crowding out the personal moments that lead us to connect more with each other… I’m changing the goal I give our product teams from focusing on helping you find relevant content to helping you have more meaningful social interactions.” – Mark Zuckerberg, January 11, 2018 USA Today

“Great. Another huge shift in tactics,” you think to yourself. This change has a big impact on your strategy, much of which is dependent on content that you’ve created and were going to promote through Facebook. Your fans have less of a chance of hearing from you now. Unless, of course, you spend more money on Facebook to reach that audience. Even then, you’re not guaranteed to engage with audiences on Facebook the way you did before.

Your goal for 2018 remains the same, but now you face a new challenge: how do you make your brand “sticky” in light of ever-changing social media marketing policies?

Get Out of Social Media and into Messaging Apps

One thing the Facebook change brings to light is the fact that social media platforms are shifting their focus towards user engagement and away from content. Over the past few years, this trend has meant a shift from public social networks to private messaging apps. Facebook should know this well, too. Not only did they acquire WhatsApp, a private messaging app, but their Facebook Messenger app has seen significant growth as users across all social networks are migrating their conversations to private apps. With this in mind, it’s no wonder that Entrepreneur magazine cited “Increasing Brand Participation in Messaging Applications” as one of their “10 Social Media Trends to Prepare for in 2018,” and Mark Schaefer identified the move from public to private messaging apps as one of his “10 profound digital trends you need to know about now.”

Here are a few ways your brand can engage with messaging apps:

In-App Advertising

This is a tried-and-true method for reaching your audience. Some messaging apps will partner with brands for ad campaigns and custom stickers. The challenge with this option is that they are short-term campaigns and have some level of exclusivity to them that prevents all but a few brands that are willing to pay top dollar from getting involved.

Custom Sticker Packs

iMessage and Google Keyboard allow for custom sticker packs. This is a great way to enter the messaging space, and it provides you with a presence directly on your customer’s phone, making your brand truly “sticky.”

Custom Keyboards

Sticker Packs are great, but what if you want to go beyond text messaging? Say you want to have your brand’s stickers on WhatsApp, Telegram, or Facebook Messenger. Beyond trying to apply to have your sticker designs approved for the brand, the best thing you can do is develop a custom keyboard. A custom keyboard allows you to share stickers on almost every messaging platform available. You will also have the ability to track usage and analytics based on in-app activity, giving you a way to learn more about your customers and provide them with a unique experience that will keep them coming back to your brand.

At Smallball, we help brands enter the mobile messaging space with strategic, turnkey solutions. Learn more about how our custom keyboards and sticker packs can make your brand sticky.

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