In an online world saturated with content, your brand has to stand out. An easy way to do that is to elevate your marketing beyond just pursuing engagement.
The engagement you earn online—in the form of likes, comments, follows, and reposts—is important for measuring how successful your content is, but that’s not all you should aim to do with your marketing. What if you could go beyond numbers in a spreadsheet and truly inspire your followers, engage them further, and convert them into brand loyalists?
That’s where interactive marketing comes in. Interactive marketing acts as a bridge between the brand and the consumer. It breaks up the monotony of blog posts and whitepapers with interactive content like quizzes, videos, contests, and more so that you can engage your followers on a deeper level. Interactive marketing benefits you directly in four ways:
- You increase your engagement. By nature, interactive marketing requires the user to engage with your content. No matter how simple or complex you go, your engagement will increase.
- You learn more about your consumer. Your ideal consumer is the one who follows you, chooses to interact with your content, and purchases your products. Interactive marketing helps you identify and get to know those consumers who engage with your content.
- You build stronger relationships with your customers. When your customers feel connected and feel like their feedback matters, it makes them loyal. When people are loyal to your brand, they tend to tell friends about your brand. The growth opportunity is exponential.
- You stand out. Interactive content is a dominant part of the social media landscape now. Anyone can make an interactive post. It’s in your best interest to stay on top of the trends to position yourself as a leader in the field.
6 Elements of the Best Interactive Marketing Content
The best interactive marketing content has a few elements in common. You can use these common elements during the ideation phase of your campaign to ensure your content accomplishes your goals and engages your followers. The six important elements of interactive content include:
There’s nothing wrong with using a drag-and-drop template when you’re designing your interactive marketing deliverables. Make sure you’re using proven design techniques when you do it, though. Or opt for platforms like Canva that allow you to customize premade designs to ensure your interactive content looks great and catches your followers’ eyes.
Every post has the potential to go viral. Some have more potential than others, but every post can do it. There’s no perfect formula for going viral, but you can determine the potential virality of a post by looking at previous patterns in your marketing analytics.
Basing your interactive content off previously successful content centers what your audience wants to see at the forefront of the design process. Catering to your audience makes them feel like their actions and engagements hold weight. This encourages them to continue engaging with your content.
Interactive marketing starts to feel a lot like market research when it’s not fun. The reality is that interactive marketing is market research—for your brand. But it shouldn’t feel like market research to your audience or else they won’t want to participate. Your interactive marketing should feel fun.
Adding a game element to your interactive content helps your followers find this fun online. Transform your content with quizzes, polls, and interactive videos. What was once a regular experience is now special. Fun makes your brand more memorable.
Many industries consider having active social media accounts a standard. But the downside of prioritizing building a following on social media is that you don’t have any ownership of that information. It all belongs to the platform you’re on. What would happen if Instagram deleted your account today? Would your audience have any way to reach you? Would you have any way to reach them? Would they know where to look?
The best interactive marketing strategies drive traffic from your social media channels to places that you own, like your email list or your website.
5. Multichannel follow-up
Once you get new information from your interactive marketing, it’s time for you to follow up. The information you collect should inform the new content you create for your audience. This helps create a loop:
- You create content
- Your audience gives you feedback using the interactive marketing tools you’ve provided
- You tailor new content to your target audience
When you dig further into a niche, your audience notices. You’ll gain more relevant followers in your targeted audience, which is exactly what you want.
6. Customer service
All your marketing efforts serve one goal: making the sale. When a customer is ready to purchase, your customer service needs to be stellar. You put in a lot of work crafting interactive marketing campaigns. Your one-to-one interactions with customers solidify them. A customer’s experience with your customer service team can turn a casual fan into a brand loyalist.
Types of Interactive Marketing Content
Now that you understand the elements that create good interactive marketing, we can discuss each type of interactive marketing content. The different types of content include:
- Contests and giveaways
The best campaigns use more than one type of interactive marketing content. Think about how you can combine different types as you learn more about them.
Contests and Giveaways
Contests and giveaways are a timeless and effective interactive marketing strategy. When you look at the elements of a good interactive marketing example, sweepstakes, contests and games meet all the possible criteria.
When you’re organizing your giveaway, you can look through previous market research for help. Once you’ve decided on a subset of your audience that you want to cater to, choose a prize that is relevant to them. Choosing a prize that is specific to a portion of your followers’ tastes makes it more likely that someone who truly wants the prize will win it, while also attracting the attention of relevant followers.
Giveaways have high fun potential. Choose a task that your audience will have fun participating in to boost the engagement rate for your contest.
Pay attention to the design of your marketing materials for the contest or sweepstakes. Include elements of the task and the prize in the design to give the participants a visual of what the promotion fully represents. Templates are an easy way to help you produce a deliverable that is aesthetically pleasing.
For true ownership, only use social media channels to promote (not host) your giveaway. Link to your website or have participants sign up for your email list to enter. This gives you a way to follow up and nurture the relationship with this segment of your audience after the contest ends.
Sweepstakes and contests inherently carry the potential for virality. To ensure this, make sharing the giveaway or tagging a few friends an entry requirement. With a well-thought-out prize, people will rush to enter your promotion.
Customer service is necessary to run a successful sweepstakes, contest or game. Your first act of customer service is to include the information necessary for a successful entry. Prepare your customer service team with answers to any contest-related questions, too.
Quizzes dominate on social media platforms—Facebook in particular. When they’re designed well, quizzes are a successful interactive marketing strategy.
Use quizzes to match your potential customers with a product or service in a fun way. You can even combine quizzes with other types of interactive marketing. Once a quiz gains traction, the momentum takes over.
That momentum comes from the end of the quiz. Give your audience options for sharing their results via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and email to spark virality. When they share it, it encourages their network to take your quiz, too.
Due to their competitive nature, there’s the possibility for quizzes to go viral, meaning free publicity for you. Encourage participants to compete against their friends and share their scores to build fun and tension around your interactive game.
Polls are quick and easy ways to gather information. Think of them as market research. It’s tough to make polls fun—they’re often very short—but it’s not impossible.
Try talking about a hot topic. A good example is the blue and black dress versus the gold and white dress. Everyone was curious to see what others thought about it, so polls on the topic popped up all over the place.
Because polls are so short and quick, they’re easy to tailor and make relevant to a specific group of people. If anything, it’s an opportunity to analyze the cross between subsets of your brand community. When you do this, you get more insight on your target audience to inform future marketing strategies.
Polls offer immediate gratification to participants. Similar to quizzes, participants get to see their results in real time. With polls, people can compare their results to other poll participants’ results. The opportunity to see where you stand among the greater brand community is an added layer of fun.
Calculators are a great interactive marketing tool for service-based businesses. They have the potential to generate sales before the customer speaks to a real human. Calculators build relevance right away because they’re used for a purpose—to get a quote for a service.
An automated tool like this acts as the first stage of customer service. The information you collect in a calculator is yours to follow up on, as the tool lives on your website. And you know that the people who use the calculator are leads who demonstrated an interest in your services, which makes it easier to market to them.
Email marketing is one of the original interactive marketing techniques. Even before you could add interactive elements, the ability to speak to a brand representative like that was innovative. Now, you have even more capabilities with email to take your customer service to another level.
Email lists are a number one ownership strategy because no one can take your customers’ information away from you (except customers). Another great thing about emails is that you can combine them with any other interactive marketing strategy to amplify their effectiveness.
Using sales funnels, following up with potential customers has never been easier. Most of the processes in email marketing are easily automated too. If you have an email list, try to incorporate at least one piece of interactive marketing content per email.
Videos without interactive elements are already successfully used by brands every day. On social media, posts with video elements perform better than static posts, and when you add interactive elements, videos are even more effective.
In your videos, direct viewers to information they need that you provide. You can combine other types of interactive marketing content, such as calculators, polls, and quizzes, with video too.
End the video with an option for viewers to share the video, sign up for your email list, or visit your website.
Creating Your Interactive Marketing Content
Interactive marketing is quickly becoming the new industry standard. Your business needs to capitalize on the increased access you have to your audience to keep up with the competition. Simply using interactive marketing is not the only requirement, however. You want to make sure your materials include two or three elements that make interactive marketing successful:
- Multichannel follow-up
- Customer service
Don’t scoff at the softer elements of fun and relevance. They are a big part of what captures audiences from scrolling, and these elements need to feel genuine in your content. Between the elements and the types of interactive marketing, you should be able to tailor a strategy to your business’s needs.
If anyone on your team is hesitant about your interactive marketing ideas, remind them of the benefits:
- It boosts engagement.
- It gives you a more accurate buyer profile.
- It helps you build and nurture relationships with your clients.
- It makes you stand out when your customers are scrolling.
These campaigns take extra thought and time to put together. If your team doesn’t feel like they can handle the project, look into hiring interactive marketing companies.