Social, Mobile and the Intersection of Online Personas
Before Facebook had over 800 million users and mobile penetration was what it is today, email was the original social network. People primarily connected with friends and family and managed their relationships with brands in the email inbox. The best email marketers broke through inbox clutter by identifying consumer preferences, engaging them with video and rich creative, and offering relevant, targeted value.
Social and mobile have transformed email for brands. What was once a one-way communication between a brand and a consumer has become a conversation. For example, in a cross-channel campaign execution, insights derived from the email channel about message resonance, creative engagement and affinities can be applied to social and mobile campaigns. The reverse also applies, where social and mobile behaviors help marketers develop a holistic view of the consumer for tailored email messages.
The key to relevant, individual messaging across channels is building audience "personas." A persona describes various versions of a self that an individual possesses. What's the difference between an audience and a persona? For purposes of understanding online behaviors, a persona encompasses various "modes" or states of mind. There are work modes and play modes; there are family modes and friend modes. What mode a consumer is in at any given time will impact their screen choice, sharing and consumption patterns, from the length of content (Twitter vs. email) to the creative types they engage with (video vs. text).
These modes can be graphed or mapped to broader segments that can be leveraged to deliver content in the right format to the right device at the right time. Social and mobile bring new and unique opportunities for deep insights and engagement because together they provide a holistic view of an individual. Marketers have the ability to connect with robust audience personas like never before.