The last two years have propelled us farther and farther into the digital world with people increasingly working, shopping, and socializing online. A 2020 study of over 10,000 people in 5 countries uncovered that the average daily time spent consuming content is now 6 hours and 59 minutes, which includes phone, TV, and other forms of digital media. This surge in online activity has created a condition known as digital fatigue, and although consumers can no longer survive without technology, they covet offline world experiences now, more than ever. Digital fatigue has affected consumer attitudes towards digital ads as well, with 75% of consumers saying they are overwhelmed by the number of digital ads they see.
Bringing the physical and digital world together to create a complete brand experience.
In response to consumer demand for offline experiences that are woven into their online habits, a new strategy known as Phygital Marketing has emerged. Phygital Marketing is the merger of physical offline channels with digital online channels to create a more robust brand experience. “It takes the best aspects of real-world, tactile interactions with a brand and combines them with digital channels to create a complete product experience”, says John Leonard, V.P. Sales and Marketing, Cover-All Business Communication Management.
Phygital Marketing meets consumers’ sensory and practical demands.
The online and offline world is intrinsically intertwined with 82% of in-person shoppers saying they consult their phones when making in-store purchases to look for competitive pricing, discounts, and reviews. However, digital has not replaced the tangible aspect of brand interactions, with 82% of shoppers wanting to ’view-and-touch’ products before committing to buying them online. This is evident with Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, opening brick and mortar stores because they recognize consumers demand tangible experiences when making purchase decisions. “Digital also doesn’t hold attention span very long and going offline helps to put your brand in focus a lot longer”, says Leonard. On average, people will only spend between 15 and 20 seconds reading a marketing e-mail while they spend an average of 30 minutes each day reading their mail.
Phygital Marketing allows brands to combine online and offline channels to create a holistic product experience. “When customers have a positive and complete experience, they are more likely to buy your products, share their experiences with family and friends, and be loyal to your brand”, says Leonard. A common phygital channel strategy employs direct mail that is connected to a website experience with the use of a QR code. QR codes in direct mail packages can easily link consumers to discount coupons or websites for further brand information. Going offline with direct mail provides that much-needed tactile experience consumers are looking for, and linking it to digital conveniences provides consumers with the best of both worlds.
With retail restrictions, increases in curbside pickup, and taste samples suspended in grocery stores, food manufacturers are turning to direct mail to offer product samples directly to consumers. Manufacturers are doing this both proactively by targeting specific groups with mail samples, and reactively by allowing consumers to order free product samples on their website to be mailed directly to their homes. Free product samples offer a quick means to expose consumers to your products. When consumers have an opportunity to try new products with no risk, it can lead to brand loyalty and a significant boost in sales. In fact, 73% of consumers say they are likely to buy a product after sampling it.
Bringing experiences to consumers that integrate offline and online activities is a winning strategy for many brands who have been able to capitalize on the best aspects of physical and digital to increase revenue. With the increase of digital fatigue consumers are experiencing, now is the right time to expand your Phygital Marketing campaigns.
John Leonard is V.P., Sales & Marketing for Cover-All Business Communication Management. He works with his team and clients to develop relevant and effective communications by using data and technology. Contact Cover-All Business Communication Management to find out more at (416) 752-8100.