Thursday, May 6, 2021

The Next Big Thing in Marketing: Personalized Avatars and Stickers

 The Next Big Thing in Marketing: Personalized Avatars and Stickers

Personalization has been a huge part of marketing. In the words of Malcolm Gladwell, a bestselling author, personalized marketing is rapidly becoming a requirement for bands to stay up with evolving consumer trends. True that, because marketing has always been about consumers. 


The shift towards personalized and targeted shopping experiences is largely due to the advancements in marketing technology. Thanks to advances in data, machine learning, and AI technologies, it has become easier for brands to achieve personalization.


One of the main reasons brands prefer personalized marketing is that it can convey the brand message to customers better and increase brand awareness. 


Research by Epsilon also suggests that 80% of consumers are more likely to purchase from brands that offer personalized experiences. Social media, emails, YouTube, Google ads, brands use so many mediums of digital marketing. Another marketing trend that is still untapped by marketers is that of Conversation Media - visual media like emojis, GIFs, stickers, avatars, etc.


When consumers text on social media, they use a lot of emojis and GIFs. They have evolved to make our conversations fun and attractive. With the use of visual media, users can convey their exact feelings without using facial expressions. 


A growing trend in Conversation Media is the use of personalized avatars and stickers. Today, most social media platforms like Facebook, Snapchat, Whatsapp, Tinder, etc., include stickers and emoticons to make communication effective and interesting. People love to customize their avatars and use them in chats. These avatars best demonstrate their feelings. 


If you’ve used Snapchat’s Bitmojis or virtual characters in PUBG and Facebook avatars, you’d know how easy it is for users to personalize stickers. You can choose one according to mood, location, clothing, accessories, and facial features.

Source: https://techcrunch.com/2019/06/03/facebook-avatars-stickers/


Consumers can post these avatars in comments on social media and share them with their friends and family over chat across platforms. 


While Facebook, Snapchat, Genies, etc., are some of the popular brands that have tapped into the potential of Conversation Media with avatars, brands like Pepsi Max and Taco Bell took the risk much before and made for fascinating case studies.


Tech giant Samsung also launched its range of memojis called AR Emoji. It allows users to create animated digital versions of their faces. The users can customize the final animation. You can choose from a selection of stickers and GIFs.



Source: https://smartphones.gadgethacks.com/how-to/not-facebook-here-are-4-avatar-alternatives-for-creating-your-digital-doppelganger-0308009/


Hike has its personalized HikeMojis customized for the Indian market. These avatars have been created to cater specifically to Indians and incorporate their traits. There are hundreds of stickers for users that can be customized in different regional languages. 


This is just the beginning. With consumers spending more time on mobile devices, brands are becoming more conscious of the impact of Conversation Media. They appeal to GenZ and millennials in a way nothing else can.


Avatars are everywhere. As the next generation of consumers spends increasingly more of their lives in a digital realm, 3D avatars will give brands an effective way to reach their target audience. Personalized avatars is a great marketing strategy for brands across industries.


Following the COVID-19 outbreak, Indian brands are also looking for channels to provide relevant branding in the digital platforms. Bobble AI, a conversation media marketing platform, is helping them customize conversations with consumers using GIFs and emojis. 


For instance, Sunfeast Yippee Noodles teamed up with Bobble AI and created fun stickers and GIFs that users can share across platforms. The ease with which users could share these elements made this campaign a big hit.

According to the Google KPMG report, Indian language internet users are expected to grow at a CAGR of 18% to reach 536 million by 2021. This is a great opportunity for brands to tap into the potential of Conversation Media. 

Conclusion

Users are the real content creators for brands these days. According to Millennial Marketing, about 40% of millennials want to participate in the co-creation of products and brands. They trust the content shared by friends. Avatars and stickers are caching on this mentality of the current generation.


Today, people trust the word of mouth marketing and endorsements. Personalized stickers and avatars can amplify conversations and prove an effective marketing tool as more and more brands start to recognize its worth.


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