Posts

How regulated industries are getting results from digital marketing

Consumers are changing—they have less time, aren’t brand loyal, are more socially and environmentally conscious, and prefer experiences over products. According to a Deloitte study, these changes are a result of climate change, economic constraints and increasing competitive options.

 

Marketing professionals operating in regulated industries have the additional challenge of compliance and government regulations, while attempting to engage with their difficult-to-reach audiences.  

 

“Don’t let regulations limit your creativity and how you engage with your customers and potential customers in the digital space,” said Desirée Gullan, Executive Creative Director of G&G Digital. “Focus on what you are permitted to do within your industry regulations and turn challenges into opportunities to remain competitive.”  

 

Gullan shared three insights on how brands operating in regulated industries can win at digital.  

 

1.Understand your audience and make your marketing work harder

Get to know your customers, what digital platforms they use, and what they use them for. Use social to understand their wants, needs and behaviours, and then design a strategy that resonates, provides solutions, and adds value to their lives. You will also save marketing budget and effort by selecting platforms your customers use. For example, if customers only use social media, developing a microsite won’t help you reach them or engage with them.  

 

2. Use the right digital touchpoints 

Paid search, social media, and influencer marketing are effective channels to reach audiences, but for some industries, this may not be permitted. Regulations can be restrictive. On top of that, not all channels are appropriate for your goals. Identify the best platforms, objectives, and when regulations get in the way, work with key opinion leaders and influencers, use digital PR, tag visual content on your website, and optimise content to increase organic traffic.   

 

3. Close the digital gap

Another Deloitte study shows that 75% of customers want consistency from their brands. You can achieve this with content that resonates and tells the same story, using a similar tone, across all digital touchpoints. Brands should also be consistent in their support services so that customers experience seamless interaction and don’t feel like they’re dealing with a business in silos. 

 

Regardless of your industry, online visibility is essential, and when used correctly can yield excellent results for your brand. Leverage opportunities, use the right digital platforms in smart, goal orientated ways. Keep your audience at the centre of your content creation, deliver value, and be consistent across all touchpoints.  

 

 “Digital is always changing and it changes fast, which also means that new and exciting opportunities are always opening up to engage with your customers on their terms, to add value to their lives and to get an ROI on your marketing,” Gullan concluded. 

Meet G&G Digital’s new GM, Samantha Fletcher

Samantha Fletcher stepped into her new hybrid role as Client Service Director and General Manager (GM) of G&G Digital, the award-winning digital marketing agency based in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

While Samantha has worked with the dynamic team at G&G Digital for the past decade, her full-time return as a business partner and Client Service Director in 2019 led to this new and exciting opportunity. And she’s eager to take the agency to the next level as they expand their digital marketing solutions into regulated industries.

“I’m very excited about the future of our business and the smart, value-adding solutions we offer our clients to help them achieve their business goals,” said Samantha. “The past two years haven’t been easy, but our team worked incredibly hard and remained passionate to positively impact our clients by delivering smart and breakthrough communication strategies that engaged our clients’ target audiences and delivered results,” she added.

From fashion to a digital expert

Samantha started her career in the fashion industry, and her passion for digital marketing took her in a different direction. Her drive and determination took her from Account Manager to Account Director and the rest is history.

Driven by purpose

While Samantha will continue to lead the Client Service team, her role as GM will also focus on the business culture. “Smart strategy drives our business and our team excels at collaborative work, and this is what I want to continue to nurture in my new role. When we’re motivated, happy, and client-focused, we deliver work that resonates with our clients and their customers, and deliver results we can be proud of,” she said.

What’s next for G&G Digital?

Navigating full-time remote. After working from home since the pandemic started, G&G Digital is now a fully-remote, bi-coastal agency, and Samantha will oversee the physical and virtual offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

“While we had very little time to prepare for remote work, we quickly adapted,” she said. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, it was vital that our team were safe. As lockdown regulations relaxed, we continued to work from home; it worked for our team, and we are seeing enhanced productivity and creativity. And now we’re all over the country,” she concluded.

4-Step marketing toolkit

The four steps to push your brand to the top

By Desirée Gullan, Co-founder and Executive Creative Director of G&G Digital

Marketing professionals have always been creative problem solvers, and these skills need to be ramped up when operating in regulated industries such as pharmaceuticals, healthcare, finance, insurance and hospitality.

Stringent laws and regulations, not to mention lengthy approval processes, can seem like too many obstacles in the way of highly effective creative communication campaigns.

“Marketing in regulated industries shouldn’t feel stifled by rules and processes,” said Desirée Gullan, Executive Creative Director of G&G Digital. “It’s an opportunity to flex your creative problem-solving skills in a smart and disciplined manner.”

Here are four steps to help you reach your audience in regulated industries.

1. Plan ahead
Due to long approval processes and other due diligence matters, adhoc campaigns may not be possible. Smart, long-term planning that doesn’t feel forced, dated or irrelevant can get excellent results, and can help you save money by avoiding costly mistakes, and oversights.

2. Pull in the same direction
Your team need to be aware of what’s at risk with the smallest error or oversight. It’s also important to work in the same direction. Invest in training, and take the time to educate and oversee the process. This will prevent issues all the way from through the campaign planning to execution. Remember, the weakest link can cause the most damage.

3. Build trust and authority
In regulated industries, you don’t have the luxury of making big claims, even if you have the data to back it up. Focus on building trust and authority, which allows you to reach your audience organically and push them further down the sales funnel. Key opinion leaders can assist this by bolstering carefully curated ideas. Use thought leaders in your industry to build trust.

4. Tell authentic stories
Innovative, and relevant storytelling can set your brand apart from others, and give you the opportunity to really explode in reach, relevancy and engagement. Consumers tend to veer toward brands that have a story they can resonate with, especially in highly regulated industries.

“Craft every detail, from the way you tell a story, to the amount of planning you put in–it all comes together in the long term,” Gullan added. “With the right approach, discipline and experience, you can find success despite the circumstances. Now’s the time to reshape your strategy and pursue opportunities for growth.”