The Risks of One-Size-Fits-All Marketing During COVID-19

one-size-fits all marketing

Given the economic conditions surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, marketers can be tempted to engage in one-size-fits-all campaigns to save time and money. However, the risks of one-size-fits-all marketing outweigh the purported rewards.

COVID-19 is impacting continents, countries, and communities in different ways. Marketers (and the brands they represent) need to take note of these nuances and adjust their strategies accordingly.

In plainspeak, it’s more important than ever to throw out one-size-fits-all marketing campaigns in favor of niche strategies.

That means going beyond basic categories of targeting (e.g. “Men aged 25-45”) and drilling down into the weeds of who a campaign is most likely to succeed with (e.g. “Caucasian and Asian men, aged 25 to 45, living in cities within coastal states, earning more than $120,000 per year”). 

But even that depth of refinement might be too broad in the months ahead. 

Doing better than one-size-fits-all marketing 

Realistically, marketers are going to need better, more detailed data that will enable them to paint a crystal-clear picture of the “who” their brands should target. 

That means considering personality types, political beliefs, spending habits, and more. Coupling demographic data with things like behavioral and transactional indicators will make marketing campaigns more effective at reaching and resonating with the micro-audiences most likely to deliver ROI. 

Signals derived from behavioral, transactional, occupational, and geographic data can do more than explain “what” prospective consumers are doing—they can also shed light on “why” consumers are doing it. 

For example, transactional signals indicate Jane Doe is spending more money on groceries in the last six weeks (the what). But why is Jane buying those groceries? 

Using more nuanced signals, marketers can get a better idea if she’s buying those groceries because she…

  • Lost her job and is worried about money.
  • Is on a new health-kick and trying to make smarter dietary choices.
  • Recently moved from a neighborhood with no supermarkets to a neighborhood with multiple supermarkets. 

The context derived from those insights can help a marketer decide if Jane Doe is worth targeting.

(An added bonus? Understanding the “why” behind a given behavior makes it easier to develop specific, high-impact messaging that’s more likely to capture attention and drive a desired campaign outcome.)

How we help clients combat one-size-fits-all marketing

At Zeta, we help our clients build niche, target audiences through the collection of real-time interest and intent data pulled from more than 200 million U.S. consumers. To learn more about our audience tracking and building capabilities, please sign up for a free demo of our Opportunity Explorer solution

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