It’s easy to follow what other’s are doing, as that’s got to be right – Right?

Wrong…

You can easily collate data, search for trends and find out about what your competitors are doing online, but it’s better to do things differently, to take your campaign and work to your own authentic brand. The trick to successful digital marketing is to take the principals and then make them your own – this is when digital works best, and I’m speaking from year’s of experience here.

I’d like to share a great example of how standing out from the crowd and doing things authentically can really make a big digital impact.

Last year , NETELLER (part of the Paysafe Group) sponsored Crystal Palace Football Club and as part of this sponsorship the marketing team delivered a social strategy that would engage customers and fans world wide. We learnt a lot about being authentic to our brand during this experience, some things we did worked really well, others – not so much, but the point is we did it our way, we were brave, we tried new things and I think ultimately that’s what really contributed to the success of this endeavour.

Firstly, we went into the campaign knowing that we couldn’t do what other sportsbook sponsors did.

  • We couldn’t be the same as everyone else – as we weren’t. We were not a traditional sponsor for a football team, we were not an online sportsbook or gaming company. As a digital wallet & payments company, we were competing against the likes of Bet365, Paddy Power (both are incredibly clever with their marketing and online social media strategies) and other big brand names in this space.
  • We couldn’t have a “copy cat” approach as it just didn’t fit with our brand and it didn’t resonate with our aim to engage a broader range of customers who loved football but may not know anything about online payments or digital wallet services and the value this has for online spending.

We attacked the social channel, piece by piece and from behind!

  • We didn’t talk much about our products but we did talk about our brand, and the involvement we had with the club we were sponsoring. We engaged on a personal level about the common love of sport world wide and tied this back to our brand leverage quite subtly.
  • We engaged fans of the club to create their own unique commentator video around a well known match to win a unique money can’t buy experience at the club
  • We spoke to a global audience via associated events (African Cup of Nations) , highlighted new player sign ups (Korean player : Lee Chung-Yong) and talked about the big league matches our club was involved in to reach a broader audience world wide.
  • We did things no-body else had done by announcing the new club manager before the club did!? (This one was perhaps risky but it certainly made people pay attention)

The point is these things worked for us , it increased our social engagement by almost 60% (engaged followers) and according to Brandwatch , who completed an independant review of our shirt sponsorship, our approach was successful in terms of gaining a better cost per mention when compared to other big sports brands.

So , my advice is be brave, don’t follow the crowd and most importantly find your own unique voice to engage your audience!

You never know what can happen…

You may fail at a few things, but that’s ok (today’s news is tomorrows trash) then remember you will also succeed by the very fact that you are doing something different.