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For every business, consumers are the key in order to sustain in a market successfully. For an engaging consumer in a brand, businesses utilize promotional activities in order to attract and engage customers with an organization (Vinerean, 2017). These kinds of promotions are done through multiple channels. Digital mediums have become the most sought after and filled with abundant possibilities for organisations as the world has become extremely dependent upon digital mediums. Hence, attracting global consumers through digital medium have become trendy. The uses of digital media platforms have enabled businesses to promote their brands, easily collect feedback from consumers.
This particular report will be highlighting a segment of aspects relating to the significance of digital media upon consumer decision. In this regard, firstly, the report will evaluate and rationalize the importance of digital media on the consumer decision-making process. The following section will demonstrate the impact of the online review on the purchasing activity of consumers. Influencer marketing importance will be demonstrated in the subsequent section of the report. Lastly, the concluding sections will demonstrate the significance of online advertising upon purchasing intention.
Consumer decision making is related to the procedure in which a consumer undergo in order to decide what to buy. The advent of digital mediums in businesses has entirely changed the process of purchasing. Nowadays, a large part of the purchases is done through online mediums. This literally demonstrates the dependency on digital media of individuals. The dominance of social media is increasing day by day and it is also hugely impacting the decision-making procedure of individuals (Iqbal and Iqbal, 2019). As businesses are extensively using digital mediums to gain the attention of consumers because of the high level of presence of consumers in these mediums.
Digital mediums have benefitted in shortening the consumer journey. The conventional process of purchasing was that people get to know about a product from ads on television and during their shopping, they used to purchase the product. Now the process can be done in a minute. In addition to that, digital media has made the searching procedure easier. As a result product research is way more accessible to the customers and they can save a lot of tie through this (Yan et al., 2017).
Furthermore, social proof has emerged as a new concept. This kind of social feedbacks helps people to take decisions quickly. According to a report posted by Forbes, 81% of the consumer makes their purchasing decision through friends' post in digital mediums. Moreover, individuals, proactively ask for feedbacks before purchasing any items. The digital mediums have made the process of getting feedback easier and more accessible. Moreover, digital media stories play an impacting role in terms of making the purchasing decision. Normally these share stories are more raw and unfiltered which benefit an organisation to offer a genuine image of a product. In a nutshell, digital mediums build product awareness which helps consumers to recognize which product can solve their issues which as a result benefitting the consumers to make decisions quickly.
Since ancient times, the recommendation has always played a huge role in terms of asking purchasing decisions. Recommendation helps to build trust among the consumer which makes purchasing decisions simpler. In present times, online product reviews play a huge role in the purchasing behaviour of people a lot. Nowadays consumers have become more aware than ever when it comes to purchasing any item, consumers prefer to buy look for another view on the products and then make their decision based on the nature of the reviews (Voramontri and Klieb, 2019). A positive review benefits in boosting more sales, on the other hand, a negative review destroys a brand's reputation to a great extent. In this regard, businesses need to pay huge attention to the feedback and should take necessary measures in order to influence the consumers with positivity.
Online reviews play a huge impact upon the consumer buying decision as human beings are the chain consumers and a reference naturally drive a customer to buy a product. A recent study conducted by Symbiosis International University disclosed that the buying behaviour of women is more influenced by positive feedbacks. Most homemakers are mostly influenced by their husband's opinion and informational influence, whereas, working women are primarily impacted by the informational impact.
Generally, online reviews deliver consumers alternatives and these reviews have become alternatives to personal recommendations. People get to compare different brands in the review section which is helpful as well as harmful for an organization (Kim and Ammeter, 2018). As per the consumer behaviour theory of Reasoned Action, Consumer act as per their pre-existing attitude and to receive a particular outcome. Hence, the consumer takes some specific action to get the expected result. As a consequence, reviews are very effective to make a consumer take decisions easily. Most consumers evaluate three things in a product, including, perfect, fair and expected product. This means consumers want to know how the product is looking and how it will be served. Naturally, this is what is displayed in the reviews and people express their expectation and their potential of fulfilling the expectation is demonstrated.
A positive response from the consumer demonstrates their wiliness to further buy a product and it is a very powerful marketing asset for an organisation that helps to attract more customers (Bhatt and Trivedi, 2020). On the other hand, negative feedback hugely impacts the business adversely and also negatively impacts a customer. Again a negative review gives businesses the opportunity to amend their weak areas. Furthermore, their reply to negative feedback can also drive back the customers. Simply, reviews are an important deciding factor that drives many consumers to buy online. Online reviews build trust among the customers and business. Hence, online reviews help to close a deal and encourage consumers to gather knowledge regarding a product. Fashion brands like, Victoria’s Secret, Free people, ASOS are extensively taking advantage of online reviews.
The term influencer marketing is a newly emerged concept and has become a mainstream form of online marketing. Influencer marketing is a type of social media marketing that promotes a product via recommendations from influencing personalities. Influencers are the people who have a large number of followers in their social media networks and a large number of people know them who are called an influencer. This kind of marketing is fruitful because of the high amount of trust they have created through their followers and their recommendation works as social proof for a brand. Nowadays, people more rely on the opinion of influencers rather than the brand.
Influencer marketing is related to the brand collaboration with an online influencer in order to promote their services and products (Haenlein et al., 2020). The influencer marketing trend began in the year 2006. Individuals are termed influencers only when they have a large number of followers in their social media channels. Mainly social media platforms are home for the influencers. This type of marketing is considered as the indispensable factor which promotes a brand of a business and enhances consumer trust.
The main reason behind the implementation of influencer marketing is to gain a large number of consumers. An influencer already has a large number of followers which expose a brand to a large number of follower. The action of following an influencer is developed based on the trust factor established. As a result, when an influencer promotes a product, followers likely to believe and buy it. For businesses, influencer marketing is a great way to reach potential customers. Furthermore, this type of marketing improves brand loyalty and credibility which play a determinant role in purchasing decisions.
Influencers help to build brand awareness as they have the incredible capability to familiarize the audience with a brand identity (Wu et al., 2018). It is also notable that the influencers are capable of persuading their followers through their recommendation, storytelling and presentation skills. This assists consumers in easily understanding complicated features and understanding the benefits easily. Apart from this, broad awareness campaigns can be done through personal touch with the help of influencer marketing. For instance, an influencer can share their own picture demonstrating their personal experience with a fashion brand or product which turns out to be very authentic for the followers.
Moreover, Influencers can drive the engagement of consumers in multiple ways. They can share videos of a brand in their all social media channels, supporting participation in the giveaway which drives a lot of traffic and this engagement is then converted into actions (Yodi, Widyastuti and Noor, 2020). A consumer who is immensely interested to buy a product falls into the mid-funnel territory in the sales procedure and an influencer help to move the consumers from one stage to another stage by delivering compelling content built with their own recommendation and experiences. Companies like, Daniel Wellington, MAC cosmetic, Forever 21, Zara, Happenstance use influencer marketing extensively.
The advertising landscape has been totally transformed after the advancement of the World Wide Web in the last 10 years. Along with tie, the trend of online advertising is evolving swiftly. Online advertising is a type of promotional activity which utilize the world wide web and internet to serve marketing message to consumers (Bashir and Wilson, 2018). Almost half of the population are using the internet and people all over the world, regardless of their ages are connected with internet services. For becoming a business successfully, online advertisements are crucial in this era. As per various research results, people prefer to gather information about a product primarily from internet sources before making the final decision. The fast and easy access to data and a large number of consumer accessibility has made online platforms more popular to consumers as well as for businesses. Motivation-Need theories are extensively used by marketers to drive consumers through online advertising.
Presently near about 4.8 billion people use the internet and 93.33% are active users. Of 5.27 billion mobile phone users, nearly 85% of users are active. Out of 4.48 billion social media users, 99% are active users who visit websites through mobile devices (Johnson, 2021). Multiple online advertising techniques, such as pop-ups, banners are considered to be annoying for consumers. Various studies have elaborated that online advertisements are more goal-centred and criticize online advertisements harshly. Furthermore, due to advancements businesses are able to gather more data about their consumer which is largely utilized by the organisations.
The ample amount of data is helping businesses to understand consumer nature and preference. As per the information, organisations focus on displaying the products they require without bothering them with unwanted items. These types of personal preferences are creating a trust factor between organisations and customers. Moreover, digital mediums have become a pace for entertainment for the user and during the timeframe when they are active; people like to get aware of products, discounts and additional information. Online advertising is more customer-centric and attracts a specific segment of the consumer which help to sustain consumer interest in the brand. Fashion brands, like Zappos, Patagonia, DKNY spends a lot on their online advertising.
After analyzing this particular data it can be demonstrated that digital mediums have become an integral part of human beings and these mediums are playing a crucial role in terms of making any type of purchasing decision. Apart from the mediums, the reviews and feedbacks are the very significant decision-maker for customers as well. Whereas, positive feedback enhances business and negative feedback hamper a business. Again the newly emerged influencer marketing is very crucial in terms of purchasing decision making for customers. As they have already a strong loyalty factor with huge followers where a small recommendation can drive a large customer to buy a product. Furthermore, the traditional way of television advertising has lost its aura, where the online advertising tools took their place to engage and drive customers. Due to the massive popularity of digital mediums, online advertising also gained huge popularity among businesses as well as among consumers. Regardless of anything all of the mediums have their own advantage and disadvantages but considering the outcomes, the impact of digital media on customer purchasing decisions is huge. Some questions that can be asked to the Sales manager or digital media managers are,
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