Today’s consumers gather information in completely different ways than they did just six years ago. Even then, the tides were obviously changing. For example, less than 37% of the public received a newspaper delivery at home in 2013. That was down from 54% in 2000 and a high of 124% in the 1950s.
Instead, it is a new world, one where advertising spend on Google has far surpassed that of traditional newspapers. In fact, the days of “yellow page” advertising have very clearly evolved into “web page” advertising.
With these changes come many challenges for rent-to-own dealers. However, there are also huge opportunities.
The New Rent-to-Own Demographic
Thanks to millennials, rent-to-own is no longer just a necessity. Instead, it’s a highly desirable option that creates limitless opportunities for both consumers’ design aesthetics and their wallets.
But millennial customers don’t shop the same way their parents did. They rely on digital means to gather information, and they tend to make decisions more quickly. So it’s critical that your store is top-of-mind when they enter the sales funnel. And that’s where digital marketing comes in.
The Promise of Digital
Digital marketing has two major benefits: 1) it is cost effective and 2) it can be used to reach scores of consumers with the click of a mouse. The challenge is knowing where to put your resources. Let’s look at a few of the best ways to extend your reach via paid media.
- Web Banners – Studies show that this is the most-frequented section of your website. In fact, consumers will scroll through your banners to see what you have next. So, the fear that you need to have the hottest items and deals showing first to capture their attention isn’t founded.
However, time should be spent here to ensure you’re delivering your message the right way. Mix in hard-hitting, “call to action” events with some softer, more thematic content. Think of it as telling the story of your store in picture book form. This is your opportunity to set yourself apart from the competition – because this book is a book that our consumers are eager to read.
- Landing Pages – Each web banner should have a linked landing page that brings the consumer to a more descriptive page of your promotion. These landing pages don’t need to be “transactional;” instead, they can simply be reference pages that inform customers about your offer and value as a retailer.
- Email Marketing – This tried-and-true method delivers focused and directed advertising straight to the consumer via email. Although this channel is effective, history has shown that it can be challenging to manage on a case-by-case basis.
- Retargeting – This targeted online marketing avenue delivers advertising to consumers based specifically on their prior internet actions or searches.
- Social Postings – Posting on social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram can help businesses generate new customer contacts and stay in contact with those that already exist. As an example, Facebook says that while most online advertising reaches only 38% of its intended audience, Facebook’s reach averages 89%.
Whether you’re a techno-savvy principal/owner or a newbie to the world of digital advertising, it’s imperative that you learn as much as you can about this medium. Why? Because the market is changing, and today’s consumers expect their retailers to have an online presence.
You spend an enormous amount of time, money and effort setting your floor and merchandising your store. Make sure you also invest the proper resources to attract consumers where they are – online. Remember, you can catch more fish with a net than you can with a lure. Let’s cast a net of digital awareness and start capturing these new customers today.
Patrick Maloney is senior vice president of appliances for Nationwide Marketing Group