Social networks as weapons of seduction

On 24 March, 2022
6 min

Public relations has become essential to guarantee the right perception of messages in this crowded digital world. It is high time that PR campaigns were integrated with digital campaigns. In this article, the agency Red Hot Penny , specializing in e-commerce, highlights the integrated strategy of the L'Oréal group to show the benefits of such a strategy.

For the first time ever, spending on internet advertising is expected to exceed investment in TV ads. This is a fact that all brands should be aware of, as it indicates a shift towards online marketing. This is also a fact acknowledged by David Greenfield , global head of the ecosystem design department at Adidas . As a result, Adidas is focusing its marketing spend on digital channels in order to achieve dominance over rivals like Nike. Last month, Kasper Rorsted, CEO of Adidas, has announced the elimination of all expenditure allocated to television commercials. Feeling that "digital engagement is key", Rorsted believes they are on track to grow their revenue from €1 billion to €4 billion by 2020.

What are the implications for retail brands?

For beginners, now is the time to reassess the value of their PR activities. The online marketing landscape is teeming with brands, bloggers and vloggers vying to get noticed and secure a share of growing consumer online spending.

Previously seen as a trivial indicator, public relations has become vital to ensuring that messages are perceived correctly in this crowded digital world. When public relations is integrated into digital campaigns (rather than conducted in isolation), it becomes possible to achieve tangible business results. Public relations activity can be fully tracked and measured. So that its success can be quantifiably proven.

Offline PR cannot be ignored

For beginners, now is the time to reassess the value of their PR activities. The online marketing landscape is teeming with brands, bloggers and vloggers vying to get noticed and secure a share of growing consumer online spending.

Adidas' decision to ditch traditional marketing techniques is a bold move. For a brand that is universally known, it may no longer be necessary to pursue publications or the search for advertising space on television channels. However, in our view, offline tactics shouldn't be ignored. Striking a balance between online and offline marketing can go a long way toward achieving the primary goal of public relations: providing more brand exposure.

Offline publications, such as magazines and newspapers, enjoy high social status. On the other hand, the fact of obtaining a report (or even a mention) relating to the brand will be able to modify the perception of this brand. When should digital come into play?

You can't know exactly how many sales a story about a given product has generated, that's one of the problems with offline PR. Publications estimate the cost of advertising based on the number of readers they have. Similarly, the higher the number of views over a given period, the greater its value will be considered. The cost of public relations and KPIs can quickly become too focused on estimates.

This is where online public relations acquires great value.

Here is the reason

The perfect balance between online and offline marketing comes from the form of online publishing websites. A presence on these sites helps improve page rankings for search queries. This is thanks to the backlinks from domains of great influence. Getting mentions in online publications is equally beneficial, as they have the added benefit of being accurately measured using links.

The Internet offers brands the opportunity to extract data. Tracking the stats of a PR campaign helps inform brands about what they are doing well and what they need to change. This is where integrating PR with other marketing channels such as search and social becomes essential for brand growth.

Once your PR team or agency has set up a campaign, for example, to distribute an article designed to boost brand awareness. It is possible to rely on statistics and tracking data from the site to measure the success of the campaign. Here are some ways to achieve this goal:

1) Social media reach and engagement

How many people have seen the article? How many people clicked on the article and on which social platforms? What is the demographic background of these people, including their age and occupation?

2) Website traffic

How long did people spend on the website? What is the bounce rate? What were the best referring sites for this online public relations?

3) Generation of sales and leads

What percentage of people made a purchase after seeing the item on social media or an online post? What percentage of people signed up for the newsletter indicating a desire for future interaction?

It is possible to test an online PR campaign as an additional tactic to provide more accurate KPIs, primarily when PR efforts are integrated with SEO and statistics. The result of a campaign can then help generate new content on a new marketing channel. Embedding PR into the content opens up even more possibilities. Instead of generating future content topics and formats for brands to use.

Here is the reason

  • The perfect balance between online and offline marketing comes from the form of online publishing websites. A presence on these sites helps improve page rankings for search queries. This is thanks to the backlinks from domains of great influence. Getting mentions in online publications is equally beneficial, as they have the added benefit of being accurately measured using links.
  • The Internet offers brands the opportunity to extract data. Tracking the stats of a PR campaign helps inform brands about what they are doing well and what they need to change. This is where integrating PR with other marketing channels such as search and social becomes essential for brand growth.
  • Once your PR team or agency has set up a campaign, for example, to distribute an article designed to boost brand awareness. It is possible to rely on statistics and tracking data from the site to measure the success of the campaign. Here are some ways to achieve this goal:

The reach of the internet

  1. Online campaigns have even greater reach potential. The online usage figures are impressive. 82% of adults in the UK connect to the internet every day. 80% of 25-54 year olds use it to find out more about different products and services. For brands, this means that there are huge numbers of potential customers actively seeking information about certain products.
  2. And the Internet has considerable influence. When it comes to YouTubers, a new breed of celebrities, 70% of teens identify with them more easily than traditional celebrities. Their subscriber audience reflects that. YouTuber channels receive on average 3x more video views than traditional celebrity channels.

Go digital-only

This is something Red Hot Penny customer Crabtree & Evelyn has observed. Earlier this year, Crabtree & Evelyn began partnering with beauty blogger and author Estée Lalonde to promote its La Source line of products. This digital-only campaign sparked a change in the brand's image, making it more appealing to the public. Crabtree & Evelyn's Director of Digital Marketing, Holly Anderson , says:

“Crabtree & Evelyn's main KPI for our last collection launch was to develop the brand's visibility with millennials. We chose to partner with Estée Lalonde during the launch because we knew we could speak to a whole new audience from Generation Y, loyal to Estée and its online interactions. As the first "face" of the brand, Estée gave Crabtree & Evelyn a more youthful and modern look. Our site traffic is now made up of a demographic of 18-35 year olds since the launch of the partnership and we have managed to get closer to Estée fans.”

Combine the reach and influence of the Internet: the possibilities will speak for themselves. Brands should target their audience online. A place where the majority of consumers are looking for places to spend their money as well as new brands to follow. But for that, brands need a strong digital PR strategy.

Brands using an integrated PR strategy

We especially love L'Oréal's integrated PR strategy. After seeing the value of online influencers, L'Oréal decided to design its campaign around them. Her #YoursTruly campaign for True Match foundation includes celebrities, influencers and bloggers. A blogger was notably included on this occasion: Gary Thompson , which demonstrates L'Oréal's attempt to expand its audience.

With more than 30,000 followers on Instagram, Thompson represents a particular niche that L'Oreal is very interested in: men's beauty products. For L'Oréal, it's about reaching potential fans of their brand. Even if these are not part of their usual target audience. Male makeup enthusiasts are an audience that the brand may not have recognized or been able to reach without the help of interaction enabled by an online PR strategy. Their television commercials for make-up tend to focus on women; thus establishing a relationship with a blogger is an interesting variation.

A new experience thanks to influencers

Plus, it's a new way to connect brands and consumers in a more personal way. Adrien Koskas , Managing Director of L'Oréal Paris UK, says:

"[The influencers] will be present at major events such as Paris Fashion Week, so they can share their experience with the rest of the world and offer their subscribers and our fans a vision behind the scenes or even from the first rank.”

It is precisely this VIP experience that influencers can offer their followers. This helps brands get closer to their audience and become more approachable. While some ads ran on TV, several video ads ran on Facebook and YouTube. Channels visited daily by L'Oréal fans.

In terms of integrating its PR strategy, L'Oréal produced content in the form of an app: L'Oréal Makeup Genius. By downloading the app, users have access to a whole selection of makeup looks. L all created by influencers and bloggers, including Caroline Receveur. The app then uses augmented reality so users can "try on" that look.

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