Google’s Micro Moments: A New Approach to Marketing

Google recently introduced a new marketing concept called ‘Micro-Moments’, which has the potential of reshaping the way companies market and sell to their consumers.

In a recent update to their Think with Google platform, Google reported on findings from their research into real customers and the moments they experience in real life.

Ad Age described the micro-moment analogy perfectly: “micro-moments open windows of ‘in the moment’ opportunities when someone searches for something top-of-mind using the closest device to them. It’s what happens in these short bursts of actions that shape the impressions or next steps of your consumers. Essentially, micro-moments unfold through a variety of common ‘I want’ scenarios that help people take steps or make decisions.”

These decisions include:

  • I want to learn…
  • I want to buy…
  • I want to know…
  • I want to go…
  • I want to do…

When a consumer wants to search for something within these moments, they will of course reach for their smartphone. On a small screen, navigated through natural and native swipes, pinches, zooms and clicks.

Google has explained that smartphones allow us to act on any impulse at any time. We take immediate action whenever we want to learn, find, do or buy something. They have also explained that there is now a demand for relevance. When we act on our needs in-the-moment, our expectations are high and our patience is low. This makes the quality, relevance and usefulness of marketing more important than ever. And ultimately, the brands/retailers/companies that do the best job of addressing our needs in each moment will win. It’s as simple as that.

But how do you address the needs of your consumers?

A few ways to tackle micro-moments in a business sense include the following:

1. Identify key micro-moments and what happens in them: Why, where and how people search for information. Google call this a ‘moments map’.

2. Understand their goals and aspirations for doing so.

3. Use search insights to identify new trends or find patterns of intent that you might not be addressing.

4. Surface the context of the search, the moment in which it takes place and the behaviours and expectations that define it.

5. Run an audit of current media efforts. Are you present in the right places with the right information in the right context?

6. Learn how information is presented in each moment and understand which content formats would be ideal (and optimized) for easy discovery and consumption on the right device at the right time, every time.

7. Discover ways to meet or exceed consumer expectations through technology, content and engagement.

8. Orient a single view of the customer and all of the moments you need to guide their journey.

9. Empower teams to test and iterate using new approaches, KPIs and methodologies.

10. Commit to being there in the moment — comprehensively and consistently.

More key statistics to take from the research:

People evaluate purchase decisions in-the-moment – 82% of smartphone users turn to their phone to influence a purchase decision while in store.

People solve unexpected problems in-the-moment – 62% of smartphone users are more likely to take action right away toward solving an unexpected problem or new task because they have a smartphone.

People pursue big goals in small moments – 90% of smartphone users have used their phone to make progress toward a long term goal or multi-step process while “out and about”.

People try new things in routine moments – 91% of smartphone users turn to their phone for ideas while doing a given task.

Our Search Marketing Consultant, Aaron, has shed some light on how it will affect RHP:

Understanding micro-moments allows us as an agency to construct better experiences for users and provide them with relevant, helpful content. With these insights, we can help to build better relationships, for example with our fashion client ‘Lipsy’ who have heavy mobile traffic, we can better understand the intent, needs and challenges, from this we can provide them with more meaningful and helpful interactions.

Life isn’t lived in years, or days, or even hours. It’s lived in moments.

Google, 2015

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