A Micromoment in Time


“Doing the right thing, at the right time, at the right place, for the right reason” is a great way to describe the intersection of luck (or intuition) and skill (expertise). But technology has changed this marketing paradigm. The new definition of this interaction is called a “micromoment.” Google’s content marketing team, Think with Google, says, “There are different types of micromoments that consumers experience, on average, 150 times a day: purchase moments, research moments, and discovery moments, just to name a few.”

The concept of a micromoment makes me think of a doctor’s appointment I had recently. Discussing age-related memory changes (not mine, of course), the doctor explained that as people age, the brain’s synapse connections slow. At 50 years old, it takes a person five times as long to connect the dots as a 20-year-old. This is significant if you are a CMO who’s attempting to grab a micromoment using an omnichannel strategy.

Competing for a consumer’s attention, a brand has maybe a few moments—not minutes—to capture the attention span of an individual and convey its brand messaging in a concise, easy-to-remember way. Ultimately, the consumer journey will be dependent upon the cumulative effect of all channels (and identify what delivers the most value in the least amount of time) for transactions. As marketers build the funnel, the “noise” of competition, disruption, and fragmentation keeps a message’s impact and scalability tight.

Becoming an expert on micromoments is difficult, and yet so very important. One strategy is to identify “qualified” buyers. The idea of delivering instant gratification as a strategy for a brand will work only if repeatable touchpoints and integrated response mechanisms are in place. Too often, inspiration, education, and entertainment are overlooked.

For each segmentation, mapping out a moment to “capture” inspiration is easier said than done. Many marketers believe that mobile has the corner on this market. However, all technologies can deliver that moment and position a brand to capture a consumer’s attention and compel action. Research moments, purchase moments, and discovery moments include up to 150 triggers for the same intended response.

A brand has maybe a few moments—not minutes—to capture the attention span of an individual and convey its brand messaging.

With attribution careening between mobile, tablet, desktop, and traditional channels, how does one define ROI? Is frequency the key to metrics? Gross impressions? Or perhaps the futurists are right, and we will soon measure response by the number of nanoseconds a brand captures. Using the data acquired in capturing micromoments will be a game-changer. KPIs and methodologies must be refined continually, or the usefulness of the data can be compromised.

Does this mean that marketers will soon be microsurfing, micromobiling, microwatching, and micropurchasing? Add the human element of the so-called “internet of things,” and we will be able to identify consumer engagement like never before. But most of the tenets we have applied to products in direct response for years will still apply:

  • Uniqueness
  • Mass appeal
  • Solves a problem
  • Fulfills a dream
  • Provides value
  • Demonstrable
  • Offers a “magic” transformation or instant gratification

Even in the context of micromoments, these factors will never go out of fashion. If orange (or whatever color is “in” this season) is the new black, DR must be the new BR.