OAO An Overview and Functionality

OAO An Overview and Functionality

The Rise of Owned Asset Optimization (OAO): Building Sustainable Brand Connections

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When search engines first emerged in the digital landscape, we all marveled at the ability to get answers to any question in a matter of seconds. However, as time has passed, it has become increasingly challenging for internet users to find the best information when they need it most. This presents a significant problem for brand leaders, who understand the importance of connecting with customers in their moments of need.

The cost to acquire customers through digital channels has skyrocketed due to intense competition from advertisers. In the United States alone, ad spend continues to climb. According to forecasts from MAGNA, media owners’ advertising revenue is expected to increase by 2.5% to $333 billion this year, with search and commerce advertising experiencing the highest growth rate of 10%.

The High Price of Finding Your Customer

Even if your brand is the best in the business, with a reputation for innovation and consistent value, you’ll still have to pay a premium to get in front of customers. In their quest for attention, brands often neglect other essential marketing assets like their websites and owned content, opting instead for high-dollar paid media. This approach is a missed opportunity to build a library of assets that truly address customers’ questions and meet their information needs.

The Arrival of Owned Asset Optimization (OAO)

Owned asset optimization (OAO) is a new strategy that allows brands to earn customer attention and trust while utilizing their marketing budget more effectively. OAO focuses on the assets a brand owns, such as corporate websites, blogs, downloadable documents or assets, proprietary data, and intellectual property, as core aspects of their growth strategy.

There are several advantages to implementing an OAO strategy. Not only does it lower the cost of customer acquisition, but it also improves consumer relationships and enhances the overall brand experience. By developing owned assets that align with consumer needs at different stages of the buying process, brands can eliminate the need for intermediaries like paid media brokers and affiliates.

From Interruption to Reception: The Shift in Marketing Values

The driving force behind OAO is a shift in marketing values from interruption to reception. Consumers have become increasingly wary of disruptive interruption marketing, such as ads that appear during TV shows or while scrolling through social media. Privacy concerns and content blocking further challenge the effectiveness of interruption marketing. Even permission marketing, which was once popularized by Seth Godin, has lost its favor due to the abundance of marketing messages bombarding consumers.

Reception marketing, on the other hand, focuses on meaningful and non-intrusive connections with consumers. OAO falls under the umbrella of reception marketing, enabling brands to meet consumer needs at the right time with the appropriate assets. This approach allows brands to become trusted resources for consumers without disrupting their everyday experiences.

How OAO Adds Value to the Consumer Journey

The underlying purpose of OAO is to add value, win customers, and grow business. The strategy begins with owned assets and is driven by consumer intent data rather than being tied to any specific platform or channel. By understanding the exact queries their target audience is searching for, brands can gain uninhibited and honest data, building meaningful connections with consumers.

Search intent data captures consumers’ authentic questions, providing brands with insights into opportunities for connection and clarification. OAO leverages this data and utilizes it to optimize owned assets that address consumers’ needs at different touchpoints throughout their buying journey.

OAO in Practice: Building a Foundation of User-Informed Owned Assets

Implementing OAO starts with consumer intent data and a clear understanding of the customer journey. From there, brands can begin building a foundation of user-informed owned assets. This includes critical elements like brand identity and messaging, intellectual property, and even assembling a team of experts.

Optimizing the brand’s website is crucial in the OAO equation, as it serves as the main access point for consumers to interact with the brand. Leveraging search intent data, best practices for design, user experience, conversion rate optimization (CRO), and content development, brands can enhance their website to provide valuable and meaningful content.

OAO is an ongoing process that extends beyond the website. By creating pillar content, blog posts, tools, downloadable assets, and even corporate communications messaging, brands can reach their prospects and customers at the right moment with the information they need.

OAO Results: Decreasing Customer Acquisition Costs

OAO provides a full-circle win for brands by significantly lowering the cost per acquisition (CPA). Compared to paid channels, OAO can reduce CPA by as much as 87.4%. However, the benefits of OAO go beyond cost savings. Unlike paid advertisements that have a limited lifespan and exist on third-party platforms, owned assets can continually deliver value and be repurposed to meet consumer needs and build trust.

Over time, these assets help brands build meaningful relationships with customers, where value is exchanged both before and beyond the point of sale. OAO is transforming the modern consumer experience by prioritizing value and quality over frequency and quantity. It empowers brands to build sustainable ROI and forge long-term, value-driven connections with their customers.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Tim Douglas; Pexels; Thank you!