If the goal of marketing is to create awareness and demand then what is the point of using conventional tools, mediums and messages? In a world that’s always on, packed with omnipresent messages pushing me-too products, classical and traditional marketing is being switched off or tuned out.
People are looking for a different kind of engagement with providers of products and services. They are rewarding companies that deliver value, provide meaning, and engage with them on a personal level.
So what is a clever marketer to do? First thing is to throw out the old rulebook. What they taught you in school or college 20 or even 10 years ago is not going to work today. Widget selling, using printed brochures packed with features and benefits or glossy print ads is just not going to get you where you want to be anymore. Classical marketing is about as relevant today as Latin is to our daily conversations. It’s at the root of many languages but it is no longer used outside of academia.
What smart marketers need today is to take risks and continuously adapt tone, channel and content to jockey for a privileged position in their customer’s mind. The old tricks aren’t going to work as well anymore as they gets overused by other rivals and as the intended audience develops an immunity to a barrage of similar sounding messages. The shelf life of a successful tool, message or campaign is getting shorter everyday.
The winners in this ever-evolving competitive landscape will be the ones that can create, adapt and evolve on the move, very often using emerging technological and social platforms. They will not rest on past successes for fear of being overtaken by others and because tastes and trends change in the blink of an eye. In a networked, social and dynamic world, conventional thinking is not just the enemy; it is a recipe for outright failure.
Tomorrow’s winners are the daredevils, the passion fueled creators and the challengers of conventions. They are the bold ones who will engage with customers to stimulate them and push them to look at the world in novel ways. But tomorrow’s marketing is also going to be rewarding for customers because it teaches, entertains and builds.
As (sustained) relationships get established, the successful marketers will promote more holistic, value-based solutions that challenge the customers’ own conventional thinking. Not because it is a bad thing but because customers are often unaware of what is possible and therefore unprepared for the inevitable change that lies just around the bend.
Integrated, flexible, meaningful, value-driven solutions will create the winners in tomorrow’s economy. The marketers who are among the first to adapt and embrace this new thinking will reap the rewards and secure an exclusive place in the customer’s mind.