This Isn’t Your Father’s Marketing

Until very recently business followed a specific plan of engagement with consumers. Beginning with print, then radio, television then the Internet, communications were a one way street. Over the last 15 or so years, all of the existing channels were used to drive traffic to a brand’s website.

old business diagram

As web2.0 behavior and technology evolved brand engagement has changed. It is no longer centered around the brand but around the consumer. At this point the consumer is still receiving your brand messages through the traditional PR, TV, print, radio, web channels, but mostly they are interacting with the web and mobile. They are interacting with radio, TV and PR, rather than just receiving messaging. They are also interacting with social networks, text messengers, blogs, media (video, images, audio) all through desktop applications, web browsers and handheld devices.

Smart brands are engaging consumers at each of these points. As everyone knows, there are more channels of engagement as well as more brands, making it a fight for attention.

new business diagram

This makes it as important as every, to not only be EVERYWHERE your customers are, but to not cop out and do what the other guy is doing. I’ve met with dozens of brands and heard the same reply: who else has done it, prove the outcome, that’s too risky for us, it’s just a fad. Sure, you can wait for the other network to do a Facebook app, ou can wait to see if another manufacturer fails or succeeds on Twitter, but where will that get you? The brands that take the risks, that try the new things, that don’t just follow the crowd, are the ones that grab mindshare by the handful and leave you trailing in their wake.

So, be the brand that stands out, or be the one that gets left behind.

new business diagram


on “This Isn’t Your Father’s Marketing
3 Comments on “This Isn’t Your Father’s Marketing
  1. Well put! We are moving away from a head space where marketers and advertisers talk “at” people to talking “with”.

    “This makes it as important as every, to not only be EVERYWHERE your customers ar…” This is true to a point. I believe strongly in brand identity, having consistent themes and engagement across multiple platforms, however, Web2.0 tools are just that – tools. And not every tool is right for every job. Being everywhere for a small business owner is especially daunting and you need to evaluate the ability of each tool to engage your audience. For example, if you’re selling denture cream, how much value are you going to get out of Twitter vs. the time you put in (ah the tricky ROI of social media again!”? But you are right, the conversation is happening with or without you, you need to be at the very least, listening.

    • Obviously not every tool is appropriate. Obviously Twitter wouldn’t be the best place to promote denture cream, considering only 6% of Twitter users are potential denture cream users. You need to be everywhere your customers are. If you have a smaller psychographic on social network A and a larger psychographic on social network B, you should focus more time and energy on the SoNet where you can have the greatest impact.

  2. Good article. Not only do you need to be “where” your potential customer base lives in order to reach them, you also need to turn one way communications into dialogs. Customers who can interact with your company or brand in a meaningful way will have greater attention to your messages…otherwise these days they are just heard as noise.

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