This will be the decade of digital marketing. Social and digital tools are exploding in popularity and use. Access to the tools is becoming ubiquitous. Marketers can easily see that consumers are embracing the technology and seem to have an unending appetite. Facebook, Twitter,LinkedIn, and YouTube are now everyday household words. Why is this exciting? The answer is not an individual application, rather it’s the behaviors they encourage and teach us and the opportunities they create.
Let me explain. With the advent of social and digital platforms, the average consumer now has the ability to be a publisher of content. When the Internet first became mainstream, most of the content was published by corporations or savvy technology folks. The average person was just a reader or consumer of the information. Over the past few years, this has started to shift with tools like product reviews, status updates, blogs, picture catalogs, and music catalogs. More and more people are beginning to create content in addition to consuming content. You and your family have undoubtedly been a part of this behavior shift.
So why is it a good time to be a marketer? I believe its because relationship marketing is beginning to become a necessary marketing model to reach consumers as they become more empowered with their new tools. In the classic marketing models of push and pull marketers would base decisions based on production output or consumer demand. Relationship marketing techniques aren’t new, but the ability to reach consumers quicker through digital platforms is changing the way marketers must think. For example, how can you show ads to a consumer on a e-retail site that are based on their profile or bast buying behavior? How do you craft a brand and a message such that consumers choose to read it on services like Facebook and Twitter? More and more consumers have the ability to screen and choose the messages they see. This holds marketers more accountable for delivering messages that add value to consumers.
Anytime there is a paradigm shift or enhancement to a marketing model is a time for marketers to test, measure, learn and adjust. The beginning decade of two-thousand was about getting consumers onto a new platform and enabling their empowerment. This decade will be for marketers to learn how to better connect with consumers. It really is a good time to be a marketer. Time to get busy!
Photo Credit: Geek and Poke via creative commons license.