“Marketing is not an event, but a process, it has a beginning, a middle, but never an end...” Author unknown

The Blog

A new take on Marketing?
Posted at 10:34 PM on 31 May 2009 under Marketing

Gone are the days when Marketing is when you, the Marketer, tell the customer or potential customer what you want to tell them. Full stop.

We are all aware (and guilty) of the countless ways traditional Marketers have conducted this type of communication – TV ads, print mail shots, telemarketing, billboards, SMS messaging – the list goes on. But there is one flaw with this – it’s ONE-WAY COMMUNICATION.

All these ways of Marketing have one common factor – a one-way communication stream. (Yes, asking a customer to send his or her details in to win a prize is hardly a form of real two-way communication).

The first thing one learns in any Marketing course is to find out what your customer wants. Remember that? Yip – it’s right up there with the 4 P’s of Marketing. (Well my textbooks still say 4, but it’s almost doubled now!)

But did we actually really care? I mean when we send out advertising messages, we don’t really want customers to interact with us – they might complain about our widgets or service! So, for long enough one-way communication has actually been quite convenient. But Marketers, no resting on our laurels – Social Media has arrived..

This new concept, Social Media, has posed a complete new challenge for Marketers. Firstly, we all need to understand what it is. Secondly, what do we do with it when we know what it is?

Well so far, my understanding is that it’s a form of direct Marketing to your community (or in traditional terms, your target audience), allowing networking and actual engagement.

This seems odd though, as you are “directly” marketing to someone you don’t have to see. Since it’s all electronic media and in the virtual world, you don’t need to see the person face-to-face. But you are still Marketing directly to your community.

Furthermore, it allows customers to interact directly with you by way of commenting, asking questions, giving input and hopefully not too much complaining, thereby facilitating a true form of two-way communication. It is also a cost effective way of interacting with your base and hey, in this economy, that’s got to be a plus.

It seems like such a simple concept, however the ROI and measurements of Social Media Marketing are still very unclear, and there are still many unknown factors when it comes to this concept.
But we can either get on the band-wagon or stay stuck in the past.

Happy Social Networking!

Comments

It is even worse if engineering tells marketing and sales what they should be selling with no consideration for the clients’ needs.

By Rudolf the Red on 2009-07-06
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