December 16, 2011
This continues the discussion we started in the last blog entry about the future of marketing.
I shared my thoughts that the concept of brand will get more important, marketing will be more about behavior than communication, and that marketing will get more integrated with other disciplines. Here are the rest of my thoughts about the future of marketing.
Empathy and artistry will get more important. Empathy is at the heart of marketing because it is the ability to see and feel through someone else’s perspective. Artistry is the intuition and creativity to invent something that offers something new and important for a customer—also at the heart of marketing. Brands like Edmunds.com get this, as they work with companies like design firm IDEO to make the car buying experience more delightful, a huge area of potential innovation.
Big data and advanced analytics will profoundly impact how well we understand our business. There will be no excuse not to fully understand the interrelationships in your marketing activities and spending. Look at the work marketing analytics firm MarketShare has done with Ticketmaster to better understand behavior and pricing (full disclosure: I serve on the advisory board of MarketShare). And this is only the beginning.
Business model innovation will separate the great brands and great marketers from the ordinary ones. Because those who think about upending the business model are usually closest to potential customers, and who build highly differentiated brands. Red Bull, Apple, Amazon, Groupon, Google, Starbucks, and Vente Privee are a few examples of wildly successful brands that changed the business model in their categories or invented a new business model.
Mobile will increasingly be the gateway to brands. The trend to mobile is dramatic in how people access entertainment, shopping information, news, and just about everything important to them. Eric Schmidt of Google says the future will be social, local and mobile. The smart marketers like Coke are already preparing for this by experimenting, and leading media/content companies are designing experiences starting with mobile devices and tablets versus computer or TV screens.
Are some of these trends and patterns obvious—yes. Are you acting on them now to prepare your organization and capabilities for the future? That is the real question.