Our brands are out of our control. They are built up (and torn down) in the minds and perceptions of customers and stakeholders. And in our efforts to regain some control, we chase brand new and ingenious truths, while tending to lose sight of the bigger picture.
Like lemmings, we flock heedlessly in the same direction, focusing all efforts and resources on the next big thing: A new technology or marketing mantra to replace the old and obviously hopelessly obsolete, so we can boost sales, brand value, conversion rates or whatever else may be the answer to our prayers.
The new black may be mobile marketing, apps, QR codes, SEM, SEO, tracking tools, social media marketing, viral marketing, re-targeting tools, reputation management, blog marketing, marketing automation or digital magazines. The shear fact, however, that they are on this list, probably means they will be ever so last season tomorrow. In theory at least.
It might seem to be arguing against any development in marketing approach, which however, couldn’t be more wrong. I welcome any tool, thought or technology that can improve my understanding of and engagement with our customers. Not because it’s a fancy new tool, but because it enhances my customer experience and exceeds my expectations.
New marketing specialties, that spring from true, identified customer needs/behaviour and the overall marketing strategy are effective, if used properly. Their real value is released only, if we take a holistic approach and integrate each specialty in the exact spot on the customer journey, where they add value.
Thus, we advocate for putting the marketing strategy first and aligning specialties accordingly – not the other way around, which appears to be a consequence of the popular blind pursuit of the new black.