The New Marketing
The Internet is developing so quickly that what is new one minute is old news the next. You can actually see this phenomena literally play out before your eyes. Log into your Twitter account and watch headline after headline be pushed further down your screen as new ones are fed out almost by the second.
The way the web has changed has brought about significant changes in the way that business and marketing is conducted. Online marketing has proven to be far more efficient and cost effective than industrial media campaigns because of the amount of time that people now spend on their computers. Indeed, a business is not taken seriously if it does not have a professional website and cannot be contacted though the Internet. What this also means, however, it that basic marketing can be done by almost anyone who has a basic understanding of the Web. It has also led to a great number of very uninspired marketing efforts as well as far too many scams. It is ironic that we do not trust a business if they do not have a presence on the Internet while at the same time we are highly suspicious of the web. The Internet offers an incredible amount of information, but it often very hard to tell how credible the sources are that it comes from.
Now that everyone has become more aware of how the Internet can be abused, online marketing has passed into a stage of stagnancy. Now that it has become common place, we are left feeling luke warm about the majority of it. So what is the next step? How do we re-focus our attention in order to cut through all the buzz and find something that is actually of value?
I think it is time to form a hybrid marketing form that strives to engage the relationship between online marketing and person-to-person customer interaction. What the vast majority of online marketing is lacking is creating a customer experience, thereby forfeiting the possibility of developing an emotional relationship between the customer and the product. The Internet can be extremely impersonal because of the ability one has to remain anonymous or invisible. Therefore it is hard to creating a trusting relationship with the customer, and unlikely that they will develop any sort of loyalty towards your company or product.
I have noticed recently that there has been an increase in the number of clients that come to businesses through the Internet, but then want to make a personal connection before proceeding with any sort of purchase. Apple is an excellent example of a company that creates a comprehensive experience for their customers. Apple sells a lifestyle as well as a product and they work hard at perpetuating this image through their stores, television and print ads. More companies need to supplement their online marketing tactics with something tangible for the customers to grab a hold of.
This integration of online and in-person marketing is the future of the industry.