The old way of marketing worked because of one simple trick: interruption. People go about their business, watching tv, walking to work, or listening to the radio, and ads interrupt that activity. That’s how ads stay memorable. Effective marketing subliminally links itself to what people choose to do, what they like to do.
Well, marketing can’t solely rely on interruption anymore. For one thing, people have not only learned to ignore traditional ads, but they have the means to skip over them entirely. Remember the days before your DVR? You could try to ignore the commercials, but you had no choice but to watch them.
The rules have changed.
Consumers have never had so much choice about what media they consume, or how they consume it. If you interrupt one experience, they’ll simply leap to another.
As a result, the rules of marketing are starting to look a lot like the rules of product design: give the customer what they want.
They want relationships. They don’t want to be talked at by brands, they want to have a two-way conversation with the people behind the brands. Social media, blog posts and viral content have never been more important.
They want personalization. They want messaging that isn’t designed for just anyone, but meant to fit their personal needs. This means that content needs to be informative and engaging.
They WANT to hear from you. Because there are so many messages these days, they want others to cut through the clutter and tell them what to choose. Their wallets are open; you need to sell yourself as the brand that fits their needs.
So while things are changing, the news isn’t all bad for marketers. Consumers have never been as aware, or as open, to the role that brands play in their lives. Remember, when one door closes, another one….