Philip Kotler, (The Father of Marketing) in his book Marketing Management remarked, “Marketing is an administrative and social process through which individuals and groups obtain what they need and desire by the generation, offering an exchange of valuable products with their equals”.
In one of his other books, titled Principles of Marketing, (co-authored with Gary Armstrong), Mr. Kotler goes ahead and proposes the theory of ‘Segmentation’. In their words, “Segmentation is acknowledging that you can’t serve all clients with the same level of satisfaction”.
To ensure that all your customers achieve the same level of satisfaction, Philip Kotler then talked about ‘Positioning’ by companies. In his words, “Positioning is making your target audience know exactly how you differ from your competitors”.
These are some of the golden rules of marketing which are just as relevant now as they were in the beginning. Which begs the question, what is modern marketing and what is so different about it?
Let us not forget that the scenario was entirely different a decade ago. Back then, marketing implied convincing people that your brand and product was the best amongst a given array of brands offering the same or similar products.
So what’s changed now? While the core concepts are the same, their approach has changed significantly.
1. Personalized connections with consumers
Coffee, an everyday beverage is served by tons of brands all round the clock in every corner of your city. Ever thought about what differentiates Starbucks as a brand and makes it a prominent choice among consumers?
Other than selling fresh coffee, Starbucks spoilt the customer for choice with the varieties and variations of beverages to choose from.
The urbane expectations of the millennial consumer spark with a consistent brand experience. Marketing is only complete when the company is able to maintain and meet those expectations specifically tailored made for them.
To accomplish this level of personalization, you must develop a deep understanding of your customer as a group with specific consumption patterns. Managing the current needs of your consumers while keeping future expectations in mind is an integral part of the marketing process. The deeper you dig this marketing pit, the better you can understand and nurture their overall brand experience.
2. Brandable Domain Names
In the nascent years of the Internet, .com, .net, .org, and .gov were some of the most common domain extensions used by organizations to build their website. Back in the day, the options were also quite limited. So, irrespective of the industry you belonged to, you could only choose from the selected options and most businesses went with .com.
However, today there are over 1200 new industry-specific domain extensions such as .TECH, .STORE, .PRESS, .SPACE and a few more versatile options such as .SITE, .WEBSITE, etc. These domain extensions strengthen your online presence and add immense value to your marketing and branding effort. For example, www.buisness.com could be anything but www.business.store is most likely an online store.
3. Perfect blend of people, processes, and technology
With the advent of technology, it is now possible to collect, sample, and analyze billions of data points to understand the corresponding impact of marketing efforts on customer behavior.
This intricate level of data analysis, even as a thought, was unimaginable a decade ago. Even today this technology is just the tip of the iceberg. To realize the full potential of technology, it takes combination and transformation across people and processes. These three forces incoherence will help modern marketers achieve their goal of a marketing transformation.
To thrive in this crazy pace of competition, it is imperative that companies adopt and clasp at new technologies be it; Artificial Intelligence (AI), voice responses, or augmented reality. Technology combined with the right mix of people and processes is the need of the hour.
3. Right blend between creativity and data
Gone are the days when creativity and data were two parallel lines. Creativity is and has always been the key ingredient in marketing. Modern marketing is the marriage between data and creativity.
Today consumers are an active part of creative marketing campaigns. Recently, Adobe teamed up with the famous band ‘Imagine Dragons’ to celebrate the 25th anniversary of its video-editing software, Adobe Premiere Pro. Exclusive raw footage from the super hit song “Believer” was shared and consumers were challenged to recut it for the chance to win a cash prize. Excellent marketing strategy, eh!
4. Harnessing the power of social media
Today, while offering a genuine product holds paramount importance; customer experiences shape the overall brand for the consumer.
Marketers cannot just worship the product alone and negate customer interactions altogether. They must create deep connections with customers to build strong ties. Experiences are the new competitive battlefield and social media is the key.
Interaction via social media, live shows, Q&A’s, opinion polls to name a few help take full advantage of any marketing strategy. Fitbit, a company involving personal fitness metrics surely makes the best use of social media in garnering the support of a strong community. In addition, they both share their knowledge and at the same time collect information from consumers about product usage and other relevant metrics.
Yes, marketing has evolved in recent years and the world has witnessed a shift toward technology and data-driven approaches. Is it important to keep up with these advancements while devising your marketing strategy? Well, of course, it is! However, do not forget that even in the 21st-century companies the classic marketing strategies will continue to be the foundation of a successful marketing campaign. Rethinking and refining classic approaches with all the technological changes and advancements are crucial.