- Category: March - April 2009
What is happening in blogs and social communities? Do costumers affect marketing?
To know the own costumers and to understand them, ran out the focus from many enterprises and marketing trends. But the clients do literally their one thing, by getting independent in blogs, communities and by doing word-of-mouth marketing.
Who really wants to stick to it has to embed the proper costumers in the development of new products and above all should really maintain an authentic exterior view.
But know in the world of marketing there is to be spend more money, marketing mangers look positively ahead and nearly half of the enterprises want to enhance the merchandising.
Otherwise with all the different marketing trends and fads it is not easy to know what is bringing the most money. It’s because of that, that more and more, the customer comes to the fore.
Unlike the last years, when marketing had to explain itself, do controlling and had to actuate positive return on investment all along. Besides with the former compound of advertisement it was very difficult to stand one’s ground. But things have changed know, in the Web2.0 the customer gets autonomous and conducts his own marketing, that the affected companies are not able to control anymore. Due to that the customer’s focus is being rediscovered.
Jim Stengel, Global Marketing Officer at Procter and Gamble names his new challenges: There has to be a profound altercation with people in the digital and networked world. Also he knows that today, the consumer wants to know which company stands behind their own label with heart, soul and integrity.
Although the customer often doesn’t behave like that at all, he is critical and sometimes also cheeky. In the World Wide Web he reviews products, advises favorites or openly complains about one company’s bad quality and immoral behavior.
Obviously this causes many problems for the affected companies. But these problems can be avoided or fought if a change of mind is happening.
David Court of McKinsey speaks about a “seismic change” and the American Association of Advertising Agencies postulates: “digital changes everything”.
So what stays uncontested is that Internet remains the most important medium for marketing managers and advertisers.
However, the average banner advertisement is not sufficient anymore. The customer wants to interact actively in blogs, wikis, on Youtube or Myspace in web communities that are provided by the companies and with which they can create and conduct their own online marketing.
That’s why companies have to learn to listen to their customers and consumers.
A good example for the new customer orientated marketing is the Danish toy producer LEGO. They recognized that customers are not only able to buy but they also can bring in new ideas, enhance products and thus become so called product-ambassadors.
On the Website www.mindstorms.lego.com the consumer shall hack and refine the software, dismantle engines and control mechanisms and program them new. So they interchange about ideas and solutions of new products.
The new products are developed together with the customers.
Key success factor marketing: Interaction between customers
Concerning the study “marketingtrends 2007+” conducted by the German BSI (Brand Science Institute) communities and interactions between customers will affect and lead the future market from know on. However the BSI says that the influence of the Web2.0 will diminish at long sight.
Dr. Nils Andres, BSI executive and the study’s initiator, believes that, the big expectations that companies have because of the Web2.0’s overpowering presence will lead to a mini collapse.
This conclusion leads the study to what they think are the most important new marketing trends.
The so called Crowdsurfing is a phenomenon which focuses on the internet user’s intelligence and voluntary work. Many free “members of staff” generate new contents and solve duties.
So far their potential is not totally utilized and in even underestimated in the marketing sector. But it is important to know, that the mutual impact which takes place in this mobile networks turns a consumer into a co-marketer.
Marketing certainly will have to adjust to the changing way of life. Since a lot of young adults live longer with their parents than before, there is a need for so called Third places. A locality beyond the parents’ house, where one can stay longer than thirty minutes. In the USA for example Starbucks is the epitome of a third place.
The Google Earth software with which you can watch the world from above with the help of satellites will be embedded more and more in marketing campaigns. With GPS mobile phone based geo gaming, applications can be played from all over. This could be interesting for example for Adidas, Puma or Nike, they could integrate geo gaming components in their sneakers which are then connected to the mobile phone.
In conclusion there has to be said, that marketing has to assume an important place in a company, everything in the corporation has to adjust to the costumer focused marketing.
Beyond marketing managers have to get in contact with the people and they must deal and engage
Companies like Procter and Gamble, Google or Fed Ex conduct so called “customer laboratories” where they develop and try out new products and services together with their customers.
Google for example, marketing means: bring a lot of new products to the public, then let the customer experiment and try out. Hereupon create the new definite product.
So who listens to their customer will always be on the forehead and identify archetypes.
Trend scouts from trendwatching.com have identified the eight most important trends that are applicable for 2008.
With the acquisition of a product the customer wants to emphasize which status he has achieved or which one he wishes to have.
The customer wishes appreciation as he buys premium products that allow the classification from others.
Products must be acquirable fast, compatible and adaptable. They become cursory.
For the customer, Internet and networking will get as important as breathing
While buying, the consumers want to have a quiet conscience. Also they mind the products sustainability, check that social standards are kept and they want, that the companies meet their demands according to their social responsibilities.
Who offers his clients more service and help is able to fix his brand stronger in the customers’ minds.
Make it yourself
Customers want to be active, change things, deconstruct and rebuild according to their own wishes.
People ally and start to develop own company schemes, they collect money or plan economic activities.
Application fields for customer focused marketing
Not all trends have the same importance for every company. On the first step one should analyze which type of customer orientated marketing is the most suitable and important for the company.
Furthermore there are still fields that are not based on new technology but are situated outside the web.
- Interactive TV advertisements that is complementary to the viewers’ interests and to their social background.
- Mobile phone meets retail: the US Company GPShopper offers a mobile price comparison. With his mobile phone the customer can request certain products then GPShopper detects the phones position and sends out choices and shops. By the time the customer passes one “marked” shop, the phone rings
- Telephone marketing melts up with e-mail marketing
In the future the art of marketing will consist in jumping into the social networks of the customers.
Marketing experts from the agency “different” know that there exists a new form of word-of-mouth communication. Furthermore nearly half of the customers rely on the advice of friends and already 41 percent trust in the recommendations of unknown online users.
The trust in the advanced knowledge of the masses is growing and with this the power of the consumer.
What does this in conclusion mean for the company?
When there is a fast changing of offers on the other hand there is a growing aspiration towards the personal fix points.
If structures and contents are mixed together, recognition will become essential.
The consultants of “different” embody this fact: during the interaction with the customers, relevance, credibility and consistence will still count no matter if in the Web 2.0 or in other media.
By Laura Veronesi