This is a guest post by Gary J. Nix.
Contrary to the belief of some, digital marketing conferences are not merely another chance for people to showoff how awesome they are, learn new autocorrect facts, such as the word Livestream converts to Kirstie Aimee (don’t ask), and come up with new-fangled buzzwords like screenagers and platblishers. These conferences are an opportunity to reinforce the fact that, no matter what adjective you use, it’s all marketing. This is something we must all remember, especially once you see the tag #MarketingMarketing on Twitter. And here’s why:
Games People Play
The IAB conducted a discussion on the relationship of today’s gaming and social experiences, both on and offline. Besides the fact that data tells us that two billion people are playing games digitally and about 900 million of those are doing so on mobile devices, the huge point is that people enjoy competition, collaboration, and sharing. These three levers are used in digital gaming now and have always been used in marketing.
Adding these elements in your marketing mix at the right time and in the right way will give consumers another reason to be involved with your brand. Plus, there’s a reason “Shall we play a game” is one of the most popular movie lines from the 80’s.
The Revolution won’t be Televised, but it May be Streamed
As expected, there was plenty of talk about content at Social Media Week. The most poignant from a marketer’s general point of view was presented by Percolate in a discussion that was really about content delivery has been revolutionized. While it is important to understand the seven core components of content marketing — audience, trigger, brand element, topic, campaign, business objective and platform — along with the importance of context, content has been delivered way before we’ve done so digitally. I only mention this to clearly state that content marketing is not a magic bullet. It is important for discovery and delivery in the world as we know it today; however, it is nothing new. We’ve been doing this for many moons and will continue to do so. It’s marketing. #NODISRESPECTOTPERCOLATE #ALLDISRESPECTTOJIMMYKIMMEL. That last hashtag was clearly a joke.
Millennials are Humans
This is a direct quote from a fun-filled discussion about the millennial demographic. Many truths about millennials were examined, such as their actual loyalty coupled with the ability to adapt, their demands regarding innovation and entertainment, their level of thoughtfulness, their aversion to banner ads, and their respect for serious issues. However, we have been talking about them as if they were some new species. Many of us have gone through a period of life with these characteristics, and some of us, like me, are still going through it. It’s good to know what makes this age group tick, but please don’t confuse them with a flying machine that can make the Kessel run in less than 12 parsecs. Please don’t confuse them with #GenerationSelfie either.
Culture and Behavior Trump All
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, marketing relied heavily on focus groups and surveys for the data needed to understand what people wanted. Yes, these are still important actions, but we can get a plethora of information from the social web by simply listening. The discussions that take place reveal so much psychographic information as to how people behave and people follow and create culture.
To me, this is the most important recurring theme of the conference. At times it seems that we forget that the most important part of marketing is figuring out to whom we will market our product or service. We’ve become so caught up in how we will deliver the message, we’ve forgotten to make sure it goes to the right people or that the message even makes sense. So, before you go off with a beautifully designed visual campaign with bells and whistles on the newest platform, make sure that you remember that the consumer retains control over our businesses and we need to go to them and show them value. They’ll appreciate you for it.
Just my two cents…
Gary J. Nix is known as many things: Your favorite brand’s de facto ambassador. Propagator of true brandwagoning. Zeitgeist Firestarter. [American] HYPE man. Digerati Deputy. Random comedian. Life observer. Founder of #bespokehashtaggery a/k/a Cobra Kai. Enigmatic wunderkind. Zen BRANDarchist. Keyser Söze. But most importantly, he’s all about marketing, identity, and branding in business. Strategy, Testing, Implementation — all of these things must be done in order to ensure success. Risk & Reward are his R&R. Learn more here.
“Games People Play” image courtesy of Joshua, WarGames, MGM.
“The Revolution won’t be Televised, but it May be Streamed” image courtesy of Web Solutions of America.
“Millennials are Humans” image courtesy of Disney/LucasFilms/The Corellian Engineering Company.
“Culture and Behavior Trump All” image courtesy of KeyChangeNow.com.