So its a year since the big crash of 2008. For many businesses its been a year of pain, staff cut-backs, revised budgets and knife-edge survival.
Last year, as it became apparent that the economy was about to go down the toilet, I opined that we were experiencing a turning point in media and marketing history. Old media models were under threat, new media was on the rise. Media consumption habits were changing rapidly and savvy marketers were aware of this. I suggested that the looming economic crisis would only hasten these changes.
Now, as the world lurches out of the worst of the downturn it appears significant change has taken place and the ones who are struggling to cope are those sticking to their old methods.
Many businesses have already charted a new course in the new economy, but for those just beginning to think about their marketing plans here are 7 new marketing rules for the recovery economy:
1. Interruption marketing is not as effective as it used to be. If you think you can simply buy lots of spots and yell at the audience, think again. They’re sick of the noise. They’re time-shifting and they’ve got more choices than ever. The audience is in control. Respect them.
2. Engagement marketing is in. You need to be more creative than ever and you must engage your potential customers. They’ll still pay attention if you give them a good reason. Better still….
3. Inbound marketing is the future. Inbound marketing respects that the customer is in charge. It’s all about being in the right place when the customer is ready, and offering them what they want. You don’t go hunting for them, they’ll find you (if you have a smart strategy). And when they do, your prospects of success are considerably higher.
4. A strong web presence has never been more important. Today’s consumer spends more time online than with any other media. Furthermore, they search for everything online and talk to friends online, so….
5. Your business needs to be found near the top of online searches (preferably first). Quite simply, being found at the top of relevant Google searches may be the most profitable thing you can do for your business.
6. Your business needs to begin using social media. Social media allows you to engage potential customers, build a broader following and monitor what customers are saying about you. Its amazing how many opportunities are out there for social-media savvy businesses. I know of businesses that receive more traffic and business from Twitter than any other source. And Twitter is FREE!
7. Ask for the sale. OK, this is the same in any economy, but its amazing how many businesses don’t do it. Whether its old media driving foot traffic into your store, or social media driving clicks to your site….eventually you have to ask for the sale. But always do it tactfully and with respect because as we mentioned earlier, the customer is now in charge and they have plenty of other options.
There you have it. Seven new rules for the recovery economy. If you revert to your previous marketing methodology you will likely find that your customers have moved on. They’re consuming media differently, they’re increasingly tech-savvy and they’re advertising weary. To compete today, and into the future, you need to understand these changes and react accordingly.