I must admit, i think i hate what the word marketing has come to represent. Marketing people (and i think the general public) think it represents advertising, direct mail, persistent one-to-one communication (aka bombardment), cookie ridden snooping, inbox flooding SPAM etc etc etc. Delete delete delete… It sounds as popular as the word politician and banker. But really it is so much more, so much more intrinsic to us all.
I am still learning (in my current role as CMO for Movebubble), every day the enormous role that marketing plays in any business. From customer listening, value setting, branding, message, tone of voice, social engagement, competition analysis, revenue streams, User Experience, product development and the list goes on. And, one might ask… what does that all means Logan?
I think the one thing that many business are so focussed on is B2C (business to consumer). I once wrote in another blog post that it was P2P (what i called people to people). I thought i was so clever… When i wrote this original blog post I had still envisaged a member of an organisation speaking, albeit as a person, to a customer (also another person). However since this P2P insight I have come to realise that the most crucial and valuable form of brand ‘marketing’ comes from personal recommendations i.e the interactions between your customers. Its C2C (customer to customer) as Mark Earls suggests in Herd; a book about how humans are built to interact; is the most important thing to understand and focus on.
‘I’ll have what he’s having‘ is how we are made. Its Cognitive Ease (did i just coin a phrase?)
We don’t like making decisions, hence we always take the easiest route… mentally that is. We are down right lazy. Again as Mark Earls says, we are homo-mimicus. We like to copy, its a survival instinct. I do listen to my friends and will often go the same movies as them, buy the same beer, eat at the same restaurants. So how does a company get into this, personal space. And should it? If it tries does it really just turn people off.
If your business is good enough, and performs a task beautifully and easily then is this enough to generate WOM (word of mouth) or as marketers now like to say ‘word of mouse’. The role of marketing is today; in my humble opinion all about lubricating the wheels of C2C communication. I am not sure there are any answers (that is that i have any), but i hope this makes you think a little about the role of marketing these days.
This blog is for me to put ideas out and see what people think. Engage and open up lines of dialogue. If any one has any thoughts on this, please let me know.
And on that note… “Waiter, can i have what he is having…?