Given the rapid evolution of new technology, ROI efficiencies available, and methods which deliver measurable results almost immediately…one might wonder why traditional marketing devices maintain such a dominant share of promotional spending. Among the common choices, mass media and somewhat ‘targeted’ media still prevail for ‘pushing’ the brand’s message. FSIs, Direct Mailers (often targeting the retailer’s needs more than that of brand), Catalina Marketing, Yellow Tags, and others are still paper-dependent and costly (particularly on a cost-per-unit-moved basis). Very odd in this day when everything else has moved from paper to plastic, electronic transfer of incentives, and that thing called the internet.
Paper-dependent incentives like coupons and rebates are supremely disadvantaged by dependence on retailer sorting, clearinghouses, accounting discrepancies, fraud, and subsidization of purchases for coupon clippers already loyal to the brand whose coupons they use. Don’t even get me started on waste…suffice it to say that these marketing choices are killing a lot of rain forests needlessly.
Now imagine if a major paradigm shift existed, and your competitors were already leveraging it to their exclusive benefit. It’s here and it’s happening!!
Social Media & “Conversational Currency” ™ have emerged seemingly from the heavens to save us from ‘old school’ choices. Marketers can now engage with their target audience one-on-one with a rapidly growing and interested audience. They don’t ‘push’ an agenda, rather they engage in conversation as merely a participant. ‘New Schoolers’ are driving sales and efficient ROI via ‘audience self-aggregation’ (a common affinity or subject relevance), Peer-to-Peer endorsements, and never before seen incentive tactics (independent of paper). The Internet is still FREE and results of new marketing strategies are immediate and measurable.
Bottom line (and it’s all about the bottom line), get expert advice to productively board the Social Media Train. The train is leaving the station.
Are you on board? Is your competiton on board?