I recently read a small, free, downloadable copy of A New Brand of Marketing by Scott Brinker. This publication is offered here from chiefmartec.com and talks about trends connecting marketing to technology, and the impact it has had on our industry. More importantly, it speaks to a fundamental shift in the way agencies must position the role of “digital” in their overall suite of services. This industry-wide shift is consolidated into seven key themes:
- From traditional to digital
- From media silos to converged media
- From outbound to inbound
- From communications to experiences
- From art and copy to code and data
- From rigid plans to agile iterations
- From agencies to in-house marketing
Based on many of the changes we’ve seen with our clients, the two that particularly resonated with me are #6 and #7.
#6 Gone are the days of a rigid marketing plan
Technology allows us to adjust and modify plans and people in a way that had never previously existed in marketing. Social media and the nature of how consumers interact and engage with brands allows us to tap into the latest consumer activity and sentiment. Digital platforms allow us to quickly implement, test, measure and iterate at a pace never achieved through traditional marketing models. More and more, clients expect this of their agency. Agile marketing requires a “real-time marketing mindset,” and strategies that can be conceived and executed in hours (or minutes) rather than weeks or months. At Curiosity, we strive to achieve this every way we can—challenging ourselves as well as our clients.
#7 Agencies: Expect more from your client
Bottom line, we can expect more of the work we’ve traditionally expected to be handed to us, to be taken on by our clients. From paid social, content syndication and search, to digital video and graphic production—clients continue to take on more of these roles that were traditionally held by the agency. Technology is driving not only the lower cost of entry, but also the ease of execution of these functions. Agencies must recognize this trend and embrace it in order to remain relevant. This will make the collective efforts of all parties more successful.
Marketing strategy and execution has no clear beginning or end point. Rather, it is a fluid, constantly-evolving ecosystem of interconnected parts. This connection takes place more and more through digital technology as a part of the delivery system. As marketers, it is our job to manage that ecosystem and connect the dots between consumers and the clients we serve.