4 Fundamental Strategies in the Age of Digital Marketing

In the good old days, marketing wasn’t so complicated. Make a commercial. Make a radio ad. Cater to the top magazines.
Now, however, we’ve got countless amounts of TV channels, billions of web pages and hundreds of thousands of “APPs” along with DMP’s, API’s and SDK’s. Huh? Technology has conclusively made marketing that much more difficult and much more elaborate.
What could once be considered marketing was identifying the buyers needs and communicating the said benefit. Now we’re supposed to build enveloping experiences that engage consumers.  In a land of wannabe experts selling snake oil here are four principles to guide your marketing efforts.

1. Formulate Business Objectives

In the day to day of marketing, there’s almost too much to keep up with. Everybody is struggling, not just you. This pace has catapulted every marketer to feel pressure to be “progressive” and bring in cutting-edge techniques for their marketing campaigns and proposals.
The mark of a good marketing campaign is how it achieves the advantageous goals. Therefore, how you define your intent will have a profound impact on whether you succeed or fail.
It’s easier for marketers to create a “one size fits all” approach for a portfolio of brands. However, most businesses are more adequately captured by evaluating these three metrics: awareness, sales and advocacy.

2. Identify Emerging Opportunities

Marketing executives are busy people (don’t we know it). Between monitoring the marketplace, identifying new business opportunities, collaborating with product people and running promotional campaigns, it is unreasonable to also expect them to keep up with an array of emerging technology and tactics.
It is essential to have a team dedicated to identifying emerging opportunities, meeting with start-ups and testing programs to evaluate their true potential. Most of these will fail, but the few winners will more than make up for the time you spent with the losers.

3. Separate Strategy and Innovation

Innovation teams and strategy teams are largely populated by senior executives because companies want the “best people” on them.
However, the strategy is fundamentally different from innovation. As noted above, a good strategy is one that achieves specific objectives and has a history of working. Innovation, however, focuses on creating something completely new and tend to not work as well as standard solutions (for now). Innovation is a messy business.

4. Build Open Assets in the Marketplace

Remember the days marketers could create compelling advertising campaigns that would get the consumer’s attention and drive direct sales?
Well today, effective promotional campaigns are less likely to lead to a sale and more likely to lead to an Internet search, where behavior can be tracked and retargeted by competitors. Ugh.
Successful brands are becoming platforms and need to do more than just drive consumers to a purchase, they have to inspire participation. That means marketers have to think less in terms of USP’s, and GRP’s and more in terms of API’s and SDK’s.
In the digital age, brands are more important than ever – practically communities of belief and purpose.