Before I get into my topic for this week, I want to say thank you to the three Congressmen and one Senator who “appreciated my brilliant stance” last week, even if they thought I was “a little too honorary at times.” Congress, not surprisingly, heeded my call and made the right choice. I also want to thank the woman from Seattle who declared, “You, Greg Salsburg, are a small-minded, pathetic, big stupid douche and should shut up!!” To be honest, I think she’s on to something.
Last week, I was discussing with an Academy Award winning film producer the art of communication. Specifically, we discussed the changing outlets of communication points in today’s environment.
(Wow, I am only one paragraph in and I have already thrown out 3 Congressmen, 1 Senator and an Oscar winning producer. If I name drop anymore I will need a chiropractor.)
Much of the tactics deployed to promote a film in the past twenty years first came from the mind of this man. Millions of dollars were on the line for these productions to succeed. A films shelf life at the top of the box office could be a month if a well conceived plan was executed. The studios needed to reach their audience to ensure awareness and enticement was captured. And, audiences only had a few outlets to receive messages and all were hit. The reach and receive was dealt in mass, since neither side knew much about either’s proclivities or had the tools at their disposal. This means of discussion is prevalent in Business to Consumers and Business to Business, widespread top down messaging.
Consumers/Businesses do not want to be “targets,” they do not want to be “penetrated” or “infiltrated.” They do not wish to be “assaulted” or “bombarded” with messages, most of which are not relevant to their lives. Or, my personal favorite of “execution.” The above words in quotes are just a few of the choice vernacular used by a fellow marketer from a large agency at a recent meeting. When I left I felt like I was heading to war rather than launching a product.
“We were a tactic driven industry,” Oscar winner summarized, “And, too many companies have yet to switch their way to today’s forward thinking.” He agreed that today to succeed you need to first have sound analytics and principles and matching tactics to follow.
Today the tools at an advertiser’s disposal to communicate are enormous, the costs significantly less expensive, and an ability to alter and adjust messaging quickly are readily available and the analytics to support all are abundant. Additionally, these tools have provided a voice and power to the consumer and thus positioned them away from a receiver and into a “determinator.” How and when messages are delivered and received are equally, if not more so, decided by individuals and not those outputting the content. The modern digital world has seen a multiplication of contexts: emails, search engines, blogs/forums, social media, mobile messaging, and on and on. Interactive Advertising Bureau recently reported that online ad sales reached a record 6.4 billion, up 17 percent from a year earlier and expected to grow next year.
At STIR-Communications, we have been preaching (for what feels like an eternity) a move from a mass awareness approach to one of full-on engagement. If you are talking at, rather than talking with, your audience you are going to flat-line. We rather focus on micro-messaging to niche behaviors that create interactive brand experience that recognize and enhance consumer’s behavior. So B2C and B2B are dead and if you want to move the masses you need to engage the masses. Today, we have entered a P2P (person to person) world. You need to listen, provide, partake, supply, adjust and ignite. Far different choices of wording from old world ad speak. Mr. Hollywood agreed.
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