As one sits back and thinks about the changes occurring at lightening speed on the web it is hard to fathom the world without the world wide web. It was only yesterday we just learning about AOL. Free was the norm, the wild west was growing, and everybody was learning about.
Now in the span of twenty years the web is part our being and fiber. There are the digital natives who could not fathom the world where instantaneous communications is the normal. Their are those who helped bring the web to life but remember enough of the world before their was social media, and every question one could possibly ask was at the tip of your fingertips. Wow, such people remember the good ‘ol days before gas engines and the buggy whip was cool.
The web with digital ideas lives in our minds while existing in our actions and products. There is no place like it. It lives and breaths us on a daily basis. The web as every business knows is here to stay. Yet many are just now grasping the power of it.
Many traditional brick and mortar businesses are struggling to fully appreciate and grasp the ability of the web to drive sales. If they are online they only use the web as a sales tool, some place you put your advertising. They do not understand the web is an extension of the physical location.
Social media, web 2.0 and soon to be Web 3.0, the semantic web, will drive customer interaction in ways we are only beginning to glimpse. As we connect more through digital channels we see those channels as more tangible and alive than many of use are aware.
Defining marketing in such an environment may seem hard but that is not the case. Marketing is a strategic action encompassing every action your business takes in order to communicate and reinforce in the mind of your customers your product and service is a worthwhile fit for their needs.
All to often many people and businesses blur marketing with sales when the truth is they are one and different. The ability to market is the ability to look at the strategic whole of al of your business processes and understand how that process will drive sales by integrating the idea of value into the life story of your customers mind, and being.
Strategic marketing touches everything your business does. Where strategic advertising is the story, the emotion the consumer hears, feels, uses. Granted this is a definition different than what is found in the text books. This definition helps us create a cohesive whole to our marketing. This definition lets us understand what is around so we can create a cohesive framework for hanging ideas that stick. A great living story.
The web with a million exponential touch points with a billion exponential ideas touches far deeper than the surface ripples many miles in the ocean show. These ripples create scatter plot Rorschach coalescing blue purple silver light bits tumbling into ideas tangible.
Marketing with a grand story listening and speaking is far different than mere sales. Such marketing engages, and holds your customer not just for a day, a sale, a moment. Your businesses Grand Story is held in your customers mind, memory, and spirit for a lifetime. Your business is a tangible being.
A being part of a living life fabric. We remember the corner store, the neighborhood park, the white knuckled excitement our first drive gave us.
We remember the products goods and services our high school clicks associated with. As adults, our memories hold fond feelings for the first time we bought that first whatever signaling to the world I am my own. The creation of products or services in and of itself is not a band thing it is when the product or service forgets the place it has in our lives or we forget the place of control we have over them in our lives that runaway consumerism becomes the odd protested thing.
In truth great product and services when they are the blood sweat, tears, and on sleeve pride of its creators are great things. Great products and services despise the strip it bare from the essence and squeeze the value exchange out so we can market a life into it. Such things will have a bump here and there but in general such so called things called businesses are terrible, zombies roaming the street looking to devour for they no longer inspire to create. Such thing do not serve to inspire or remind us of our own potential as a human being.
A business starting with value, truth, and fighting everyday to truly hold to that ideal demands the business to be more than a cash flow machine, more than just a way to reward risk, more than a way to create wealth. Such a business becomes a part of life as our collective memories live on creatively in happy wonder.
A business creating worth not by gimmicks, but by truth we can be our best will have to slug it out for awhile, for we live in the land of the cynics. Yet if you and your business live long enough to be more than a product or service the world will grant you your imagination's treasures. The Grand Story we write with our business brings us and our businesses alive in the minds of our employees and our selves. What story do you live? What Story do you speak? What living Story do you Share with the World?
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