Monday, June 11, 2007

How to reach the Digital Consumer ?

Test for the brave: Leave home tomorrow without any electronic gadgets. No laptop, no handphone, etc. You will probably take 5 steps out your home only to run back in to grab it all with you. Another test: Try calling your close friend, relative without using the contacts feature in the phone. Can you remember their telephone number..confidently. by heart?

Welcome to the digital world!

We have, without a doubt made great technological leaps since the 60s. Techology has evolved from analog to digital, tapes to MP3s, conventional TVs to Plasmas, camera films to memory cards...the list goes on.

Where are we heading from here? My guess is 'virtualization of information'.. When you need something, you simple search it on the web. When you need to reach a friend, you go to LinkedIn, Myspace, messenger, etc. . Over 100 million videos are downloaded daily from YouTube. All these point to the fact that people are changing the way they consume videos, media and information.

Consumers are no longer alone. There is a tight interaction between technology and consumers. They go hand in hand. The consumer is connected and mobile more than ever before. But don't be mistaken, not only are we adapting to technology, it is adapting to us as well. In a recent US survey, it was suggested that the dexterity of the new generation's thumb has increased. As weird as it seems, it is true. Have you observed differently people interact with their phones, especially teenagers!

As a result, there is a tendency to bombard consumers with information through various digital channels in the believe that he will be more receptive in a shorter period of time. Personally, I do not feel that launching a CRM, digital or mobile campaign is going to be more effective or reach out to more customers. The consumer is clever and getting increasingly smarter. There is less brand loyalty and convincing them to purchase a specific product or service is only getting harder.

Sure, I would not consider a 360 marketing campaign to be complete if it does not include digital, and mobile elements. Forget these two mediums and there is a high chance that you failed to maximize the impact of your campaign.

Technology is not an end goal. It is merely a new way to reach your consumer. So let us not forget our basics marketing principles. Do not forget that our job is to answer consumer needs. Use technology as a media, a way to reach them and use it wisely. Do not overload your consumer with too much information. Digital is a way to better select and understand who you want to talk to, how you want to talk to him and what kind of message you want to deliver.

Digital is a excellent weapon. Use it wisely with marketers who know how to handle it. Use it with marketers who first understand your audience, your market and your products. Marketers need to evolve to cope with technology but they need to learn how to use this new tool.

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