(If your marketing isn’t influencing consumers before you meet them, you’re doing it wrong)
The current trend in marketing declares that consumers are in control of a company’s brand—that consumers have more power now than ever before as they tap away at Twitter and Yelp and steer your brand into oblivion. If this is the way you are directing your marketing efforts, you might be looking at it wrong.
Actually, the consumer has had as much power as they ever had. They still determine the rise and fall of brands regardless of whether they use social media or not.
Very little has changed in marketing over time. Product A is better than product B because of X. You should like us because of Y. These fundamentals stay the same, regardless of how people communicate with one another. The only difference is the rate at which people communicate and the personalized message (or lack thereof) in that communication. You adjust your plan in response to outcries on social media– just as you would have done in the old days through articles in newspapers or letters of complaint. The only difference is the speed at which you need to respond. Social media is merely a tool, not a tactic. It’s a tool to highlight your virtues. And showcase your response time.
The entire point of marketing is to influence consumer awareness: how to get people thinking about what you want them to think about. Period. If you simply react to whatever consumers want to talk about, you will get trapped in the black hole of the fickle consumer consciousness.
Yes, we are all fickle. My opinions about many things swing wildly based on a few simple conversations. It is who we are as people. The point of marketing is to continually focus the consumers’ ever-wandering eye directly onto the topic you want to discuss. That way, you are steering the boat. You still are in control of your message and identity. The only way someone takes that away from you is if you hand it to them. Do it right –