InciteMC (www.incitemc.com) has published a white paper based on interviews carried out with several marketers and what their vision of 2014 is exactly. They are in complete agreement: “Things are changing and they are changing so fast that the job of a marketer needs to adapt all the time. Competitive edge today will be nothing more than the norm tomorrow. So as to keep right up there at the top, every brand needs to actualize itself to fit in with the market needs.”
Consumers are changing the way they act…
You might be lacking in energy. Your consumer has made gains. The consumer is stronger than he ever was in the past.
He can Speak through social networks.
He can Choose thanks to always out-doing your competitors where consumption is concerned on the web or in app stores
He is Mobile end never there where you expected him to be five years ago.
Three years ago when a market segment was geographically-based, now it’s all a question of what OS your brand is being looked at from.
Three years ago a brand had to be present on Facebook and Twitter. Now, it has to be on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Vine, Instagram and YouTube.
Three years ago a web site that as more or less responsive to mobile design was enough; today every brand has to adapt its mobile content to the user’s needs.
The job of a marketer has changed completely.
… and so have your risks.
You have far more channels to supervise than you ever did in the past. Your client base is fragmented and split into pieces. They’re all different. They’re only temporary. Positioning your brand on the jersey of a sports team or running an ad campaign is nothing more than complementary to a multi-channel strategy of marketing these days. You have to keep up to date with the strengths and the weaknesses of each and every channel and above all with the profiles of associated users.
You have access to a growing quantity of data. It will be important for you to set up KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) so you are able to measure the values linked to your market segment. Your IT Deprtment will come in handy at this stage. All of this data must be concentrated in one IT system and they must be able to be grouped together. For this project, specific development will be necessary; so don’t hesitate to come to us for assistance ;-).
You have to provide answers quickly and that are individual. If your consumer publically asks for something, then he’s expecting a public answer but that is above all individual and tailored to his specific needs. 42% of consumers expect a response from you in less than 60 minutes. Snail mail is definitively a thing of the past. Failing to answer the consumer invariably leads to attracting other people that are unhappy and that can quickly turn into a crisis situation.
You have more competitors. New horizons have meant that barrier to market entry have been taken away. Positioning yourself in the market is essential therefore. You can never say (or write) it too much: competitive edge today will become the norm tomorrow!
So, going back to the initial question that we started off with: What’s going to hold back marketers in 2014? The answer might well be “not a lot except perhaps the tools he is going to use and above all whether he can intelligently turn them into loyal consumers”. Being right there where your consumers are is essential (social networks, mobile terminals in this case). Try it out! Try out channels and set up KPIs so as to measure which are the most effective for you, and then bet on that one. Be ready to take a look at other channels and ask yourself these questions: “Is my market there?”, “How to find out?” and “What do I need to do to get into this channel?”.
Publish material on that channels that is going to interest your market. Not an article on your last customer’s technical solution. Real content that Your consumer usually need! Make sure that they can gain access to it when and whenever they want to.