I’m sure you all know that the marketing costs for about anything we do in the world-wide web are increasing and extremely expensive. It is pretty common within all e-commerce companies to measure the success of marketing based on ASR (advertizing sale ration), CR (conversion rates), traffic, page impressions, ad impressions and many, many more KPIs. In fact looking on our company reporting every week I wonder why the customer happiness or the net promoter score are not more prominent compared to the these dedicated marketing figures.
Looking at visualizations of the typical online marketing cloud I get a slight understanding why. And at this point I have to admit, I’m a tech guy and I honestly do not care to much about the marketing pow wau that tells me how cool all this is. The tech pow wau is similar frustrating to me as it doesn’t generate customer value too.
Today I read an article about marketing people talking about need for new advertising formats. Honest? Are we really still thinking that interruption is the way to go? Any marketing format that doesn’t add any value for the customer is IMHO just to be deleted. It isn’t adding any value.
My favorite online magazine shows me much more often that I’m using an ad-blocker. Yes of course I do so. Have you ever looked at the list of tracking cookies you get looking on any site without such a blocker? Have you ever heard about the malware you get through the ad-server of serious companies? Have you any kind of light security awareness that tells you not to give a stranger your address? Ok may be I’m a bit to paranoid as a techie due to the fact I deal with these things every day, but ensuring not every advertising provider can easily understand who am I and how to match my profile to something sounds quite logical to me.
With the new privacy protection laws the European Union will establish in 2018 all this kind of cookie based, programmatic marketing will become obsolete anyhow – at least from my point of view. And then? Ok we will get a lot of sites asking to become a member. Makes sense for me in certain terms – as a potential customer as soon as I see any value of it. Ahh again, value this evil term of financial focused people. Yeah value, something that fits to my needs. To my interaction with a site.
And how does it fit that I consume information created by journalists without paying them? As a son of a journalist I know what this mean. With out an opportunity to exchange value for the work that is being done it is definitely hard to survive. But how can we exchange value without a direct interaction between those who created and those who consume? What is the role of the intermediate such as the online magazine that presents the information to me?
I figured out a while ago that social media platforms are based on the engagement rate. It is extremely valuable for them if customers come more often to have a look. Again they make their money with interruptive advertising as they sneak in ads in the information flow you see. We all know this from Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.
If this concept is understood it is also simple to predict that important updates of a person will not been sent out immediately to all of your follows but at a point in time when it suites the receiver. So people get the message typically in their morning – not in mine. So all my followers in different time zones get their email messages at the best time for them to read and engage with the platform. The second question for me was what is the most important message my follower read and engage even with me – so that I can get back to them or find a suitable moment in time to gain attention over all these other posts, notes and attractions?
For my experiment I used LinkedIn and a change to my profile. Actually I posed a new position that reflects an investment with new the Happy Melly company I did recently. And you could see technology at work. Over 3 weeks now my engagement with old friends and other contacts grew dramatically. For someone who doesn’t write any big news on LinkedIn so far nor having any sales activities the 3 digit number of profile visitors is quite interesting.
Understanding technology is a key skill in marketing today. And I’m honestly sure that we need to bring the technology and marketing teams much closer together. The fact that one group is just using technology provided by external companies and the other group developing new internal solutions isn’t a good split. Knowing your technology as well as the effects activities in marketing can have is definitely supporting better products. It can foster solutions for the poor journalists that might loose their jobs due to ad-blockers and with that avoid us being interrupted in our need to consume information today.
And of course I’m convinced that it is not the AI technology of the advertising or marketing solutions that should recommend us the right products in our customer journey. Our product managers shall be empowered to create the perfect mix for each of the various customers. And yes we need to understand customers not only by a segment, we need to really start listening to a customer individually and ensure we can provide the best value for her or him in order to increase engagement. I’m sure the customer will give us his identity information in return and happily buy our products when we can ensure the right one at the best time.
Within the digitalization already most of the classic fields of our company are technology based. Bringing all of these disciplines together there is a great opportunity to improve probalistic data and get to real deterministic data of our customers. With that our chance to gain attention of our customers is much more likely as it is their individual information our technology provides. Understanding all these different topics within a product development team will become key IMHO.