So many things have changed beyond recognition over the last two decades, primarily technology-driven. The transformation from physical to digital has disrupted virtually every sector of business.
Look around and you’ll notice it everywhere. Black Cabs vs Uber. CD vs digital downloads. Bookshops vs Kindle.
Even the process of buying a car has changed. In the past, people would visit a car showroom on average four times before making a purchase. According to BMW, that has come down to just 1.4 visits:
“Buyers do research online – salesmen are there to refine their decisions rather than ‘sell’. It is part of a changing process in the way cars are sold.”
The other huge change is the power shift from brands to consumers.
We now all have 24/7 instant access to all the information we might need. And an overload of incoming marketing messages that we are becoming increasingly adept at filtering out.
It’s the age of the empowered consumer. Better informed, more selective, more influential, less loyal – and harder to reach.
All of this presents massive challenges for businesses when it comes to marketing products and services.
Attention is the new currency of business. You can no longer just buy it. You have to earn it.
So as business owners, we have a stark choice. Change or die.
Because if you’re still operating like so many business owners, doing ‘bits’ of marketing on a sporadic basis, it’s simply not going to be effective.
You’ll most likely end up with an unloved website gathering cyber-dust and advertising that fails to attract new business.
So what’s the solution?
There’s a couple things that will apply to most businesses.
Firstly, customer focused targeted marketing. It’s about digging deep about what really drives your potential customers – and treating them as individuals, rather than trying to mass market to everyone.
Secondly, an automated marketing system, so that follow up happens without you having to manually do it every time. A system that build up your database in conjunction with your website and other marketing.
It’s all about clear communications, providing value by educating your customers, influencing buyers with social proof and continually fuelling your marketing engine.
It’s just a case of acquiring the right knowledge – and then implementing the most relevant marketing solution for your business.
If you want a real insight into how marketing has changed, what you need to know – and how to plan your marketing – then check out our upcoming workshops.