Shift Happens

Shift happens and a big shift is taking place right now in marketing. Customers and Buyers are shifting the way the acquire information to solve problems. No longer are they passively waiting for your ad to interrupt their concentration; be it TV, radio, outdoor, newspaper, trade journal, or direct mail.

If you have not already noticed, it is the age of the Internet. David Meerman Scott in his book "The New Rules of Marketing and PR" points this out by asking four basic questions (to paraphase):

  1. In the past month or two have you conducted research using such traditional media tools like newspapers or trade journals?
  2. In the past month or two have you responded to a piece of direct mail that might solve a business problem?
  3. In the past month or two have you conducted a Google, Bing or Yahoo! search to research a problem?
  4. In the past month or two have you emailed a friend asking advice in researching a problem and their email reply had a link or links to possible solutions?

I bet you probably answered NO to questions 1 and 2 and YES to questions 3 and 4.  Don’t you think your customers/buyers are doing the same thing?

The market has shifted from traditional media to the Internet. Does this mean all traditional media is obsolete…no at least not yet.  This change, however, is taking place quite rapidly as you can attest with the number of newspapers, magazines and trade journals falling by the wayside. Trade Show attendance is also down, and that can also be an indicator of the economy, but then again think of how easy it is to obtain information from the Internet?  Now are you being found?

But certainly television will survive, paid by the 15 and 30 second commercials? This is another area of change impacting the B2C marketer.  Bob Garfield in his book The Chaos Scenario:

"As the second chapter of this book I
believe made abundantly clear, advertising is not the future of
marketing. No, it will not entirely disappear. Yes, it will play a
role. But the 30-second mini-movie is not a growth industry. Digital
tools and database marketing will open channels of communication, and
reservoirs of information, that will relegate display advertising as
we’ve known it to a subsidiary role. Most likely, it will serve as a
series of signposts — logos and simple messages pointing users to
websites where the real action is. This could happen within five years,
certainly within 25. Unlike graphic design, which will never be
obsoleted, the CGA industry — if it ever becomes an industry — is at
best a short-term enterprise. XLNTads.com, ugenmedia.com, Filmaka,
GeniusRocket, Zooppa and others are hollering, “Jump in! The water’s
fine!” But if you’re a marketer, you’d be forgiven for not diving
headlong into a draining pool.
"

So shift does happen and is happening right now.  This shift is as dramatic as the shift that took place between the age of radio and the age of television. The difference here and now is instead of 3 networks and local channels of communication, there are thousands of channels on the Internet. Gone is the age of a large market and limit channels for information delivery. Now it is the vast number of channels available for information delivery and to reach the market that has shifted the way it gathers information.

Recently my 29-year old son, who never owned a land-line telephone told me he would be dropping cable TV.  He would still be able to watch his favorite TV shows and still get to watch his favorite movies.  How, through the Internet! He will not drop his cable Internet service, but he figures he will still get what he wants in the way of entertainment and news through the Internet and save on Tivo and cable TV charges. He will use services like HULU or NETFLIX for entertainment, news will come via the news web sites and the videos they offer.

The shift is already happening. What does your company have to do to embrace the shift and ride the wave of change?

If this sounds too scary to contemplate, maybe it is time to call for expert assistance to help you navigate the the thousands of channels available and become more visible through the Internet.

About Jeff Quandt

Jeff Quandt is an Inbound and Digital Marketing Strategist and owns On-Q Marketing LLC. He helps businesses get found in a Google Search bringing prospects to business' website to generate leads.

Then through Inbound Marketing tactics qualify the lead, nurture the lead, and ultimately converting the lead/prospect into a customer.

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