We have reached a point in human evolution
where society and technology is moving at a tremendous velocity. The scary
part: our brains are not designed to evolve this fast.
“The real problem of humanity is the following: we have paleolithic
emotions; medieval institutions; and god-like technology. And it is
terrifically dangerous, and it is now approaching a point of crisis
overall.” E.O Wison
If you are in the B2B Business or in the
B2C business here are two books that are must read for your survival. It will
question your business strategy arm you expansive insights. Rebecca Costa in her
The Watchman's Rattle: Thinking Our Way Out of Extinction, writes how
ancient civilizations collapsed because they hit a cognitive limitation. Are we
headed for a similar collapse? Can it be prevented?
Brain Solis, on the ther hand, explores the concept of "digital darwinism"–
the evolution of consumer behavior when society and technology evolve faster
than one’s ability to adapt. In his book,
End of Business As Usual, he talks about the persistent pounding of
technology, including social, mobile, and real time web. He says, brand
executives have a hard time appreciating what needs to change because they don’t
live their brand the way their customers do, and if they don’t live it they
can’t understand why adapting to evolving audience expectations is so important.
change, people change, users change. You have to be there to adapt to it or
else you will be making cassettes when the CD comes around."
Seth Porges, Cloth mobile app.
Even a decade ago, "digitizing" our
personal connections was downright unthinkable. The technology simply did not
exist. Today, the story is different. We have the technology to deliver the
right message to the person precisely the right time. And this has fundamentally
change the way we do business…. again, one more time. Society in general is
experiencing a technological tipping point.
The convergence of big data, social listening and integrated tracking tools have
made traditional, interruption marketing a thing of the past.
Today the striving goal of marketers is to
personalize their audience based on who they are and what they want, or need.
Rather than "one-size-fits-all", your various touch points is tailored towards
the individual at that moment in time. In other words, marketing is about
humanizing the interaction. It is about "one-to-one" interaction. It is
about crafting messages and approaches that will deliver your customers most
value and thus motivate them to buy.
companies, creating marketing that customers want is a colossal shift from
the norm and, even though they want to do it, psychological and operational
barriers stand in the way. Making your company inherently useful without
expecting an immediate return is in direct opposition to the principles and
business deeply ingrained at all levels." Jay
In an age of empowered consumers, you design
your brand marketing by building a strong foundation:Your brand and your visitor experience starts with
your own people, your employees. They are your brand ambassadors. "Make what you
stand for and what you promise explicit, then make sure it's clearly and
consistently communicated and that the implications are understood." If you are
exhibiting at trade shows, have a clear understanding WHY? What is it that
you stand for and what is your promise? You do not have have to have the
most novel product to sell. You do have to cater a novel experience for people
to take away.
Anchored on a Strong Vision:
A strong vision serves as Roadmap and guides every aspect of your
business by describing what you need to accomplish in order to continue
achieving sustainable, quality growth. Create a vision that galvanizes your
employees. People like to feel that what they are doing really matters. They are
inspired by a shared vision, working towards a common goal. Trust me, your
clients and prospects will clue on to this as they walk in your exhibiting
space. This is somethng that cannot be faked.
Identify, engage, and nurture your brand advocates:"Brand
Advocates are not just your biggest fans; they are your most satisfied
customer who are most likely to recommend your brand without being paid to do
so" Your brand doesnot have to be the biggest, the best or the sexiest.
But, your brand has the potential to be highly recommended by hearly half of
your customers. So, identify and serve your brand advocates. Host a special
event for your brand advocates at the venue.
your business, brand, and customer experience strategies:Your brand sets customer expectations. Experience
is how those expectations are met or not. For example, "If your brand is 'cheap
and disposable,' manufacture your products so they can be disposed of easily.
There are market needs everywhere." So, you see how your brand and your customer
experience is closely tied to your business strategy.
for Authenticity: Explosive growth of
social networks and rapid mobile phone adoption have given rise to "in the
moment" communication. “Companies that market to consumers in a way that is
authentic and locally relevant to the moment have a distinct advantage over
companies that merely broadcast the same message over these new channels.” If
you are exhibiting at trade shows, you have a distinct adavantage of catering to
'in the moment', location based authentic messaging. Authenticity creates
customer loyalty and drives confidence
it. Your Brand is no longer yours: It used
to be that companies were the keeper their brands. Not any more. Today, the
relationship between you and your customer is intensely more complicated. The
experience of your brand must be in alignment with your customer expectation. If
not, it will be effortlessly broadcasted across the channels. (47% of the
millenials share their positive experience online and a whopping 39% share
Emotional Experience of Your Brand:
Research states that rational thinking is used to justfy decisions based on
emotions. Meaning, if your brand makes an emtional connection with your
consumers, they will find ways to reward you with a relationship. Each touch
point evokes a set of
emotions that each consumer intuitively measures against his or her brand
expectations. Face-to-face makering is a a great way to make an emotional
conection. The earlier you make this emotional connection, the better. “Because
once consumers have decided they like a particular option, the more difficult it
is for them to backpedal. Their thinking falls in line with the emotions.”
As, Brian Solis says, we are all in
competition. Competing for attention, competing for relelevance, competing for
the moment. In an age of socially "connected consumers," when we have have all
become curators, carefully choosing the experiences that moves us, to cater to
the audiences of our audiences and hopefully, those who in turn follow them,
"brands are either part of the conversation or they’re
not and as a result, they’re either part of the decision-making cycle or they’re
absent from the heart, mind, and actions of the connected customer."