Brands will act as their own multimedia, bypassing press and publishers.
By cultivating a brand community and culture with their customers, brands will begin to collaborate with their audiences (as opposed to simply trying to sell to them), creating loyalists and brand advocates. In the future, the seeds of branding and marketing efforts will be rooted in what customers are talking about and making. Customer responses and feelings toward the brand will dictate future product development or enhancement. If the customers are happy, they’ll gladly wear the marketeer’s badge, reward them, or speak highly of them and do what is needed to bring the brand to others in their interest or social network. On the other hand, give them a bad experience and they will let everyone within their network and social media outlets and graph know. Many a brand has tumbled quickly by pissing customers off. You live and die by how you treat your customers.
Brands that focus on Generation Z will have the advantage.
The post-Millennial generation will be even more demanding than its predecessors, and brands will need to acknowledge that. For legacy companies, simply updating older marketing that targeted Millennials won’t be enough. By 2023 there will be a shift. Companies created by Millennials such as Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat may have to pivot their entire product and strategy to survive. Generation Z will demand that companies be in business for something other than pure profit. Capitalism is about to be reshaped, and those who think solely about revenue as a sign of success will be sorely mistaken and rightfully abandoned. Just ask voters who see the environment, social interaction and community involvement as major factors for any politician.
Most disruptive marketing will be around products, not service.
While service companies aim to create happy customers and look forward to contract renewals or positive social sentiments, product companies thrive on innovation and what their products will look like it the future. What exists in the here and now may be good, but what will exist in the future can and should be considerably improved. So, for marketers of the future, customer satisfaction and retention will not be enough. Innovative products and solutions will be the things that create more value for customers. Apple will have to become even more creative if it is to survive. Microsoft has become more valuable by giving away free software, creating synergistic partnerships and offering an ongoing suite of services that compliment the way people use computers and mobile devices.
Personalized, data-driven disruptive marketing will become the norm.
There is a difference between data-driven disruptive marketing and interruptive marketing. While the former is relationship oriented, whereby content acts as a currency to build trust, the latter is nothing but old-school push messaging in a shiny new digital wrapper. Marketers who focus on building relationships around good products will be rewarded, while fake fast followers with crappy products and poor service will be ostracized. Just ask those companies that where accused of green washing their products (creating an image of doing something for the environment, while doing very little) or those companies where product quality (dishwashers, fridges and stoves) was substandard and quickly shunned by the consumer.
Tracking metrics will be more accurate.
Today most businesses measure marketing success by looking at hollow “vanity” metrics such as impressions, likes, shares, or engagement rates. We’re still developing sophisticated mean to mine the right data. The future will witness the rise of better analytical tools to help marketers gauge success in terms of emotional and cultural relevance, as well as ROI. Artificial intelligence is already being used by companies to better understand the sentiment towards specific issues as opposed to transaction counts. Just ask companies like Advanced Symbolics who scan thousands of Facebook and online conversations to find out how consumers view specific products for services.
This is only the beginning of some of the disruptive approaches to marketing and its important for every organization to better understand the needs of their customers and to approach their customers in a way that makes them feel wanted and special and need to continue to add even more value to keep them long term. A solid strategy should include looking through a future lens to better understand where you are now and what you should be doing in the future to better understand you customer.