Monday, January 19, 2009

Engage don't preach

Putting all your money online at the moment might not be the best approach, as an increasing number of people are living in both analog and digital worlds, and so it’s a must to give consumers a taste of both in a well-balanced way.

That’s the view of Denuo CEO Rishad Tobaccowala, who spoke at the recent seminar “Dawn of the new era: How consumers and communications are changing and What you can do to thrive”, a joint digital event between ZenithOptimedia, Starcom Mediavest and Digitas.

Tobaccowala says merely advertising on social networks like Facebook and MySpace is not doing real justice to the dollars marketers allocate to digital marketing.

“If you’re coming up with online campaigns let there be elements where people can speak back to the brand. It may be more of a customer affair thing and not a media or a marketing move,” he says.

A couple of interesting insights that he shared on consumer trends caught my attention. For instance, he speaks of consumers becoming more and more voyeuristic with God-like features.

“People want to express themselves and like to watch other people and are curious to follow them, particularly celebrities. No longer can a consumer be treated as idiots rather technology has made them kings with God-like features,” he says.
And to communicate with such a well-equipped audience, marketers need to speak with them rather than to them. According to Tobaccowala, the single biggest change that has happened in recent times is the move towards a globally decentralized linked network.

“People can trust their own research before buying any product, be it cars or mobile phones, so it only helps companies to be more transparent and be where the conversation is rather than trying to bring people to their own conversation,” he adds.

Tobaccowala is a veteran with over 25 years in marketing and strategy and also serves as an advisor and director on the board of many leading multi-national organizations in global marketing communications.

No comments: