Consumer Insights on Meaningful Customer Conversation

I enjoyed the American Marketing Association’s recent webinar on “Meaningful Customer Conversation: How Interactive Marketing Drives Engagement.” Forrester’s Shar VanBoskirk did a great job of explaining how interactive media has impacted traditional media.

The premise of Ms. VanBoskirk’s presentation is give the people what they want by using data to learn what they want and using interactive marketing to inform people that it’s available, as well as to deliver it.

As we all know, traditional media is losing ground. Based on a study from North American Technographics, TV viewership is flat (12.67 hours per week) from 2004 to 2009 while time spent listening to radio is down 18% (6.58 hours), time spent reading newspapers is down 17% (2.65 hours) and time spent reading magazines is down 6% (2.11 hours). During this same time span, time spent on the Internet is up 117%, granted its growth is off a low base. However, at 12.5 hours per week, the Internet will surpass TV in the near future.

This evolution in media use has resulted in three significant changes:

1. Consumers have higher expectations. We are now able to get news through multiple channels and we expect immediate, custom content. The Internet and peers have a greater influence over purchases than traditional media. As empowered consumers we expect interactive relationships with product and service providers. We are proactive and vocal. We know we have value and we tell everyone what we really think. We are less inhibited on the Internet.

2. New media models replace old ones. Aggregation facilitates conversations about content you didn’t create. Community, not content, brings value. Syndication allows advertisers to reach audiences on sites they don’t host. Social media amplifies messages via inexpensive/free tools.

3. Marketers are replacing traditional media budgets with interactive media. Online media models don’t work like they do offline. Content is separated from its physical form. The cost/value of the physical medium is falling. The value of content is fragmented. Audiences are worth less online than offline.

Forrester has coined the term “splinternet” as the next era of the internet where end-user access to connected content and experiences is fragmented across non-pc devices.

In order to be successful in the splinternet, marketers will need to target their messages so they are relevant to smaller and smaller segments.

How will the splinternet affect how you go to market?

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About Insights From Analytics

Integrated marketing professional who generates insights from analytics to increase revenue. Daily blog now resides at www.insightsfromanalytics.com/blog.
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