In Paris there is now a pledge to reduce street advertising by 30% by 2013. This policy is indicative of a growing concern about the mental pollution caused by the global ’consumption machine’. A fresh and meaningful marketing approach is needed – and the first step is to talk to your audiences as people, rather than just consumers.
Extrinsic vs Intrinsic
The 20th-century left-brain outlook fueled by a set of extrinsic values – ego, status, wealth and power – is obsolete. It is obvious that a 21st-century marketing model must include intrinsic and people-centric values such as concern for others, community and the environment. Tomorrow’s marketing must match people’s value universe to fulfill real needs and expectations. According to the Meaningful Brand Index, in the UK only 5% of brands are perceived to have a positive impact on our well-being and quality of life and most people would not care if 91% of today’s brands ceased to exist.
The 4P Business Model
Our values are not genetic – but embedded and normalised by what we encounter in our social environment. With ever more of us questioning brands and their value universe, marketing must be linked to a 4P bottom line: People, Planet, Pleasure and then Profit to deliver a meaningful message. The 4P is not just a communications strategy, but a value driven proposal where the payoff is engagement, community, sustainability and loyalty – fuelling a positive bottom line. Everything in society is interconnected and to deliver ‘real’ value we must explore today’s society trends. By linking trends to people’s lifestyle preferences, we gain profound insight into the opportunities that will drive tomorrow’s marketing.
1. The Female Factor and Engagement
The female factor is an important currency and, according to McKinsey’s report Women Matter, gender-balanced companies achieve better operational profit. Increasingly global female influencers and leaders are reshaping leadership through collaboration and innovation – creating value by integrating empathic “soft” skills into both business and marketing.
2. Global Citizenship and Mobility
Access, community and mobility are key to engaging with a migrating digital fluent youth. To facilitate the global citizens’ desire to participate and stay connected, brands must act as trusted guides, enabling sharing and learning. Therefore marketing must facilitate autonomy and seamless experiences across multimedia platforms.
3. Total Transparency and Trust
According to Edelman, trust in government and business in the UK is still in decline and well below the global average. Reputation is the new marketing, as social networks drive a culture of openness and sharing. Good management of private data is essential for trusting relationships and marketing must ‘deliver truth’ to have lasting competitive advantage.
A Better World and Participation
Successful social initiatives require commitment around an issue to create social impact. Brands that share their point of view through cause marketing need to invite participation and interact meaningfully with all their stakeholders – customers, employees and suppliers.
5. The Good Life and Meaning
From politics and work to community and family, happiness and positive experiences are strong drivers. We seek meaningful engagement to assist us in achieving personal fulfillment and quality of life. Develop your brand platform and make it a wellbeing facilitator in order to match the real needs of people.
6. Cultural Capital and Narrative
Starting a movement instead of a campaign is crucial to growing a strong cultural legacy and achieving brand recognition in a globalised world. A meaningful marketing strategy also recognises the value of interactive transmedia experiences – aural, visual, touch, smell – that weave into people’s personal narrative.
7. Smart Technology and Agility
Google states that 79% of smartphone owners use their device to aid shopping and 74% make a purchase as a result. Mobile digital technology has empowered us to work, socialise and consume ‘on-the-go’. Social media marketing must be agile and adaptable to keep up with our real-time demands – brand building is a digital exercise.
8. Cloud Culture and Community
Successful brands already engage in open dialogue, enabling user-generated content to evolve meaningful relationships – but the challenge is to streamline ‘big data’. Operating in multiple digital modes and delivering targeted content via cross channel platforms is the only way to connect with people and cultivate your community.
By applying a 4P mindset to the changing face of marketing, you can imagine the future, plan what your brand should do differently, and then map out how best to do it. A Trend Atlas is essential to decode the cultural contexts of society, enabling a meaningful future marketing vision to serve the ‘real’ needs of people. A meaningful communications and advertising strategy impacts communities and society – and the brand owner – in a positive way.
Article: The Marketer, March 2012
Images and Inspirational Sources
1. Extrinsic vs Intrinsic – Infographic Kjaer Global
2. Volte Face – Image Kjaer Global
3. Balanced ‘4P’ Marketing – Diagram Kjaer Global
4. The Richer $ex – Time March 26, 2012 >>
5. The Colour of Money – Tridos Bank Magazine >>
6. Are you Happy – Illustration by h34dup >>
7. Head in the Cloud – Bloomberg Businessweek March 2011
The future is shaped by our choices and actions – meaning that we are all active change makers