Top 10 Guide: Marketing your Start-Up and SME
Immerse yourself with international brand man and entrepreneur, Graham Dodridge who shares his insight and experience.Download Now
We need to remember what marketing is: a connection between organisations and a market that benefits both parties.
Of course, this process needs knowledge and insights to segment and target specific people, and information to try and accurately predict future events. This is very much the scientific side of marketing, where big data allows us to target markets like never before.
This data, along with AI and marketing automation, means that marketers can communicate with huge numbers of customers at the touch of a button. According to a 2017 study, 53% of B2B organisations have already automated their marketing in some way, and 37% said that they planned to do so in the future.
If we’re not careful, automation in digital marketing can result in the creative, human aspect of marketing being lost or underestimated. People become a number in a spreadsheet as we lose the personal, face-to-face connection of the past.
It’s great that we can target and communicate with customers at greater numbers now, but the real challenge is to meaningfully engage with them. They aren’t robots; they’re people with unique thoughts, feelings and preferences.
Organisations need to engage with customers on a human level. People favour brands that are relevant, empathetic and compelling. They want an experience that meets or preferably exceeds their expectations.
Delivering this experience is much less of a science. It could be the colour of a logo, the composition of an image or the phrasing of a message that connects a person emotionally to a brand. This is where the art of marketing lies.
So, has marketing become too scientific? On balance, it feels like we are in the middle of a technology-driven marketplace, but I think the pendulum is about to swing back again.
Technology has given us fantastic scientific tools for testing and analysis of activity, but the right creative ideas still must be developed and delivered to achieve outstanding results.
It’s not about the quantity of communication; automating as many messages as possible to clients. It’s about having the right messages, planning a smart strategy and delivering an engaging experience that resonates with people.
Science is the stage, but creativity is the star.