Feeling Nostalgic about Digital Marketing

Hello Business Owner!

I know this is random, but, all things in life start randomly, believe it or not. And you are not alone, you are joining a group of 7000 small business owners friends (including me) who read the daily digest with news from the world of Tech, Digital Marketing and more, so that we can keep up with the world of Internet.

Instead of talking about tedious details about QnA’s, or schema’s or markup tags, from time to time, I like to speculate about what might happen in digital marketing.

I grew up in 90s of India, which is kind of like 60s of America, only difference is that India made the jump from TVs, to Cable TVs to Internet in the same decade! Most of the people who were born in 90s of America don’t know how life is without Internet. Internet is the new Electricity, it’s hard for us to question its existence, whether it’s good or bad, it’s just essential.

A lot of the business owners, still are from the time when Google didn’t exist. Lot of the advertising was only possible if you had ton of money, you had to take big business loans to make something work. People couldn’t think about starting a business just like that. Starting a business was a complicated process, but not anymore. You can get online, and start selling in a day (Website + Adwords + Service).

Google itself has adapted and made sure every local business gets a chance to rank No 1 for some area, so that everyone gets business, so that there’s no monopolies on Google, except for Google itself (is a monopoly on advertising).
In some senses, Marketing has been a favorite tool of Capitalism. Capitalism would collapse without Marketing (won’t it?) In fact, everything we know about business and marketing in general was created at universities, that were funded by companies who created a lot of wealth with business. Strange I know.

Capitalism flourishes as long as marketers can stimulate buying interest. It doesn’t care about the situation of the consumer so to speak (that’s taken care of by banks and debts 🙂
So is something different possible? Can a business build a brand, make money, but still think about the consumers who might/might not buy their products and services?

We need to start asking: Does the brand serve well the person and the society? Marlboro was the most popular brand of cigarettes. It delivered taste and high satisfaction. But it also could deliver a heart attack, liver damage and “bads” to others in the smoke vicinity.

A Gulfstream plane can deliver a great and comfortable trip for one CEO but it generates much more pollution and climate damage per person than a full passenger flight in a Boeing airplane. Companies in a free society can freely decide what they want to make and sell but they should consider whether the brand has a beneficence problem and whether this will ultimately hurt the brand.

Consider that our food industry makes heavy use of sugar, fat, and salt, all leading to obesity and certain illnesses. As more consumers become conscious of these ill-effects, they may retreat from using the product or brand. A socially responsible company needs to shape its offerings to minimize personal or societal ill-effects of their brand offering.
Digital Marketers need to target not only the minds of the customers but also their hearts and well being.

The concept of emotional marketing has been described in several books including Experiential Marketing by Bernd Schmitt, Emotional Branding by Marc Gobe, and Lovemarks by Kevin Roberts. 
Great examples of emotional marketing were achieved by marketers such as Howard Schultz of Starbucks, Richard Branson of Virgin, and Steve Jobs of Apple. Starbucks’ concept of “third place for drinking coffee,” Virgin’s “unconventional marketing,” and Apple’s “creative imagination” are the implementations of emotionally relevant marketing. These brands occupy a deep place in our emotional hearts.

More than ever, this is now possible. Why? Because Digital Marketing can be so targeted and personal that we don’t need to sell everything to everyone. Amazon is becoming the biggest company in the world by exploiting this customer behavior.

Ok, enough for today! i will leave you with your own thoughts, I am sure I took you back in time, just a little bit, by talking comparing traditional marketing and the present.

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