Emerging Electronic Media – Internet & Web Marketing
Today’s consumer and industrial buyer is faced with an incredible volume and array of marketing messages that are seemingly thrust at them from all angles. The choice of vehicles for promoting your products, services and offerings are growing by the day. As each new medium emerges it places additional strain and pressure on the traditional media that were yesterday’s ‘king of the heap’. What worked for us yesterday may not necessarily work for us today. The challenge for today’s marketer is to identify new and innovative ways to communicate with their chosen market. But just who is that chosen target market?
The traditional way of determining your target market was to consider traditional demographic profiles static data such as age, gender, geographic location etc. But today’s consumer is a complex being and doesn’t necessarily fit into the neatly defined box. More and more companies with marketing savvy are realising that they need to appeal to the emotional and personal interest side of buyers, a practice collectively known as psychographics or lifestyle analysis. Consumer and FMCG marketers have been using psychographics and lifestyle analysis for a long time because they are selling to people in their individual capacity. But don’t these consumers have jobs? Don’t many of them also make buying decisions for their companies?
The traditional mass advertising mediums such as television, radio and print are struggling to achieve what the industry calls ‘cut-through’, in other words the ability to cut through the overcrowded and noisy messaging in the marketplace and be able to capture the attention of consumers and buyers. To achieve any degree of ‘cut-through’ the advertiser either has to have an outstanding advertisement that generates interest, perhaps due to its clever or catchy nature, or the product has to be so ‘gee whiz bang’ that you can’t help but take notice of it. Many great award winning ad campaigns have proven to be lame ducks when it comes to sales results, and the converse is also true – many pretty basic, low budget campaigns have generated outstanding sales results. There is no magic formula.
Marketers around the world are considering and using advertising vehicles outside of the traditional mediums and are focusing on the basic principle of more personal interaction with their market and customers. There is no question that internet and online advertising is fast becoming a major force in the promotional mix. Through interactive websites, subscription-based e-zines, opt-in email marketing campaigns, sponsored search results on search engines, paid-for banner advertising and website search optimisation techniques, marketers are able to reach and interact with their target market in a way that traditional media could never provide. In the same way that traditional media can be categorised by demographic and psychographic profiles, the new emerging electronic media vehicles are also maturing to the stage where they too can be clearly targeted in the same way.