I want to spend some time sharing with you my predictions regarding marketing methods that we will see become obsolete and those we need to keep our eyes on in the next decade. Clearly marketing has changed over the years – even I can attest that. We've seen a switch from traditional means of marketing to more nontraditional and interactive ways of marketing. I started in marketing in 1998 and I'm amazed and excited about not only where we are, but also where we are heading. I think once you review my predictions for the upcoming decade, you will understand my excitement and will perhaps share in it as well.
Out With the Old
In the year 2000 we were dabbling in interactive and online marketing, but our feet were still planted in the traditional ways of getting our marketing message out to consumers. As I said, marketing is changing, and marketing trends that will decrease substantially or phase out completely include the following:
Yellow Pages continue to lose effectiveness when it comes to reaching customers. We no longer reach for the Yellow Pages when we are looking for a product or service. Instead, we grab our keyboards and do a search. We are information seekers and the Yellow Pages fail to give us all the information that we desire. An address and telephone number coupled with a graphical ad are no longer enough, and therefore, we go online.
When was the last time you thumbed through a catalog before tossing it into the trash can? I remember my mother would keep catalogs and put them into the cabinet for us to peruse when we were bored. That's no longer the case. When we are ready to buy we go online to find information about the product and to read reviews from other consumers. Catalogs do not provide us with the in-depth information we, as consumers, seek. This reason doesn't even take into account that we are becoming an environmentally conscious society that no longer wants the waste when we can use other means to find the information we need immediately.
It's true many companies still swear by direct-mail pieces, but if you are sending out a solo direct-mail piece and you are not integrating it with an online or drip campaign – it spells failure. We've been bombarded with direct-mail advertisements and marketing pieces, and truth be told, we, as consumers, are sick of them. You fill up our mailbox and we continually have to sort through our mail to find what we deem important. This just makes more work for us and frustrates us. We are over it and will only toss those direct-mail pieces into the trash unless you do something extraordinary that gets our attention. However, when companies do that the campaign is often no longer cost-effective.
Oh, wow, don't even get me started. When was the last time you heard of a telemarketing campaign actually working? We don't want you to call us unless we've given you permission. You are interrupting our family time and you even sometimes interrupt our dinner. You start off with scripts that make you sound like a robot, and it really ticks us off that we got up to answer the phone only to be greeted by another telemarketer. We hate these calls so much that there are tools to block you or at least screen you from getting to us. The majority of consumers don't even answer numbers that they don't know – see what you've done? Telemarketing is no longer effective.
I don't think print and television will ever completely go away – that's not my point in listing them. I'm listing them because I think the money that companies spend on these marketing methods will decrease and be redirected to marketing activities that provide real-time statistics and real-time results. I believe that in the next decade you will begin to see print and television integrated more with online marketing campaigns and they will work to drive the consumers online to purchase, request information or contact the company. We've already begun to see this with major brands today.