Is it time for online marketing to take a more human approach?

The world of digital marketing is changing. Although still relatively new, so far the focus has been very much on getting results from consumers to serve business purposes. However, we are moving further and further away from this approach and towards a mentality that puts the customer firmly in the driving seat. Is it time for online marketing to be more human?

Where are we now?

It’s no secret that digital marketing has thrived on the basis of what it can be used to “get” from consumers. But that has only worked up to a point. As the industry evolves we are starting to see more of a move towards blending marketing with customer service so that the driving force is more what can you do for your customer than what can they do for you. This is going to require a significant attitude shift across many organisations but the rewards will be plentiful, especially for those who do it ahead of the game.

Repositioning online marketing for a more human approach

Take a different view of marketing

In the past, online marketing has often been all about driving consumers to make a purchase, even if it was just a single one. However, a more human attitude shift requires brands to look at advertising and marketing as a way of building a long term relationship with customers. So, revenue is measured in terms of lifetime value, not individual transactions, and the purpose of the marketing is to build a genuine connection rather than to achieve a fast sell.

Don’t get complacent when it comes to data

Particularly with the arrival of the GDPR, acquisition of customer data is no longer permanent– consent to use it can be withdrawn at any time. The readjustment here is looking at marketing and being critical about its quality – is it good, is it useful to the consumer? Brands need to delve deep into analysing the way marketing is being done to ensure that permissions to use data are not suddenly withdrawn. If that means investing in better quality marketing it’s a small price to pay.

Don’t separate selling and service

Online marketing exists because brands believe they have a product or service that consumers will benefit from using or buying. It’s a very effective way to introduce new products to existing customers and to expand a customer base. However, when it comes to an end with a conversion often a lot of the future benefit is lost.

What’s becoming increasingly obvious is that selling and service need to be joined up to create one long, continuous cycle. That means ensuring that these functions are integrated within the business and that customer experience doesn’t feel different before conversion and afterwards.

Online marketing is changing year on year as a result of new technology and evolution of consumer attitudes. Keeping up with the challenges is about to get a lot more individual – it’s going to be all about the human touch from here on in.

For more of the latest digital marketing trends, get in touch with Iconic Digital’s team today on 020 7100 0726.

Author: Steve Pailthorpe - Follow us on Google+