Dr. Anne Marie Thomas, Chief Strategy Officer for Resource Interactive spoke at the CMA’s December International SIG meeting – the title of her presentation: “7 Global Trends for 2011.” Dr. Thomas’ perspective focused on the world of digital marketing, as one would expect from someone in her position.
The 7 Global Trends she identified were:
- Mobile – the New PC: Mobility, in general, is continuing to grow and is competing with the PC as the most-common means of accessing the internet. The implication is that marketers must have mobile goals in their marketing mix. These goals should include how to deliver rich, highly engaging and useful experiences that leverage the capabilities of mobile hardware.
- It’s Better with Friends: The socially-powered web is redefining marketers’ reality – and not just in the digital world. Brands can “participate” in the social discussion about themselves but the communication is no longer one-way. Brands need to take advantage of how Facebook and other social media allow for a more flexible and personalized digital customer experience.
- Atomized & Distributed: The fragmenting of content and commerce means a brand has to leverage the media touchpoints that are relevant to the customer – this is another element of the personalized experience noted above. The challenge is to touch the customer where they socialize, shop and search. During the discussion Allison Circle of the Columbus Metropolitan Library underscored this point by noting that the library had been unsuccessful in creating social interaction in library-controlled spaces.
- Location Matters – Making Digital Local: Mobility means your customer can be both physically inside your business AND online. The advent of Facebook “Places” and other location-based services like Foursquare leverages this capability for marketers. Retailing guru Chuck Palmer commented that this makes possible the “distributed version of the Blue Light Special.”
- Life is a Game: Nothing engages networked people more than a good game. Getting people to participate with the brand in an interactive contest of some sort is a big opportunity.
- The Digital Looking Glass: Augmented Reality (AR) is another digital concept marketers need to pay attention to. A commonplace example of this are the first-down lines superimposed on football fields on TV – the lines don’t really exist, putting them there “augments” the reality of the game. The increasing use of 3D technologies is another type of AR. Using AR on a mobile device with a consumer “in the moment” can bring a brand proposition to life.
- The Internet of Things: The veritable explosion of content creates a world of data to mine and activate to enhance customer experiences.
I have to admit I don’t understand all the implications of these trends. I noted a quote during Dr. Thomas’ summary that makes little sense to me – she urged us to “curate relevant location and events through a mobile AR looking glass.” Well, she’s got the Ph.D & I don’t.
That’s one of the reasons I attend these events, though, to expand and stretch and challenge my own concepts of reality.