Social media networking and interactive content are becoming fixtures in the modern world of marketing. They invigorate a portion of basic human identity that delights in personal attention, genuine conversation and individualized control. People are eager to feel cared for, not manipulated. They want convenience, not interruption. The world of marketing is changing drastically and there are more outlets for the marketer’s voice than ever before. That number of available outlets could double by the end of tomorrow. This is where the future of marketing lies – in consumer’s choice to digest information.
The future of interactive marketing will relinquish viewer control. It will be forced to embrace the immediacy and personalization characterized by traditional social relationships, creating interesting and sincere content that can be channeled through online communities and mobile networks.
I will be studying this topic in search of tomorrow’s strategies to target new online and mobile audiences. Research will be conducted through various methods and sources including prominent marketing professionals and organizations such as the Triangle Interactive Marketing Association and the American Marketing Association. I will explore agencies who excel in interactivity such as Harris Interactive, Media Two, Multi-Channel Marketing and Rockett Interactive.
My research will thoroughly consider well-respected authors on the topic such as Kim Dushinski and her book, The Mobile Marketing Handbook, where she outlines the use of new tools like Bluetooth marketing, interactive signage, 2D barcodes, image recognition and AT announcements in the context of new marketing strategies. Another excellent resource will be Tamar Weinberg’s The New Community Rules: Marketing on the Social Web, published by O’Reilly. It explores conversation marketing and online reputation tactics with microblogging, influential video and podcasting.
Another vital tool for my research will be David Meerman Scott’s book The New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to use Press Releases, Blogs, Podcasting, Viral Marketing and Online Media to Reach Buyers Directly. Scott details how to speak to customers in the comfort of their own online community and let useful content drive action.
Prominent blogs, like the Forrester Blog for Interactive Marketing Professionals will provide me with various insights into online consumer research. Forrester recently released the 2009 Benchmark Survey, the second largest survey in the country behind the U.S. Census. Its results show that once-upon-a-time luxury items like PCs and mobile phones are now in three-fourths of U.S. households. Media strategy must adjust to meet the needs of a population where nearly one in four have a DVR. Long-gone are the days of depending on television advertising. Research results show that consumers of every age are embedding more and more online technology into their daily lives.
One aspect of this research will look into the affect of interactive online advertising through examples such as Google and Amazon, that both use content-based personalized advertising techniques. With a market that is increasingly dissected by new technologies and burgeoning online sites, it will only become harder to grab and retain customers’ attention.
In today’s hyperconnected culture, marketers have to find customers where they enjoy spending time online and speak to them through meaningful conversation. In the future, marketers will need to address intrinsic needs for personalization and community while adapting to rapidly evolving technology. I plan to discover the best tactics for reaching a progressively mobile market and establish best practices for future interactive marketing strategy.