Online promotion and customer activity tracking have changed the face of marketing forever, that’s a given. As a result of this I’m seeing some disturbing trends in digital marketing including a strong bias against elements of marketing that have always packed a powerful punch. Every day there’s a new digital “expert” telling me that numbers don’t lie. Or that I need to add a tactic within my marketing strategy that is counter-intuitive to the overall plan, mainly because another digital marketing campaign found success using that tactic.
I’m grateful to have the pleasure of working with true geniuses in the field of digital marketing. Here are three things really great digital marketers all understand about integrated marketing:
1. Numbers are only half the story. Anyone who’s done a ton of A/B testing will tell you there are some really weird subject lines and promotions that take off like a rocket. And we don’t always know why. Great digital marketers know you have to throw in a few wild cards, particularly at the beginning of the campaign, because what the numbers will tell you will work, isn’t always what works. Numbers, plus experience and a bit of gut feel or intuition will always give you the best result.
2. Traditional media is still relevant. A lot of folks on the digital side look down their nose at print, network TV, direct marketing and other forms of traditional advertising and PR. Great digital marketers know that the best results (and this holds true for my IMC campaigns as well) result when there is an attempt to create synergy between digital tactics and traditional media. It may not be as glamorous as content marketing right now, but a good hit on local TV will always deliver for consumer brands. Learn how to synchronize digital tactics with these efforts, and they can provide a tremendous boost for online results.
3. Customer behavior trumps demographics. Digital marketers live and breathe off data, but using demographics and big data is only as important as how well it predicts behavior. Great digital marketers know the area to research and test is customer behavior. Where do they get their information? How do they behave on a landing page? When do they buy? All of this information, as I’ve mentioned before in my conversation about Warby Parker, is more important than building huge grids of personal data.
Bottom line? Great digital marketers haven’t thrown the baby out with the bath water. Intuition, creativity, traditional media and behavior are still vital components of a modern marketing campaign, no matter the medium.
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