Meaningful Connections by Chris Baldwin

The future belongs to awesome marketers who hear it coming

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To all the awesome marketers out there…

Want to know what the “immediate” future will look like? Well here it is… Here is what we are (and will) all be fighting for as agencies and businesses over the coming years – “the m-commerce gap”.

Following the attention —> which is shifting to mobile devices.

Furthermore, this slide, which comes from a recent comScore research effort placing mobile in the context of the Maslow pyramid, even has some of the pains that need to be solved … look familiar?

Let’s keep working hard on solving them as agencies and businesses. The ones that solve them first will thrive. The ones that don’t will die a speedy or slow death – This last point, I can promise you.

This is also why focusing on the customer experience in a mobile context is so important for our clients and their customers. Traditionally, digital performance agencies have been in the business of buying into relevant attention (i.e buying traffic). This started (in an internet context) with banner advertising in the 90’s and moved to search advertising in the early 2000’s and then we saw display, social and programmatic advertising emerge as the new kids on the block.

And through access to people’s attention, you can market to them and influence their behavior. If done well, this behavioral manipulation translates to building relationships that drive business performance. But buying into attention is only one part of the equation. Once you have someone’s attention and are able to manipulate their behavior to visit your website (and more recently your app), you better make sure that the visitor is able to perform the task that they and you want them to complete. And this is now happening increasingly on mobile devices.

This is why we need to build maturity in the form of mature relationships between agencies and the companies they service. To become more strategic and help our clients build digital maturity across the full spectrum of digital marketing to help their customers over the entire customer journey and beyond into loyalty, advocacy and evangelism…like Apple did last decade. And they became the biggest company on earth.

We are trying to build relationships at scale through technologies like the Internet (a connection machine), which is disappearing and becoming ubiquitous (everywhere and always on). And we are trying to do this on websites and apps that are sometimes broken or not the best they can be. They are primitive, primordial beta versions, of what is to come. They produce more friction than flow.

Companies that understand this – reducing friction for the customer and building flow (path of least resistance) like the Uber’s, Airbnb’s, Google’s and Amazon’s …. are winning. And they are winning because they are using the data to understand the relationships they are building at scale, and building frictionless, loving relationships that people want to belong to – because they give us what we want. These companies know that to build lasting relationships through technology, requires using the data to personalize to the individual, create amazing experiences, empower us to get things done, bring incredible value into our lives and ultimately lead us to happier ones…which keeps us coming back for more because happiness leads to success in life.

We (T4U) are currently in the business of personalization…the first step in meaningful connections. Speak to someone who cares with a message they care a lot about. The next step, which we are currently taking is experience, which means you must be relevant in the customers context (their experience). Whether it be in an app, on a website, in a messenger, in a store, on TV… you must be relevant in the context of their intent and their experience. The next step is empowerment, which means to allow the customer to fulfill their intent – get the things they want and empower them to get those things done. Save them time, reduce friction, promote flow, and offer the path of least resistance. Time is our most precious resource. Help people use it wisely. This leads to incredible value in the customer’s life. And if the balance is right (a very personal and complex topic) for the individual, happiness follows and they come back for more.

If you want to learn more and see me presenting one version of meaningful connections as a keynote at the IAB Mixx Awards, you can do so here on Youtube.

Cheers,

Chris

Strategy Director @ Traffic4U