Marketing: A Waste Of Money Or The Most Important Business Function?

Marketing: A Waste Of Money Or The Most Important Business Function?
SHARE
THIS



In this guest post, Dr Peter Steidl (pictured below), principal at Neurothinking, takes a good, hard look at how technology will shape the future of marketing.

Dr Peter Steidl

The impact of new technologies will be more complex and disruptive to marketing than many of us realise. In case you are not yet worried about your future as a marketer, let me explore some of the major trends and developments that will create unprecedented risks and opportunities for marketers.

McKinsey, the Oxford Martin Institute and other credible parties predict that technologies that are already being deployed – artificial intelligence, blockchain, 3D printing, virtual and augmented reality, the Internet of Things, drones and robotics – will eliminate around 50 per cent of today’s jobs. Unfortunately, these technologies will not create many new jobs, leading to a massive disruption in the way we live.

As an example: technologists have proudly announced that autonomous vehicles will create some 120,000 new jobs in the US. What they didn’t mention was that close to eight million truck, delivery van, taxi and other professional drivers will lose their jobs. Add to this the expected job losses in the car insurance, auto repair, hospital and health services, car manufacturing and other related industry sectors, and we are looking at well over 10 million jobs lost compared to a gain of 120,000.

Of course, governments are not going to sit idly by while half the population lives on unemployment benefits. A number of countries are exploring the introduction of a universal basic wage as a means of dealing with the expected high levels of unemployment. But what does this mean for marketers?

As a marketer, you will find it easy to imagine how the prospect of a fixed, merely adequate income will impact on a consumer’s spending. Australia’s current household debt stands at just above 120 per cent of GDP. Of course, debt is no problem as long as income growth allows the consumer to catch up with their payments. Australia has had the longest uninterrupted period of growth of any country in the world, so consumers have got used to taking on debt based on the reasonable expectation that they will earn more in the future and thus be able to comfortably manage their indebtedness.

Now imagine how consumers will react when they know – with a high degree of certainty – that their future income will be safe, moderate and stay the same for the rest of their life. They will no longer be able to expect year-on-year income growth. What will these consumers do? What will happen to consumer spending?

And this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to technologies changing consumer behaviour. The use of digital home assistants is spreading rapidly in the US (e.g. Amazon’s Echo, Apple’s Siri, Google’s Assistant) and consumers are starting to delegate the ordering of many goods and services to them. Developments in new delivery systems – notably drones – are facilitating home delivery of many items, including groceries. Australia is not yet that advanced, but the US situation is a sign of things to come.

These developments, in turn, will have a profound impact on the retail scene. For example, when a significant share of groceries is ordered online and home-delivered, we are likely to see a reduction in mainstream retail outlets and a growth in emotionally engaging destination stores.

From a marketer’s perspective, there are a number of key challenges that must be addressed. Some of the most important questions that need to be answered are:

  • How will consumer behaviour change when close to half the population will be on a universal basic wage (or unemployment benefits if the Australian government screws up)?
  • How can we ensure that our offer is still seen as relevant and something the consumer doesn’t want to trade for convenience and lower prices by delegating the purchase to a digital home assistant?
  • How will we ensure our brand is the one chosen by a digital home assistant?
  • How can we adjust our offer and the positioning of our brand to be relevant and desirable in the new, emerging market environment?

If we can’t be the price leader (and the vast majority of brands can’t), then the only way to succeed in this environment is to build a strong emotional relationship with the consumer. This means that we need to develop a clear brand positioning because familiarity and buying habits will no longer drive purchases, and this which demands that we move increasingly from exposure to engagement.

Marketers can no longer afford to continue spending their time on short-term issues, with the quarterly budget consistently taking priority over the long-term health of the brand.

We are looking at an emerging environment where marketing will either be propelled to the most important business function or will start the quick slide to its demise, and this choice will depend on what marketers do between today and when the technological disruption hits and consumers change their behaviour in ways we have never experienced before.

A branch of marketing that is arguably in the best position to deal with these changes is sports marketing. More about this in my next contribution.

If you want to learn more from Dr Peter Steidl about the future of marketing, click here to secure your ticket to the Ministry of Sports Marketing conference next month.

Latest News

Women In Media Profile: Zeina Khodr
  • Media

Women In Media Profile: Zeina Khodr

When B&T was offered to interview a lady named “Zeina”, we initially thought it was the warrior princess herself.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
39th AWARD Awards Winners Announced
  • Media

39th AWARD Awards Winners Announced

The winners of the 39th annual AWARD Awards were announced tonight in a celebration of the most outstanding creative communications work in the Asia Pacific region. The theme for the night was “Count Yourself Lucky” and didn’t disappoint with a record number of golds being presented. Held at Carriageworks as part of the Semi Permanent […]

Q&A With Cannes Chairman Terry Savage
  • Advertising
  • Media

Q&A With Cannes Chairman Terry Savage

If you mistakenly thought this was an interview with Kojak's Telly Savalas, as it turns out, it's even better than that.

Optus To Phase Out Virgin Mobile Brand
  • Marketing

Optus To Phase Out Virgin Mobile Brand

Didn't much fancy that Telstra story above? Well, perhaps B&T could tempt you with this tasty Optus tickler instead.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
AKQA R&D Teams Up With Google For Semi Permanent 2018
  • Media

AKQA R&D Teams Up With Google For Semi Permanent 2018

AKQA R&D in collaboration with Google has developed a process called Somesthetic Transfer. It uses machine learning to take both the style and texture of an artwork and apply it to another image to be 3D printed with a UV printer. The works will be displayed at Semi Permanent 2018 in Sydney from Thursday 24 […]

WPP’s Health & Wellness To Unveil ‘How Design Can Save A Life” For Vivid
  • Marketing
  • Media

WPP’s Health & Wellness To Unveil ‘How Design Can Save A Life” For Vivid

Design students from Torrens University’s Billy Blue College of Design have partnered with WPP AUNZ’s Health & Wellness division to decode clinical data on ‘Medicinal Marijuana in the Treatment of Epilepsy’. Their creative solutions will be presented at a Vivid Ideas Exchange titled ‘Design can save your life: how can creativity improve comprehension of health data?’ […]

Diversity Case Study Series: The Royals
  • Advertising
  • Marketing
  • Media

Diversity Case Study Series: The Royals

If you read one diversity case study on B&T today, make it this one. Not that there's any others to choose from, really.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Cricket Australia Finds New Major Sponsor
  • Marketing

Cricket Australia Finds New Major Sponsor

B&T was going to insert a homage to Sherbert's classic "Howzat" here before realising it was naff and showed our age.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
PHD Wins HSBC Global Media Account
  • Media

PHD Wins HSBC Global Media Account

ICYMI, PHD has FTW the HSBC business IRL. It's not so much a LOL or NSFW, but a TL;DR. Ahh, forget the whole thing.

InMoment Accelerates APAC Expansion With Key Acquisition
  • Media

InMoment Accelerates APAC Expansion With Key Acquisition

Customer experience (CX) intelligence platform, InMoment, has expanded into Australia and New Zealand with the acquisition of customer experience agency, brandXP and appointment of Claire Fastier as its APAC business head.

Marketers Need To Focus On Voice Search Right Now
  • Opinion

Marketers Need To Focus On Voice Search Right Now

In this opinion piece, Performics Australia performance content account director Steve Robinson (pictured below) dives into the hazy relationship between marketers and voice-activated technology. From settling family disputes, (“Hey Google, are fossil fuels really made from dinosaur bones?”) to running a household, (“OK Google, add toothpaste to my shopping list”), voice-activated systems are becoming more […]

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
SpotX Launches Online Resource Library For Publishers Seeking GDPR Guidance
  • Advertising
  • Media

SpotX Launches Online Resource Library For Publishers Seeking GDPR Guidance

Video advertising and monetisation platform SpotX has announced the launch of an online resource library for the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The library can be found on the company’s website and is part of a wider educational initiative by SpotX – which is headquartered in the US and has an office in […]

Daylight Agency Opens Government Division, Hires Legal & Political Expert
  • Marketing

Daylight Agency Opens Government Division, Hires Legal & Political Expert

Integrated communications firm Daylight Agency has cemented its presence in the government and political arena with the appointment of industry veteran David Begg. A practising solicitor for over 28 years, Begg (pictured above) will head up the agency’s new government division. He has extensive experience working with large commercial clients on high-profile regulatory and legal […]

Frost Design Unveils New Look For John Holland
  • Marketing

Frost Design Unveils New Look For John Holland

Frost Design has shown off its comprehensive rebrand of iconic Australian infrastructure and property business John Holland, based around the brand idea of ‘Transforming Lives’. John Holland CEO Joe Barr said Frost was the only branding business who understood that the impact of the rebrand was just as important internally as it would be externally, […]

Women In Media Profile: Jill Johnston
  • Media

Women In Media Profile: Jill Johnston

We've got an absolute cracking Women in Media profile today. Not to say it's approved by the Chiropractors' Association.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
First Lady Michelle Obama and President Barack Obama Dance Together at the Presidents Ball
  • Media

Netflix Secures Producer Deal With The Obamas

It seems former US president Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama aren’t quite done with the international spotlight just yet. The Obamas have officially signed a multiyear deal with Netflix, which will see the power couple producing films and series with the streaming giant. According to Netflix, “The Obamas will produce a diverse […]

How To Spot A Trend Versus A Fad
  • Opinion

How To Spot A Trend Versus A Fad

One need only view our editor's hot pink leg warmers today to realise he's neither fad nor trend.

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Why Engagement Is The New Rule Of Content
  • Opinion

Why Engagement Is The New Rule Of Content

And why is B&T running a photo of an engaged couple for this content engagement article? It was either that or a carrot.

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Fairfax Media Recruits 20 Trainee Journalists Across All Its Titles
  • Media

Fairfax Media Recruits 20 Trainee Journalists Across All Its Titles

Fairfax Media has today announced the recruitment of 20 trainee journalists to join the newsrooms of The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Canberra Times, The Australian Financial Review, Brisbane Times and WAtoday. This represents one of Metro’s largest trainee intakes in years and underlines the commitment of the mastheads to fostering a new generation […]

Sydney Australia - November 7, 2011. An extreme close up of an American express card issued by the Australian bank Westpac.
  • Media

AMEX Launches Global Media Review

Are there not enough hours in the day? Are you cheek-by-jowl with your co-workers? Well, hopefully you won't win this.

Sydney Water & Republic of Everyone Create Vinyl Records Made Of Recycled Marine Plastic
  • Campaigns
  • Marketing

Sydney Water & Republic of Everyone Create Vinyl Records Made Of Recycled Marine Plastic

Sydney Water has pioneered a way to create records from marine plastics and, in doing so, encourage more people to join the movement of local clean-up groups rolling up their sleeves every weekend to clean plastics, litter and other pollutants from the city’s beaches and waterways. Plastics are collected by volunteers, then cut in pieces […]

Credit Card Compare Names Its First Head Of Marketing
  • Marketing

Credit Card Compare Names Its First Head Of Marketing

Aussie credit card comparison site Credit Card Compare has announced the appointment of Caroline Raffan as its inaugural head of marketing. Raffan (pictured above) has over 10 years’ experience in brand strategy, campaign development, digital marketing, events, public relations, content creation, market research, advertising, stakeholder management, social media marketing, and project management. She joins Credit […]

Why Programmatic Needs To Become A Branding Machine
  • Advertising
  • Marketing
  • Opinion
  • Technology

Why Programmatic Needs To Become A Branding Machine

In this opinion piece, Phil Murrell (pictured below), country manager for Australia and New Zealand at Sizmek, argues that programmatic ad spend needs to move up the branding funnel. When I started in digital advertising way back in 2004, we got our media insertion orders via the fax machine. We relied on that machine to […]

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine