Mass Marketing Doesn’t Work Anymore: Marketo CEO

Mass Marketing Doesn’t Work Anymore: Marketo CEO

The future of marketing is not going to be mass marketing. It’s not going to be campaign marketing. It’s going to be engagement marketing.

Emma Mackenzie
Posted by Emma Mackenzie

At least that’s what Phil Fernandez, founder and CEO of ad tech company Marketo stressed to the audience at a breakfast in Sydney on Thursday morning.

The days of interruptive advertising, particularly in the digital space, does not work anymore, he said. “People are tuning us out.

“Everyone knows people are tuning out advertising. If you’re buying advertising and you’re not worried people are tuning it out, then you should probably stop buying the advertising.”

Mass marketing is dead, he said, or at least it’s dying a slow death.

As marketers we have to remember there’s humans involved, it’s not all about the tech and the consumer shouldn’t have to worry about the tech, he said.

Fernandez used the example of Google Cars. Google has been testing out its self-driving cars for a while now. And even though it had a small crash recently, the other tests seem to be rather positive.

Fernandez noted how the consumer has nothing to worry about when it comes to making the car work. They don’t have to move this cable here, put this there. The technology is all done in the background and all the consumer does is input where it wants to do – a technology they most likely already know how to use if they own a smartphone.

And marketing should be the same, he said. Consumers shouldn’t be able to see all the technology behind something, it should just work.

However, a question posed from the audience asked how to deplete the silos in businesses that segment the marketing team and the tech team, especially with more emphasis of marketers having control over the technology.

You need to talk with the facts, responded Fernandez. And sometimes it’s a defensive posture, but he said those silos need to break down between the company.

Too, you can’t go past a ‘future of marketing’ speech without bringing up the Internet of Things (IoT). Fernandez reckoned it’s just going to continue, to the point where he wouldn’t be surprised if digitised pill bottles reminding customers to update their prescription come into play soon.

Everything is soon going to be a place where marketers can target messages to people.

And it means the concept of the ‘customer journey’ is becoming fragmented, to the point where Fernandez noted no one actually knows what the customer is going to do, besides the customer.

It’s a similar notion to what MediaCom said recently. No one customer is going to buy something the same way.

Ultimately, the future of marketing is going to be about relationships, he said.

“We know as human beings know how to be in relationships. Think about everything you ever do in being in a relationship with another human being, and figure out how to do that in a mass digital, mobile, social scale with your customers and prospects over time.

“It’s all about listening.”