Friday, January 30, 2009

Time to revisit communication strategy: Corporates should connect with customers’ emotions

Malcolm Gladwell’s book Blink is a must-read for all of us in public relations, marketing, marketing communications or MarCom, brand consultancy and advertising. The book indicates that we have to revisit the way we communicate with our stakeholders, particularly customers and potential customers.

Writing about the book in Marketing Today, Daryl Travis, CEO, Brandtrust, says, “We’re confirming brands are about feelings, not facts. Buying decisions are made on promises that transcend products, and promises are rooted in human emotions. Quite simply, brands are built on trust. Making and keeping promises builds trust which is among the most basic of human emotions. To impact our company’s bottom line, we need to get in touch with our customers’ emotions. As marketers, we must have our own blink moments and embrace the reality that branding is about ‘brain surgery’ and psychology. Because how your customers feel about your brand isn’t a casual question. It is the crucial question.”

Gladwell talks about how consumers make decisions in the blink of an eye.

“Gladwell’s effort to share emerging insights into how our brains work is timely,” writes Travis. “In this decade, we are learning more about how humans think and feel and what drives our behavior than the whole of our discoveries in the time since Sigmund Freud dreamt up the idea of psychoanalysis. This has profound implications for marketing and brand professionals.

“It is critical for marketers to understand the role of emotions in human decision-making and behavior. Raised in Western culture, we are well indoctrinated in the forces of logic and reason, but we’ve lost sight of the essential role emotions play in determining human behavior. In fact, all human behavior is driven by emotional input derived from the stored visualizations.”

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Marketing mix: Larger role for corporate communications on anvil

Marketing will be the most important area of expertise for the next generation of leaders, according to a survey of US senior executives.

The study, commissioned by the Institute of International Research, sought to identify key areas for leaders.

Marketing was the clear choice, with 31 per cent of votes, followed by 20 per cent for operations and 16 per cent for financial expertise. Sales and engineering were deemed least critical to leadership with 11 and six per cent respectively, reports Marketing Today.

Marketer Seth Godin attributes the rising recognition of marketing to fierce marketplace competition. “Being good enough is no longer good enough,” said Godin. “This is the most cluttered marketplace in history… Leaders understand that spreading the word about their offerings is the only path to success.”

In spreading word about a company’s products/ services, public relations is considered a powerful business tool. Several global marketing and brand experts have been acknowledged the power of PR. These experts have been urging corporates to use the low-cost tool more effectively.

Considering such advice and the above-mentioned survey findings, corporate communications is set a play a more crucial role in a company’s marketing mix. Watch this space for more updates!