OK, so that’s a pretty big question for Tuesday night when I’ve on the go since 6.15am.
But in my quest to answer it, I’m going to be assisted by some useful material sent through to me from Steven Van Belleghem – author of The Conversation Manager – who gets marketing, social, technology and how it all mashes together.
It’s worth checking out his presentation on Slideshare about Marketing 2020 – it’s a biggy at 111 slides but worth the time investment to see how his thesis hangs together towards the end and for some great thought-provoking examples too.
Extreme customer-centricity: customers will no longer be satisfied with an average treatment. Those companies with a policy of extreme customer-centricity will be the most successful.
Technology: marketing and technology will be two sides of the same coin. IT budgets will continue to shift toward marketing. For marketing departments all over the world, data and technological know-how will be prerequisites to success.
Selling without selling: convince customers through expertise instead of commercial messages. Win them over by bringing added value to their lives.
The new leader’s main objective is managing the ‘why’. Primarily, he manages the company’s reason for being as well as its long-term vision. In addition, there are three aspects that characterize the conversational leader:
Empathy: the new leader is a good listener. He is available both for staff and customers. His job is to provide support and counsel wherever possible.
Connecting: the conversational leader is a bridge builder; he connects people. He believes in the power of networks and helping other people, even when there’s no short-term gain involved.
Decisive: the conversational leader is capable of making decisions and executing his vision. It’s not just about listening; in the end it’s also about taking action.
Plenty of sensible thinking there on how leaders need to operate and some practical stuff that reinforces what I try to make sure I do, but sometimes struggle to actually make happen in the day to day busy-ness of the working day.
So what’s your take on Steven’s view of future marketing?
Image credit: David Silver on Flickr