ADOTAS — Chris Aarons, CEO of Buzz Corps, Denise Zimmerman, President & CSO of NetPlus Marketing, Kevin Barenblat, CEO of Context Optional, all take a shot at predicting the future.
Aarons: “As sales continue to decline in the early part of 2009, advertisers and marketers will need to consider the phenomena of getting your customers to market for you. When companies control the medium, marketers have to master the media and the message. But when customers are the medium, marketers must master the art of cooperation and collaboration. Successful companies will create honest partnerships with their customers across every aspect of the organization and demonstrate they are worthy of an endorsement. This is customer co-marketing and combines the elements of word-of-mouth and social media as well as influencer, partner, and traditional marketing to create brand ambassadors that share opinions, educate others, and help drive brand preference.”
Zimmerman: “Pundits who spout about the demise of Web 2.0 and display advertising in response to the current economy are focusing on the wrong things. Web 2.0 is much more than an advertising or marketing platform; a device, a channel – it represents a major dynamic shift in how we communicate and interact as a society and therefore has extended ramifications in how we communicate and interact with our customers. To ignore this and not embrace it, particularly in a down economy is irresponsible. The down economy will actually help accelerate companies’ use of what some classify as Web 2.0 and digital overall – but with a high degree of focus on return. In many ways, reduced budgets – while forcing many to trench down into pay for performance including search, CPL, CPA models – will also fuel a high degree of “measured innovation” in areas such as Twitter and other social media or Web 2.0 platforms. Display media is also not dead. We have heard this before in troubled economic times. Think back to the big bubble burst of 2001. Display will contract just as overall budgets will, but once again what will be lost was probably not highly effective in the first place. To succeed, accountability, efficiency and effectiveness will rule giving a distinct advantage to those folks steeped in digital who are not spoiled with high margins, fat retainers and wasteful budgets.”
Barenblat: Prediction #1 – cross-platform becomes vogue. the “what are we doing on facebook?” panic is over. in 2009 brands will be engaging audiences with integrated programs across social platforms – from facebook to myspace to linkedin to the iphone
Prediction #2 – measurement is king. as brands wise up and the economy tightens, dollars will flow to channels that can be measured. measurement that ties engagement across all social channels in imperative
Prediction #3 – promotions overtake brand marketing. offline 60% of marketing dollars are promotional rather than brand focused. however, online only 22% of dollars are promotional. and on social networks the share is even lower. in 2009 expect to see more contests, sweepstakes, coupons, and sampling programs run through social networks (and expect them to be cross-platform and heavily measured)
Prediction #4 – friends connect everywhere. facebook connect, google friend connect, and myspaceID will bring social interactions to the rest of the web. savvy marketers will integrate these viral social features into their online brand presence.
— Express your opinion, comment below.