Marketing is a tricky concept……and, so is the world today. Why I say that? Because consumption style are more complex (or confusing) today.
Two decades ago, marketing is about reaching out the right market for the right product or service. When we talked about marketing, we simply saw identification of the market chunk, what are their characters, and how to influence them to buy or use what we have to offer. If there is a necessary extension, mostly it was about maintaining the market for re-consumption. Now, it is far more complex than that.
Practically speaking, I think there are two prominent elements in today’s marketing. They are relationship and attraction. The two mix up in a quite simple elaboration of marketing: If we can create the relationship in ways that keep up attraction to each other, then marketing is on the way.
Take a look at our media. They put a lot of things in the public. Many things. In some magazines, you can find almost about anything, from sophisticated stuffs to dumb things altogether in one issue. Of course there is distinction between ‘smart’ magazines with easy-reading magazines. Smart magazines will explore a topic in a way that confuse us, and the easy-reading one will present it in shallow but fun way. Recently Wikileaks issue is a good example for it. Some media explore it through complex perspectives, and made me felt confused about things that I thought I already understood. Some other media just explored about the trivial but sinister information around the issue, and played with them. They crafted the issue like it was for gossip tabloids.
Either way, they works. The message or topic was engaging the intended readers/audience in a way they like to be engaged.
Those who read ‘smart’ media are probably not those who fond of gossip tabloids, and vice versa. What the topic is actually about is not a big deal. It does not really matters either, whether the issue relevant to the readers/audience. What matters is how we present the issue in ways that engage them. If our readers don’t like to dwell into complex discussion (you should read it this way: no thinking, please! 🙂 ), we can throw complex issue in over-simplified fun and easy way! If the audience wants to feel themselves as advance people, just garnish silly issue with confusing theoretical perspective, and you’ll have them.
Look at gadget market like Blackberry or iPad. Blackberry and iPad have specific and sophisticated functions. They are not merely phones or PCs. But, do all the iPad and Blackberry user understand all those functions? No. Most of them are not tech savvy people, I believe. They only use the function in limited way. The reason why they have those gadgets is because those gadget may be confusingly entertaining, but obviously they are sexy. Yes, those things are complex, but entertaining, and most of all, sexy!
Look at lifestyle market fashion or fine dining restaurant. Amazing outfits with glamorous accessories are getting common everywhere. Everyday, I feel that I meet more and more people go to the party. Do they? I don’t know, but they dressed like they do. I met more people becoming regular customers for fine dining restaurants these days. The indulge their meals in ways like high-profile New Yorkers or some Beverly Hills celebrities. And yet, some of them are actually simple people who live life nothing like New Yorkers or Beverly Hills people. They just like the confusing but entertaining lifestyle. Those lifestyles are sexy!
Nice gadgets we have today are unquestionably advance technology, but they were popular mostly because of their alluring profile that makes consumer feel far better if they have them. Even though the manuals are too complex to read, they love them anyway. The fine dining restaurants are actually high-culture place of dining, but that is not necessarily what makes consumer go there. I believe, most people prefer practical and easily enjoyable meals at nearest cafe or deli without the obligation to ware tux or gown. But, the glamorous and high-end feeling attach to it is irresistible.
In fact, I think it’s OK to be a bit confusing, because it may create an impression of sophistication. Sophistication and complexity can be sexy, as long it is entertaining. Entertaining helps us build relationship. Plus, make sure that whatever the things we try to market, whether it is idea, goods, or anything; make sure they are appealing enough. Allure them. Make them sexy.
Relate with them, present in ways that attract them, then we’ll get the ticket to introduce anything we want them to see as what matters. That means, we’ll be able to market whatever we want to market!
Posted with WordPress for BlackBerry.