The Renaissance of CommunicationA new start or back to old ways?
A series featuring TKO’s take on how communication has changed for marketing professionals and how it is likely to keep doing so…
The Renaissance of Email
It would be fair to say that since e-mail first started becoming a part of working life as we know it in the mid-1990s, the platforms for online communication have multiplied and diversified. Some 30 years later and we are spoilt for choice with video conferencing apps, instant messaging, video/picture sharing, etc…
While this had certainly expanded the toolbox of the marketing professional, it also increased the potential for misuse. The abundance of platforms on which companies could get across their messaging meant that many rushed to maximise the total reach of their campaign without properly considering what might be a cost effective method of reaching their audience.
In B2B marketing, this presented a unique problem, as B2B purchase decisions are almost always taken with serious consideration and backed by detailed information. Such information is difficult to comprehensively communicate on platforms with small character limitations such as most text ads and native ads on social media sites. The problem then, came from the trade off between choosing the platforms that will give you access to your target audience and ensuring that the format of the platform allowed you to effectively transmit the information that would actually prompt an enquiry.
And then something changed… or to be more specific, everything changed. Flights were grounded, home offices were set up and going to the supermarket safely became a genuine test of a person’s reactions and agility. Corona had most certainly arrived, but had it brought with it a change in the way marketing professionals communicate?
Well, if it didn’t, then it certainly should have. As businesses have seen their revenues fall, budgets cut and long-term futures come into doubt, they’ve also seen the risks associated with B2B purchasing decisions rise sharply. Where in the past poor purchasing decisions might have been excused or brushed under the rug with a slap on the wrist for good measure, those responsible now face the additional pressure of the company’s survival. If they weren’t already, these teams and individuals now scour any resource available to them to ensure these decisions are made from a holistic point of view.
Now then is the time for marketing professionals to make sure that when their prospects go to check their emails in the morning, they need not look any further than a few emails down from the top of their inbox to find that genuinely useful marketing material that they oh so desire!
B2B Marketing activities that have the purpose of building or maintaining brand awareness are now forced into the back seat to make room for genuinely informative content that directly answers questions prospects have, rather than generic branding. If you cast your mind back a few minutes (or not, depending on your reading speed) you’ll remember that there was actually a method of communication invented that perfectly suits the need of informing someone looking to be informed.
So cast aside your aspersions about email and think not about the industry standard or what your textbook at university told you. Look beyond pressures to subscribe to trends and take each situation for what it is. When you do, you might just find that what made email a breakthrough in the time of Pulp Fiction and Seinfeld all those years ago, remains just as applicable in this period of uncertainty.
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