Marketing’s New Language

From the Four P’s to the Four R’s!
In 2008, consumers have become turned off to PUSH marketing as they are bombarded with as many as 3000 messages hitting them every day. The company saying how great they are in a display ad doesn’t cut into all of the other marketing noise out there. Besides, consumers trust each other more than someone trying to sell them something. It’s a highly connected marketplace.

The four P’s of push marketing (Product, Price, Place and Promotion) have been the retail standard since marketing became more of a science than a way to describe what went on in the village square. Product, price, place and promotion were used to move people through the buying cycle of Awareness, Interest, Desire, and Action.

Targeting customers en mass, through magazines, television, radio was the one-to-many marketing model. ONE marketer would show and describe product… Massage and manipulate pricing… Place ads and products in front of MANY potential consumers… Exploit and promote the offering however possible.

According to WebTrends, a leading provider of web analytics and consumer-centric marketing intelligence solutions, that model has recently shifted dramatically as consumers are listening to each other (not to marketers) and are getting bombarded with too many messages to make sense of it all, marketing is transforming from the traditional Four P’s of push marketing to the Four R’s of consumer-centric marketing (Reveal, Reward, Respect and Retain).

So much has been made of viral marketing lately that I will skip its definition and jump right to its outcome and another R word – referrals. Smart marketers from Pottstown to Poughkeepsie know that the most effective way to get new business, to make new sales, is from referrals. The Four R’s that define the current climate support referrals like nothing else. Modern marketing or this revolutionary new sales stream isn’t really marketing at all but a new world in which the web creates an ongoing conversation about products and services on the World Wide Web.

Reveal: Take the information you already have about your customers and allow them to reveal why they are loyal to your brand. These revealing insights can help you learn how to attract new customers.

Reward: It’s a good idea to give clients something for revealing valuable marketing information. To truly collect valuable information you need to offer something valuable. I get three to five requests a week to take a survey that will “only take 10 or 15 minutes.” I don’t have ten or fifteen minutes to give a marketer to help them unless I am somehow rewarded.

Respect: Highly relevant targeted offers result in increased trust toward your brand. Value the consumer’s time and information and promote an ongoing dialog beyond your products and services to create a culture of mutual respect between your existing and potential clients and your company.

Retain: Retention of customers, especially online customers, is about understanding the behavior and interests of the consumer to create an ongoing dialog that is beneficial to the consumer and on their terms.

You’ve all seen ecommerce websites where buyers rate products and leave comments– some online players within the 422 corridor are doing this. It’s a dangerous feature to add for a company that doesn’t care, but retention marketing is all about creating a platform that encourages interaction, interactivity and honesty about your Tri-county brand.