With the New Year upon us its usual to reflect on what has been a dramatic period of change both in society, business and politics. The battle between ‘left’ and ‘right’ ideologies has never been more prevalent, as the direction in which our society should go continues to polarize and dominate popular discussion.
For those of us charged with brand management and advocacy we have a set of rare challenges. Just as ‘climate change’ has its supporters and detractors so do brands, particularly in an era where digital disruption has created an ongoing debate about the ‘value’ of brands. Prices are very easily compared online, and experiences with products can be readily commented on in social media.
With the marketing investment or expenditure line, depending on your perspective, under such scrutiny it is important that we meet the challenges of this new age and develop strategies which give brands oxygen and preserve their health.
Sadly there is too much of a temptation to starve them of funding when the reality is that in the new world they need more.
Brands need to be nurtured online with content as well as to acknowledge the growing importance that the mobile phone now plays in the purchase equation. 2014 research showed that people spent on average 90 minutes a day on their mobile phone or the equivalent of 23 days per annum. Using our mobile device to call people is actually the sixth most used function after other activities such as checking social media and gaming. Web browsing came top of the list with people spending 24% of their mobile usage time browsing the web, closely followed by time spent on apps.
57% of people are now saying they have no need for an alarm clock and 50% of people no longer wear watches, as their mobile phone is their first choice for knowing what time it is.
This data and our recent experiences show that whilst some clients are reducing their investment in above the line activity and transferring dollar investment to digital channels the reality is that they should be looking to invest in a total media environment, maintaining some of their traditional brand work, but at the same time embracing the new world.
Here’s hoping that more marketers will look to integrate and understand what ‘Brand Change’ is all about in a marketing environment where digital and mobile telephony are the key drivers in terms of technology, and that people now can do more research and are better informed than they have ever been.