Over the past 2 weeks, we have seen a lot of buzz from a HBR blog post written by Bill Lee. The title, "Marketing Is Dead" continues to get Bill's blog post quite a bit of mileage and even today, there is still much heated debate over the article's intent.
The fact is, I agree with many of the points Bill makes in his post...except for the title. A more accurate title would be"Traditional Marketing Is Dead In The Social And Digital Age", but the marketer (and analyst) in me always appreciates the impact of a bold and controversial statement! Here's my take on the points Bill makes in his post:
- Traditional marketing tactics are having less relevance in an age where buyers lead the journey and increasingly tap into online resources and social networks for information. Yes, marketers face the difficult challenge of competing for their buyers' attention in a crowded and noisy online environment. Traditional tactics may have less influence on buyers in social networks, however they should not be abandoned! Our research shows that buyers are still influenced by traditional tactics like physical events and even printed content. Successful companies use an effective mix of complementary traditional and social tactics.
Yesterday, I spent a good portion of the day with a Bay Area community platform vendor's exec and management team. We discussed the current and future state of online communities, spoke about market growth and B2B marketing trends. It was a passionate, energetic discussion...one of those rare moments when everyone at the table realizes that we all on the same page, each of us "preaching to the choir" about the incredible opportunities that online communities offer to companies across all industries. Opportunities that many B2B marketers miss.
Well, the time has come for all of you to take advantage of these opportunities. Our Forrester research team has been quite busy over the last 2 months, working on a B2B Online Community Playbook that will provide you with all the research, tools, assessments and guides to help you plan and execute your online community. One of the critical reports in our playbook (what I like to refer to as the "heart" of the playbook) is now available, and provides you with 4 unique community strategies and a simple framework, called "CLICK", for building them: