Organizations today are being challenged to quickly catch up with ever changing “interactive media”, inventions and new trends are moving faster than organization can ever cope with. The only choice they have is to run faster and find solutions that can push them to catch up.
We all know that change is not easy but we also know that “Change is good”, at the time we live in change is inevitable, therefore, organizations need to approach interactive marketing with an open mind and optimism. They must seriously consider integrating interactive marketing efforts with the overall marketing process, ensuring cross-organization decisions are facilitated through creating coherent planning programs; allowing the interactive marketing to be injected in the main stream of marketing activities.
One important point I must make clear here, that “interactive marketing” is different from “Online marketing”, both may face very similar challenges the latter is less difficult to implement into organization than the first one.
“Online Marketing” is marketing online using the channels to advertise for your business, such as display ads, ad google, social media, email marketing, content marketing, affiliate marketing etc…this type is controlled by the business, the consumer can respond, by clicking on the ad or establishing social media dialogue. With Interactive Marketing customers are more involved in the building of a brand, using methods such as crowd-sourcing, experiential marketing, community marketing, customized interactive tools.
The key issues causing organizations to lag on the interactive marketing fast lane:
- Organizations heads are “interactive marketing” resistant.
- Lack of specialized staff in the interactive marketing domain.
- Fear of uncontrolled exposure
- No efforts to revamp and re-engineering the existing processes to embrace interactive marketing methods
- No Interactive Labs available within the organization and no efforts to establish those.
In a paper I read about the “Future of Interactive Marketing” prepared by “Forrester, it indicated that 30% of large firms still have fewer than 15 interactive staff members, and big brand advertisers like consumer goods or media firms dedicate just 2% of media spend to interactive channels, eventhough consumers log 34% of their media hours online.
Interesting figures from the paper:
Solutions are clear:
- Hire specialized Staff
- Embrace “interactive marketing”
- Customize the process of marketing to incorporate interactive marketing
- Educate and transfer knowledge between those with interactive marketing skills and those with traditional marketing skills.
- Empower interactive marketing staff
- Establish specialized labs for experimenting
Point number (6) is important, the whole nature of interactive marketing is experimental, since this technology is growing and new things are coming up quickly demanding from us to be fast, creative and courageous we need an experimental field to allow us to proof the new concepts.
Organizations must join the future, it maybe burdening them with expenses now but it will turn to be cost effective for the future, as it will help them to know more about their client and tailor their marketing efforts on/off line for their needs.