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February 24th, 2009 - Tim Berney

The more things change ...

Things sure have changed.

When I developed my first marketing campaigns some 20 years ago, it seemed like most marketers had a pretty good handle on where to reach consumers. Most media options were well established, and those of us in the marketing industry knew how to use them. Back then, the only thing that differentiated most plans was the media mix.

Today, those traditional mass mediums are struggling. They have fewer viewers, listeners, readers. It's no secret that the digital age has taken its toll on conventional media.

Consumers have migrated. A significant portion of their media consumption has shifted to the Internet, cell phones, video games, pay-per-view, digital video recorders, etc. So, what do we do? We simply shift our messages to those new mediums, as well. Right? Well, moving to digital is not as easy as simply developing a 30-second spot or a half-page print ad. Given the fact that consumers didn't reconvene in a few places like before, we have to figure out where to find them and how to reach them in fragments. With millions of choices and unpredictable habits, consumers are in control, and it is therefore necessary to develop different messages and to appeal to different audiences.

In the end, we must target the right consumer. We have to reach them at the right time and we have to develop compelling messages that engage them.

Things sure are the same.

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