The new era of marketing in Africa and how making it to work for you.
The internet has changed everything.
Stunned? You shouldn’t be. Telling you that the internet has changed things shouldn’t stun you.
However, if you are serious about business, what it means for your business will stun you.
Even if you understand the technical details of your business, gaining your customer’s attention and positioning your organization in the face of today’s rapidly evolving consumer is a different ball game entirely.
The new era of marketing magic.
Imagine a world where everything is connected and anything can be known. Wear clothing gathers customer data, refrigerators do the shopping, and companies tap into consumers’ subconscious thoughts.
Everyone is talking about social and digital media because it has become crucial component of marketing today. Why? A new breed of customers is emerging and they are challenging marketers to be more intelligent and innovative. Especially across Africa, business communication has never been more dynamic. Marketing and distribution models are also changing.
The influence of consumers on brands is being amplified; the power of the conversations and information sharing is redefining the future of business.
This is the future of marketing. And it’s already happening.
The future of business is not going to change. It already has.
It’s a relationship that as old as business itself. Sometimes you win. Sometimes it’s difficult and risk.
It is never too late to begin this business transforming journey as most people and startups are already exploring digital technology to turn typical African excuses and challenges into opportunities. In the article titled ‘Disrupt everything: how the web, social and mobile are changing everything we do, Michelle Atagana member and heads of communications and Public Affairs at Google South Africa affirmed that,
“The rise of the web, mobile devices, and social media has changed the way companies think about their businesses and their services. The more we explore these disruptive technologies and the industries being disrupted, the more evident it is that businesses which do not use social media or mobile technology to lower barriers and improve efficiency won’t last very long.”
In McKinsey’s November 2013 report, themed ‘Lions go Digital’ they had also beautifully captured the rising trend of startups and businesses leveraging technology to leapfrog existing bottlenecks across the continent.
“As the internet expands across Africa, it has become a launching pad for a new generation of digital entrepreneurs.
In Nigeria alone, Konga and Jumia have become major online retailers, Paga is emerging as a key player in mobile payment, and Jobberman has created a digital marketplace for employers and job seekers. In Mozambique, a startup called moWoza has created a more efficient supply chain by using text messaging and a smart phone app to deploy available taxi drivers to deliver parcels from wholesalers to informal letters.
A GREAT PRODUCT IS NO LONGER ENOUGH
Yes, having a fantastic product or service in the marketplace used to be enough to steal a market share.
Not anymore. You don’t only need to have a great product, you need to get the word out and connect with your target audience.
Customers expect ultra-personal and truly authentic connections with brands – and new technology makes it possible to deliver on these expectations.
In an article on Techcrunch by Matt Burns titled, “Making The Perfect Phone is not Enough” he asserted that any great product without the right kind of marketing will be lost in the cloud of their competitor’s.
These days, it is only a matter of time before all your unique selling proposition becomes commonplace, making all product offerings within an industry begin to make it look alike.
If you don’t believe it, check out the propositions from banks, telecoms, and other industries within the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) segment. Even when you have a truly ground-up, then another, till the market is flooded with a similar product, making the market saturated, forcing prices to fall.
Economists call this commoditization.
International barriers are collapsing has made different product flood the market. In the light of these, consumers are not only looking for the first or the best product, but they also want more, a relationship something that they are going to remember. In a generation where the gist about your product or service offering is available in a few clicks, people are dumping great product for user experience.
The power of influencing a buyer’s decision is no longer in the direct control of the marketer; your target audience has a firm grip on it.
The power to influence a brand as shifted. Social media is creating a flat battlefield by reducing barriers to access the equipment and tools for small and medium-sized (SMEs) business.
They can now leverage digital tools to establish their presence, generate awareness, and compete favorably with big shot corporations and reap huge profits.
I really don’t care about this digital marketing, but since my customers are there, how does it help your business? That’s the question you will be asking yourself now.
Digital marketing is not just a transaction counter; it is about using the web, mobile and social
Connected platforms and devices to build, nurture and sustain a profitable business relationship.
I hope you now have a clue of how digital has changed marketing in this present age.