‘The best marketing doesn’t feel like marketing.’ – Tom Fishburne
‘The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.’ – Albert Einstein
An interesting phenomenon when it comes to the understanding of the power of change; nothing exists on this planet that hasn’t undergone an adaptation or change of some sort. It’s impossible to stay archaic and still make a much-felt impact if you’re living in this day and age.
Fundamentally we cannot do away with the concept of change. The world has evolved over the years with a lot of the things we were used to when we were growing up.
One of the things that stand out in the tech world is the revolutionary trajectory that marketing in itself has taken. Only 2 decades ago we were used to the television set as the most advanced form of advertising, followed by the frequency waves on the radio and then the billboards on the roads that told the world all the information you’d need about a product or a service being rendered by an organization.
Back then to have your commercial pop up right after a show that was ongoing and seeing the kind of work put together to communicate what the company was about and the kind of service it rendered was an interesting thing for viewers all across; it had kids go to school and either discuss the advert or have them make impressions of what they had visualized.
Adverts like the animation of the man driving and then losing control of his car and falling off a high place and then landing on a cushion preventing his death and with that; Glyco would form on the screen announcing their intentions as an insurance company being your cushion for life, or the ‘Anapuna’ salt advert which used real-life people and very relatable things like the character improving in their academics and especially their essay composition when the salt is added to their diet emphasizing the need for quality products and the role they play in our lives daily.
It does take your mind back when you sit down and think about how these ads formed an integral part of our lives registering themselves in our memories forever. The dodgy thing about marketing is that even no marketing is marketing.
The St. Louis sugar company is probably one of the long-standing custodians of this heritage here in native Ghana. Rumour has it that their product still sells to this day and not once has anyone regarded an ad on the television or the radio. Opta Joe would say ‘Mysterious’ here.
Marketing as an art or as a part of our daily existence began even before the term was coined and designated to it. When you delve into the history and the archives of ancient civilization, you’d realize that people had establishments that utilized trade in all kinds as their means of making ends meet.
If none at all, from our history and the battle for independence, we are all associated with the term barter trade which involves individuals trading different goods assumed to be of comparatively similar value as and when who needed what.
The history of money concerns the development of social systems that provide at least one of the functions of money. Such systems can be understood as a means of trading wealth indirectly; not directly as with barter. Money is a mechanism that facilitates this process. It wasn’t until money came into existence as a means of payment for goods and services.
I’m sure it’s been a while since you heard anyone talk about money and its roots right? Kids nowadays don’t even know how it came into being yet they have come to believe that it controls the world as it were.
A classic metaphor for most relationship foundations in this day and age; they don’t bother to get to know the person or their history and are just comfortable with the picture of a person they’ve seen on Instagram. A character from ‘Everybody Hates Chris’ would say ‘Tragic!’. But all these forms of trade didn’t happen without the magic of marketing.
Whether it was the trader in the town square who was selling bread and meat, the General of an army who would have a notice on every wall in their whole city putting out a bounty on a vigilante, or a criminal who has escaped with his drawing and features and the kind of money whoever would capture them would get, all of them in their small little way used a bit of marketing to get their message across.
Marketing has been defined to be the sum of activities involved in directing the flow of goods and services from producers to consumers. What has been existing over the years is what we term as traditional marketing which made use of adverts and campaigns through radio broadcasts, the television set, billboards, and even public service announcements. Back in the day, it was just plain word of mouth and print that was used to market stuff.
Marketing is an art that I feel acts like energy; it can’t be created or destroyed really but just transforms itself from one form to another. Because marketing won’t die, at least it doesn’t look like it will, because every improvement of tech just means it’s getting more opportunities to be tested and tried in different ways.
Think of it as the beast Hercules faces that grows another pair of heads when one is cut; the television’s life span was drastically reduced when the internet came into the picture and struck rock bottom when through this same internet, YouTube was birthed. Traditional marketing is what used to exist and now even that is bowing to the new trends.
However, in our day and age, there has been an issuing of very serious warnings on the new form marketing is taking on and what it can do to you as a business if you don’t adjust yourself well enough; Bill Gates, CEO of Microsoft and currently an individual with a net worth of note is quoted as saying ‘if your business is not on the internet then your business will be out business soon’.
Another quote that has been thrown around concerning this situation is that ‘it has been said that ignoring online marketing is like opening a business and not telling anyone about it’.
Basically what all these are pointing to suggests that the new kind of marketing which goes by the name digital marketing is one to be duly taken note of and understood as best as it can. Digital marketing is defined as the marketing of products or services using digital technologies, mainly on the Internet, but also including mobile phones, display advertising, and any other digital medium.
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It happens to possess an array of components which include Content marketing (which in a sense this article is), Search Engine Optimization, Social media marketing, and others.
The finality of the matter is the fact that there’s nothing on this planet, no art or concept, that hasn’t been on a journey towards this century and hasn’t either been a victim or embraced change as it came.
Marketing just happens to be one of the few ones still sticking around with its ability to transform almost comparable to the camouflaging ability of the chameleon. I can’t wait to see its new costume in the next decade.