Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Marketing - the going nowhere debate

JP Rangaswami is a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts and a Fellow of the British Computer Society. Originally an economist, then financial journalist and, after nearly a decade of working for an investment bank, his futurology skills have been recruited by BT.

He has a view about marketing .....'and when “socio-economic groupings” meant something, when “marketing” could predict your propensity to buy something based on all the boxes they put you into versus Long Tails that weave their equalising ways across class and gender and hirsuteness, or lack of'.

He notes that... "In the meantime, everyone else (bar the marketers) is into biometrics. And maybe that’s acceptable. Was a shibboleth an early form of biometric identification? Well, at least the shibboleth identified someone as a member of a group (or not, as the case may be). You see, one of the problems we face with modern definitions of privacy and confidentiality is deeply connected to this need for a protected need for individuality."

For PR, he has a thought content in which he says "Only the customer can make content king. We must all remember that."

We still argue that the PR industry has to provide content and excellent content at that. Is this still true. When 'we the media' is the new media, all our content is only as good as its acceptance by the commons in their niche and small communities.

For me, the key is the values of the commons. It is here where we can find allegiance, engagements and, for some, customers, vendors, partners and employees.

But don't go and seek the mass market defined by values. That is vanilla marketing. It lacks authenticity and the ingredient of community.

Because marketing is going no where and PR refuses to try to understand the nature of relationships, we now need a new supra profession that seek to weave its way among the relationship clouds (if you like the Myspaces, YouTubes, Blogger, Flickrs and Diggs of this world). These Relationship Cloud pilots have a better chance than those who still keep their feet firmly in concrete booted professions.