Be an old friend instead of a bridge troll

I spoke at a marketing conference yesterday in El Salvador.

The county is experiencing rapid growth in broadband internet penetration as well as mass media products. As a result, soon most people will have too much media to choose from. Additionally, the upper middle class is starting to get access to digital video recorders and learning how to skip ads. This segment of the population represents the lion share of consumer spending in the nation.

This will change the game in marketing. Previously, when media choices were limited, the interruption advertising model worked. To consume content, you had to put up with noisy ads (hurry! hurry! sale!). Those days will be over, much like they are here in the United States. You can choose the least annoying content or even skip the annoying ads in your favorite content now.

Effective marketing in any media rich, user driven environment must be an old friend not a bridge troll. You should focus efforts to target, personalize and add value to the user’s life with your marketing executions. Sergio Zyman (former CMO of Coke) has a great saying: “Good marketing is a service. It adds value when you purchase or consume the product.” Think about that. Coke is refreshing because the marketing told us to expect that benefit. Geico’s Cave Man campaign is an entertaining service that makes us smile.

Recommended: Screen all marketing projects, especially advertising to see if it is a service or a cost of getting content. Read Sergio’s fantastic tome,