Welcome to the new roarin’ 20s
Recently a client asked me to contribute some thoughts to a blog about predictions for the next decade. As much as I wanted to predict major positive changes in our culture and civilization; as much as I wanted to predict that the Packers would dominate the NFL for all of 2020; and as much as I wanted to predict peace and prosperity for all citizens of the world—it’s hardly realistic.
Forecasting the future, in marketing terms, means discovering what works. Testing and measuring messaging, approach, platforms and strategies– quantifiably and anecdotally– is essential to achieve results: what we call ROO. Return on Objectives.
Analyzing data to make marketing decisions doesn’t guarantee results. (Just look at political polls, Wall Street profits reporting and sports wagering upsets—none of which are very reliable). However, statistics combined with anecdotal evidence already points the diminishing value of traditionally written marketing pieces.
Words matter. They won’t go away. The way we use them may. In the next decade, according to my crystal ball, our attention spans will continue to shorten considerably. Unfortunately, few will want to read lengthy blog posts, wordy social media analyses and multi-page articles. Video and live stream broadcasting already dominates marketing communication and in the next decade indications are it will take over nearly entirely. Of course, with AI roaring through technology, in the next decade communications most likely will evolve into realms we can’t even fathom.
This transformation is underway now. If you want to communicate with your customers, choose the platform that speaks to them, in their language, doesn’t bore them and assures you of their attention. You’ve got about 10 seconds to capture them. Ready-set-go. Oops, they’ve clicked on something else. Mastering the quick connection is going to be paramount. Good luck!
How do professional communicators arm ourselves for the 2020s? My current strategy includes preparing for a more global pool of clients by trying to learn a second language (slowly, poco a poco); surrounding myself with young, flexible technology focused teammates; becoming more hands-on in creating visual communication pieces (ads, infographics and videos); and finally, and becoming ready to turn on a dime as the world evolves.
So, tell me, what are you looking at in the next decade? What changes do you see coming down the pike and does any one even know what a pike is anymore?