5 principals of engagement marketing: engage consumers where they are
Recently, Business Review Australia's sister site Business Review USA featured the five principles of engagement marketing based on the e-book by Marketo, which “(helps) marketers master the art and science of digital marketing.” Principle one is to engage people based on what they do. Number two is behaviors. Number three is engage people continuously over time. Number four is to engage people directed towards an outcome.
Principle 5: Engage consumers where they are
You may not have noticed, but there are now two universes we inhabit. There is reality, the space before the "Digital Age," and there is virtual reality, or cyberspace, which is the space created by the invention of the internet. Just as in “reality,” where humanity created channels of interaction: home, work, the bus, the movie theater, the mall, church, the park and so forth, people traversed through all of these spaces seamlessly and business learned to capitalize on opportunities to deliver their message. Humanity has created numerous channels in virtual reality. These channels include email, websites, Instagram, laptops, tablets and so forth. Humanity travels continuously between reality and virtual reality, inhabiting each compartment within those realities as easily as water itself flows across space. The moral of this story is not new and can be summed up with the phrase, “don’t put all your eggs in one basket,” or for that matter, two, three, four of those baskets. Instead, have an egg—your marketing message and call to action—in every basket.
“Marketing is no longer about being ‘multi-channel’, [eggs in a lot of baskets]; it’s about beingomni channel, [an egg in each basket],” asserts Marketo.
As an engagement marketer, however, having an egg in each basket is only one third of your assignment. The second third is to offer a call to action and the last third is to unify your message to keep the customer engaged.
“If you start a conversation with a customer on one channel, you should continue that conversation when she navigates to another. If, for example, she watches a video on your Facebook page, you wouldn’t want to show her the same video on your website,” advises Marketo.
This article concludes Business Review Australia's series on the five principles of engagement marketing. We hope that these summaries have helped inform your assessment of engagement marketing and its relevance to your enterprise.
Q&A: Professor Loredana Padurean, Asia School of Business
As someone who is creating Asia Pacific’s business leaders of the future, what do you believe are the essential skills leaders require?
In many ways, we need leaders who are Renaissance women/men or polymaths, as opposed to specialists of an industry or a field. A polymath is a person with profound knowledge, proficiency and expertise in multiple fields and today’s leaders have to be able to combine various ideas, look at problems in novel and useful ways, and develop a broad and yet still deep set of skills, talents, and knowledge.
You’ve coined ‘smart’ and ‘sharp’ as skills of the future. What are these?
They are replacements for ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ skills, a concept coined by a US Army doctor in 1972 who observed that his pupils had different skills: dealing with machinery required ‘hard’ skills, while dealing with people and paper were ‘soft’ skills. This concept has served us well since, but I find it too binary, not to mention the semantic implications of the words themselves.
Soft implies gentle, delicate, mild, quiet, tender, weak. However, there is nothing soft in navigating competing perspectives and cultures, handling and delivering critical feedback or dealing with office politics. Instead, I prefer to call these skills ‘smart’. Hard implies rigid, difficult, heavy, static. But how can we think of engineering or software development as static or rigid? I believe ‘sharp’ is more apt as such skills need constant updating or sharpening.
I think it’s time to reflect on these classifications, because we can drastically change someone’s perspective by how we choose to talk about and frame something.
How important are smart skills in leadership today?
Smart skills are more important than ever because we live in a world of extreme diversity: generational, ethical, value-based, gender, etc. Gone are the days when giving an order was an effective act of leadership. I personally work with people from five different continents and across five different generations, therefore as leaders, we need to know how to adapt, motivate, inspire and connect. We need to increase our investment in learning about them in action, especially as smart skills are more difficult to develop.
I believe that a successful leader today has to be both smart and sharp. Take cognitive readiness, one of my top 10 smart skills. In order to be cognitive ready, one has to master system dynamics, one of my top 10 sharp skills. Also, did you know that one of the primary reasons why digital transformation fails is not the absence of digital literacy, a sharp skill, but the need for more validation and adaptability, both smart skills. So, instead of thinking of these skills as binary, I prefer to think of them as the yin and yang; co-existing and complementing each other.
So, you can teach leaders smart skills then?
Yes, you can, via a combination of the classroom experience, plus an action component supported by deeply embedded reflection. At ASB we call this Action Learning, and we teach it both in the MBA and in the executive programs. For example, in teaching a leader emotional maturity as a smart skill, first they need to learn what it is, and then act on it, before reflecting on what we did and how we did it. And then to repeat it, but this time with more expertise and awareness. It’s not easy, but that’s why my favourite mantra is ‘the job is easy, the people are not’.
Discover Professor Padurean's successful skills for a digital transformation here