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Plus Report - By Thomas Baekdal - June 2014

Rethinking Advertising in the Connected World

Just like every other part of the Media, the world of advertising has changed dramatically over recent years. But brands (and publishers) are still approaching it from the old ways. While most are embracing newer digital channels, they are still benefitting from them due to their older focus.

The shift is not really about the formats or the platforms. Instead, it's about how we connect with people, and how that changes they way ads are targeted.

So, let's forget about the digital channels for a moment and just look at how brands traditionally approached advertising in the disconnected world.

The traditional model for advertising was limited by the disconnect that existed between the brands doing the advertising, and the channels that people use. The first limitation being where a product is sold.

In the traditional world, your product would be sold in your stores, but advertising would happen in magazines, newspapers, on billboards and other places. All of which are far away from your actual point of sales.

This limitation, in itself, is responsible for how most companies are structured, with separate Marketing and Sales divisions. They are separate because a brand's marketing is happening at a different place and time from your sales. This has led to a focus in which the Marketing department would discourage the direct connection to a sale, and focus more on image campaigns.

We often hear marketing people say "you should never try to sell your products in an ad."

Everything is just a click away

It didn't just affect marketing itself, but also how it was measured. Metrics like retention and brand value are often at the top of the list, while real-world-sales metrics were kept away from them, with the unfortunate result of analytics and KPIs being downplayed and even frowned upon, because they were 'distracting'.

However, in the connected world, our point of sale is the same place as our point of influence. When you post about a new product on Facebook that links directly to your webshop, your interaction with your customers are essentially like having them inside your store.

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Thomas Baekdal

Founder, media analyst, author, and publisher. Follow on Twitter

"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made ​​himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
Swedish business magazine, Resumé


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