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A marketing conversation

January 29, 2007

Marketing has been my job for so long that I sometimes forget what it looks like from the outside. To me, the role and mission and practice of market are all very clear. I consider marketing fundamental to the way in which businesses operate and increasingly essential to the way in which society as a whole operates. Marketing is fundamental (as is reading).

For many years in the 1980s and 90s there was a degree of backlash against marketing. People did not want to be “marketed to”. This reaction to marketing sins laid the foundation for the current wave of social networking and participatory marketing. The solution, ultimately, was not the end of marketing but the eventual triumph of marketing over everything else. Everyone today is a marketer. We just might not all want that title.

Let’s begin a marketing conversation. My opening point is that the entire social networking, user-generated content, participatory marketing model has made traditional marketers work harder (everyone seems to agree on that) but has also given them far greater clout in the marketplace as a whole. If you do this for a living you now have to raise your game, but the rewards seem to be much bigger if you can do it right.

More on that next time.

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