In our recent “Marketing Hope” survey, 100+ professional service CMOs signaled that the chilling effect on marketing brought on by the Great Recession is thawing. Amen. Adios, Great Recession! RIP.
Many plan to grow their marketing investments and re-engage with key markets in 2010 and are excited by the prospects. However, they are re-entering a new brand world in which the rules of engagement are now more and more interactive:
- Web sites are more important than ever as branding tools (and most fail at this task).
- Getting found on the Web requires a mastery of searchengine optimization and search-marketing tools.
- Social media adoption offers reward and risk.
- Thought leadership is being consumed in new and varied ways—think blogs, podcasts and virtual tradeshows, for example.
So the smart B2B marketing money is going digital, following the lead set by B2C marketers, and will be concentrated on attracting and persuading the interactive buyer. But even savvy digital marketers like Google, Zappos and Nike understand the need to find the right mix of on- and offline efforts. The challenge is finding that balance in our new world.
What follows are the stories of nine courageous firms who have a head start on 2010. They used 2009 to define and roll out brands for the times. Take a few minutes to read their stories and experience their work. See the positioning they’ve staked. Note the blending of media. And glean ideas that will help you attract the marketplace attention you’ve grown to deserve.