Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Isakson's future of marketing updated

Paul Isakson recently presented an updated version of his excellent "What's next in marketing and advertising" presentation. His content is embedded below for your convenience and my thoughts follow.

The presentation contains many excellent observations and assertions, broadly making the case fora radical shift in the way professionals of this industry see their work and the world. Points I particularly liked in Isakson's presentation:

  1. quote by Clay Shirky saying that "a revolution does not happen when a society adopts new tools. It happens when society adopts new behaviors." - how true...

  2. marketing must speak to people, do things (what things would be interesting to discuss) with and for people

  3. marketing will be collaborative, generous, experimental, helpful, playful, personal, honest and participatory

  4. to get there commit yourself to something bigger than yourself, listen carefully and replace the thought that the world is an audience by the opposite (I would say each audience is a world and each person a universe)

  5. "the best way to get people to do stuff with you is to first join them in what they are already doing"

20090801_TheEconomist_USAdvertisingSpending Isakson accurately identifies some pretty important trends that do represent a change that may explain why this recession is particularly hard for advertising, with recent figures from the US market showing sustained fall in spending. In short the world is changing and as people, who now have a voice in the public space thanks to the web,  become better educated about advertising and marketing tactics they are less likely to fall prey to mechanisms that used to work so well... Or in fact seemed to work so well because there was no real way to tell and everybody accepted a situation of waste of as much as 50% of money spent to convince consumers to trust specific brands and products. That bit about measuring the effects of initiatives and having more relevant petrics is missing from the presentation and I think it should be there because metrics is not just a minor operational aspect but rather a highly strategic one: if you derive knowledge from unstructured information and act on that knowledge you do have an edge that is likely to be worth multiples of what it cost you to create it.

Overall excellent food for thought again. Thank you Mr Isakson!


  1. Thank you, Alex. And you're right. The need for new metrics is missing and should have at least been one slide in the last section, if not more. If I get to give the presentation again, I'll be sure to do that.

  2. Sounds great Paul. I look forward to your thoughts on metrics because it's really a crucial aspect of building feedback into the system. New behaviors will only create a revolution if we have a way of measuring both the behaviors and their actual impact IMHO.