MAL 25/18 MAL25/18 - Page 57

The hue and cry has been that marketing will become irrelevant as marketers know the word of mouth and organic marketing is more effective and what marketers try to do is to start a conversation. What pundits are saying is there are now more efficient means to start that conversation than mass media. Empirical evidence, however seems to go contrary to that assertion. Not too long ago we were told to prepare for the demise of newspapers, magazines and books since digital platforms hade made it possible to access the same information at a fraction of the cost. Newsweek even ceased print publication in 2012 and retained the digital version of the magazine but it was not long before the print version was re-launched in 2014. Newspapers, magazines and books have not disappeared, all what happened is we got a new online channel for them. There are those that like to read their publications online and there are those that need to feel the hard item in their hands and it is not true that the young prefer being online it is usually determined by where one is and how much information they need or whether they are just passing time. We had seen the same phenomenon in the radio industry when we were preparing to bury the medium and then FM transmission was introduced and the medium took off as the most popular and cost effective medium locally. We have also noted that those making the assertions are also likely to be narrowing the marketing profession to promotion. True, the promotion part of marketing has been hit hard and agencies in particular are reeling. But is this another case of the subset becoming the whole? If you were to go into agencies at the moment you will find them delving into social media metrics, content marketing and worried about SEOs. They are on the lookout for creative talent that is tech-savvy to be able to tap into new opportunities. This tells you that the agencies are responding to the market needs but the agencies have not closed the traditional services which mean they are still on demand and still being offered. The ad So the profession that is under condemnation seems to have confounded the doomsayers, it has not died, as professed, but has morphed and molded itself around a new paradigm and instead of a funeral we may be at the cusp of a glorious rebirth. agency does not look too different from These are the ones that make their CEOs squirm in discomfort since they have what it looked like before. yesterday’s solutions to today’s problems. 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