Over the weekend I was shopping at the grocery store and something caught my eye that made me laugh. A mother was pushing her cart and adding groceries with her three teenage kids in tow. All three were looking down at their phones and texting furiously. Not a care in the world nor any realization that people with carts were moving out of the way.
While I completely understand the benefits and enjoyment we all get using handheld devices and the importance of staying connected to family and friends, the image of these three kids made me stop and wonder. When is it too much? Business Insider CEO Henry Blodget recently commented that “Second screen is a big opportunity,” noting that more 80 percent of young TV viewers (ages 18 to 24) simultaneously use a phone or tablet while watching the big screen. I mean, how many screens/devices does a person need? Talk about stimulation overload.
The digital revolution has created so many opportunities for PR and marketing folks, but have we gone overboard? Has digital technology taken over our lives? I’m beginning to wonder if it’s gone too far. In fact, this weekend I read about the new Barbie Makeover Mirror that allows kids to apply makeup on the iPad screen using facial tracking technology. Creative…yes. Ingenious…yes. But, wow, isn’t this a little much?
The bigger question (at least for those of us in PR and marketing) I began to ask myself is, with all of these channels available and the continual advances in bandwidth technology, what is this doing to the marketing landscape?
Customer segmentation and target marketing used to be the backbone of marketing and PR activities. Tailor your message for your customer. But in today’s world, with so many channels available to connect with customers, how can marketers decide which areas to focus on? Does this mean that you can abandon the old channels like TV and radio advertising? Can you sideline your website for social media sites or mobile apps? In most cases, the new channels are one more thing to worry about. One thing is certain – capturing our increasingly short attention spans is getting harder and more complex than ever.
One of the companies we work with, e-Spirit, recently discussed the challenges with content consistency and localization on a global level. With information and channel overload creating more opportunities – and more opportunities for missteps — to reach target customers, how can marketers manage everything?
My question to you, the reader, is how does your company manage so many channel opportunities? How can your company maintain brand consistency using so many channels?
Author: Rob Goodman
Rob Goodman is a communications professional with more than 27 years of experience in public relations, marketing and content creation.