Bye-bye Advertising, Hello Experience Building
Years ago working in marketing meant that you needed a strong sense of creativity, an ability to define a great communications strategy and the skills to build value for a brand. Today, you may need to add experience design to the mix. The latest trend for marketers is in creating “branded experiences”. While the concept is not new (it’s been discussed loosely since 2004), the reality is that these experiences are becoming more and more prevalent, mainly in the area of rich internet applications (RIAs). An article in last weekend’s New York Times explains how companies like Nike, General Motors, and Proctor and Gamble are pulling back on traditional ad spending and opting instead for creating deeper relationships with their clients through branded services and communities.
What does this mean for marketers? It means that they will now need to have a better sense of building applications and communities that truly engage users and integrate with their lives, getting them hooked and keeping them that way. Building an “experience” that is impressive and immersive enough to keep a user engaged over time takes a different skill-set than building a 30-second ad. It looks like marketers and software developers will be getting a little closer in the future.