End of the marketing road?


In recent months, it has become quite clear to me that marketing as we know it is coming to an end.

The main reason for this is that the world is becoming so instantly connected and socially integrated that it is increasingly difficult to sell a bad product — in fact, the trend is moving toward producing greatness in your space. Choose that route or just forget about it.

What brought this trend to my attention was a digital content project on which I am currently working (more on that in the coming months); during my discussion with the other partners on this project, it became apparent that we either had to put in the money, time, and effort into producing something fantastic, or we would be better off not doing the project at all.

Over the shoulder

How do you determine whether what you are working on is going to take off? Usability testing when it comes to digital games for modern smartphone and tablet devices for example is now best conducted in classrooms where a single student is allowed to play the title. If his or her fellow students are attracted enough to keep looking at the game play and they actively attempt to obtain the game, you probably have a winner.

The good old “word of mouth” technique is back—but this time it is on steroids, and it spreads like wildfire through the social Web. So if the title you have produced deserves a recommendation and the precious time of the critical buyer, you will succeed without doing much marketing at all – just make it available.

The above observations are obviously based on my conclusions related to digital development and to the fact that the various digital marketplaces are becoming increasingly crowded with applications and, as such, quite competitive on price and offering extremely high quality. However, I firmly believe this trend will apply to all other products and services, regardless of the industry, in the near future.

Moving forward, you will no longer be able to use marketing dollars to sell a bad product — either the harsh reviews will destroy any appetite to buy it, or it will be buried in the ever-growing pile of other low-quality products that nobody wants to even try.

Time to produce high quality?

The higher cost implications of producing a great quality product may be a showstopper for many companies and individuals alike, and although there is some truth to the “just get something out there” approach, there has in fact never been a better time to invest in producing high quality. This is certainly true when it comes to digital production, as we have already reached retina screen resolution on many devices.

This means you will not have to keep reproducing the content to comply with new screen resolutions because anything better than retina is not going to be discernible to the human eye, and it should, in theory, never need to be improved upon. Consequently, retina dramatically increases the shelf life of your product.

There are no shortcuts to any place worth going

– Beverly Sills