Marketing 4.0 is a marketing approach that combines online and offline interaction between companies and customers.

Authors: Hermawan Kartajaya, Philip KotlerIwan Setiawan
Publication Year: 2016

In Marketing 4.0: Moving from Traditional to Digital,leading marketing authorities ( Philip Kotler, Hermawan Kartajaya, and Iwan Setiawan) examine the changing marketing landscape in what they called Marketing 4.0. They describe the new world order of digital, the new breed of connected customers with limited time and attention, the rise of mobile, shifting marketplace trends, and sub-culture splintering that every marketer needs to pay attention to.

Favorite Takeaways – Marketing 4.0

Marketing 4.0 is a marketing approach that combines online and offline interaction between companies and customers. In the digital economy, digital interaction alone is not sufficient. In fact, in an increasingly online world, offline touch represents a strong differentiation.

Marketing 4.0 also blends style with substance. While it is imperative for brands to be more flexible and adaptive due to rapid technological trends, their authentic characters are more important than ever. In an increasingly transparent world, authenticity is the most valuable asset.

Marketing 4.0 leverages machine-to-machine connectivity and artificial intelligence to improve marketing productivity while leveraging human-to-human connectivity to strengthen customer engagement.

The essence of Marketing 4.0 is to recognize the shifting roles of traditional and digital marketing in building customer engagement and advocacy.

The major premise of the book is that marketing should adapt to the changing nature of customer paths in the digital economy. The role of marketers is to guide customers throughout their journey from awareness and ultimately to advocacy.

The Changing landscape

Marketers need to embrace the shift to a more horizontal, inclusive, and social business landscape. The market is becoming more inclusive. Social media eliminate geographic and demographic barriers, enabling people to connect and communicate and companies to innovate through collaboration. Customers are becoming more horizontally oriented. They are becoming increasingly wary of marketing communications from brands and are relying instead on the f-factor (friends, families, fans, and followers).

The customer buying process is becoming more social than it has been previously. Customers are paying more attention to their social circle in making decisions. They seek advice and reviews, both online and offline.

Marketing Amid Paradoxes

The changing landscape creates a set of paradoxes for marketers to deal with, one of which is online versus offline interaction. Both are meant to coexist and be complementary, with a common aim of delivering superior customer experience. Furthermore, there is a paradox of the informed versus the distracted customer.

Even as connectivity empowers customers with abundant information, customers have also become overly dependent on others’ opinions, which often outweigh personal preferences. Finally, with connectivity come enormous opportunities for brands to earn positive advocacies. Still, they are also prone to attracting negative advocacies. That may not necessarily be bad because negative advocacies often activate positive advocacies.

Youth, Women, and Netizens

Youth, women, and netizens have long been researched thoroughly by businesses but typically as separate customer segments. Their collective strength, especially as the most influential segments in the digital era, has not quite been explored. Youth are early adopters of new products and technologies. They are also trendsetters, yet are fragmented as to the trends they follow. Ultimately they are game-changers.

As information collectors and holistic shoppers, women are de facto household managers, the chief financial officer, purchase manager, and asset manager all rolled into one. Finally, netizens are social connectors, as they overwhelmingly connect, converse, and communicate with their peers. They are also expressive evangelists as well as content contributors in the online world. Together, youth, women, and netizens hold the key to marketing in the digital economy.

  • Youth for Mind Share
  • Women for Market Share
    Netizens for Heart Share

When it comes to brand advocacy in the digital world, not all customers are created equal. Some segments rely on their own personal preferences and what they hear from advertising; thus advocacy does not matter to them. Moreover, they do not share their experience with everyone else. Other segments have a greater tendency to ask for and give recommendations on brands. They are the ones who are more likely to be loyal brand advocates.

Aware, Appeal, Ask, Act, and Advocate

In the digital economy, the customer path should be redefined as the five A’s—aware, appeal, ask, act, and advocate—which reflect the connectivity among customers. The concept of Marketing 4.0 ultimately aims to drive customers from awareness to advocacy. In doing so, marketers should leverage three main sources of influence—own, others’, and outer influence. This is what the authors call the O Zone (O3), a useful tool that can help marketers optimize their marketing efforts.

O Zone (O3)

The O3 is another tool that helps marketers to optimize their marketing efforts. When marketers manage to identify the importance of outer, others’, and own influence, they will be able to decide which activities to focus on. When outer influence is more important than the rest, marketers can focus more on marketing communications activities. On the other hand, when others’ influence is the most important, marketers should rely on community marketing activities. But when own influence is the most important, marketers should put more emphasis on building the post-purchase customer experience. 

Learning from Different Industries

In analyzing the generic five A’s framework and evaluating conversion rates across the different stages, the authors identify four major patterns for various industries: “door knob,” “goldfish,” “trumpet,” and “funnel.” Various industry types can be placed under any of these patterns, each with a specific customer- behavior model and a different set of challenges. We also identify four different industry groups based on BAR statistics, each representing a set of marketing best practices: brand management, channel management, service management, and sales management.

When Brands Become Humans

More and more, brands are adopting human qualities to attract customers in the human-centric era. This requires unlocking customers’ latent anxieties and desires through social listening, netnography, and emphatic research. To effectively address these anxieties and desires, marketers should build the human side of their brands. The brands should be physically attractive, intellectually compelling, socially engaging, and emotionally appealing while at the same time demonstrating strong personability and morality.

Mobile Apps, Social CRM, and Gamification

To drive customers from purchase to advocacy, marketers need a series of customer engagement tactics. There are three popular techniques that have been proven to increase engagement in the digital era. First, marketers can use mobile apps to enhance the digital customer experience. Second, marketers can use social CRM to engage customers in conversations and provide solutions. Finally, marketers can use gamification to drive the right sets of customer behavior.

Content Is the New Ad, #Hashtag Is the New Tagline  

Content Is the New Ad, #Hashtag Is the New Tagline  

In a nutshell, content marketing is a marketing approach that involves creating, curating, distributing, and amplifying content that is interesting, relevant, and useful to a clearly defined audience group in order to create conversations about the content.

Content marketing is also considered to be another form of brand journalism and brand publishing that creates deeper connections between brands and customers. Brands that are implementing good content marketing provide customers access to high-quality original content while telling interesting stories about their brands in the process. Content marketing shifts the role of marketers from brand promoters to storytellers.

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