September 8, 2007

Growing Marketer Customer Disconnect

Posted by Bizaholic | 11:16 PM | , with 1 comments »

Two weeks ago, I was at a dealer relationship meeting. After the usual stuff of entertainment, the dealers were updated on latest happenings in the company and how they were going to make the company achieve greater heights in coming years. Though I could feel that they were least interested in that and more inclined to know what gifts and prizes were there for them. Post that, latest TV advertisements were shown to the esteemed audience and to everyone's surprise, majority of dealers couldn't understand the latest TV ad that was getting critical review across creative circles!! To get the Ad entry into their brain, Head of Marketing had to explain the Ad which meant rendering a laymen's version of some universal concepts of science. Whew!

This led me to think -
  1. Are we, marketers and our better halves (advertising agencies), getting away from realities of life?
  2. Are we making advertisements to justify our own grand views of the world and customers instead of telling a story to build brand and increase sales?
  3. In the name of creativity, are we forgetting our target audience?
A cursory look at the current breed of advertisements would tell the truth. The fact is that 80% of the advertisements doing the rounds on TV are useless as far as their primary role of story telling to sell a brand is concerned. Some are so bad that I wonder whether the brand manager and advertising agency worked on the advertisements in their sleep. And then they call them clutter breaking commercials!!

Seeing the current crop of advertisements on TV, I often wonder whether our advertising is progressing or regressing.

Whatever may be the case, one thing is certain that we are seeing a spurt in population of what I call "apartment managers", the special breed of managers who see world in terms of the apartment complex they live in! The result is increasing myopic vision about customers. The end result is often - an advertisement or a marketing campaign that validates perceptions of our own little world but is far away from the realities of larger world.

Isn't it time for the brand managers and advertising people to spend more time meeting customers, understand their way of thinking and doing things, and walk for a while in their shoes to get an inner glimpse of their lives? Doing this instead of plotting marketing and advertising strategy to fit their "apartment view of world" would bear more fruits and would bring the marketer much closer to his customers.

By the way, any guesses about what proportion of Indian population must be aware of gravitational force of earth?


  1. Fighter Jet // September 19, 2007 at 9:52 PM  

    you may be right in the light of statistics that you have provided regarding useless ness of Add.What I feel is that trully attention grabbing add are very close to the maas appeal,the junta at large.Simplicity is what differntiate them from the crowds.Be it add of fevicol,or Dhara refined oil or Nirma washing powder....etc.There is no magic,keeping the message simple and target in mind.And the job is done.