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The Place of Nature (Human to Human) in Marketing

Without Humans, Marketing is Dead on Arrival

Photo Credit: Dunedin City Council Archives Flickr via Compfight cc

Marketing is easily the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large. Without marketing, services and products can not go round and when they don’t go round, the world becomes static.

Marketing started as trade by the batter, that’s a means of exchanging what you have with what you need but don’t have. With modernization, companies sought better ways and means of distributing goods, services, gain customers, and maintain relationships with them.

Even the small tasks like writing thank-you letters, playing golf with a prospective client, returning calls promptly and meeting with a past client for coffee are marketing. The goal of marketing is to match a company’s products and services to the people who need and want them to ensure profitability.

However, the primary thing that propels marketing is the human. Without the human angle to marketing, nothing will move. It will be about our ability to maximize the uniquely human skills of judgement, vision, intuition, wisdom, creativity, and resilience.

Where due to the result of technology, robots are made to carry out some certain assignments in the place of humans, the robots are actually produced by humans and only complement the efforts of humans. According to Forbes, Robots automate, algorithms reveal, but marketers need to delight.

With reference to the etymological interpretation of the word “marketing”, we note that marketing is to connect the seller (who plays a role in the “sale”) and the buyer (who plays a role in the “market”) in a specific space (i.e. marketplace). And it must be realized that both the seller and buyer are in fact, humans.

There has been a lot of innovation with the resultant marketing technology but all is nothing without a strategy. Machines will definitely learn very well what to do effectively and more efficiently, but cannot replace the intricate knowledge of human and customer behavior which should be at the heart of great customer knowledge. Ultimately, a marketer’s goal is to increase sales and drive customer retention.

So, what actually does the human do in marketing?

1. Associative and emotional relationships

The world has gone very digital and businesses have to keep up with the trend, this makes it difficult for a salesperson to break through the noise. To truly make a connection, a salesperson has to assume the role of a consultant or a trusted advisor.

There is this erroneous belief that customers buy from the company, the true position is that nobody likes to buy from a company, people buy from people. They are moved by your emotions and want to see you associate with them.

Your customers don’t care whether you’re in marketing or sales, but they care if you can help solve the problem they have. This breeds loyalty which any business thrives on.

2. Communal touch

Across an array of industries, there’s a focus on building a community of like-minded individuals. Just imagine what a community of robots will look like and how many people will want to belong to such a community.

Your community will be bigger than your current customer base, and the more humans that are part of that community, the more opportunities you’ll create for marketing and sales. People are more comfortable, swayed, and influenced by the”boy next door.”

3. Word of mouth

Machine learning cannot express your deep feelings and attachment to a product. With the word of mouth marketing, you have the opportunity of creating a compelling narrative, a story that people will actually care about.

It’s extremely rare to get people to care about your brand unless you already have a certain amount of prestige associated with your company. Crafting a story that makes people care about what you’re selling will have a much stronger impact and no machine learning can do that for you. It’s very doubtful if all the robots in the world will create a prestige for your brand.

4. Degree of engagement

In the words of Kristen Wendel, Sr. Director of Marketing Operations at LeanKit, “Engagement is the new form fill.” With the human to human (H2H) approach, you are not just generating leads, you are generating interest. Forrester Research discovered that less than 1% of leads in B2B ever become customers.

H2H focuses on how to get in front of your target buyer. You don’t need all those cold calls and email blasts.

Conclusion

While machine learning is giving marketers more insights into what people are doing and searching, AI should better be utilized to analyze the data in real-time while humans focus on the strategy, creative, and continued refinements. It’s very accurate that machines will amazingly optimize what they know, on the other hand, differentiation and priority requires human thinking

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