In about three months, my next book, Meatball Sundae, will be published. I know, I know, I just published a book. I’m breaking the biggest rule in publishing. I’m trying your patience by doing another book so soon, but it really couldn’t wait. The new book is on a totally different topic, and it’s a lot longer and filled with examples and stuff. It’s about the internet and new marketing and the fourteen trends that change everything.
Every Monday for the next few months I’m going to publish a thought piece from the book. We’ll start with the basic premise then move on to the fourteen trends in the book. Here goes:
What’s a meatball sundae?
Maybe this is familiar. It is to me, anyway:
You go to a marketing meeting. There’s a presentation from the new Internet marketing guy. He’s brought a fancy (and expensive) blogging consultant with him. She starts talking about how blogs and the “Web 2.0 social media infrastructure” are just waiting for your company to dive in. “Try this stuff,” she seems to be saying, “and the rest of your competitive/structural/profit issues will disappear.”
In the last ten years, the Internet and radical changes in media have provided marketers everywhere with a toolbox that allows them to capture attention with seemingly little effort, planning, or cash. Six years after the dot-com boom, there are more Web sites, more email users, and more viral ideas, online and offline, than ever before. There are hundreds of cable TV networks and thousands of online radio stations. Not to mention street marketing, email marketing, and MySpace.
Corporations, political parties, nonprofits, job-seekers, and yes, even people looking for love are all scrambling around, trying to exploit the power of these new tools. People treat the New Marketing like a kid with a twenty-dollar bill at an ice cream parlor. They keep wanting to add more stuff—more candy bits and sprinkles and cream and cherries. The dream is simple: “If we can just add enough of [today’s hot topping], everything will take care of itself.”
Most of the time, despite all the hype, organizations fail when they try to use this scattershot approach. They fail to get buzz or traffic or noise or sales. Organizations don’t fail because the Web and the New Marketing don’t work. They fail because the Web and the New Marketing work only when applied to the right organization. New Media makes a promise to the consumer. If the organization is unable to keep that promise, then it fails.
New Marketing—whipped cream and a cherry on top—isn’t magical. What’s magical is what happens when an organization uses the New Marketing to become something it didn’t used to be—it’s not just the marketing that’s transformed, but the entire organization. Just as technology propelled certain organizations through the Industrial Revolution, this new kind of marketing is driving the right organizations through the digital revolution.
You can become the right organization. You can align your organization from the bottom up to sync with New Marketing, and you can transform your organization into one that thrives on the new rules.