Business today faces a new and incredibly complex ecosystem in which to establish a relationship to customers and the public. The range of media sources (blogs to print newspapers), platforms, networks (LinkedIn to discussion boards), devices (TV, Blackberry, iPad), and communication modes (from texting to guerilla marketing), and practices (crowd sourcing anyone?) all becoming further established and fragmented in equal speeds, have made communicating with customers difficult for even the most savvy marketers.
Building a brand has never been more challenging.
The golden era of advertising was defined by one-way communication directed at consumers. However this is far from the case today, and top-down marketing has been forced to make way for networked brand building, characterized by multiple channels and influencers, with the brand “owner” not necessarily the brand’s only voice.
Positioning has always been about differentiation. But in this unfolding environment, differentiation can be very short-lived. What really matters over the long term is maintaining relevance to a vast number of different stakeholder groups – from current and future target customers to channel partners to traditional and online media. What is relevant to one won’t be relevant to all.
In today’s complex new ecosystem, how a brand is positioned to a variety of distinct audiences is a critical concern.
Five unique shifts are needed to complete the transformation towards a vision-based brand positioning.
1. From creating marketing strategies to driving business impact.
2. From controlling the message to galvanizing your network.
3. From incremental improvements to pervasive innovation.
4. From managing marketing investments to inspiring marketing excellence.
5. From an operational focus to relentless customer focus.
Adjusting to the new landscape requires leadership that will guide the business from a tactical orientation to one that is visionary in scope.