Monday 30 June 2008


Marketing at a Crossroads

No longer are the 4 P’s; Place, Price, Promotion and Product the main tenants of marketing. Marketing on the Internet is more about Relationships and Process.

Process is about technology, platform and intelligent, expert systems. Marshall McLuhan said a long time ago that the medium is the message. The Internet is a very sophisticated medium capable of delivering messages target to a single client, tuned to their precise interest at every point of purchase. It is automatic, re-engineering and personalizing the message for multiple users all in the same instance of time.

Your travel product, a travel experience, is as multidimensional as your clients. For example, you may cater to weddings and romance as well as lazy beach living, active holidays, gold vacations and gourmet dining. You can’t say it all at one time to one traveler. Information about your product must be engineered and differentiated; it must be made personal to each traveler.

Information must be malleable, configurable, searchable, accessible and delivered tailored to suite।

For example you may choose to advertise a golf holiday, you deliver content and images that are tailored to what you offer the golfer. You direct golfers to a special page dealing with that experience. You do this on your website, and on every channel you market on. – you cannot organize and deliver it manually. The process and platform configures and deliver the message dynamically. For this your information must be engineered with systems that are very smart, learning what motivates the clients and delivering the experience they are looking for. The difference is that the online message is a "Pull" message prompting an action, offline it is typically a "Push" message to gain awareness. With that the entire focus of marketing has changed. For more on this, see United Airlines Case Study by Double Click.

People are not talking to people at this stage, it’s a process, and the process understands people, gathering and analyzing information about them every step of the way. The smart systems (the Platform) tracks clients interaction, recognizing patterns, responding appropriately, managing and analyzing data in the process of building the digital relationship. See digital-relationships

But Process and Platform are not enough. In a complex integrated world, Partners are essential. Microsoft has said this clearly, telling its Value Added Resellers (VARS) to Partner or die!. Simply put you can do it all yourself, so you must rely on people with skills and passion that complements your own. The mechanics of Internet is very complex, we must cooperate to succeed; outsourcing is essential!

Finally, the Internet is driven by Passion. Thousands of ordinary people, professionals, workers, teachers and student donate time and resources freely, building content, services and applications that they feel passionate about. People are building relationships, offering comments, writing blogs, helping others, for free. This community has spawned the social network, which interacts and influences everything on the Internet.

Jason McNamara, CMO of Atlerian says that the new marketing is driven by passion, we need to be passionate about marketing and today, more that ever before, that means being passionate about understanding and measuring the digital footprint. ”Being able to apply sophisticated marketing analytics to every piece of information you collect about your customers is like bringing the customers themselves in-house to tell you not just what's working and what isn't, but why. You can use this passion to your advantage, helping generate ideas, proving their relevance, and justifying the money you spend” See Jason McNanara’s article on the new 5 P’s of marketing: People, Process, Platform, Passion and Partners (

###### Over 50% of leisure bookings are online in 2012. An estimated 89% of planners are researching event locations on the web.

Related Posts (at a crossroads series):

New Order of Commerce: 
Destination Marketing 

Travel Marketing
The Supplier
Search at a Crossroads
Publishing at a Crossroads