The Importance of Human Marketing In Business
As a consumer, you certainly appreciate the human touch. Naturally every human being appreciates the sense of acknowledgement. It also shows a level of appreciation. In the earlier days of marketing, consumers were dominated by a brand’s equity. Your options were limited due to the confinements that major brands would place upon you. Those days are over but many legacy brands continue to do business in the old fashioned way. A few of those that went out of business include Blockbuster Video, Hollywood Video, Circuit City, RadioShack, and Sports Authority.
You see, a couple of the referenced major brands above were started way back in the 1920’s and 1940’s. Yet even their brand equity could not sustain against the rise of technology and human marketing. For the record, in the duration of this article I will utilize the term “marketing” in relation to “digital marketing”. It’s just marketing now!
As a modern brand that operates in two thousand and teenies, you need to put forth a significant thought towards human marketing. Meanwhile though, let’s extrapolate a few of the components around human marketing.
Defining Human Marketing
Human marketing pertains to the experience and interaction one faces with a particular brand. A Google search won’t even give you that much (already tried it). Let’s break down further the meaning of human marketing though.
Every morning, a good portion of us walk into our favorite coffee shop. We get excited about our morning dose of caffeine to spark the creative levels for our day ahead. Some may be even ecstatic – especially if you work in the marketing industry. Monday mornings can be rough, and an early dose of caffeine may be exactly what you need. The expectations are fairly high, right?
Oh, but wait! Suddenly the person standing on the other side of the counter simply says, “Hello, how may I help you today?”. You’ve been coming to this very same coffee shop for the last 3 years. You like your coffee a certain way, and that is one of the highlights of the day. Instead, you are faced with robotic-like customer experience that instantly drives you crazy.
The majority of large coffee shop chains treat their customers like a number. You are nothing more than another revenue piece. Even though most of these very same coffee shop chains go as far as stating that they care about your experience. In reality they really don’t care and their only focus is generating revenue by the numbers.
The Rise of Human Marketing
A couple of months ago I wrote an article here on Curatti regarding the emotional era. This very same mentality borderlines with the current state of marketing. It’s all about the human-centric approach. As humans and consumers, each one of us craves a sense of acknowledgement. For instance as indicated above, personalization should be a key factor that every brand utilizes to engage with its customers. Addressing a customer by their first name or even remembering their choice of coffee says a lot about human marketing.
Most major brands are incapable of recognizing the consumer. We are nothing more than a revenue opportunity for a quantitative approach towards ROI. This is where small businesses and mom and pop shops can especially compete with big brands. Personalization, customer service, and human interaction are key factors that can be quite advantageous.
Who is Classified as a Human Brand?
In your pursuit of human marketing it’s important to reflect upon your current endeavors. There are certain brands currently in operation, that may in fact be deemed as human marketing companies. Establishing the delineation between a tradition and human marketing brand can be an absolute key to business success.
A few of the characteristics that a human marketing brand should adhere to include the following:
- Strong problem solver
- Relationship builder
- Focus on quality over quantity
- Great storyteller
Each of the above mentioned characteristics can take on multiple meanings. The main constant worth considering here is the adaptation towards a more human-centric approach. Front-facing and relationship building are 2 imperative components that can make a significant impact on your brand. A long-term investment approach will also heavily attribute towards the establishment of a human marketing brand.
An Outlook Into The Future of Human Marketing
As the Millenials and GenZ – also known as the iGeneration – take on a more predominant role in society, brands should put forth a stronger focus towards human marketing. In 2015, the iGeneration was nearly 25% of the U.S. population. This makes them an even larger cohort than Baby Boomers or even Millennials. An iGeneration is considered to be anyone born in the early 1990’s.
Millenials and GenZ are both heavily concerned with connectivity. This includes human-based interaction through digital channels using modern technology. A 2014 independent study discovered that iGeneration individuals are more loyal, thoughtful, compassionate, responsible, and determined. This data boasts the need for a human marketing approach in order to engage with them in promotion of your products or services.
How To Become a Human Brand
Transforming into a human-centric brand is no easy task. The results of your transformation will be heavily reliant upon the level of strategy, implementation and execution that you pursue. There may also be a resource and cost factor involved in your transformation. But it will certainly help you connect with Millennials and GenY.
When undergoing such exercise considering answering the following questions:
- Who is your target audience?
- Have you identified your buyer personas?
- What is your buyer personas purchasing behavior?
- How does your buyer persona think and act towards your products and services?
- Who is your ideal customer?
- How will your buyers benefit from your products or services?
- How will you nurture your customers?
- Have you identified the specific demographics?
These are only a few of the questions that a human-centric brand should be capable of answering. The complexities of morphing into a human-centric brand are quite real. While many brands will fail, some will succeed and thrive in this endeavor. Real market success in human-marketing will rely heavily upon relationship building, cultivation, implementation, and execution.
Image attribution: Copyright: ‘http://www.123rf.com/profile_apinan‘ / 123RF Stock Photo
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