A new perspective on marketing

A long time ago we discussed Brain Solis’ “The end of business as usual” on Newstalk Radio. It is a very, very dense book about the new marketing. I spend a few hours getting a structure and a story for my five minutes of fame. But how do you explain 292 pages of deep content in 4.5 minutes on the radio?

Digital Darwinism and the caveman principle

The presenter, John on Newstalk, took the angle of digital Darwinism and the caveman principle. He had prepared a lovely intro and then it was my turn…….

This is what I prepared:

No escape

There is no escape. Technology is going very, very fast. Five billion people are now connected online. The average age of the world population is now 28, which means that we are dealing with very social media savvy customers. Most buying decisions now have an online element.


As a result of the evolution (revolution?) online, people are now becoming part of our search engines (which is why it is called social search). That has repercussions for both the individuals (reputation) and companies (brand). The power is back to the people, and as a business, you need to become part of the ego-system of the individual.

Social capital

With the increasing importance of reputation as a brand or individual, social capital becomes very important (and should be part of your balance sheet). It will go further. Social capital will become part of your CV and part of your individual credit score.

An explosive headache for marketers

Our interests, experiences, context and the history of the experiences with the company become very, very relevant. It is not about the quantity of the relations. It is about the quality of the relationship. It is about one to one conversations, micro-engagement and heart share. Combine that with collective EQ, IQ and the long memory of the net, and you have an explosive headache for a marketer who is very likely to be a lot older than 28 (and therefore does not understand).

The need to be very compelling

How do you stand out, how do you connect with the heart of your customers and how compelling are you. And with the attention span of “The Shallows,” you need to compel in the moment. How do you make a split second compelling? An important part of that will be the higher purpose of your company. The soul of your business, which brings us to marketing 3.0 and the importance of culture.

 Global-local village shop

I read “The thank you economy”, and from that, I got the image of the local village shop on steroids. You need to create the feel and engagement of the local shop where everyone knows your name (song of “Cheers” in the background) on a global scale.

You can listen to the interview here

Not enough time
  • I had accepted that I would not get the time to talk about the move from social graph to interest graph.
  • Or the concept of networks, within networks, within networks called niche networks. As co-founder of www.smallbusinesscan.com, you can understand why I find that very good news. In fact, the whole book is good news for Smallbusinesscan and Ulster Bank.
  • Or not having the time to explain that six degrees of separation are now four degrees of separation. Or that processes such as AIDA are now circular and have a very strong feedback loop. If you doubt the effect of feedback loops, I suggest you read “overconnected”.

And I can go on (it is a very dense book).

The lessons

What are the lessons?

  • Brands are now the sum of the experiences and these experiences are visible online
  • We are all becoming brand and reputation managers
  • You are too old to understand
  • When moments need to become compelling, design is key
  • Context is king
  • Social capital is an asset
  • Soul, culture, passion, heart, ethics will have to become part of the brand experience
  • Brands are part of self-expression
  • Mediocrity is not accepted
  • Engagement will not be transactional but emotional
  • Use data mining to segment to near one to one level
  • Everything is circular and holistic

Four questions

There are four questions you need to ask yourself as a business:

  1. How loyal are you to your customers?
  2. Could you twitter your mission statement?
  3. How compelling are you?
  4. Where it the loop in your product or service

If you are over 28 years old…..

The book is very dense. Maybe it is too dense. It impossible to read on an iPad or Kindle if you are in the habit of wanting to make notes on the pages, there just are too many of them. It does cover a lot of books we covered before. Books such as “Marketing 3.0”, “The thank you economy”, “Infinite possibility”, “The Starfish and the spider”,  “Emotionomics” and “ZAG”. They were more enjoyable to read.

However, if you are looking for a comprehensive book on the future of social media, this is the one. If you combine it with Brain Solis’ other book “Engage” you will be sorted on social media for a while. So if you are over 28 years old and a marketer or business owner, you should pick up this book.


sensemaking cover


Sense making; morality, humanity, leadership and slow flow. A book about the 14 books about the impact and implications of technology on business and humanity.

Ron Immink

I help companies by developing an inspiring and clear future perspective, which creates better business models, higher productivity, more profit and a higher valuation. Best-selling author, speaker, writer.

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