In an interview with B2B Marketing Magazine, Antonio Lucio, CMO for Visa, discussed the ways in which his organization has radically modified its approach to marketing by thinking audience first and following three key principles of social media: 1) Sharing is the new giving; 2) Participation is the new engagement; and 3) Recommendations are the new advertising.
“The rapid rise of social media has led Visa Inc. to radically revamp its approach to marketing, the company’s top global marketing executive said in a keynote address this month at ad:tech San Francisco.
“I have never seen such a transformative change as the one that we are living through today,” said Antonio Lucio, global chief marketing, strategy and corporate development officer at Visa, the world’s largest payment network.
Lucio, former CMO of Pepsico Inc., said Visa has reallocated its marketing budget to give more emphasis to digital, and has developed a new marketing model built on three premises, the first of which is “think audience first.”
Digital and social media, still focused on the audiences first
Despite the movement towards digital and social media, there must still be a focus on the audiences first. We couldn’t agree more. Major companies like Visa are moving much of their marketing spend online, and allocating more resources to social media. This, in turn, is inspiring more companies to follow suit. And certainly more audiences are conducting searches, reviews and more interaction online.
Audiences are taking longer to choose, there is no longer an easy to follow funnel. With all of the resources online for reviews, blogs, social conversations, there are more places to dig up dirt or uncover glowing reviews before making a purchase decision. Yet it’s important to keep the eye on results, not just activity.
A conversation earlier today, with our team and about a client program, focused on generating volume of hits and likes and friends, or cultivating a lower, but more qualified pool of friends, fans and recommenders who are most likely to generate actual results.
Once again, who are the target audiences you must reach?
How and where are they engaging now? How much of it is online and how much is offline? If online, what are the preferred sources for information or recommendation? Some audiences are responding to email, others are avid blog readers. Some products and services lend themselves to white papers and “how to” information, while others find demonstrations are most valuable.
We caution again against running down a particular social or digital path, focusing on participation or number of likes, without a clear direction to actual results. It’s easy to get lost in the weeds of what’s hot in social and online. Yet as marketers, our end goal is to make use of the right tools to reach the right audiences, those that will not only participate and recommend, but those that will open their wallets and commit.
When targeting your audiences, dig deeper. Consider the generations, the stats on Facebook, where you are currently connecting. More of our posts address this topic.
- Is your audience on Facebook?
- Personas create audience definition
- Marketing Mistake: Different generations don’t matter
- Marketing Mistake: Social media is the answer