Denying consumer choice is akin to locking the doors of your business because you expect customers to arrive on YOUR schedule. Only the clueless would argue against the growing choice-driven marketplace.
Consider what’s about to happen in prime-time television. Will a program’s longevity one day be tied to paid viewings rather than estimated mass viewings? No doubt networks will not only know how many people are viewing, but WHO is viewing their product.
If an ad ran and no one saw it, would it still be an ad? It’s not a silly question. This is a new reality bulleting toward you: a consumer controlled marketplace means you can no longer force-feed your message to a pliant population. Like trees felled in a vast forest, advertising is increasingly falling unseen because advertisers ignore the reality of consumer choice.
Our challenge is to create marketing newly empowered consumers CHOOSE to see; compelling, relevant, genuine messages that set aside pretense and hype.
Don’t just open the doors, hand your customers the keys. Speak in their language. Give yourself over to their choices. This isn’t a fad. This is the new landscape.
[Originally published 8 Nov 2005]