Change is the New Normal

The bottom line — technology is changing everything.

Part 1 of 3 in 2017 Digital Marketing Series

The simple truth is – and many are still slow to accept this — technology is dramatically and rapidly changing everything — how we think, act, feel, communicate, and consume.  Consumers quickly embrace these changes.  But businesses and marketers are slower to adapt.  We need to change that.

A little more than ten years ago, smartphones did not exist.  Today, the planet has more mobile devices than humans.  Everyone, everywhere, is now wirelessly connected 24/7/365 to the internet.  It is the new normal.  We now have greater access and choices, louder voices, and higher expectations.  Demand time and attention spans have been reduced to nanoseconds.  Written communication has shrunk to truncated, unpunctuated bursts. In the not too distant future, written communication itself will be largely replaced by verbal communications to an intelligent virtual assistant or smarter device and feedback will be from immersive, holographic realities.

For marketers, this means that, today, at a minimum, you must have a fast loading (less than 3 seconds) mobile web site that is compatible across all brands and platforms (smartphone, tablet).  And, you must optimize your Google listing to show in the top 3 local search results (viewed on mobile devices).  Soon enough, consumers will expect the voice activated interface (think Amazon’s Alexa) that can respond to requests and execute a purchase and delivery.  Other innovations will become pressing.  Are you ready to deploy customer service chatbots?  Will you have a VR showroom ready in 2019?

According to Adobe Digital Insights, a record more than $1 Billion in Black Friday 2016 purchases were made via mobile devices, equaling more than one third of ALL online sales.  What was your share of these day-after-Christmas purchases?  The cost of not keeping up is high.  Macy’s, for instance, announced it will close about 100 stores in 2017.  Many other retailers are following this trend of closing brick-and-mortar stores.

Is your social media marketing mobile compliant and up to consumer expectations?  Do you currently have “buy buttons” of your Pinterest and Twitter accounts?  Are you integrating a seamless purchasing experience with social media and mobile search?

Besides this mobile internet connectivity evolution, people are embracing into mainstream many other technology innovations at a faster adoption rate than ever in history  — innovations like wearable technology, virtual reality, the “Internet of Things” connected devices, 3-D printing, autonomous cars; cameras everywhere live streaming reality, and unsecured networks.

These innovations provide new information, efficiencies, relationships, and expectations.  They raise the bar.  They create change, and disruption; faster innovation, and unexpected obsolescence.

As consumers, we love these innovations.  As brands, marketers and business organizations, on the other hand, we are challenged to keep up with consumers who are far ahead in embracing these technologies and the expectations they create.  New technology is expensive….and complicated.  New media, channels, processes, and data require news skills and venturing into untraveled waters.

Being a digital consumer today is wonderful.  Being a digital marketer is hard.  But, the message is clearly calling us to act.  Marketers need to catch up.  We need to embrace and effect change.  We need to adapt.  Faster.

If you would like some assistance with assessing where your organization is in today’s automated digital marketing environment and what kind of improvements are right for you, contact us at  We love to dive into this with brands whether they are trying to crawl, walk or run.

In our next article, Part 2 of 3, “Digital Marketing Trends to Embrace in 2017,” we’ll show you some important trends in technology and consumer behavior that must be addressed in your updated digital marketing plans and budgets going forward to better compete in the fast-changing marketplace of 2017 and beyond.


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