The Case for Flexibility in Industrial Marketing


The tactics that marketers are using today will be different six months from now. Are you prepared?

We’ve all heard the old adage that “the only thing constant is change.” While that may seem corny or cliche, it’s also true. You need to build flexibility into your industrial marketing plan. And while you certainly can’t predict the future, you must be prepared to react to them.

Case in point: social media.

Remember Friendster? Barely? Same here. Launched in 2002, the site’s popularity fell nearly as quickly as it rose, and now primarily serves Southeast Asia as an online gaming community.

After Friendster, there was MySpace, which now functions mainly as a channel for up-and-coming bands and artists. Illustrating its arc, it was purchased by News Corporation in 2005 for $580 million; Justin Timberlake (amongst others) purchased it in 2011 for a mere $35 million.

Twitter is now the weapon of choice, along with Facebook. Then there’s Google+. Were you caught asking, “How do we use that? And what the heck is Pinterest, anyway?”

Now there are so many social media platforms to keep track of that we need dashboards like HootSuite to manage them all.

But it’s not just social media. We’ve gone from “What are blogs?” to “How do we leverage our blog?” to “You don’t have a blog? Are you nuts?”

Then there’s marketing automation.

Fathom provides a brief story of its development:

The rise in social media sparked the creation of thousands of new tools and tech companies – all offering solutions that “make our jobs easier.” The problem was that marketers were now split between a wide array of tools, reports and priorities. The need for one system that brings everything together pervaded the industry, and the demand for marketing automation platforms spiked.

How can you keep track and ensure you’re spending marketing dollars wisely with all of these channels? Marketing automation providers like Marketo, Act-On and Pardot knew they could be that solution for marketers and launched their platforms around 2007.

As your marketing messages change, so too are the platforms that are used to deliver them.

Whether it’s something like a new social media platform to contend with, or a fundamental shift in the industry such as marketing automation, change will always take place – and we need to embrace it in our industrial marketing strategies.

Photo credit: theloushe via photopin cc

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