Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Customer Rules!

I apologize. I've been harping (or harpooning) the media lately in these ramblings to the exclusion of other types of rapid technological change or amateur radio. But there has been a deluge of good info the past few weeks on the subject of how media usage--by both types of customers: viewers/listeners/readers as well as advertisers--is evolving so rapidly. Take yesterday's Radio Business Report, which carried a surprisingly candid article about how customers now control media, a portion of which reads:

By customer-controlled, we simply mean the traditional era of dominant media systems — one in which media organizations accumulated audiences based on content development and availability, and then sold advertisers time or space to access those audiences — is no longer the principal marketplace format. Instead, consumers now access and accept (or ignore) a multitude of media forms and formats, based on their own needs, desires, wishes and capabilities. Thus, the control of the media marketplace has clearly shifted. Consumers, as they always have, control the media forms they choose to use. The primary difference is that the alternatives available to them have increased exponentially.

The traditional methods of media planning, allocation and measurement are essentially obsolete, particularly in the United States and perhaps around the world. There is little question that the historical approaches developed and used over the past 40 or so years were effective in their time, namely, when mass media was the primary communication tool of the marketing organization and consumers aggregated to consume those media forms in large numbers. Major changes have occurred over the past four years, which make those tools and techniques questionable and perhaps even irrelevant.

Well said. Well said.

Don Keith N4KC

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