As 2011 rolls to a close, here are some predictions—and wishes—for marketing in 2012.
1. The use of data as the main driver in offline and online campaigns will increase. Data should certainly not be viewed or priced as a commodity in the marketplace. Data often determines the ultimate success of a campaign.
2. Mobile marketing will continue to grow. This one is a no-brainer. As the number of Americans ceasing to maintain a traditional landline as their primary phone continues to grow, so too will the marketing implications for mobile communications.
3. The use of lists and data will become more aggressive in the 2012 election. Now is the time for mobile and online data to be used to help determine interests, demographics, ethnicity, and grassroots causes that will appeal to voters and motivate them to support their candidates, causes and cast their ballots in November.
4. The use of data that is cleansed and verified, modeled, enhanced and utilized in making marketing decisions in real-time will grow. Real-time data processing technology has been in place and working effectively for a number of years and is now being offered to marketers able to capitalize on the use of data driving what offers to show the consumer while they are online, as well as via intelligent interactive voice recorder (IVR) scripting.
5. More marketers will use online surveys. Every business-to-business and consumer online publisher should consider offering online survey questions. The additional income generated will be well received and the data viewed as being highly sought after.
Wishes for 2012
1. More call centers that are located and staffed in the U.S.: Let’s help to reduce our nation’s unemployment by training and staffing the hundreds of empty call centers and thousands of seats waiting to be filled.
2. Free admission to industry trade shows: Our industry trade shows are an essential part of how we conduct our business. The offering of “free” admission into the exhibit hall will generate increased levels of foot traffic, and will entice more exhibitors to participate.
3. “Halo” direct marketing products and services will be more aggressively promoted by the traditional direct marketing community: We need to work with our offline list owners and take ownership of the offering and marketing of online website advertising opportunities, online survey questions, online leads, offering survey questions in outbound telemarketing phone calls, (including warm transfers), and any other creative marketing channel products that we can develop.
4. The USPS stays in business: Just think of the massive number of businesses that will feel the brunt if the USPS declares bankruptcy. Printers, lettershops, service bureaus, call centers, and, of course list and data companies. will all be severely affected. Not to mention hundreds of thousands of postal workers. We are all in this together. We need strong industry leadership working together to come up with viable recommendations and solutions.
Leland Kroll is president of Kroll Direct Marketing Inc.