No homepage: what the changing internet means for your brand website

The following excerpts are from interviews with top marketing experts on the best ways to connect your brand with customers.

Kevin Roberts, CEO, Saatchi & Saatchi

Why do I need to rethink my traditional marketing approach?

“Traditional marketing is dead right, marketing is all over. If you’re in the marketing game, goodnight, good luck. We have… consumers don’t want to be marketed at anymore. We’ve moved on from this whole attention economy you know selling by yelling, we’ve moved into a situation the power has switched dramatically, no matter what business you’re in right now there’s been this incredible power switch okay.

So to me marketing’s been replaced by connectivity so don’t think of yourself as the marketing department anymore, don’t think of targets, don’t think of consumers, don’t think of demographics think of your role as being the connector.

There was Steve Jobs at Apple who said creativity is just connecting stuff and the role of the old marketing department is now to connect, to connect ideas, to connect emotions, to create loyalty beyond reason for whatever it is that you’re selling…

So don’t think about marketing at people anymore, think about connecting with.”

Tom Smith, social media expert

So this social networking stuff. Is it probably just a small proportion of the population that is getting stuck into it isn’t it?

“… hundreds of millions of people are reading blogs, watching videos … You know, it is a mass phenomenon. If you are online you are doing it so as internet penetration rises you know the impacts of social media will be felt amongst all parts of the population worldwide.”

So if you are a business person or a business rather with a message to get out there, what does this mean and what impact does this have on decisions you should make?

“… we know we have seen in this research that people are spending more and more time in less environments because social networks now allow you to do everything you want online. So people are spending less time on sites outside of this. So you kind of have to take the message to where people are going to be which is inside social media rather than build a brand website and expect them to come.

It’s about taking your content to them and taking your message to them where they spend their time which is increasingly social media.”

So the lesson for any business is that we have moved away from the time when you created a brand website and advertised it to get people to come.

Instead we can use today’s unprecedented internet connectivity to reach out and speak directly to any of the people you need to talk to.

The reason this works better for you is that you can can flow your content directly to the right people whenever you need to.

So the critical thing is the number of these connections you are creating, with your website ready to support your sales process when people are ready to buy.