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Connected Customers Are the Future: Brian Solis at #PRSAICON

Marketing and PR have integrated at a rapid rate. These two disciplines, once very distinct, have now overlapped and merged thanks to new tools and tactics for communicating.

For any company, the need for integrated communication and sound strategies is clear. That’s why we attended the PRSA International Conference this week to hear what’s trending and what’s to come in our new, unified world:

“Feedback is a true gift that allows opportunities for engagement,” stated Brian Solis during his opening keynote.

Brian SolisAre you collecting feedback on your products and services from clients as well as prospects? In order to excel, Brian says, we must adapt to the new communications world.

No longer are decision makers solely internal.

Our decision makers should be our audience, because we’re all part of this business ecosystem. Everything that we know, isn’t the end-all-be-all; we all have much more knowledge to acquire.

Last chance! Don’t miss Brian’s Vocus Webinar today. Click here! 

Innovation is hard when it comes to business, Brian points out. But the key to innovation lies in something simple: leaning forward, trying something new and seeing what we don’t do right. Tools and technology are a gift, but as part of this business ecosystem, we need to be the very people we’re trying to reach. We need to be listening, engaging, and doing the things that our audiences do in order to understand them better.

Let’s face it: yes, customers go through a journey with our business or organization. But that journey is a mess, and the path is inconsistent.

In the words of our own CMO, Mark Gambill, the path to purchase is no longer linear. Those business tactics that were once “tried and true” may be completely untrue now. People will forget what you did and said, but won’t forget how you made them feel. Brands should have functional value, but also emotional value to reach those people.

Enter the “experience cycle”.

The experience cycle is the relationship between the user, consumer and brand experience, says Brian. The experience cycle is what your audience feels when they are interacting with you, whether a prospect or a client. The best thing about experiences? People share those experiences. And your audience has an audience of audiences.

Sounds complicated? It’s not. If something good happens, we share it. If something bad happens, we definitely share it. In the ultimate moment of truth, people share their experiences. Shared experiences affect impressions, and no amount of marketing will ever change an experience.

The growing group Brian refers to as “connected customers” – those on social media, those receiving your emails, those who visit your website, those who see you in-store – all value things differently. This is our chance to create and innovate what that experience is.

It isn’t about tools or technology, it’s about behavior. Articulate how you intend to improve experiences and relationships, and apply that to your strategy development. This is the future of marketing, this is the future of relationships and this is the future of business.

For more PRSAICON coverage, click here. 

About Cision Contributor

This post was written by a guest Cision contributor.

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