You may be thinking, what are you talking about? Everything is digital nowadays!
My point exactly. Everything is digital nowadays. So, why are you still considering digital as a world apart?
We are the revolution
The fact is that the digital revolution already happened a long time ago. Digital has become a part of us. We live in it, through it and for it. Our devices are extensions of our limbs, close friendly companions that not longer just sit there, but listen to us and help us. Those creepy ones are called virtual assistants, by the way, and their cognitive system is often called machine learning. We do business online, our cinema is usually online (Youtube, Netflix, Amazon), our music is online (Spotify, iTunes, Deezer), our dates are online… You get where I’m going with this.
Digital Marketing is as dead as digital itself
I am not the first to say it. To tell you the truth, I heard it a few weeks ago from one of my lecturers when discussing digital marketing. I dug deeper on the subject and found a couple of articles:
- Mark Pritchard (P&G) said in 2013 — …the era of digital marketing is over. It’s almost dead. It’s now just brand building.
- This nordic marketing agency, Spoon, put it in an interesting perspective in their Digital Marketing is Dead article — Although the future is certainly digital, the days of digital marketing are numbered. The marketing department of the future does not distinguish between digital and analogue, bought, earned or owned. In the future, the centre point is the story which can be used in any channel.
It is all marketing — both online and offline. And these two… well, they’re in a hot, intimate relationship.
Music — Plugged + Unplugged = 1
Let’s take on the idea that there is no longer a line between digital and analogue, and see some examples:
1. RiRi and her album Anti (2016)
In 2016 Rihanna launched her comeback album ‘Anti’. Even though it wasn’t the most successful album launch (read why here), it used a combination of online and offline marketing that can easily be replicated.
- Posters. I was still living in Berlin at the time, and you could see ‘Anti’ posters all over the city. They were in every wall across different neighborhoods. It was impossible not to see it. You would know Rihanna had a new album, even if you hadn’t listened to it yet. (Offline)
- Streaming & iTunes. The album was first made available as a Tidal exclusive. However, a week after it was all over the web, including other streaming services and authorized music platforms. (Online)
- Press. Blogs, magazines, newspapers and other press talked about the album. Good or bad, ‘Anti’ was all over the press. (Online + Offline)
- Tour. Rihanna announced a world tour to promote the album. Thousands of people attended her concerts all over the globe. A lot of interviews and radio showcases were given. A lot more posters were printed. (Offline)
- Single & Music video. I don’t have to say much about it. Only that video is continuously growing as a medium and that the right collaborations are extremely powerful marketing. Work’s catchy hook, together with an exotic beat, Drake and sexy visuals made the song spread like wildfire lighting up everyone’s summer. (Online)
2. Tasmin Little — The Naked Violinist
First, a bit of context. I read about Tasmin Little’s work this week on a book called Tribes, by Seth Godin. I thought it was great timing to have heard about her and the strategy she came up with to reach her objectives. She is yet another good example on how the lines are blurred. It’s all marketing.
- Her album was available online for free. She wanted to spread classical music around. It was her passion. She didn’t want to bank in. She saw the benefit to the people and made it easy for them to access her music. (Online)
- Regular concerts in schools, prisons, small towns. She took the music to the people directly, physically, eye to eye. She went to places people wouldn’t usually go because she knew there was an audience there hungry for music. She satisfied their needs. Win. (Offline)
3. Buskers — Dublin
For those who don’t know, this is not a band name. Busking is the art of street performing, which is so particular to Dublin. Buskers are often professional musicians that want to bring their music to more people. Many of them also take it as an exercise to become really good live performers. So, where’s the marketing in it? Let’s go back to the question…
- Performing. They have songs and talents they want to showcase. They do it on the streets. They are promoting themselves by doing what they do best — singing and playing. (Offline)
- Social Media & Website. You will see that most buskers have a guitar case open in front of them. It is usually full of little business cards, or some have CDs, others leaflets, but all of them have a common element — social media or website links. Essentially, they’re creating the link between the offline element (performance) and the online element (social media/site). This way, if people like their music they can connect later on and keep listening to it wherever they go. (Online)
We’re not longer in the age of digital. Digital is in us.
The lines between online and offline are blurred.
Marketing still is about identifying, anticipating and satisfying people’s needs. So, make digital and analogue work and help them the best you can.
Thank you for reading!
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