I was having a conversation with a media industry executive recently about consumer engagement, and they made the argument that that topic is pass, that it was hot last year or the year before, but was not now. I disagree. I don’t think consumer engagement should ever be pass. It is the critical element of any brand… relevance! If consumers engage with your brand consistently, you will never go hungry. Your bottom line will always reflect that you are providing something of value, something worth engaging in. There may be new buzzwords to describe it, but in the end, it’s involvement with your brand. I don’t know of any marketer worth his salt who would say that emotional connectivity is something he does not want or need for his brand.
I realize this is a simple idea. I do think, however, that simple doesn’t necessarily mean boring or useless. In any of my jobs, I have gotten so caught up in whatever challenges I was facing, that I often would forget the basics. Being reminded of the simple truths, the clear principles of advertising and marketing that were just as important when David Ogilvy wrote about them as they are today, is worthwhile. Marketers need to find fresh ways to bring their ideas to consumers (Facebook, cell phones, podcasting, YouTube) but the principles remain the same.