The Marketing Corner: Brand Game Changers

February 17, 2014 Updated: February 17, 2014

The marketing environment is seeing many changes that require marketers to become “quick-change artists.” This stems from the fact that the evolution of marketing is happening at a kinetic pace. 

Many companies are doing their best to keep one step ahead of the competition. For small-business owners, it increases pressure on resources that are already constrained. 

There is a plethora of game changers that are resetting how businesses go to market. Now, more than ever, the status quo should be challenged. Let’s point out some examples.

In just a short time, disruptive units such as take-overs have been an important factor in many digital programs. Now, many advertisers are seeking native placements that blend into the content on the Web. Granted, the disruptive ads typically provide big impact for the advertisers. With the rise of native placement, advertisers are seeking methods to organically place units seamlessly to encourage brand interaction.

Greater use of research data is transforming typical archetypes to really understand all aspects of a given audience. At best, archetypes may limit the reach potential of a given audience. Best practices involve gleaning insights on how a given audience identifies itself and how it uses media to execute better marketing plans.

Purchasing programming used to be as simple as buying a unit (or multiple units) and possibly get a billboard that designates “presented by sponsor.” Today, media buyers are searching for programming with legs in order to extend a message to multiple platforms (that is, social media and mobile). Sports programming such as the Super Bowl can be a game changer. The typical reach is incredible (alas, so is the cost per unit). It is one of the few programs on television where the commercials get just as much attention as the actual game. Whenever possible, purchasing programming from sports or even a drama show such as “Scandal” allows opportunity for brands to extend their message to other platforms. The audience’s reach and the high interest provide a water cooler effect of programming of this nature.

Multicultural marketing is also at an all-time high. Due to the sheer size of minority groups, they have become very attractive. In the United States, the Hispanic population exceeds 52 million and African-Americans represent 38 million. Each is expected to experience population growth and increased spending over the next few years. 

Mobile is another game changer. A report from Comscore stated that 45 percent of all Hispanics and 46 percent of all African-Americans between the ages of 18–34 are smartphone owners. These younger adults would rather have forgotten their wallets at home than their smartphones. 

They are constantly using their phones throughout the day to complete a variety of tasks. Mobile marketing has scale and now reliable verification. Deployment of communication messages via mobile is a smart play, especially if the desired audience is millennials.

Changing one’s strategy can be tough. But, brands that figure out a way to be consumer-centric and evolve marketing tactics have a greater chance of becoming market leaders. Decide on which game changing tactics you will use to thrust your business forward in 2014.

Adele Lassere is a marketing/advertising consultant with 20+ years of experience, freelance writer and author of “Elements of Buying: A How To Reference Guide on Advertising for Business Owners”; available at Adele was listed on Black Enterprise’s 2011 Top Execs in Marketing & Advertising and Black Enterprise’s 2013 Top Women Executives in Advertising & Marketing. Contact: