In stark contract to my Nevada experience (bright, sunny, and tons of walking), I arrived at Grand Central Terminal on a chilly, overcast day and walked a very short distance to the ABM offices. I was immediately face-to-face with a great friend, Marcom Star, and a leader in the B2B Marketing arena, Dr. Ralph Oliva. Ralph got me involved with the ABM organization – and has taught me a ton along the way.
The theme of the meeting was, "Marketing Through Turbulent Times: We're All in this Together", and it brought together professionals from the client side (people like me) and the media side (people from Reed Business Information, Penton Media, Nielsen Business Media et al). We discussed our challenges, opportunities, and ideas regarding crafting a brighter future.
We eventually reached a point where it seems like a new engagement protocol might be in order. Here's why: clients commented that media sales people frequently offer little more than "more ad space" and "cheaper ad space" when clients are actually seeking greater value. A couple of us made it clear that we are willing to PAY for such value. Media management people commented that they are disappointed when their sales team simply tries to sell space when management knows that their media organization is sitting on a mountain of rich data. Media representatives told us that there is a lot of value to be delivered. For example, they can often richly describe and differentiate subscribers far beyond the basic BPA-type data of which we are all aware.
While this group made plans to explore this concept at a later meeting, I was busy text messaging my team back home, instructing them to contact EVERY media partner we use here at Indium, and to open up the discussion of deeper value. My first question was prompted by a media person who said that most media do extensive research into their markets and even individuals. So I am asking my media to update me on any research they have performed in the past year. ACTION!
I hope this discussion leads to something that is valuable for all Marcom professionals. I know that I have already gained.