Marketing Innovation: Innovative Marketing Approaches
Business dynamics change quickly due to technological advances. Conventional marketing techniques, tactics and strategies may become less effective. Therefore business marketers must embrace these changes and experiment with new marketing methods that were not available before.
Definition of Marketing Innovation. Meaning
could be defined as the development of new or unconventional ideas to be implemented in marketing practices, with a positive impact on a company's marketing success (e.g., increasing sales, profits and market share, increasing brand awareness, winning new customers, becoming the "market leader"). Note that in many cases it is difficult to distinguish innovative marketing approaches from innovative products, but I'd like to focus this discussion topic on the first one.
An example of Innovative Marketing
Take IKEA, the global multinational company for ready-to-assemble furniture. It uses innovative marketing strategies to provide a superior experience for their customers. They launched the Catalogue app, which not only gave users access to the company's inventory but, via augmented reality, actually allowed them to view how items would look in their home spaces. In addition to that, IKEA provided other innovative marketing services such as babysitting for 60 minutes completely free of charge, in-store restaurants with very cheap meals and family-friendly offers such as buy-one-get-one-free. IKEA also makes efforts to cater to post-purchase needs by introducing a platform that helped customer sell their second-hand furniture, and opening up the brand's Facebook page to act as an online marketplace. It's the collaborative impact of all of these efforts that makes IKEA's marketing so innovative.
What are the Optimal Conditions for Effective Implementation of Innovative Marketing Strategies?
You can approach this issue one by one, considering each and every new possibility for some innovation in marketing as a separate issue. However as managers, perhaps it is more useful to consider what could be the organizational competences, culture etc. for innovative marketing to flourish? Here's a list to get started:
- Cohesive communication across teams that work hand-in-hand with marketing, like sales and customer support;
- A creative, inspiring work environment that allows the freedom to explore new ideas, concepts or a change in the current situation;
- Ensuring stakeholder participation, remembering that stakeholders do not care so much about creativity as much as they care about whether it contributes to the financial outcome;
- Evaluating goal progress to correctly identify the success or failure of innovative marketing campaigns or instruments;
- Keep up with the ever-changing marketing techniques.
The Role of Key New Technologies In Innovative Marketing Approaches
It's not my intention to create an endless buzz-list of new technical gadgets. However it is true that new technologies play a key role to enable marketing innovation. Here are a few to tickle your curiosity:
- Virtual Reality (VR):VR allowed marketers to take advantage of this technology and use it in their marketing campaigns to transfer the customers to anywhere they want. For example, "Toms Shoes" created an innovative VR experience for their customers as they took them on a journey through Peru to give a pair of shoes to someone in need, transforming their tagline, "fashion for a good cause," into a realistic experience that customers could explore.
- Augmented Reality (AR): This technology helps to improve interaction and representation of knowledge as it creates more intelligence, context-aware, and transparently immersive experiences for customers. Marketers use AR to help customers virtually sample and get an idea of how things will look before actually buying them. For example, previewing interior design ideas before actually choosing them.
- "Phigital" Marketing: ( Physical + Digital = Phigital) the integration between traditional marketing methods and newer digital marketing experiences. Marketers use it to provide an interactive and engaging means of building and enhancing customer experience. For example, Audi used this technology in its showroom in London by integrating interactive touchscreens in combination with the display of the physical vehicles to create the ultimate innovative marketing experience.
- Chatbots: to keep up with AI technology and provide customers with the best possible user experience. Marketers use them as they are 24/7 customer support and can typically predict customers' questions before they even have to ask.
⇨ What are you doing to make the marketing efforts in your company more innovative? Please help me in making these lists more complete, both the one of organizational demands (1 - 5…) and the key new technologies (a - d…). Thanks for your comments.
Nagasimha Balakrishna Kanagal (2015), "Innovation and Product Innovation in Marketing Strategy", Journal of Management and Marketing Research Vol. 18.
Anup Batra (2017), "5 Examples of Successful Marketing Innovation Strategies"