Stoned Racounteur

Saturday, December 18, 2004

The new Buzz in town

Just read about a new marketing concept called “Buzz Marketing”. While it is well known that the most powerful mode of marketing is word-of-mouth, this technique takes it a little further. The probability, that a consumer is going to buy your product, increases greatly if another person gives a favorable review of the product. So we have Companies now hiring people to go out in the supermarkets to whisper into your ear that so and so product is the right choice baby! These people are the breed that are generally looked up to as trend setters, the people who set the fashion for tomorrow, the people who decide what is in and what is out.

So what gave birth to the new concept? Look at a few facts that I found in the article

“more than half of the ads for cars, credit cards and pet-related products are ignored by television viewers. In addition, 42% of ads about home products are ignored, as are 45% of fast food advertisements. The numbers are far worse in the case of viewers with personal video recorders such as TiVo For that group, 95% of fast food ads were skipped, as were 68% of car ads, 80% of pet product ads, and 94% of financial product advertisements”

It is clear that traditional marketing techniques have taken a beating and some innovative thinking needs to be done.While Buzz Marketing is just and extension of an existing concept, marketing experts warn that unless it is used judiciously, it will become just another pain in the ass like pop up ads on the internet, or telemarketers who just wont quit calling. Call me skeptical but I don’t think that companies will be able to make good use of this tactic simply b’coz all of them will get excited all at once and in the end we’ll have a lot of “Buzz” but will start sounding more like noise to the average Joe.

There is an interesting ethical debate associated with this concept. The conflict is that it is not right to send marketers disguised as normal folks and try to deceive the consumer. It is a known psychological fact that if a person does not know that he is being convinced, it is easier to convince them as opposed to if they know that they are being persuaded. This kind of marketing is being seen as the last step in the ultimate intrusion of privacy by marketing firms.

Anyways, all said and done in the end the product needs to carry off the hype that is generated thru any kind of marketing that has been done to support it,’coz a bad product will bomb at the market, with or without a “Buzzing“ marketing campaign!


Post a Comment

<< Home