Global warming and rising oil prices means less people travel and meet in person. Developing technology and internet penetration means more people meet online. What does this mean for online marketing and engagement? I suspect it means three things.
1) Real life meetings become the goal. Getting people in your strategy to meet with you and each other in person is the holy grail. It cements the relationship.
2) Soft contacts are useful. We will interact with more people in less meaningful ways. These softer online contacts might be our future employers, employees, friends and lovers. It’s a sales funnel. Having lots of measurable soft contacts might be valuable (e.g. a PR account exec with lots of journalists as Facebook friends).
3) Learning culture differences to the internet. Skype, webcam meetings and e-mail chat changes things. Everyone has different culture, and some of these cultures might be less inclined towards these technologies. Who is less comfortable talking online? Is their less trust in online meetings? Is making a deal online as acceptable to all as making one in person?
It’s exciting, many concepts old and stale (International Marketing 101) become new again. Less talk about the rise of mighty China and more talk about how they are using the internet, how they communicate online, what are the similarities and difference?