The Evolution of Marketing from Trade to Technology

MARKETING   |   6 minutes  |   February 4, 2019

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Simple Trade Era
Simple Trade Era

This era was defined by simple, hand created products. A household would produce and consume what they needed, so little marketing was needed. However, what would become major marketing platforms, such as newspaper and magazines, were invented during these early stages.
Simple Trade Era Infograph
Simple Trade Era Infograph
Production Era
Production Era

The Industrial Revolution paved the way for an era defined by low-cost mass production. Advertising during this time was limited as most businesses rightly assumed people would simply want what was available. This style of outbound or interruptive marketing would define how businesses marketed for close to a century before inbound marketing gained momentum in the early 2000s.3

Production Era InfoGrpah
Production Era Infograph
Sales Era
Sales Era

As the market became saturated with mass-produced products, competition began to increase. The marketing tactic during this era relied heavily on sales techniques and undercutting the price of competitors with little concern for quality and customer satisfaction. Together with print media, radio became a popular advertising channel.

Sales Era Infograph
Sales Era Infograph

Marketing Department
Marketing Department

During this era, marketing as a business function began to form. All things related to advertising were grouped, forming what we know as the marketing department of a company today.9

Marketing Department Inforgraph
Marketing Department Infograph

Marketing Company
Marketing Company

Marketing becomes a core focus for companies as they move away from previous methods and start to focus on customer needs for the first time. The “customer is king” saying comes from this era, as businesses survive by meeting customer needs. Pricing strategies advance and distribution channels are defined during this time.13

Marketing Company Infograph
Marketing Company Infograph

Relationship Marketing
Relationship Marketing

The “customer is king” marketing tactic continues to refine itself as businesses begin to focus on building lasting relationships with their customers. The goal is to create relationships and loyalty to ensure customers keep coming back.18

Relationship Marketing Infograph
Relationship Marketing Infograph

Social Marketing
Social Marketing

In this era, inbound or permission marketing takes off. The relationship between customers and businesses shifts as customers begin to dictate how they receive content as opposed to businesses pushing content. By signing up to a newsletter or following a brand on social media, you invite the content you want into your life.

Social Marketing Infograph
Social Marketing Infograph

Where to from here?

From the Marketing Company Era beginning in the 1960s when marketing efforts began to take the customers’ needs into account, the importance of the consumer has grown into the central focus of marketing strategies today. As big data becomes a fundamental marketing tool, businesses may be able to access and analyse large-scale social media and browsing behaviour using artificial intelligence and machine learning.65 With this information, complete customer profiles can be developed, and streamed into narrow segments of preferences, likes, and dislikes. With this level of insight, businesses may be able to make more targeted decisions aimed at those most likely to purchase their product.66 Taking it a step further, using the data collected, businesses will be able to predict consumers needs and create the first consumer-responsive products.67

AI is said to potentially be the biggest change in marketing since the beginning of digital, with “80% of marketing executives predicting AI will revolutionise marketing by 2020.”68

As technology continues to rapidly disrupt industries, it is essential to adapt with it and understand how trends in marketing could affect you or your business. The only way to foresee how great the change will be is to remain as relevant as possible as new trends and technology become available every day.

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