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meanwhile, at the CMA convention…

So while the ‘rogue’ marketers (hat tip to Tara Hunt) are meshing in Toronto, the big boys of marketing and advertising are doing the annual Canadian Marketing Association convention in Montreal.

And just what are they talking about? Well, being exceptional. Leveraging the influencers. Un-massing media.

- Marketing Magazine (Sub req)

Roberts [Kevin Roberts, CEO worldwide, Saatchi & Saatchi] said we’re now in the “attraction economy,” which is all about consumer engagement. “Today’s market research is asking the wrong questions to the wrong people at the wrong time, and it is not asking questions around engagement,” he said. The only question marketers need to ask about a piece of advertising is, “do you want to see it again?”

“If you’ve engaged (her) and she wants to see it again, then you’re probably going to be successful.”

Roberts also said he’s “sick of hearing about” ROI. “For me, ROI stands for return on involvement. And that’s what we need to be measuring, not return on investment.”

Which consumers should marketers try to engage? Roberts said ‚Äúinspirational consumers: the bloggers, the people who are viral, the people who have a point of view. Old school marketing is about heavy users and early adopters. It‚Äôs all rubbish. It‚Äôs all gone. You‚Äôve got to find those people to connect with. They‚Äôre out there, they want to interact with you… these are the people who are going to make brands live or die going forward.‚Äù

It’s also key to make brands not just irreplaceable, but irresistible, Roberts said. For example, “you can replace the Apple iPod with any other MP3 player that’s cheaper and probably has a longer battery life, but do you want to?”

Sounds like Roberts has been reading his Seth Godin.

I agree. We need to connect with people and give them something exceptional in return for their click, purchase, time, information, etc. What I take exception to is the assertion that all marketers need to ask about a piece of advertising is “do you want to see it again?”. No, I want to ask… will they buy my product or service and then tell all their friends about it? I’d rather make the sale the first time they see the ad… probably save the client some cash on the media buy to if we were aiming for exceptional products vs. exceptional advertising. Sometimes the two go hand in hand, like the iPod, but in the end, if the product was subpar to begin with all the killer graphics and clever double-entendres in the world ain’t gonna make it the next big thing.

At least we know the ‘traditional’ marketers are trying to get it. And that’s a good thing.

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