The Future: Close-the-Loop Marketing
If you look back at a blog I wrote on customer-centric marketing, you will see the futurist in me. Recently, while being interviewed at a pharmaceutical event, I spoke about the need to link all components of marketing—both hard and soft—into a fully integrated marketing weapon.
I explained that true integration would eventually be defined as media convergence and what I termed a “close-the-loop” logic trail. The term “close-the-loop” generated excitement from the interviewer, who asked me to elaborate. I explained the concept of customer-centric marketing, using one of my current projects as an example of the application of the close-the-loop concept.
“Wow!” was the response, including a strong comment that mentioned a trend in the marketing field of assigning the title of “manager of close-the-loop marketing” as a new level of management in the marketing table of organization. Some firms within this vertical structure call the position by a slightly older name: director or manager of multichannel marketing.
I searched Wikipedia and did not find any definitions. A few more searches left me still looking for the answer, but then, via a Google search, I found a firm called HubSpot, which uses the term. Further searches suggested that the term originated in the pharmaceutical industry.
What does this have to do with print, marketing, media convergence and me? On the surface, not much; but if you look to the future and HubSpot’s website, you’ll see simple customer-centric marketing. A business associate, Jeff Stewart of Trekk, has been working on back-end links that provide in-depth reporting of customer interactions. Another business associate has been looking into developing a “black box” to manage the complete process. (I can’t divulge his name or his firm’s name at this time—if I told you, he would have to kill me.)
The description below from my pharmaceutical contact explains the link between print and profits. As many have said in the past, printers need not add products or services but MUST integrate them into their firms’ offerings.