Don’t procure your marketing technology the way I bought my TV

Posted: Friday 24th August 2012 in Paid Media, Performance Marketing, Retail Strategy, Thought Leadership.

Make sure what you get, is what you need.

I was sitting gazing at my new purchase with a slightly unsettling level of dissatisfaction, especially considering the amount of money (and, more to the point, time and effort ) that went into getting it there. Before it could be positioned in my living room, there was its wideness, thinness, LED, Wi-Fi, voice (and motion) control, facial recognition, free blu-ray player, free tablet, 10 per cent off and 2 per cent cash back to consider …not to mention the 3D HyperReal Engine.

Despite all the considerations and potential confusion, I think there are valuable lessons to be learned from my experience that you can apply to your marketing programme and specifically the marketing technology you need to run  it – that is, unless you want to end up in the same state as me and my TV!

  1. Don’t decide on a whim that you need one. I can’t remember if it was an article I read, an advertisement that caught my eye or a bit of friend envy – but I know it definitely wasn’t driven by a clear need.
  2. Be clear what you want it to do – establish key decisions for buying before you shop around and don’t be swayed by the seller’s view of what they think you want. Ideally tie this in to some financial rationale for when the sexy extras start to add up.
  3. Don’t let the features you won’t use drive your buying decision – don’t let my 3D HyperReal Engine become your WYSIWYG Attribution Model.
  4. Don’t give up and just go with the sales pitch – there will be a moment when you have invested so much time in the decision that it stops becoming a decision. Plan for that and give yourself the space to consider properly. I was lucky the lady in Currys couldn’t find the set and so I was able to escape to Costa and check out some proper customer reviews.
  5. Who is going to set up it up for you – if it’s part of the final product, then you need to be clear about what that means. I now spend more time in AV forums than AdWords in search of my perfect set-up.
  6. Does it need third parties to work? 3D TV with no Sky subscription is a pretty desperate place in the modern world – akin to an agency with no customer insight team.
  7. Get into the detail and actually have a go if possible to test run the product. (Note: by this I do not mean a demo which actually detracts from your purchasing decision making by fooling you into believing that the Utopian 3D world represents your reality).

In summary, know what you want, why you want it and find someone you can trust to point you in the right direction.

Let me know if you have experienced something similar with your latest technology purchase. If you have similar lessons to share, send us your comments here or post a tweet @summitmedia