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Technology and Marketing

Technology and Marketing

Author: James Howard

This lesson introduces the basics of technology's use in marketing.

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Hello, and welcome to this tutorial on technology and marketing. Now, as always with these tutorials, please feel free to fast forward, pause, or rewind as many times as you need in order to get the most out of the time that you're going to spend here.

So let me ask you a question. How much has your life changed in the last five years? Now I realize, depending on your age, this could be dramatically or it may not seem like very much. I have kind of a longer memory than most of us here, but even I realize that my life has changed dramatically in the last five years, primarily because of the world around me.

Now, what electronics do you have at the house that are over five years old? And my guess is, not a lot, because technology changes so fast. So how do businesses respond to these technological changes, and especially, how they relate to how we market our products? Well during this lesson, we're going to be looking at those macroeconomic factors in marketing. We're also going to be looking at changes and updates in technology.

The key term for this lesson is going to be social media. So macro factors as far as marketing is concerned. Now you remember we talked about that external environment before, those macroeconomic factors. Things like social, legal, economic, technological, which we're going to discuss here more detail, also political. And these all can have an impact on the business. And because they're external to the business, I have very little control over how those factors are shaped.

Now social factors, especially nowadays, are uniquely impacted by technology. We live in a world where technology allows us to be more connected than ever before. Imagine five, ten, 15 years ago when the internet was brand new and I was still, well, younger than I am now, watching a YouTube video, or watching a video on Sophia and getting college credit just from doing my work in an online environment and never having to go to a classroom. Pretty neat, isn't it?

I can learn simply by watching and listening to someone who's probably thousands of miles away from where I am. How do we communicate with each other? Twitter has spawned an entirely new language to make use of 140 characters or less in a message. We don't see letters anymore.

So technology and these social factors as far as technology is concerned are big, and they impact how a business markets. Because let's face it, marketing at its core is communicating with the customer. And if I'm not communicating in the way that the rest of society is, I'm probably missing my market. One example of social impact is online reviews. Before I had to watch the newspaper to see what a professional critic thought. Now I can see what the neighbors down the street thought of a particular restaurant. And businesses have to keep these things in mind to stay successful.

So social media, let's go ahead and define that. Now social media is online based communication tools that are utilized to share information, things like Facebook, or Twitter, or email, or email or text messaging, or online reviews. These are things where people or the society social factors now get involved with technology and businesses have to respond to these things.

Now another thing we're going to look at is legal factors. Well, what possible legal factors could I have with social media and social media marketing? Well, for one thing, there's privacy concerns. Privacy concerns with email, or data mining.

I mentioned before, it's amazing how I want to search for something, a particular product, the next time I go to one of my favorite sites with banner ads, that product, or something like it, suddenly appears. And that's because my data's being mined. Now, the question is privacy and legality. Are these things legal, and are they ethical to track someone's movements around the internet or look at someone's emails?

There are also new economic factors that technology has brought us with marketing. E-commerce is big. Online sales. Before, you had to go to a store to get something or order it out a catalog. Now, I can simply point and click on a mouse. We've been doing this since the early '90s when Pizza Hut sold its first pizza online. Pretty neat. And you know what? We've come a long way since then.

So how is it I market my business or my practice to take advantage of this e-commerce? It reduces my cost because I don't have to have a brick and mortar store, but it also presents these new challenges.

And there's also this new thing called a virtual community that didn't exist before. Now, a virtual community is simply a community that exists in the electrons of the ether of the internet. They don't actually meet, they don't belong in the same, necessarily, geographic area. They simply share the same interests and they express and pursue them in an online or virtual environment. So how do businesses take advantage of this particular virtual community?

Well, for one thing, you have to be a part of that community. You can't just jump in and go, "Hey, hey, buy my product." That usually doesn't work. You need to become a part of it. So you need to create a brand identity that's part of that virtual community. And you can also reward customers in a virtual community with loyalty programs, and you can use those online.

For instance, using Twitter to advertise the people who follow you in your virtual community about a particular discount. Hey, come by today, we've got this thing for you. And the people who follow you, and are part of that virtual community with you would be interested in that thing. So they would come and potentially buy that product.

Now, building this virtual community, where businesses are going to use something called the four C's of social technology, and they are consumption, curation, creation, and collaboration. And this kind of all boils down to and helping the business build that virtual community. And we're going to discuss these in more detail in the next lesson.

You know, the world is changing. We mentioned that throughout this lesson, and technology is always changing. Let's go back to that five year test. How many of your electronics are over five years old? And thing about technology is, it's constantly changing. You've got to review it and it got to be updated.

An organization can no longer simply build something expect to keep it forever. Does anyone remember one of these? Well for those of you who don't, that's called a rotary telephone, and it was pretty big back in the day. And we're not going to get exactly what day, because it makes me feel old.

But this was actually attached to a cord that was in the wall. And if you wanted to go to another room with the headphone, you had to get a really long extension cord. But you're always corded to it. This was cutting edge at one time.

Imagine a business trying to run their business and market using just this technology. No. You always have to be updating. You have to update your systems, and not just the hardware, but the software, too.

So the websites, your sale systems, your programs, online reviews, operating systems, all these things must be under construction almost constantly, which presents a new challenge. How do I keep running my businesses if I'm always having to update my profile or my website? How do I run my business if I'm always having to update my website? Well, it's a fact of life and you just simply can't get away from it.

Let's think about it. If I didn't do my updates, if I didn't keep my sites constantly under construction to keep up with the next operating system or the next web browser version, then my advertising would no longer be seen. If it's no longer seen and my technology is too out of date, then I lose those potential customers that I might have had.

So what did we talk about today? Well, we talked about macro factors in economics, those things like social, legal, economic, political, and technological factors that are external that affect a business. We also talked about the importance of making sure that we're doing changes to our hardware and our software and we're constantly updating to keep up with what society and technology are doing in order to stay viable.

Want to thank you, as always, for spending some time with me today. I hope you had a good time. You guys have a great day.

Terms to Know
Social Media

Online based communication tools that are utilized to share information.