Inc. Magazine heralded 2018 as the Year of Human-to-Human Marketing. This is a really important point in digital marketing's evolution which recognises that people are getting pretty fed up with spam, bots, remarketing and machine-driven communications in general.
Our desire for human interaction is pretty fundamental and very unlikely to wane over time. Indeed, as AI robots with voice recognition and AI voice synthesizers become more widespread, interactions with "real" humans will become more critical. People simply cannot create meaningful relationships with machines and are developing strongly negative reactions when they realise they have been duped by a machine. We've all seen how people react to pre-recorded sales phone calls for example.
Whether it's 2018 or not, Sangram Vajre is right, technology-enabled human-to-human conversations are likely to be the next wave of Sales and Marketing, with marketing focused on enabling their Sales people to become trusted advisors to their clients. Logically, this will be particularly true where the sales process is complex and requires knowledge transfer from the vendors' experts to the buyers' experts.
Despite the proliferation of software tools, I firmly believe there's a shift back to the good old days of personalization at a 1:1 level. Again, the biggest challenge is aligning new technology with your marketing strategy to connect with the people you want to buy from your company. If you're a CMO, you need to consider how this technology is going to help drive engagement at each stage of the buyer's journey and customer experience. Adding a new tool isn't useful unless you know how it will work to drive new revenue. At the end of the day, regardless of whether you're in marketing for a business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) organization, it's about creating human-to-human (H2H) connections.