The past few years have seen an astonishing rise in the investment of digital marketing, and it’s predicted to continue. According to US sources, prior COVID digital spend was estimated to reach around £115bn by 2023.
We’ll have to wait for father time to prove or dispel the above forecast activity, although even taking into account the current business climate, the ability for all to invest in self-promotion while engaging audiences over an ever-increasing stable of (trusted) platforms have become the lifeblood for many an entrepreneur. Today, digital more than matches the in-person or face to face marketing approach and in some sectors digital now leads the corporate strategy for growth.
My own business has always been heavily influenced on solid personal relationships and of course, the publishing industry has had to contend with ‘revolutionary change’ since the mid-’90s. So how do the ‘old school’ (face to face) aficionados contend or even compete in today’s world?
Today’s business world is really no different to methods of not so long ago. Success is ultimately about who you know, the relationships, the developed trust and I find face to face (even virtual face) referral networking is just right for my business.
Trust is something that has established many a great relationship, without this most important of ingredients meaningful business is rarely sustained.
An example being the UK phone tapping enquiry of 2005-7.
One of the world’s most successful media families were in charge of a popular Sunday tabloid, stories of phone tapping, celebrity witch-hunts, accusations/tales of institutional corruption and pay-offs that threatened to topple the government of the time.
The weekly gossip columns sold a lot of newspapers readers gleefully lapping up the scandal. That was until the same tabloid was accused of ‘listening in’ on the phones of victims of the London bombings, even deceased servicemen and of tragically the murdered schoolgirl, Milly Dowler.
What followed was a total collapse of public trust in the organisation, reviled were its masters and anyone else with affinity to the newspaper. A lengthy enquiry followed, people went to prison, reputations were ruined and the paper was closed.
Digital or face-to-face? For me, business is personal, it’s about who (or what) I trust.