The Future of Marketing (and Other Visions).
By Robin Houghton
Saturday, 4th August 2012
I've always felt the number one quality of a marketer is to be able to see things from the perspective of others, to understand different viewpoints.

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Maybe that's the ability to go 'out of one's mind'. So does that also mean being able to see things from a different time?Sometimes I look into the future and it's a strange thing, because it's a world after I'm gone, it will have no relationship to me.

Futuristic visions usually have a lot to do with technology. I can't see visitors from outer space but I can see a time when humans will be embedded with all kinds of microchips, from birth, enabling us to communicate with each other directly, without gadgets such as phones, TVs or home computers as we know them now.

There probably won't be any geographical or physical barriers to communication. I have a feeling we'll be able to 'dictate' notes/emails (or their equivalent) simply by thinking the words silently in our heads. Screens will be everywhere and nowhere, they will be embedded in the walls of our homes, schools, workplaces and in public spaces but visible only when activated, and will show different things to different people but at the same time.

The languages of the developed world will (continue to) merge into something akin to a pidgin Mandarin. Handwriting will disappear. Physical, paper books will be rare and highly prized, and only an elite will be capable of reading them.

I think our current exchange economy will develop and something else will grow and bind with it, call it a community economy or a gift economy if you like. In business, the notion of monetary value will no longer be predominant. Barriers between home and work life will continue to break down, but people will be much more capable of managing their lives and their choices.

Competitive organisations will collaborate far more, coming together to solve specific problems - made easier by the fact that people will be working for a number of different employers simultaneously. Employees will be valued for their social and business networks, and for their contributions to those networks, as much as for their individual skills or qualities.

Marketing will be no longer a separate discipline but an attitude learned by everyone from an early age, because marketing will have become what it has always claimed to be, but never achieved - the ability to know and understand others so well, that anything you have to sell sells itself.

But enough of my musings - take a look at where artificial intelligence has really got us...

Google 2084 image from:


About Robin Houghton, MA FRSA

Social media is so much more than just marketing. The business world is becoming more social, a little at a time. This site is all about the journey from social media to social business and beyond, and my thoughts and experiences along the way.

For want of a more succinct title I call myself a social communications consultant, helping organisations (and the individuals within them) understand what it's all about, why the change is coming and how to make it happen.


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