I spoke at the Marketing Institute of Ireland‘s Annual Conference in Dublin yesterday. (All of the presentations made are available here
http://www.mii.ie/2007conferencepresentations). ‘The democratisation of everything, the death of deference and the rise of mass self expression’ won the prize for most pompous speech title. Most of what I covered is mentioned here but the ‘death of deference’ is a new theme.
It was prompted by discussions with our heath practice colleagues where the dilemma of the modern GP was described to me in detail. He or she shouts “next”, looks up and sees yet another patient walking into the surgery clutching fistfuls of printouts from the net. These days, many of us have diagnosed our illness and even prescribed our preferred brand of drug before we even get the appointment. Not many years ago, we would walk into the surgery and listen quietly as the revered doctor pronounced on us and pushed a scribbled prescription form across the table. The thought that we could enter into a discussion on their judgement was would not have occurred to most.
Those days are gone and whilst we still need and respect the training and experience of doctors and other experts we are no longer passive receivers. We research, we question, we want to know why and we want to discuss the implications of everything.
Some other examples thanks to my colleague Jenny Owen, Head of Brand Culture & Insight at JCPR
• The mass revolt against the high street banks has begun. More thank a million forms demanding refunds have been downloaded from consumer websites with the banks settling out of court.
• A record 4 million householders have dumped their gas & electricity suppliers after an internet led campaign. British Gas have admitted they’ve lost 1.1million customers in just 12 months. Consumer pressure has encouraged them to slash gas bills from 17%
• In 3 months 1.8million citizens have signed an online petition against plans for road pricing
• The online ‘Every Little Hurts’ campaign against Tescos has meant the supermarket giant has scraped plans for a £130m retail development in Surrey…
• Football fans have joined forces online to put pressure on clubs to slash their ticket prices; before, fans were paying anything from £50 upwards for a ticket to the game…
• 41,403 Mac fans have already signed Greenpeace’s online petition vociferously asking Apple computers to ‘green’ their products.
• 20,000 people have signed the Save Borough Market online petition with signatures being added every day…
The message for brands and corporates, was to respect the new model citizen in this world who will not put up with paternalistic behaviour or methods of communication.
[tags]Marketing Institute of Ireland, brands[/tags]