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Marketing and its new responsibility to a human journey

It is a well-known fact that as the world around us is changing very fast, consumers are more open to experimenting and exploring new things. But how is marketing keeping up with these advances from increasingly segmented and hyperconnected consumers?

Some of the most pressing themes of modern marketing include the battle for attention, changes in data privacy and the rise of assisted commerce, and of course, product innovations. But what lies at the heart of all these efforts? People.

Across all organizations and functions, every strategy and every plan is created bearing in mind the target audience. And while we need to dive deep in concepts like Agile, Design Thinking, Data Science, AI, Innovation, we also need to consider factors like Behavior, Motivation, Tensions.

Further COVID-19 added to these additional responsibilities of home office, home schooling and juggling multiple priorities at the same time. This period only accelerated our need to have a collective awareness about the human being and about how much we needed to stop and see what really matters- our life and our family. We went from FOMO to JOMO: we have been inundated with so much information that we forgot the importance of a good direction, a good briefing, a good conversation.

How does marketing fit into this dynamic? Good marketing must collaborate with the journey and be useful, and start within the company- with empathy, good leadership, diversity, and an appreciation of the culture of error and constant feedback.

Marketing should go from the inside out, from the outside in, and be involved in making the right decisions, especially in today’s era when, according to Jean Baudrillard, "We live in a world where there is more and more information, and less and less meaning."

In an article by Fernando Teixeira from Adobe he quotes the book “Nine myths about work”, in which British researcher Marcus Buckingham deconstructs a series of myths, including the one that people care about the companies where they work. Instead, he says, they care about their teams. This is a great watch-out on where attention is being directed. People aren't leaving companies just for money or recognition.

And believe me, this is not a problem, this is where the real opportunity is.

Here are some tips that contribute to the marketing journey. They are fundamental for any company that wants to grow, regardless of its current size.

#1 To understand things, we need to have repertoire- so we need to be curious without fear… as Fear is the enemy of curiosity.

#2 We need to provide conditions for engagement, happiness, and performance

#3 Empathy is not only a buzzword, mental health is an urgent priority in people’s lives (from workers to consumers)

#4 Good questions are essential for everything. As Warren Berger famously mentioned, "Knowing the answers will help you in school but knowing how to ask questions will help you in life."

#5 Knowing your target is a premise.

#6 Tests will be done, mistakes made, and it's all part of growing up.

#7 Connect everything possible into a single data lake. It is important for people to create the ability to search for solutions through investigating data and creating hypothesis.

#8 Strategy must be done carefully, with a lot of research, with evidence to future trends mapped to design short, medium and long-term hypothesis, preferably in addition to influencers, trend setters as real-life matters.

#9 Forget the funnel strategy: top-down, which starts with brand awareness, through interest, consideration and intention to evaluation, purchase, and relationship with the brand. Today the consumer expects mass customization. So, take care of data intelligence with patterns and algorithms to make this possible.

#10 Take advantage of crisis that companies are most afraid to invest in and target Innovation, get ahead in all ways, from product to user experience.

Mayra has a degree in Marketing and a specialization in Marketing and Communication Management at theUniversity of São Paulo (USP), in Marketing Intelligence at the Universidade Nova IMS in Portugal and Intercultural Communication at the University of Florida in the United States and is currently Head of Innovation Strategy at Ambev. The Innovations area involves the company's alcoholic brands, the most loved and admired in Brazil: Becks, Budweiser, Stella Artois, Corona, Bohemia, Skol, Brahma, Antarctica, among others.

Throughout her career, she has worked in the strategic team of large companies in the technology (consumer electronics) and services sectors, where the focus has always been to identify consumer problems, and then develop products and studies relevant to them.