The Death of Mass Marketing and The Rise of Tribes

Over the past few months, I’ve come across many posts, and even talked about it myself, about the idea of the end of mass marketing or that mass marketing is evolving.  I personally believe that we are seeing a shift in marketing efforts.  Empowering your customers to be your voice and share the excitement that is in your product or service is much more effective than blasting them with canned ads – just the other day I read an article about how Sprint is partnering with YouTube to produce a homepage ad made completely of user-generated content.

Jeremiah Owyang suggests that brands need to connect with their biggest advocates.  That it will be these advocates that will sway over prospects.

Chris Brogan believes that ‘empowering people matters so much more than marketing to them.’

Coca Cola realizes that ‘mass media is declining in importance’ and that they their future depends on ‘continued ability to connect people to our brands and our Company all around the world, one person at a time.’

We are seeing movements all over the Internet about people connecting personally with others – sometimes across great distances.  I personally see that with Twitter.  I have connected with individuals all across the globe on Twitter with common interests and goals.

All these observations thus far are solidified by Seth Godin who recently spoke at TED. Seth talks about how the Internet has given rise to tribes.  People who are normally disconnected, connecting through the Internet.  In this case social media tools.  Check out the video – it’s very inspiring and will make you think about your traditional mass marketing efforts.

What do you think?  Is mass marketing dead?  Will the more effective marketing efforts actually be seen in personal connections?  Please share your thoughts.

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