It was a cold wintery Melbourne evening as we took our places around The Hub kitchen table. Our gorgeous chef extraordinaire Imogen was quietly beavering away behind us as we settled into our Deep Dinner.
There was Victoria the film maker, Kath the content marketer, Spencer the brilliant designer behind Carolyn Tate & Co., Georgina the customer service and marketing strategist, Jessica the marketer, Adam the loyalty marketer, Paul the digital strategist, Sandy the community building blogger, my 15 year-old son Billy (you can never start them too early) and yours truly.
It was shaping up to be a lively evening right from the get go as each revolutionist introduced themselves by getting right to the heart of why they do what they do and what they believe.
The delectable food kept appearing and was washed down with a gorgeous red or two while the topics segued seamlessly into each other. We covered such topics as how to educate our impressionable children to be suspicious of marketing, why ad agencies focus so much on their creative rather than deeply connecting with the actual customers they’re meant to be serving, why there’s such disturbing incongruency between the marketing promise and the actual experience delivered, why the language of marketing (ie consumers and target markets) is so dehumanising, why the marketing of Australian politics is on the scrap heap, why commercial graffiti (billboards) are legal yet beautiful non-commercial graffiti is outlawed and why marketing is just seen as an expensive bolt-on by most companies.
While being mindful not to just whinge about what’s broken, some great stories were shared about companies doing brilliant things on the marketing and customer service front, companies like Whole Foods Markets, Zappos, Toms, Bankmecu and cities like Sao Paulo* who have a city-wide ban on billboard advertising (and not to mention the hundreds of us small biz champs doing the most brilliant stuff of all).
Seriously there was enough rich beautiful content to fill a book and a year of blog posts from all of us.
Being mindful that an ‘all talk and no action’ approach was simply not acceptable, I ended the evening with a challenge for each person to do one thing different as a result of our evening together.
Here’s a couple of the responses…
I’m resolved to work with people whose work I respect and enjoy (doing valuable things and not harming anyone).
I’m going to question what our client’s request from us. I’m going to delve deeper on the why not the how. Slowing down and starting with why will hopefully result in more valuable outcomes and more trusting relationships with clients.
It’s the marketing language I’m going to tackle. I’m going to make it human and bring it back to being about people.
And as for me, I’m going to continue on with the conscious marketing revolution at my next evening event Conscious Connections & Deep Conversations at The Hub in Sydney on Wednesday 11 September. I hope you’ll join me.
Yours in conscious marketing
PS What one thing are you doing? Maybe it’s one of the five things below.
- Forward this blog to your friends
- Post your ‘one thing’ in the comments below
- Join me at the Conscious Capitalism event on Tues 10 Sep
- Join me at the Reinvent your Business Info Session on Wed 11 Sept
- Join me at Conscious Connections & Deep Conversations Wed 11 Sept
* Image is the Sao Paulo skyline at night courtesy Fernando Stankuns