Mike Walsh on the future of communication

Mike Walsh on the future of communication

We asked NOA partner Mike Walsh to comment on some of the current  hot topics in the communication industry today.

Mike Walsh is a world renown futurist who advises the international Fortune 50 on disruptive innovation and building companies for the 21st century. A thought leader on consumer and digital trends, Mike is also one of the most admired keynote speakers in the industry. Recently, Mike became a NOA partner and member of NOA’s board.

What do you think future communicators need to master in order to succeed?

Today’s most important marketing trend is the merging of engineering and storytelling. Not so long ago, they were very different worlds. The technology people built the machines and kept them running, while the creative people invented amazing stories and won awards. The rise of real time data changed that forever. In the 21st century, a marketing campaign can no longer be a work of art. It is an experiment in a digital reality that is infinitely measurable, trackable and accountable. To succeed in that new converged world, requires future communicators that are able to think and create with both their right and left brains.

Some industries manage to increase business through digital channels, but many struggle. When it comes to digital monetization- where do you see the biggest potential in this field?

The companies that have been the most successful – regardless of channel – are those that really understand their customer’s path to purchase. Once you can join the dots between the sequence of media, social interactions, brand stories, and triggers – that actually contributed to a transaction – you know exactly what you need to do tomorrow to win more market share.

The Internet of Things has had a bright future for a while now. What will “unlock” the business model of The Internet of Things?

Real world behavior will be the click-stream of the future. There is a lot of hype about the IoT right now, but in truth – machines and sensors talking to each other is just not that interesting. What is powerful is when the devices we use, help to build a real-time picture of our customers as they move through the world. When that happens we can stop talking about abstract terms like reach or frequency, or even tactical concepts like response rates. That’s because marketing will become less about creating messages, and more about designing branded interactions that occur on the myriad of devices that will define our future lives.

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