Marketers: “Why the marketing I did was not working as well as before?”

In the past, customer journey was a straight line; a marketer advertised to:

  1. Create Awareness, and then
  2. Arouse Interest and Desire; and then
  3. Customers make purchase

Customer journey is not linear anymore

  • Today, in the digital world, social media and other digital interactions complicate the customer journey
  • The traditional marketing funnel ends up looking more like a pretzel, with twists, turns and overlaps at every corner
  • The customer journey can be “clogged”

How negative word of mouth hurts business?

  • Traditional marketing and digital marketing efforts could generate awareness and interest
  • But if the marketing funnel is “clogged”, the customers cannot not move through to complete the purchase
  • A company’s marketing efforts could be undermined by the discussion among potential and existing customers (and competitors) in social media or online communities if social media marketing is not managed pro-actively by the company

New marketing funnel could have 5 phases


  • Customers exposed to different brands by marketing messages and advocacy of others
  • Customers become attracted to some brands
  • Customers actively research for more info from the brands, from media or from friends
  • Customers decide to buy and interact with the brand through the buying and service processes
  • Customers may develop loyalty, rebuy from the brand and become advocates or even promoters of the brand

Remark: Social marketing is particularly important at the ASK and ADVOCATE phases even though it can play a role in all the 5 phases

Source: Marketing 4.0: Moving from Traditional to Digital

What does a marketer do in the 5 phases?

  • Do enough customers finish the journey? If not, WHY?
  • Does a marketer know whether the customers are moving towards the “finish line”? If not, WHY?
  • Is the marketer using the right methods or tools to achieve the business objectives? If not, WHY?

In social media marketing, marketers typically want to know

  • When and Why to use What Content Strategies and Tactics
  • When and Why to use What distribution platforms or channels
  • What works and does not work for the competitors
  • What resonates with the target audience
  • How to improve Return On Investment of their marketing efforts 
  • How to prevent and manage crisis

The Next Step

  • iThink can work with marketers to diagnose the marketer’s business concerns without charge 
  • iThink helps many businesses but we don’t know whether we can help a particular business until the diagnosis is done  
  • If iThink found that there is no strategic fit between iThink and the marketer, iThink would advise not to proceed with the next step  
  • If there is strategic fit, iThink will discuss with the marketer how iThink’s tools or services can be of help 
  • The marketer determines whether to engage tools or services prescribed by iThink  

Other Common Questions by Organizations and the Possible Answers:

Does social media marketing work in my industry?

If word of mouth is important in your industry, then social media marketing will work in your industry

If social marketing works for my industry, how do I do it?

You probably want to find where you are and where you want to go before determining how to get there. Start with identifying customer interests, studying competitive landscape and relevant social market environment, and learning from the best practices. Click here for examples of use cases of tools for social marketing.

Am I using the right methods and tools?

Are you achieving all the desired outcomes with your existing methods and tools? If not, you might want to speak with providers of methods and tools for benchmarking and comparison purposes

How do I improve the ROI of my online and offline marketing initiatives?

You can’t improve what you don’t measure. Do you have metrics to evaluate the ROIs of your online and offline marketing initiatives? Do the metrics allow you to compare your ROIs with those of your competitors?

What and how people are talking about issues relevant to us?

Do you know what you don’t know? You need to monitor the “unknown unknowns”. Click here for an example of the Use Case of a Marketing Navigation System

“Are people positive or negative about those issues concerning us?” and “How could we be more proactive in Crisis Prevention and Management?”

First, you need to find out what people are talking about that concerns you. Then, sentiment analysis and text mining can help gauge the the emerging trend of public sentiment. Click here for an example of the Use Case of a Marketing Navigation System