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May 29, 2013

Digital Marketing as a "Black Box?"


As Digital Marketing grows more the number of tools to manage a Social Media campaign also grows. Digital Marketing Agencies increasingly use these software tools to manage campaigns. Large Brands like IBM are developing a system (software) that would ideally automate a majority of the Digital Marketing campaigns so that a marketer could focus upon other activities. For instance, the IBM's Unified Service called IBM Marketing Centre almost automates all the Digital Marketing activities on the web. The best part is Brands doesn't have to hire an IT team to manage the system.
Digital Marketing Black Box
One can comfortably call the above system of automating marketing as a "black box". This is because all the marketing operations happen inside the box and one can just "plug and play" the box during a marketing campaign. This gives freedom for the marketer to focus upon other activities.

Now the question is "How much Automation is good?" Too much of automation will have an adverse effect upon the overall marketing campaign. Brands should keep an eye (in)side the box and know what is going on in there. This would enable a balanced approach to marketing during unification of efforts. For instance, when a customer posts a message about the Brand or post a message to a Brand on twitter, the Brand should respond immediately. So, here automation of the marketing inside the black box would not work. It requires a human intervention to listen and respond appropriately.

However, activities like email unified messaging, web and video conferences can be unified into a black box and can be accessed when necessary. The challenge however is to know how much to automate. So, Brands should spend considerable amount of time in doing the whole marketing manually. When they do it manually they get to understand what to automate and what not to. With that Brands can decide upon what to go inside the box and what not.

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