Marketers should treat consumer as best friend: Boschma

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Jeroen Boschma

Jeroen Boschma

Jeroen Boschma is a respected marketing expert and sought after international speaker. He is the co-author of  ‘Passed Label and Lifestyle: adolescent communication in an adult perspective’. His latest book, ‘Generation Einstein, smarter, faster and socially more aware’ (2006), led to a media hype in The Netherlands. He is currently co-authoring the Indian edition of the book, ‘Generation Einstein’, with Bindass from UTV. The book is expected to be released by end of April 2012.

He shares his thoughts on Indian youth marketing:

On Indian Youth
Indian Youth is a part of the Global Youth generation. The youth in India is same as the youth in England, Spain, Holland, Germany or somewhere else in the world.  They have same key goals, the same way of doing things. It’s a very positive generation and extremely creative. It’s a generation that prefers to go for authentic brands.

Friendship is a key today. Marketers should think whether they would use a marketing strategy for their best friend, and if they won’t, they shouldn’t use it for these young consumers.

On marketers vying for the attention of youth
If you are the market leader you should not think about reasons to believe, in the new world of marketing you should think about reasons to be. The current generation is the Maslow-5 generation, because they’re on top of the Maslow pyramid. They’re also all about friendship. Also, marketers should remember that it is no more about how can I get closer to youngsters or how can I act a little stupid so that youngsters like me. In fact marketers should think more on “How can I make youngsters invite me into their lives as a brand or a company?” Interestingly, Indian marketers are already thinking on those lines.

Also, it is very important for marketers that they forget everything taught at the University that works. Because, what worked then does not work now. What works today is always very specific to your particular brand. The solution depends on what your brand is and what your story is, which defines how to ‘engage’ the youngsters and make them fans of the brand. The big mistake that brands do is that they do the same thing across all mediums.

On challenges for marketers
One of the biggest challenges for marketers is to stop themselves from thinking that they know the Youth of today, because they were young once. That was a different time when you were a youngster. So, as a marketer it is very important to be open minded, try different things, and enjoy what you are doing for your brand and love the brand you work for. That’s what your fan expects you to do.

It is important for marketers to ask themselves the question: “How can I make them involve me in their life?” That’s the key to success.

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Abhinav Mohapatra

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