Common challenges, uncommon wealth

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The Twenty First Century will overturn many of our basic assumptions about economic life. The twentieth century saw the end of European dominance of global politics and economics.

The twenty first century will see the end of American dominance. New powers, including China, India, and Brazil will continue to grow and will make their voices increasingly head of the world stage. Yet the changes will be even deeper than a rebalancing of economics and politics among different parts of the world.

The Challenges of sustainable development – protecting the environment, stabilizing the world’s population, narrowing the gaps between rich and poor, and ending extreme poverty – will take centre stage. Global cooperation will have to continue to the fore. The very idea of competing nation-states that scramble for markets, products, power and resources will become passé. The world has become much too crowded and dangerous for more ‘great games’ in the Middle East or anywhere else.

In the last seventy five years most successful countries gradually came to understand that their own citizens share a common fate, requiring the active role of government to ensure that every citizen has the chance and means to participate productively within the society and to curb society’s dangerous encroachments on the physical environment. The Activist philosophy, which holds that the self-organizing forces of a market economy should be guided by overarching principles of social justice and environmental stewardship, has not yet been extended robustly to global society.

Let’s look into the global marketing as a product and economic perspectives. Marketing in the 21st century is very different from its early beginnings. Today’s marketers have more choices in terms of support, media opportunities, and communications. They also have more competition from varied sources, especially as the Internet has made it possible for companies around the globe to compete virtually.

The 21st century also offers many choices for marketing communications. Companies still have access to traditional tools, such as newspapers, radio, and television, but also have a wide range of online tools, including social media. More choices are a good thing; they present opportunities to connect with more people in different ways than ever before. More choices also represent challenges, however. Staying on top of the many options available can be time-consuming and sometimes costly.

Technology has offered not only more options for sharing marketing messages, but more selections for creating these messages as well. Today’s marketing personnel can use a range of tools to enhance communications through graphics, sound, and movement. Inexpensive video cameras mean marketers can create do-it-yourself media that saves both time and money. Be careful, as the quality of created materials needs to be consistent with the desired brand image.

More consumers’ choices in the 21st century means more competition for businesses from many sources. The Internet, in particular, now allows even the smallest organization to establish a regional, national, or even international presence. Competition now comes not only from the business across the street, but also from across the world.

Word-of-mouth has always been an important factor in successful marketing efforts, but social media makes this method even more of a factor. Consumers have the ability to interact with millions of people in the 21st century, in sharp contrast to the days when information was shared over the backyard fence.

Despite the many new opportunities available to marketers in the 21st century, tried and true marketing techniques still work. Ultimately, successful marketing is about identifying a target market, understanding its needs, and communicating the business’ compelling messages through multiple channels. These marketing messages all convey how consumer needs can be met by the business products and services.

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