Same As It Ever Was?

brass glasses-junior boss

I’ve just picked up a thought provoking post from Kyle Lacy. Kyle draws our attention to the crucial issue of understanding your customer, and in particular your business to business customer.

Your customer base is changing as I type. The people who will take the decision to buy your products and services will increasingly come from so called Generation Z. This is a generation that takes social media for granted. For them it isn’t hip, new, trendy, or cutting edge, its just ‘is’.

This fresh generation of business leaders and decision takers see the world differently to their predecessors, they gather their information differently, they build business relationships differently, they socially influence and are socially influenced differently. These are the Wizards of Oz Z.

If all this gives you the feeling that you that you might be ‘over the hill’ don’t panic. Forrester reckon that Generation X can still play too! This theme also is taken up by Sylvia Ann Hewlett, Laura Sherbin, and Karen Sumberg in their Harvard Business Review article How Gen Y and Boomers will reshape your agenda. In the article they point to the internal forces competing to dominate an organisations cultural agenda and how what was once valued in organisational life is undergoing change. To manage the upcoming and outgoing they talk about Time Warners Digital Reverse Mentoring program:

“in which tech-savvy college students mentor senior executives on emerging digital trends and technologies such as Facebook, Twitter, and other Web 2.0 applications.”

For managers who operate from the fundamentals of a critical marketing philosophy the capturing of a deep understanding of the beliefs, attitudes and behaviours of their customers is a continually changing endevour.

Nothing is the ‘same as it ever was’

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