Creative Destruction in Marketing

Mess: Crayon Crumbs
Image by Lost Star

The movement towards data-driven marketing makes creativity the most important asset they can offer.

Specifically, great marketers will engage in creative destruction of data driven norms and disrupt market standards to stand out.

It’s not that they will ignore their customers and their feedback, the fruits of marketing automation’s analysis of big data. Rather, they break the established marketing norms of their peers and competitors built around those tools.

Schumpeter’s economic theory of creative destruction means more now as we seek to apply norms and rules to all that is social and the way we interact. For those unfamiliar with Schumpeter, a watered down version of the theory is that economic development arises out of the destruction of prior order.

With marketing becoming intrinsic to all brands’ long-term health in a distributed world of relationships and interactions, breaking through cluttered “me, too” marketing matters more than ever.

Great marketers don’t play it safe. They literally shake up everything we expect, and delight us with shocking and pleasing approaches, design and yes, words that sing to our hearts.

How Nike Defies Convention

Nike blog

One of the most unique campaigns we have seen in recent times was the use of neon shoes by Nike at the Olympics. It was a brilliant tactic, literally and figuratively, breaking through an over-sponsored event with the best endorsement possible, athletes across the globe with different jerseys but one brilliantly colored shoe.

Let’s be clear. People traditionally don’t buy neon sneakers. The risk was significant, but it paid off. The shoes stood out on consumers’ various screens, from mobile to big screen TVs.

“The Volt is our signature color for Nike,” Martin Lotti, global creative director at Nike said. “It’s our Tiffany Blue. Of course, it’s no accident that we picked that color. The whole point of this was to create impact.”

It should be no surprise that Nike had the guts to try this. While a huge brand, Nike continues to destroy the norms of marketing in sports as it moves forward. Consider that the sportswear giant undermined adidas in its strongest sport to become the most well known brand associated with the 2014 World Cup.

Creative Destruction Applied to Our World

Mess: Smear
Another image by Lost Star

Creative destruction matters now more than ever.

What will certainly cost online marketers is the opposite, a decision to stand pat. Consider that even though we all knew mobile and tablets would matter, two years ago they were relative non-factors in marketing. The same goes for Instagram, Pinterest, etc., etc.

Without creativity, we cannot differentiate from the machine of automated digital communications and me, too approaches to search, social and content.

When everything is commonly accepted practice we have to look at defying that convention to stand out.

It’s one of the reasons I like Triberr so much. It flies in the face of the social media purist’s beliefs about how it should be done, from automation to semi-private blogger gatherings. And it works, too!

Stay hungry, break the mold, get beyond static meme-based marketing. Disrupt the market and delight your prospective customers with something they wouldn’t expect from you, but certainly want.

What do you think? Do we have to break the norms to stand out?