Companies need to switch ‘from marketing to mattering’, says Direction First MD

In a technology-driven market organisations need to change their focus from marketing to creating meaning for consumers, the boss of full service marketing research agency Direction First has said.

Erica Van Lieven

Speaking at MSIX yesterday, Erica Van Lieven, founder and managing director at Direction First, explored the changing dynamics between customers and businesses due to the rapid growth of artificial intelligence.

“The way people are relating to brands is changing significantly and I think it means in this world where algorithms could easily run everything, you need to move from marketing to people to mattering to people,” she said.

“When you’re mattering to people, you are bringing in human consciousness, creativity and human purpose into what you’re doing,” she added.

“I don’t think brands are at the centre of the marketing universe anymore.”

During the session about artificial intelligence, Van Lieven discussed making business ‘matter’ telling the audience that’s how you will get the human aspect.

“Havas Media have said in their research that 93% could easily leave and they wouldn’t be too upset about it,” Van Lieven said.

Staying relevant was another issue she presented in this technology powered world.

“The real challenge in an AI powered world is how are we going to transform our organisations,” she said.

Van Lieven used Netflix as an example, listing the ways in which it has transformed with technology, going from a DVD delivery service to an online streaming service.

“Our ability to harness collective intelligence may well be a very important thing in the future, the human species brings creativity to any challenging commercial situation,” she said.


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