I recently heard Joseph Jaffe, author of Z.E.R.O.: Zero Paid Media as the New Marketing Model, speak at a conference and discuss the combined forces of accelerated technology disruption, consumer changes, and innovation evolution affect on the marketing world today. Jaffe warned that if the advertising industry does not adapt, it will result in financial underperformance to job loss to a collapse of the current media ecosystem. Jaffe’s solution? A marketing model he calls the Z.E.R.O. framework:
Zealots, Jaffe explains, in this context are Advocates – Promoters. Entrepreneurship is about innovation and “the internet of things.” Retention is realized through customer-centricity and the A.D.I.A. funnel. Finally, owned assets speak to the direct-to-consumer advertising and omni-channel market we are in today.
As he was passionately discussing these ideas (a fun speaker to listen to), I was sitting there thinking that none of this happens if you don’t have the right people. The key to all of this is a cultural change. If you want to survive in this new subscription-based experience economy, you have to make that transformation with your people. A customer-centric culture equals an employee-engaged culture. Your people must be an advocate first – they are your biggest brand ambassadors – that will convert your customers.
Companies like Red Bull, Nike, Apple, Starbucks, and Amazon.com already know this. You can see it in how they manage their brand and their people. If you want your organization to survive then you, too, need to change.