For the past 7 years, the world has evolved and changed from the days of our magazine production into a hyper-connected world where people get information at the click of a button, know more about people than they do themselves while still living virtually.

Along with these changes have come the humans who have evolved with their taste, preference and beliefs. The things that mean more now have a different set of understanding to them. People now hope and look for more than they get and that is where marketing is going.

Marketing has moved and in this space, moved with the changes that the world is experiencing at the speed of light. Technology has been a great driver from software to apps to devices that multitask, process faster and mimics the human brain (artificial intelligence) in more than a way.

The consumer who used to be content with a catchphrase and nice faces, now wants to relate. He or she now wants to have a relationship that goes beyond buy and use. It is now a 360 cycle that moves in a seamless transition from the ad on TV, Radio or Newspapers to the ground that is immediately transferred to online. And this has been how technology or digital has impacted on marketing as we know it in Ghana.

Experiences are now communal with channels like SnapChat, Instagram, Facebook Live, and Periscope. People get real time and not even pictures but video feeds. They have a behind the scenes seat that takes them through the eyes of the director (phone owner). These experiences are lived together and therefore to understand their motives or what makes them tick, you need more than “JUST SELL OR DO” mentality.

Marketing in 2016, is all about ‘NUMBERS’. Numbers now matter more than ever and therefore has compounded the task for the marketer who now has to sell in addition to making the product the best alternative available. The evolution has married ‘BELOW THE LINE’ Experiential Marketing (about giving the consumer the best experience that will be talked about and relived over and over again), ‘ABOVE THE LINE’ Communication Marketing (comes with advertising and traditional media) and ‘DIGITAL’ Online Marketing (brings a 360 approach to the table).

So to get the response and reaction of consumers like they want it, a brand has to understand the consumer. There is the need for a sort of creativity, innovation and originality that will make the difference. The soul of the brand has to work in sync with that of the consumer. The story of the consumer must matter to the brand. Brands that have realized these antics have grown tremendously from 2009 till now.

Talk about Google, Facebook, Samsung and Apple. They’ve come to know that each consumer has a unique taste but at the back of that taste is a universe craving. To be different and a leader, you need to step out of your zone, explore, understand and satisfy these cravings.