If you’ve been in marketing for a while, you’ve probably come across a copy of Don Peppers and Martha Rogers’ book, “The One to One Future.” (If you haven’t, it’s a good read for any B2B marketer.) Written in the 1990s, the book painted a bright future — one where marketers could connect with their audiences on a more personal, one-to-one level.
The idea was simple: all of the new technology and data flooding marketing at the time would pave the way for personalized, incredibly relevant customer experiences. Two decades later, we’re still not any closer to making this vision a reality.
In fact, I’d argue that the technology we’ve deployed has, in many cases, pushed us further away from that 1:1 connection. We’ve taken innovative technologies and platforms like marketing automation and digital advertising and used them to spam our audiences with millions of untargeted, irrelevant messages.
As a result, marketers haven’t been able to deliver on what our customers really need: a personalized message with relevant information. While technology has pushed us further away from our customers, I believe that we are on the cusp of actually (finally) using technology to help restore that 1:1 connection.
We’ve already started to see this happen, and it’s made possible by two important things: Account-Based Marketing (ABM) and artificial intelligence (AI). ABM and the return to customer-centricity.
I’ve written about ABM before, usually in the context of why it’s good for marketers.