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This content is taken from the University of Southampton's online course, Digital Marketing: Challenges and Insights. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 8 seconds LISA HARRIS: What’s new and different about marketing today?

Skip to 0 minutes and 11 seconds JULIA WOLNY: Well, marketing has been around for quite awhile. From the 1930s, ’40s, ’50s– so the theory of marketing is well-established. But what’s happening now, I think– because of the different devices, the new technologies, and the way people use marketing, the practise has changed. So a lot of the different devices mean people behave differently with marketing– both the consumers and the marketers. So there’s a lot of change, a lot of shift. But one of the things that I think is important is to try and analyse and talk about what’s different. And that’s why research in digital is really so important and current.

Skip to 0 minutes and 45 seconds LISA HARRIS: OK. And did you think digital is really just the latest version of marketing or is there something that’s really distinctly different?

Skip to 0 minutes and 52 seconds JULIA WOLNY: I think that a lot of the principles– for example, segmentation, positioning– are still relevant. They’re still relevant. But the way that, for example, segmentation is conducted. Traditionally, it would been conducted by demographics. So you’d look at age and gender and income. But now, increasingly with the information and data available, we can look at behaviours– so how often people shop for some products, how often they visit a website. And that has an impact on how segmentation is actually conducted in practise.

Skip to 1 minute and 26 seconds LISA HARRIS: So Julia, you must work with a number of different businesses. What’s new and different about the way in which they’re doing digital marketing?

Skip to 1 minute and 33 seconds JULIA WOLNY: Well, there’s small companies and big companies. And they do digital marketing differently because they have different budgets. But also, increasingly, marketing is about appealing to a community. So it’s not so much about selling the product but really trying to establish credibility within an online community. And that really makes a difference to how you approach marketing. So it’s more sort of a sociological, consumer-behavior approach.

Skip to 1 minute and 56 seconds LISA HARRIS: Does that mean, then, that practise is ahead of research in digital marketing?

Skip to 2 minutes and 0 seconds JULIA WOLNY: When you think about where digital marketing has come from and why social networks exist. They weren’t created with a commercial benefit in mind. They were created with a social benefit in mind. And it’s only afterwards that companies started to think how can we monetise this? How can we create marketing campaigns out of this? And we all know of social networks that would do that! So in a way, you could say marketers might think they are following what consumers are doing. And they’re trying to catch up and utilise the different networks that exist for their benefit.

Skip to 2 minutes and 39 seconds LISA HARRIS: So what, then, are the benefits for researchers and businesses working together in this area?

Skip to 2 minutes and 45 seconds JULIA WOLNY: I think businesses can benefit from talking to researchers and looking at the long-term trends. And in fact, recently, I’ve published a manifesto, which creates a foundation for how businesses can operate with researchers as part of their eMarketing subject interest group that is a network of researchers in the area. So we’re really looking out to collaborating with businesses. And equally, for researchers, especially in digital marketing, you can’t really do effective research without having current data, current and real data. The areas that are of interest to practitioners should also be of interest to researchers. So the kinds of things like how big data is being utilised, the issues of privacy and the consumer perceptions of privacy, for example.

Skip to 3 minutes and 33 seconds The other thing in an issue I’m looking at is multichannel consumer behaviour. So how has this happened? How has this changed because of the different devices and platforms available? So a lot of different areas that we can look at.

Skip to 3 minutes and 48 seconds LISA HARRIS: Thanks very much, Julia.

Skip to 3 minutes and 49 seconds JULIA WOLNY: Thank you.

Skip to 3 minutes and 50 seconds LISA HARRIS: Thank you.

Skip to 3 minutes and 50 seconds JULIA WOLNY: Thanks Lisa.

Research and practice in digital marketing

In a short course such as this we have chosen to concentrate on areas that impact upon all marketers, based on the current practical research projects we are involved in at Southampton.

You will be meeting some of our researchers and be introduced to their research during weeks 2 and 3.

In this video we meet Julia Wolny who talks about how research into digital marketing helps us to understand the similarities and differences between digital and more traditional marketing and highlight what is changing.

She also talks about how marketing is moving on from selling a product to appealing to an online community and outlines what benefits businesses can get from collaborating with researchers.

The work we are involved in ranges from individual PhD student projects, to staff/student or staff/business or student/business partnerships, through to multi-million pound European-wide collaborations between academic teams and global businesses.

In some cases this work feeds directly into our teaching, and in others the teaching that we construct around a topic grows into a research project – it works both ways.

Through the course we also invite you, marketing practitioners and consumers alike, to discuss and input to important digital marketing matters where members of our team have ongoing research interests.

Julia has written about the evolving connections between research and practice in digital marketing for the Journal of Direct and Digital Marketing. She notes:

“This new wave of digitally focused marketing academics — similar to the ‘new wave’ movement in film and art — is questioning traditional concepts, methodologies and techniques, challenging both marketing theory and marketing practice. Through critical conceptual thinking, we come up with new insights about what theories still hold true in this digitally mediated world and how best to update the knowledge base to reflect the realities.”

A link to Julia’s article is available from the bottom of the page.

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This video is from the free online course:

Digital Marketing: Challenges and Insights

University of Southampton

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