Mitchell is a marketing seer

The excellent article by Alan Mitchell, “Keep the customers satisfied” (MW August 14), should be buried in MW’s own internal time capsule and unearthed in five years’ time. By then, along with many other more predictable advances in marketing channels and distribution, the reader- discoverer will be able to tick off the many prophetic statements in the piece against the actual status quo.

Coalition or partnership marketing is the future and, like Virgin brand extensions, it’s going to grow and grow, with no turning back.

Slowing Western world population growth, and reducing economic circumstances with increasing media fragmentation and consumer choice, will all contrive to awaken marketers to the senselessness and high cost of “going it alone” 100 per cent of the time. Currently, most marketing partnerships, other than short-term sales promotions, are in the area of database marketing and customer relationship communications programmes, where one company endorses another and presents its partners’ offers as part of a loyalty benefits basket.

But it needn’t stop there. All manner of broadscale media-driven marketing alliances will blossom based on lifestyle product/service pairings taking product placement to its logical extension – dual and triple-branded commercials, ads, posters and so on. Called, perhaps, affinity brands advertising it will become the mainstream equivalent of affinity group data marketing.

And, for a change, database marketing leads the way!

Chris Ogilvie-Taylor

Managing and strategy director

Marsden Grant International

London SW1

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