HP marketing chief urges marketers to use UGC

Cannes: Hewlett Packard’s chief marketing officer Michael Mendenhall has urged marketers to make more use of user generated content, or cloud-based marketing, to keep users engaged with brands during the recession.

Michael Mendenhall
Michael Mendenhall – Hewlett Packard

Speaking at a seminar hosted by digital agency R/GA at the Cannes Lions International Advertising festival, Mendenhall says using cloud-based services such as blogs, forums, videos and social networking is essential to brands continuing to build equity during the economic downturn.

“The market for one to many marketing is eroding. Marketers must integrate digital and cloud media into their strategies to keep brand awareness strong. Consumers rely on cloud technology to keep them aware of what is happening outside and marketers can se this to their advantage,” he says.

Use of cloud marketing is a central component of HP’s current brand renewal strategy. Mendenhall says that with more people using internet to keep up to date on a daily basis, using cloud-based marketing will “fundamentally change the way we communicate and interact with each other.”

HP has already started rolling this out with a new customer forum launched on its website in January, a deal with MySpace enabling users to print their photos in high quality, a competition with MTV to design new netbooks, its Snapfish photo service and the new Magcloud service, enabling users to design their own print magazines.

He explains: “Typically marketing budgets are the first to be cut, but history shows this only achieves short-term savings that can be harmful in the long-term. The fact is that the pressure is on marketers more than it has been before, and digital media and cloud marketing costs almost nothing.

“You can offer aspects for free, and then face the decision of how to monetise it. The answer is to se the cloud to build a powerful brand to drive revenues more efficiently than other media – there really is nothing but blue sky ahead for cloud-based marketing,” he adds.

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