Marketing Communications: (Credibility + Impact) versus (Reach + Frequency)

(Credibility + Impact) versus (Reach + Frequency)

Ever since Regis McKenna published The Regis Touch, high-tech marketing executives have known that their earned media (PR, for those of us antiquated enough to use that term) has far more credibility and impact than advertising, especially in B2B markets where purchase decisions are reviewed by multiple parties before a transaction is approved. That’s why they spent their budgets on briefing analysts, speaking at conferences, and getting coverage in the business and technical press.

At the same time, ever since Trout & Ries published *The Battle for the Consumer’s Mind*, B2C marketing executives have known that reach and frequency are key to winning purchase decisions that are made by a single individual with little or no review. In this context, creating awareness and generating interest are critical, and advertising provides the best bang for the buck.

Over the past decade or so, with the rise of digital media and social media, this distinction has become blurred, and both strategies are more than a little shopworn. On the earned media side, there is so much content to choose from that people are far less likely to download a white paper or read an article through to the end, even if you can get it in front of them in the first place. And on the advertising side, over-reliance on the ad monetization model has resulted in massive amounts of spam, turning off prospects, leading to ever-declining response rates for even the best creative.

What you would like to have is a medium whereby you could combine the credibility and impact of that portion of your earned media that has already demonstrated its ability to cut through the noise with the reach, frequency, and manageability of a digital advertising campaign.

I mention all this because a recent merger in the Mohr Davidow Ventures portfolio has created just such a capability. AirPR, which specializes in assessing the impact of earned media, has joined forces with Ozmotik, which specializes in deploying high-value content following a digital advertising model, to create a new company, Onclusive, which is designed to combine impact, credibility, reach, and frequency, into one integrated campaign management capability.

In other words, for those of you old enough to remember, the guy with the peanut butter has bumped into the gal with the chocolate, and, as was true with Reese’s peanut butter cups, the world has become a better place.

That’s what I think. What do you think?

This blog was originally published by Geoffrey Moore on LinkedIn