Digital strategy for the world we live in

The Engagement with Engagement is Over


Super Patrick
Originally uploaded by ocellnuri

I love the feeling I get when a long dormant part of my brain is reactivated. It energises me. It feels like the intellectual equivalent of an endorphin rush.

The other night I heard a great quote "The Spectacle is Everywhere" — and it comes from Guy Debord’s Society of the Spectacle. When I first read this during my university days I became a little obsessed with the situationists and a radical, very French, way of thinking — but what I found particularly liberating was the poetic use of language within a more formal "discourse". And the more I thought on this, the more it made me reconsider social media and what we, perhaps lazily, call "engagement".

So now I am toying with the concept that "engagement" is just not good enough. Not for brands. Not for marketers. Not for consumers. Come join the discussion around this MarketingProfs article.

4 comments

  1. Gavin:
    I think we are not content with ‘engagement’ to someone either, yes? We get married or we break up. In other words, engagement is just a phase of our relationship. Alas, marketers tend to fall in love with terms and use them over and over until they lose sight of the original meaning. Could it be because there is a need to provide ‘value’? Ok, that was loaded 😉

  2. The Engagement is over

    Dear sweet Gavin. Whose writing is more poetic than plain. More insightful than mundane. He has called for the death of Engagement. And I think he is right. ‘Engagement’ does not reach far enough nor adequately convey the restless desire we have to con…

  3. Wow, you are quoting Guy Debord. I love that kind of references in a marketing world.

  4. Yes engagement is a part of a relationship and the love metaphor is a bloody marvelous one when thinking about relationship with brands.
    The idea that we as people should be wedded to a brand or have a permanent break up is the sort of marketing nonsense that overbearing clients construct around themselves to cushion against the reality (for it is one), that 73% (I made that up) of products or services are on parity. That doesn’t mean there are other variables that can provide differentiation, (proper) values for instance are often difficult to quantify.
    If only we could get used to more layers of relationship such as; brand lust, promiscuity, infatuation, indifference, going steady, on-off on-off and maybe even bliss or arranged marriages is something I’ve put forward to multinational brands as a way of navigating through potential phases of relationship when thinking about engaging.
    Alas the average marketing manager immersed in a set of tenuous values and synthetically evolved marketing language is unable (often through hierarchical, position tenure and promotional pressure) to entertain the thought that our customers may well be up for a bit of brand adultery.
    I think this was best captured by an agency I worked with a few years ago who came up with the line: Pot Noodle, The Slag of All Snacks.
    A slag is English vernacular for a woman of ill repute. Professional or not
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hhcl
    The ad is always worth viewing over here:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_6GGDhHzKI