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Growth marketers.  Never cease exploring. But always go back to where you started.

Marketing always starts with the consumer and actionable insight. 


The narrative today about marketing is change. The truth is that marketing’s role in business and strategy has never changed. Marketing always starts with consumer insight and behavior. The media and tools today only make that more true.

The narrative today is also that marketers are threatened with extinction: by technology and management consulting. The truth is that with business awash in data, it's marketing that owns the most important data, that can inform strategy and explore the future.

TS Eliot had an appropriate comment on exploration, that we will arrive back where we started. Despite challenges, Marketers know their roles have never been more critical.

TS Eliot also noted “Nothing is said that has not been said before”. That seems relevant to the Marketing debate today.

But Marketers cannot be diverted from their exploration by technologies or consultancies with their shiny tools and know-it-all promises. Where did Marketing start? And how can we know that place as if for the first time?

Re-evaluate Marketing around Engagement,

not Media. 

According to eMarketer, as Millennials become the largest generation in the market, 97.3% of companies are re-evaluating their media mix in 2019. They must explore what evolving culture, beliefs and behaviors mean to the survival and renewal of their brands.

But consumers set the agenda and lead the conversation. “Mix” no longer means media and impressions: it means engagement and experiences.

How we manage and understand engagement and the impact of individual, shared and community experiences matter more than how much we spend on media.

How we track and predict the impact of engagement on beliefs and experiences on behaviors matters more than media effects.

Because engagement predicts future sales and brand growth. 


Define Marketing as a social science.

Please choose between these two definitions on Wikipedia.

A.   “Marketing is the study and management of exchange relationships. Marketing is the business process of creating relationships with and satisfying customers. With its focus on the customer, Marketing is one of the premier components of business management.”

This is a narrow definition, with which technologists and ‘math’ men. can be comfortable. They can quantify the personal data gathered by digital media and focus on individual consumers. They may worry about privacy concerns. They can prove short-term optimization.

But, with all the data, all the technology, all the consulting, all the processes, all the metrics, all the data science – where is the long-term growth?

Here is an alternative.

B.    “Social science is a major category of academic disciplines, concerned with society and the relationships among individuals within a society. It, in turn, has many branches, each of which is considered a "social science". 

This is an expansive definition, embracing the individual customer, group or community, and the ‘ecosystem' in which movements develop, preferences are formed, and decisions made.

The data here is aggregated, to enable the understanding of the bigger trends in behavior, among segments and across movements in the marketplace as a whole. 

nested system.JPG

Growth is driven by individual experiences

and social engagement

Customer experiences and conversations, and the emotional engagement they generate can now to a meaningful extent be quantified, optimized and forecast. Once information poor, Marketing is now awash with data, more than any other business function. That data is no longer simply transactional: it encompasses text, voice and video.

At Consilient we believe in the unity of that knowledge, and in empowering marketers to lead the business narrative, anticipate changing behaviors and cultures, and deliver predictable and actionable growth.

What is needed is a new synthesis in which:

1.    We create a single view of the marketplace, marketing and media; in the context culture, conversations and competitive forces

2.    We create a single view of the whole consumer, with their individual buying, social exchanges, and community participation

3.    We create a platform and language to connect marketing to the business and financial outcomes

4.    We make this solution one that senses and responds to them consumer-led trends and economic shocks in the market 

Growth is driven by individual experiences

and social engagement


Stewart Pearson

+ 1 206 747 0090

Stewart Pearson is Founder of Consilient Group, a team of data scientists and social planners focused on mapping a path to consumer-led growth.

Post Scriptum

I discovered the TS Eliot quote, and infinitely more, through the great Lester Wunderman. 

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