9 February 2018 • Marlene Admiraal
Grip on the future
Which IT innovations will be important in the coming time? And what can you do with them in the area of sales and marketing? In order to answer these questions, the Commercial Economy programme organised the annual Sales, Marketing and Media Event (SMME) on 23 February.
Over ten years ago, iPhones, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat, Twitter, iPads, Spotify, Uber, Alexa and Pokemon GO did not exist. What will the coming ten years bring? That could be a time of self-driving cars, robots, augmented reality, smart application of big data etc. And how can you fit that in your sales and marketing activities today? What consequences are there for companies’ revenue models? Which opportunities exist, and also which risks? All these issues are the reason that the Commercial Economy programme organises a day each year to present the most relevant topics to its (prospective) students to prepare them for the future.
Attention is scarce
Hans de Zwart from Bits of Freedom kicked off the morning programme. Bits of Freedom is the movement that stands up for internet freedom in the Netherlands. De Zwart got everyone thinking by stating that our attention is scarce and that we must protect it. Businesses are focused on grabbing your attention through advertising. But you need silence to be able to think.
Guts and vision
Tim Hoppen, Commercial Economy lecturer, then spoke to Igor Beuker, keynote speaker and host, prize-winning marketing strategist for global brands such as Nike, Amazon, L’Oréal and Unilever, and new-breed trend watcher for Fortune 500. Beuker told the students that guts, vision and courage are important. He also gave his vision of modern marketing. That is not about campaigns, but about looking at trends, responding to them and putting your customer first. Only then can you influence the future.
In the afternoon, students could choose from various workshops, including sustainable banking, big data in marketing and Bitcoin & Blockchain. Second-year student Robel Mehari was unsure what to expect but was interested in taking part. After the plenary session, he followed the Bitcoin & Blockchain workshop. ‘Initially, I was interested in the Bitcoin craze, but I didn’t dare to step into that world. Thanks to this lecture, I’ve realised I’m not going to do it.’