Omer Artun

Thorin McGee is editor-in-chief and content director of Target Marketing and oversees editorial direction and product development for the magazine, website and other channels.

While making an emotional connection with customers is becoming more important, most of the experts we interviewed for this article saw technology as part of the solution, not the problem. The trick is not just to have technology that works for you, but to be able to use technology as an extension of your marketing department. Can you make technology part of the marketing team?

Since the earliest days of direct marketing—and brand marketing, for that matter—efforts have been measured in the pseudo-military terminology of "the campaign." You have an objective, a plan, the resources to implement it, and you attack. The campaign succeeds or fails, then you go back to the drawing board to work on your next campaign.

With all the emphasis on data and technology in today's marketing, it's too easy to forget that marketing is an emotional discipline. As the recession falls further into the past, we're seeing more and more that customers who've been primarily concerned about price for years are now looking for a reason, almost any reason, to choose a brand based on something more. Can your marketing meet the needs of these customers?

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