Today, I was on Pandora listening to some music, to find yet another LivingSocial ad.
Yet Another Livingsocial Ad

This really got me to reflect on last 5-10 years…

Google, Flickr, Facebook and Twitter never advertised early in the growth of their success.

They won peoples heart by offering such a unique offering that they didn’t need consumer advertising. I put my 2005 hat on, and I remember at the conferences when advertising for consumer services was frowned upon as you should be able to capture users based on the quality of your product alone. Also, “the right type of people” (early adopters) signup when you are not advertising and feel more committed to the product.

It’s not only LivingSocial, new growth consumer companies have demonstrated more aggressive paid marketing levels including scvngr, Zynga, and GroupOn.

You can’t watch the superbowl or navigate an iPhone app without seeing an ad for these companies.

Is the cool “don’t need to advertise” attitude gone?
If so, what was the tipping point?
Did GroupOn 6B valuation change peoples psyche on this?
Have we reached hypercompetitive level for time to mass market that this is now required?
Is this acceleration a long-term trend or a short-term fad?

Not sure I have the answer but one thing has changed… Advertising is more accepted for consumer growth internet companies then it was a year or two ago.


47 Responses to Changes in Advertising Psyche for Consumer Services

  1. Interesting observation. I wonder if this is reflective of marketing budgets growing, or of these companies being more consumer focused – needing to reach more "normals" than "early adopters"? I think it's just a different climate – more fertilizer to throw on the garden – in hopes it all grows faster.

    • sandieman says:

      "Normal" vs. "Early Adopter" is an interesting paradigm. – old school way of thinking about it.

      Funny thing is when you hear GroupOn talk about this, they mention that advertising drives people to create the initial momentum to get a real community of adopters. Early adopters now reachable via advertising? Early adopters bigger part of our population?

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