In the next two years, $5.8 trillion dollars will be spent in digital commerce according to Marketo CEO Steve Lucas. To capture a share of it marketers need to focus on experiences, he said.

Lucas spoke during the Marketo Nation Engage conference in Sydney this week telling the audience ecommerce spend is more than the GDP of the UK, France and Germany, the worlds largest economies.

According to the Marketo chief, it means marketers should be less concerned about traditional marketing and more focused on engagement.

“There are so many companies that don’t think and act. They don’t have an engagement strategy.”

He said some companies just send an email and if they get 0.0001 per cent click through rate, that will do because they carpet bomb the planet with emails.

However, Lucas argues that day has come and gone.

“It is time to think about how we engage on personal levels with people across every channel wherever they live, whatever they do.”

Experience is marketing

Lucas told attendees marketing is now predominantly about creating experiences – the tagline of Marketo’s new owners, Adobe.

He explained, “It’s what takes something from taboo to, almost, to it would be very weird if you didn’t do it. What is clear to me – abundantly clear – is that the world we live in, experience is the great differentiator.”

Steve Lucas, CEO, Marketo

He uses the example of Uber and Airbnb where ten years ago it would be weird to get into a strangers car but nowadays because consumers have an app and a good experience, it makes its acceptable.

Lucas asked the audience when was the last time they saw an ad for Uber, noting there is no traditional marketing for the rideshare company.

“I believe the marketing is embedded within the experience which is the application or the network itself.

“So it’s not a case of whether marketing does or does not happen, of course it happens. But it happens in a way where I’m uniquely tuned in to everything that you want to do.”

To explain further, Lucas uses the example of Coachella and Fyre Festival when it comes to experiences.

He said Coachella gets better every year and people go to for the experience, compared to, in the case of Fyre festival, a few people putting together a marketing campaign and showing people having a good time on an island formerly owned by Pablo Escobar.

“You could recreate the experience but we all know that experience is so much more than a website, an app. It’s commitment, execution, its consistent delivery, it’s a network, it’s a brand,” Lucas said.

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