Last Tuesday, the Globe and Mail hosted an online Q&A session with Ryan Caligiuri, a marketing specialist from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Caligiuri is a proponent of “emotional marketing” and employing the following strategies:

  • Communicating powerfully with the goal of evoking emotion;
  • Building movements and engaging communities;
  • Creating products and services that are worth talking about;
  • Breaking current models and introducing solutions;
  • Storytelling.

Although his pitch in the Globe and Mail was entitled “The Death of Old Marketing”, Caligiuri admits in the Q&A session that this phrase was an exaggeration to attract readers to the discussion. While he does argue for “new” approaches to marketing, he acknowledges that if traditional marketing means are working for you, you should stick with what you’re doing.

In my opinion, the Q&A with Caligiuri didn’t really live up to the hype. Case in point, here’s a direct quote from the expert: “Marketing directors to new graduates are all stuck in 1960” (emphasis added). Another direct quote:

“The interesting thing with ‘new marketing’ is that it’s not new at all. It’s been around for many years. However, new is all in the mind of the CEO, CMO or new graduate who might be learning about these principles for the first time. And through hundreds of conversations with marketing professionals and business owners calling it ‘new’ is still very much appropriate. Now, they are not new, but how many organizations really follow strategies of finding those with similar biases and build a product and story for them?”

I found it disappointing that Caligiuri used such absolutes and unsubstantiated claims, because such inaccuracies weakened any legitimate arguments he may have had, such as the merits of emotional marketing. Give the session a read and let us know what you think!