360 Communication or 365 Engagement? A False Opposition.

A couple of years ago a few people decided that “360” communication was “dead” and we should now be talking about “365” instead.  (i.e. from 360 Degrees to 365 Days). Largely this was being said in an attempt to differentiate the agency or individual saying it, but there is also some interesting thinking behind it.

360: The premise is that in the old pre-digital/ social world, the marketing process involved creating a communication (usually a TVC) based on the brand’s values, and then bringing that communication to life across all touchpoints … but only in a Paid one-to-many way.  This was generally rolled out in an episodic campaign-based fashion, with little audience interaction and no continuity. The consumer was expected to passively consume TVCs, and the brand was effectively “dark” (ATL at least) between bursts.

365: In the new digital/ social world we now inhabit, however, our consumers don’t live in quarterly campaigns, nor do they distinguish communication channels. They expect faster and constant communication with their brands across more comms platforms and conversations.  It doesn’t mean we have to advertise every day, but we do need to move to an “always on” model that is community-centric rather than TV centric. Essentially Earned and Owned media fill in the gaps between Paid campaigns, and offer a way for consumers to get involved with the communication/ spread the word during campaign periods. So …

Not just…                                                      But also …

TV Centric                                                    Community Centric

Standalone Campaigns                             Permission based content streams/ Ongoing Dialogue/

Reach and Frequency                                Participation

Net net, we should be talking about “360 and 365”: 360 is still relevant (unless done badly) but is no longer enough on its own.