The buzz in marketing circles is about "customer engagement," ways of interacting with customers to advance marketing goals. cScape, a London based digital agency, has released a survey of 1000 "Customer experience professionals, showing the level of interest in programs that move customer engagement along. There is lots of it.

Here’s the catch: the creators of the study are not big on "traditional advertising" and have not included even interactive advertising as part of the the study.

This is instructive for media sales people to see just how far this "engagement" concept can go without ever mentioning advertising.

From the study:

"Traditional marketing communications is almost an ‘us and them’ situation. The logic is that if we say it loud and often enough, some of our message will stick! Modern web-based businesses need to deploy a much more subtle of our message will stick! Modern web-based businesses need to deploy a much more subtle line of interactive communications. One that’s all about mutual interests. People coming to a site want it to work and to work well. A site that achieves this is one that gets the business and generates the kind of ‘feel-good’ factor that brand marketers strive for."

On your next call:

Don’t bring this study. But do think about the part of the "non advertising" dialog our advertisers are having about engegement that this study represents, and think about the marketing dollars that will drain away if you cannot make the point stick that interactive and magazine advertising can be extremely engaging. We sell many media that engage customers in many ways. On your next call think about how you can bring that point foreword.

Download the entire study here (registration required).