Focus on relationships over transactions, says Lou Paskalis

The Bank of America executive shares how to win the marketing war rather than the battle.

Marketers are spending too much time trying to optimize experiences and ads when they should be focusing on engaging consumers in relevant ways that build lasting relationships, said Lou Paskalis, senior-VP of customer engagement and media investment at Bank of America on Thursday.

"You only have so many opportunities to reach a consumer," said Paskalis during the ANA Masters of Marketing Week annual event in Orlando, Florida. He said that marketers have to make sure the content is safe, but they also need to figure out their consumers’ need states and mindsets when reaching them in programmatic environments.

"We can start to think of episodic experiences and building on those experiences. If we’re trying to win the transaction, we’re going to lose the relationships, and that's winning a battle, but losing the war."

Rob Master, VP of global media and consumer engagement at Unilever, said on stage alongside Paskalis that marketers need to create quality consumer experiences.

"We have a huge opportunity to enhance the creative and experiences our consumers are having in the digital landscape. We’re storytellers. We can’t lose sight of the fact that we’re here to tell stories about our brands that inspire and engage consumers," said Master.

He added that marketers need to think about what a quality ecosystem looks like and then define it themselves.

How do marketers move forward in today’s increasingly complex media landscape? Master said: Be part of the solution, lean in, count and be accountable and if you see something, say something - "don’t be afraid to call out the good guys and the bad actors."

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