Right Side Up: Building Brands in the Age of the Organised Consumer

Published by HarperCollins (ISBN 0002571528)

The so-called 'Information Age' has led to a new breed of marketing guru with their e-this and m-that, 10 principles of this, 12 rules of that. The bookshelves are full of e-marketing treatises.
But marketing has had its own discourse before the advent of cyberspace and Alan Mitchell has been one of its articulators. His regular column in Marketing Week is a staple part of the marketeer's diet, even if it has been known to upset those with a delicate constitution.
He starts Right Side Up by saying that “traditionalists may find some of what follows infuriating. Good”. What follows is premised on the shifts that the new e-conomy has created. But what is refreshing is that Mitchell sees this not as a completely new world but as a refreshing return to the way things should be for marketeers, “to make it buyer-centric, rather than seller-centric. To turn it Right Side Up”.
That is not to say that there is nothing new in the new e-conomy. Mitchell argues that the core functions of marketing – connecting buyers and sellers – can be undertaken by anyone: sellers, buyers or third parties. What the new space does is to create a new set of relationships that “create a moment of huge potential and possibility” – a move towards buyer-centric marketing.
And it is this enthusiasm from a man deeply rooted in traditional marketing and not prone to fads or gimmicks that is to be welcomed. This is a traditional marketing book full of traditional marketing speak but one that talks about an exciting and challenging moment for the profession.
The layout may not be as 'digital' as some texts and the soundbites might not fit on a screensaver, but there is real marketing experience here.