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109: Marketing Today talks with Digital Darwinism author Tom Goodwin

In this week’s “Marketing Today,” Alan spoke with Tom Goodwin, author of the book, “Digital Darwinism: Survival of the Fittest in the Age of Business Disruption.” Goodwin is also a sought-after speaker — addressing topics like the future of advertising, digital disruption, and business transformation — and he is head of innovation at Zenith.

In his conversation with Alan, Goodwin touches on how people rely on and attempt to harness new technologies in ways that complicate things but do not provide the radical transformation they are hoping for. “We have this kind of ongoing narrative about how chaotic things are and how the pace of change is worse than ever,” says Goodwin. “I think, sometimes, that means we focus more on the technologies than on our instincts, and we focus more on data than we do on ideas. And somehow we make life more complicated than it needs to be.”

Goodwin goes on to add, “I think we have this wonderful new toolkit, which gives us new possibilities. But, actually, many of the learnings that we’ve got from the past, many of the techniques and strategies that we’ve employed before, are largely still appropriate today.”

Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today” podcast include:

  • Goodwin, since he isn’t a fan of print —”ink on dead trees,” he calls it — was reluctant to write a book, but he responded to the urging of others. (1:26)
  • Goodwin on what’s not (2:54)
  • Rethinking business models: “Every company needs to be honest about the situation they’re in.” (5:06)
  • Goodwin discusses disruption and paradigm shifts. (10:03)
  • Companies that rely on data are focused on the past but change comes from doing things never done before. (15:16)
  • “Change actually looks a lot more messy, scrappy and uncomfortable than most companies are prepared to accept.” (17:28)
  • Where Goodwin sees big opportunities for Digital Darwinism. (20:08)
  • Trends that concern Goodwin: wealth inequality, AI changing people’s roles in the economy, and companies operating at lower profit margins. (21:30)
  • Goodwin anticipates no radical departure in the future of marketing, but he would like to see marketers get better at using the tools they already have. (28:57)