Futurology with Dietmar Dahmen

The speed of change has overtaken the learning curve. 75% of CMOs believe there has been more change in the last two years than in the 50 years before. Half of them don’t know how to deal with big data. Over 50% do not feel in control anymore. One thing is clear: technological development cannot be stopped. So what do you do?

In his return to LMU on July 22, digital marketing guru Dietmar Dahmen delivered a fascinating and forward-looking perspective on the latest innovative trends and their impact on branding, marketing and advertising. Organized by M-School partner thinkLA, Dahmen’s lecture focused on the latest technological developments – how much has changed over the last decade, where we are today and what’s to come. Customers want and expect information and access as quickly as possible; if they have to wait, they’ll look elsewhere.

In front of an audience comprised of marketing and advertising professionals and students, Dahmen advised how to handle today’s speed of change and how to use this change to (over)achieve marketing and business goals in the future. He encourages companies to step out of their comfort zones and expand their perspectives. You have to adapt and evolve. Kodak is dead because it didn’t innovate and jump on the digital bandwagon. iTunes is suffering in Europe because Spotify is dominating the market. The concept of not owning anything is growing in Europe (ex. car sharing). Dahmen says to always be thinking about what others could do to destabilize your business.

Humans receive 6,000 messages a day but only remember 27 of them. We only remember things that are truly “epic,” says Dahmen. As a result, marketing is becoming more individualized. Digital ads can now detect if a man or woman is nearby and will change the product placement according to gender and mood. If a person seems sad, an ad for chocolate will appear for women and beer for men. Google is working on a taxi that knows everything about you – your schedule, your ideal car temperature, your favorite radio station, etc. Sensors will play a key role in future technology by their ability to anticipate what will happen before it does. For example, if a driver is becoming drowsy, a sensor will detect the problem, cause the wheel to vibrate and suggest the nearest Starbucks. Companies know that these changes are coming and are all working hard to come up with the best and most efficient solution. Only time will tell to see who comes out on top. 

Austrian native Dahmen started out as a strategic planner, and later moved on to become a highly-decorated creative director at leading global advertising agencies such as Ogilvy, DDB and BBDO. He now works as a creative consultant in the television, videogame, fashion, hotel and organic farming industries, with expertise in the areas of marketing, branding, consumer behavior, digital trends and solutions. He also is a co/owner of the eco-platform Earthback in Berlin, president of the board of advisors with Mediahead Zurich, member of the board of advisors with Summit NYC in New York and chief innovation officer with the German/Austrian-based digital full service company ecx.io.