Community: The Last Great Marketing Strategy

Last Updated February 27th, 2023

Mark Schaefer, Community, Belonging To The Brand, The Customer Experience Podcast, marketing leader, marketing strategy, author, speaker, podcaster, community strategy, community marketing, community leader

Listen to “243. Community: The Last Great Marketing Strategy w/ Mark Shaefer” on Spreaker.

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The age of disruption, interruption, and spam is over in the marketing world. Because it’s over for customers.

What’s moving into the spotlight? Community.

Everyone desires to belong — a true sense of belonging you can only get from other people. Based on surveys and research, Millennials and Gen Z are the loneliest generations and they crave community in authentic and meaningful ways. We all do.

The demand for empathy and connection is incessant; it never fades, falls, or diminishes. Their supply, however, is limited. The ability to close this gap is to be of true value. And when done in a sincere and strategic way, it can help you build your business.

In the long recovery from lockdowns and quarantines, now is the time to lean into co-creation, build advocacy, and provide the safe, engaging spaces consumers seek.

What does that look like, and how does it affect branding?

In this episode, Mark Schaefer, a marketing strategist, author, professor, and keynote speaker based at Businesses Grow, illuminates the ideas behind his most recent book — Belonging to the Brand: Why Community Is The Last Great Marketing Strategy.

Mark explains the truth behind what consumers need to develop brand affinity and join the missions of the brands they trust most. He also details the steps to take for building a community and how to earn resonance with an audience.

With 10 published marketing books under his belt — tackling everything from rebelling against the status quo to leveraging cumulative advantage — Mark takes a stand to campaign for what he has discovered as the last great marketing strategy. He isn’t just a voice for radical change in marketing; he rolls up his sleeves and moves forward.

This is Mark’s second visit to The Customer Experience Podcast to talk marketing and marketing strategy. He first joined us on Episode 131: Returning the Human Voice to Marketing. We talked through two of his previous books, Marketing Rebellion and Cumulative Advantage.

Listen to this episode to learn:

Why community is the last great marketing strategy
Why so many people struggle with building communities
How to establish resonance and connection with an audience
What the differences are between an audience and a community
How to make purpose truly matter in your organization
Mark Schaefer quoted on community, engagement, and audience on The Customer Experience Podcast with Ethan Beute of BombBomb.

Community: The Last Great Marketing Strategy

Hear Episode 243 and all the conversations on The Customer Experience Podcast in your favorite podcast player …

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We also embed the full conversation and make it searchable right here in these blog posts. The recording with Mark Schaefer is right here …

Listen to “243. Community: The Last Great Marketing Strategy w/ Mark Shaefer” on Spreaker.


Video Highlights with Mark Schaefer:

Check out the top five video highlights from our discussion about community as a marketing strategy

1. Marketing’s Role in Customer Experience



2. The Emotional Continuum from Social Media to Audience to Community



3. The Three Characteristics of a Community



4. Sephora and The Engagement Metric



5. Starting Small with Community



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Ethan Beute | About The Author

Chief Evangelist at BombBomb, host of The Customer Experience Podcast, and Wall Street Journal bestselling co-author of Human-Centered Communication and Rehumanize Your Business, Ethan Beute collects and tells stories of clearer communication, human connection, and higher conversion through simple, personal video messages. BA: University of Michigan. MBA: University of Colorado-Colorado Springs.

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