What's Next For Marketing?

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**Who isn’t fascinated with where the world is going?**
In this day and age, the most paranoid amongst us (yes, I’m talking to you!) have to watch both our backs… and our fronts. The competition is everywhere… and the competition is anywhere. Take a cold hard look at your next door neighbour’s garage this coming week, because it is more than likely that your industry’s next massive disruption is happening in an environment that looks just like that. Only the paranoid survive, as they say. But, we’re at that time of year, when the topics of discourse – in print and online – not only look back at what happened in 2014, but look into what the next year (or decade) will bring.
**Framing the future.**
How do you feel about the myriad of articles that are plowing into your newsfeeds over the past few weeks that have some variation on the topic of “what’s next?” It’s my job to see, think, do and care (thanks, [Avinash Kaushik](http://www.kaushik.net “Avinash Kaushik”). It’s my job to care. It’s my responsibility to study, understand and direct this copious amount of thought leadership, and distill it down into something reasonable and actionable. With that, I can’t help but realize that what’s next is not where the attention needs to be paid for marketers. Sure, take a glance at wearable technology. Yes, virtual reality seems like it’s getting closer and closer to being something more. Everyone is still talking up robots and augmented reality. The future is upon us. Is this relevant for brands? Probably. But, we have a lot more work to do on the home front before we can seriously worry about the horizon at this point.
While presenting at the [HubSpot](http://www.hubspot.com “HubSpot”)’s [Inbound marketing summit](http://www.inbound.com/ “Inbound”) this past year, my close friend, [Christopher S. Penn](http://www.christopherspenn.com/ “Christophe S Penn”) from [Shift Communications](http://www.shiftcomm.com/ “Shift Communications”) asked me to discuss the future of marketing at the [FutureM](http://futurem.org/ “FutureM”) event (which was taking place at the same time). For me, the future, really is today for marketers… and it’s ours to lose.
**Here’s why…**