Thirty-five years ago, things were radically different in the marketing industry.

Thirty-five years ago there were no free marketing tools like Facebook and Google+. Thirty-five years ago business owners couldn’t pin digital images to an online board for the rest of the world to see and to follow. They couldn’t tweet in real time to customers about their newest sales or about the latest hot item selling off their store shelves.

Thirty-five years ago, the marketing industry was a prehistoric dinosaur — rumbling along randomly and making an impact only where it chose to set down a gigantic, lumbering foot. It was limited to a single geographic location, and to know it was there, you had to either run right up on it or hear the noises it made as it shuffled along in the dark. Sometimes it chased you, and occasionally, you got a nice taste of a tooth or a claw. For the most part, the lumbering giant stood still and made a lot of noise. If you weren’t standing in the right forest, you never even knew it was there.

Thankfully, the days of the dinosaurs are gone. Business and organizations now have limitless tools at their disposal to assist in marketing their particular goods and services — tools that have the capacity to reach around the world in less time than it takes to turn and say hello to the person sitting beside you:

1. Social Media — Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, and more. They’re free! Thirty-five years ago we didn’t even image to connect with countless thousands of people in just seconds. Needless to say, conceiving marketing to audiences across the globe was unheard off!

2. Internet – Back thirty-five years ago online was just taboo and the idea of moving from brick-and-mortar to online was the most ridiculous thing in business. Now, it represents the way we communicate, market and launch new ideas, trends and products. Who would’ve thought thirty-five years ago that this is today’s reality?

3. Mobile — Like it or not, the 21st Century is the era of mobile devices. Imprinting marketing materials with QR codes that point you to Websites, apps that intimately connect you with brands, advertising opportunities on your cell phone, the list goes on. Back thirty-five years ago, a cell phone was just a phone that only the wealthy had access to. Now is a way of life, it’s a necessity.

4. Email Campaigns – Thirty-five years ago, email was only for businesses and higher education for internal communications. The trend “Snail mail is out, email is in” opened a door new to market to a vast amount of people and better yet personalize. Nowadays, even though email is still a viable channel of communication, it is slowing down and being ran over the social channels. Who would have thought?

5. Big Data – From retargeting to complex marketing segmentations, big data made the way for the Marketing Scientist. Technology opened opportunities to analyze the immense data that the Internet produces daily. What an interesting problem to have, no? Thirty-five years ago our data analytics were centered on tabulating direct mail responses. We’ve come a long way!

This year marks the 35th anniversary of the American Marketing Association Chapter of Central Florida. Through these past years, marketing professionals have shared their fair share of marketing best practices at our chapter and educated our members on the next best thing. We’re celebrating over three decades of tremendous growth and innovation within the marketing industry, and we’d like to invite you along for the ride as we embark on another thirty-five years of unlimited possibilities.

As you can see, thirty-five years may not sound like a lot; but, a lot has happened in the marketing world. Together as fellow marketers, we can prepare ourselves for the exciting and dynamic marketing world moving forward.

Join us in the celebration!