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The Next Evolution of Marketing: Connect with Your Customers by Marketing with Meaning Hardcover – 1 Oct 2009

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"With solid credentials supporting him (as chief marketing strategist at Bridge Worldwide, a large advertising agency), Gilbreath lays out his ideas about a marketing strategy he calls 'meaningful marketing.' He defines meaningful marketing as the 'marketing itself add[ing] value to peoples’ lives.' Insisting that traditional marketing is now out-of-date because the consuming public has grown sophisticated in avoiding regular marketing strategies ('Most traditional advertising is meaningless,' he says), he is a great proponent of marketing that offers consumers actual things to put to practical use, which then, in turn, makes the best advertising for the company that is supplying those services. He cites the 'best historical example' of marketing with meaning as the Michelin tire company, which, way back when, produced the first-ever car-travel guide to France. From there Gilbreath presents, essentially, a how to: outlining a model for developing meaningful marketing and then explaining, with many useful case examples, how it can be tailored to any company, large or small. An essential addition to comprehensive business collections." --Brad Hooper, Booklist (Booklist 2009-09-14)

About the Author

Bob Gilbreath is chief marketing strategistat Bridge Worldwide, one of the largest globaldigital ad agencies. He has worked withsome of the world’s largest marketers,including Procter & Gamble, Johnson &Johnson, Anheuser-Busch, and Ford. Hecurrently leads digital strategy work for clientssuch as Kroger, Abbott, Luxottica, andConAgra Foods. Bob was recognized by AdvertisingAge as one of the Top 50 Marketersof 2004. Bridge Worldwide headquarters arelocated in Cincinnati, Ohio.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars 26 reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Clear Vision plus Actionable Advice 18 Jan. 2010
By Jason Deal - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For progressive marketers and their advisers anxiously monitoring the tectonic shifts in consumer media consumption and the degrading performance of their traditional marketing strategies, this book does a great job of landing the conceptual plane described by today's media and marketing thought leaders such as Godin, Garfield, and those Punk Marketing guys. Traditional media isn't dead, but over the coming years it will become increasingly important for brands to create value with their actual marketing efforts. The web design guys have known this since the browser took off and the notion of user-centered design took's not about getting the message pushed out, but about creating unique value to help consumers achieve their goals and attracting consumers to the brand through this value creation effort. Bob's book builds the scenario clearly, provides a vision for a new model through interesting case studies, and provides well-considered guidance on how to make this turn happen starting with your next project or campaign. While the marketing services industry debates its future in these tumultuous times, I believe this book also provides a template for the future agency's the "add agency". Highly recommended.

5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Inspiration 11 May 2010
By E. Jurkovic - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As a recent college grad trying to get into the advertising industry, this book got me excited to work in the field that is going through so much change right now. The bottom line of this book explains how the old model of "tell and sell" advertising is basically dead. Mass media is falling apart and basic advertising that interrupts our daily lives is simply not working as a business model.

With the consumer now having so much power and the ability to interact with her brand, companies HAVE to adapt and provide incredible relationship value with consumers. That is exactly what the book explores with countless examples to back it up.

Most argue that advertising is slowly dying but those optimistic ones out there, like Bob here, know that it is simply changing for the better and I don't think I would want to get into the industry at any other time.

Read this book if you want to do anything at all related to marketing/advertising/sales.
5.0 out of 5 stars Timely, solid info. that is very useful - Highly recommended 14 Nov. 2009
By The Marketing Guy Who Drives Sales -r - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Bob Gilbreath has created a wonderful resource with this book in which he talks about the current state of marketing and how things are changing. Unlike far too many other books on the subject, Gilbreath actually talks about how things are different and then he goes on to explain *how to respond accordingly* and how to adjust your marketing efforts to best take advantage of the new social, interactive environment and all the new ways of reaching your target market.

Gilbreath obviously has a rich background in branding and marketing, has been in the trenches and understands the importance of tying marketing efforts to actual sales performance. It is this connection from marketing investment to impact on sales that I find inspiring and puts this book several notches above most other books that merely preach about new media marketing from a theoretical point of view.

Loaded with current case studies this book lets you know how to change your marketing to get results in this new media landscape and does so with plenty of authority so you know it isn't just theoretical advice. This man has done it and knows what he is talking about. You will gain confidence in knowing this book provides a blueprint on how to connect with customers in this new marketing environment where customers are increasingly rejecting traditional methods of marketing, branding and advertising.

Ignore this work at your own peril. This book is a masterpiece and belongs on every marketer's bookshelf.

--Review by the author of the e-book, "How to Build and Manage Your Brand (in sickness and in health)."
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the very few marketing books that make sense. 30 Nov. 2009
By George Parker - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I must say that when asked to review Bob Gilbreath's book, The Next Evolution of Marketing, I was somewhat reluctant. Probably because I expected it to be yet another of those marketing potboilers lining the shelves of America's bookstores, either sporting such esoteric titles as The Twelve Immutable Marketing Secrets of the Kalahari Nomads, or words of wisdom from some gnarly old retired captain of industry, probably ghost written by his latest trophy wife.

Fortunately, Bob's book is neither. For a start, he isn't gnarly, he isn't even retired. He's still working at a large global digital ad agency, which he does rather obviously promote the crap out of at every opportunity. Remember Bob, push is passé. However, to his credit, when he does do this, he ties it in to a specific, provable benefit his company has brought to both client and consumer.

Described by other reviewers as the next step beyond "Permission Marketing," Bob's central thesis is that because customers are increasingly being bombarded with advertising messages which they are choosing to ignore, we now have to create "Marketing with Meaning." I wholeheartedly agree, but with one caveat... There is nothing new about this situation, customers have always been bombarded with marketing messages, it's just that now, the volume has exponentially increased and potential customers have many more ways to tune you out. Therefore, Bob's words acquire even more relevancy.

In the first half of the book, Bob gives many, many (way too many), examples and case studies of companies who have taken a different tack in marketing their products and services to existing and potential customers. All good worthwhile stuff, particularly as he shows the concrete results of their efforts rather than the usual BDA (Big Dumb Agency) soporific... "We increased brand awareness." Personally, I think the number of examples is overkill, but I am sure all the MBA's out there will lap it up and create hundreds and hundreds of Power Point slides from the information.

The second half is a guide to implementing Bob's "Marketing with Meaning" premise into a company's marketing program. As with all good ideas, this is in reality, simple and logical. Something most large organizations seem to have a problem grasping. Think Cisco with its 47 "Action Committees" each with dozens of middle managers. Then compare it Rockefeller's Standard Oil at the height of its power. He had eleven managers. Bob does an excellent job of boiling everything you need to know down into four succinct and meaningful steps. Bravo Bob, but you'll never get a job at Cisco.

If you are pressed for time, take Bob's advice in Chapter six... "Start at the end."
The final five chapters are solid gold. The whole book reminds me of famous dead ad man Howard Gossage, who said forty years ago... "People don't read advertising, they read what interests them. Sometimes, that's advertising."

The Next Evolution of Marketing, Has lots of good stuff, I highly recommend it.

Now go buy my last book. Cheers/George
The Ubiquitous Persuaders
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Insights, Timely, Relevant, A must read 18 Nov. 2009
By John Chancellor - Published on
Format: Hardcover
You only need to look at your personal behavior of ignoring commercials to understand that conventional interruption advertising no longer works. We have all become quite adept at tuning out advertising/marketing efforts. The average person is bombarded with some 3,000 messages per day - so in self-defense we have learned how to guard our attention.

The concepts of this book are based on the truth that our attention has become our most precious asset. Everyone I know suffers from excess demands on their attention. Therefore we have become very guarded about who and where we give our attention. "Consumers trade attention for value." We are no longer willing to listen/watch advertisement unless we believe we are gaining some value in return.

The best example of meaningful marketing is Google. "Because it is revolutionizing the advertising and marketing business by providing a service that people find valuable, Google is considered the most valuable brand in the world today, even though it spends almost nothing on advertising."

The book is divided into two parts. Part one answers the questions: What is marketing with meaning? It goes into great detail why traditional marketing is meaningless and therefore rapidly becoming ineffective. "Meaningful marketers never push, they invite prospective customers in by creating marketing that appeals to the higher unmet needs in their overall lives."

Then there is a discussion of what marketing with meaning can do for a business. Bob Gilbreath says that marketing with meaning follows a hierarchy of consumer needs. The first level of marketing with meaning is providing meaningful solutions, the second level is providing meaningful connections and the highest level is providing meaningful achievements.

There are numerous examples of highly successful marketing campaigns in each section. The examples covers a wide variety of products/services and sizes of businesses.

Part two of the book is a detailed outline for anyone to implement the concepts of this book in their own business. Again, there plenty of examples of successful implementations.

Does it work? According to Gilbreath, "Not only have we never seen a major meaningful marketing effort fail to pay off, but with the rising cost and failing results of traditional mass media, you may have no other choice."

The book is well written and easy to read. The concepts and insights are remarkable. You will totally understand that to compete in our rapidly changing world, you must adapt to meet the prospect. There are dozens of examples of companies that have used the internet to build meaningful marketing campaigns much faster and less expensively than traditional marketing.

As a final note Gilbreath discusses the way society views marketers - on the lower end of the scale. He says, "By creating marketing that people choose to engage with, and that itself improves people's lives, we are reaching the highest level of personal success."

So not only will the marketing work better, the marketers will find higher meaning in life.

This is a very important work. I believe it brings very high value to anyone involved in marketing their business.

It is the next evolution of marketing.
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