Tony Southgate of Archant’s Digital Decoded: Has your marketing changed to keep pace with your customers?

PUBLISHED: 15:16 13 September 2019 | UPDATED: 15:24 13 September 2019

Tony Southgate.

Tony Southgate.


Tony Southgate of Archant’s free Digital Decoded workshops explains how customer habits are changing – and businesses must keep up to survive.

They say business on the high street isn't easy... but why?

What is the reason? Who is to blame? What technology caused us all to stop shopping? Is it because of all the millennials? I reckon it might be hipsters... Hipsters only buy old things from charity shops... maybe that's why we have so many charity shops… hmmm.

Whether they are millennials or hipsters, people are still on the high street. I've seen them our there walking about, I assume they must be shopping as a high street is a pretty grim place for a stroll. So what is going on?

E-commerce, the internet is obviously a thing. It has obviously changed out shopping habits, but I think it has also changed our browsing habits.

Let me explain using my dad as an example.

I can remember trips to the high street with my dad in the 1980s and 90s would be all-day affairs. We would bimble along from shop to shop, looking at things and talking about what we wanted to buy and what we wanted for lunch (it was always a Wimpy).

My dad happily spent hours shopping. Move forward 30 years and my dad now shops in straight lines. My dad (in his seventies) has a plan before he hits the shops. He has already decided what he wants. He has planned where he will spend his money with military precision.

Bearing in mind my dad now moves more slowly than most glaciers, a trip to the high street rarely exceeds an hour or two.

This is because my dad has spent hours at home, online, browsing. He picked shops he found on Google, he picked businesses who had great websites where he could see the things he wanted and read all about them. He worked out the best deals and his straight line route round the high street before he left the house.

I think my dad is the answer to some of the high street's troubles... He isn't a hipster but the internet has changed his browsing habits. The businesses who have changed their marketing habits are the ones who get his money.

The businesses who haven't changed their marketing habits to keep up with my dad simply don't see him anymore.

Digital Decoded is a marketing seminar to help businesses cope with customers like my dad - they are free to attend and start next week.

The seminars will be held at two venues:

Wednesday, September 25 - The Royal Beacon Hotel, Exmouth (8.30am and 11.30am)

Thursday, September 26 - Escot Estate, Ottery St Mary (8.30am, 11.30am and 2.30am)

More information and booking at or call Tiffany Lewis on 01934 422568.

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