How the Internet Has Changed Business — A Retrospective with Jesse Willms

These days, it’s hard to go a day without heavily interacting with the internet. The revolutionary technology touches practically every aspect of our lives and it has profoundly changed the face of the modern world. This is especially apparent in the world of business, where the technology has a massive impact on the way commerce is conducted. To explore this idea further, we’ve looked to the example set by Jesse Willms, a well-known e-commerce entrepreneur. Through exploring his work, as well as additional examples, we can gain a better idea of how the internet has made its mark on the field of business and the wider world.

Jesse Willms Leverages the Internet in Marketing

Perhaps one of the effects of the internet that’s most  readily apparent is the impact it’s made on the way products and services are marketed. In times gone by, marketing was typically a broadcasting effort. Advertisements or other marketing materials were created for tv, radio, and print, and they were then pushed out into the world to try and gain as broad an audience as possible. Since it was difficult to gain feedback concerning who these materials were reaching, it was often difficult to target advertising in an effective manner. The closest that a marketing professional could often come was to seek outlets with an audience that overlapped with their target customer base, and then broadcast messaging through that medium.

The internet, however, has revolutionized the field of marketing and has turned the concept of broadcasting advertisements on its head. this is apparent in the work of Jesse Willms, who first gained prominence for his efforts in e-commerce marketing. In those efforts, he was one of the first individuals to effectively use search engine-based marketing strategies to help target a message. Rather than just sending marketing materials into the world with no idea of their effectiveness, he helped showcase an avenue that could determine existing purchasing preferences for customers and then help to present them with goods and services that would be of most interest to them. In this way, he was able to connect consumers with useful products in a new and innovative manner.

Increasing Access to Data

The revolution in marketing methods has also reflected back on another fundamental change that has been spurred by the creation of the internet — increased access to data. The broadcasting methodology for traditional marketing methods highlighted above was largely put in place because it was often difficult to get actionable data about consumer habits. There simply wasn’t a way to see how an individual interacted with a piece of marketing copy in, say, a newspaper without being present with them to watch as they read it. This presented a problem whereby marketers and other business professionals were relying primarily on educated guesses to inform their business decisions. This is a difficult way to conduct business since one is often unsure of whether or not their efforts are actually having a meaningful positive impact.

With the advent of the internet, however, access to data increased by leaps and bounds. Marketers and other business professionals now had access to entire suites of tools that could help inform how a consumer was interacting with marketing copy and even what additional actions they were taking after they viewed a particular advertisement. This not only helped marketers produce more effective advertisements, it helped business professionals across multiple different positions better understand how to do their jobs more effectively.

Jesse Willms on the Power of Social Media

When one thinks of the internet these days, much of that exercise is often focused on one prominent subset of the technology — social media. Social media has become such a powerful influence on the modern world that many people utilize the technology daily, providing it with an unprecedented ability to influence our actions and steer the course of modern society. It has become a primary repository for news, opinions, social movement, and business. This centralized aspect of the technology has empowered users with a greater degree of access to information and communication and it has also empowered businesses with a greater ability to promote themselves and stay connected with customers.

Jesse Willms has spoken extensively about the power of social media in business and how the technology can be leveraged by forward-thinking business leaders. Much of this work has focused on the modern marketing shift from a broadcasting model to a model that is more focused on a back-and-forth dialogue. Such a shift has the power to inform product innovation as well as marketing decisions. This is evident in the e-commerce leader’s latest business initiative, a network of sites providing free vehicle history reports. The initiative was born, in part, out of research he conducted on social media that helped inform him as to emerging trends and needs in consumer markets.

Leveraging the Internet for Education

Another aspect of the internet that has become an intrinsic part of modern society has been the manner in which it increases access to education. With much of the world’s information living on the internet in various forms, there has never been another resource that has held so much potential to increase a person’s knowledge levels. This can be done through formalized online classes, one on one interactions, or through independent study. Whatever the method used to bolster one’s level of education, the result has a heavy impact on the field of business, where knowledge often correlates with a person’s ability to find success. This is a truism that has been seen over and over throughout business history and continues to be the case as access to education spreads across the modern world.

The internet has become so ubiquitous that it’s often difficult to be aware of the outsized impact it has on various aspects of our daily lives. This is especially true in business, a field that has fundamentally changed over the years since the popularization of the internet. We see this reflected quite vividly in the work of Jesse Willms, who has built a thriving career off of his ability to leverage the internet to aid consumers in their purchasing pursuits. The above retrospective on this field not only helps to inform on how the technology has made its impact, but also helps to showcase how business professionals may continue to leverage that impact moving forward.

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