A campaign can give your product & service exposure, but it can’t make your business a success, only your customers can do that. If your campaign goes viral, great, but if your business or offerings aren’t as well, then the campaign was probably pointless. You want people talking about how good your product is, not how good your viral campaign was.
When you devise your company name or create it’s brand & identity, create a marketing/ advertising/ viral campaign, put on a live event or show, interact with a client or customer, you have a choice…
you can be memorable…
you can be remarkable
you could even be phenomenal…
but best of all, be unforgettable!
(for the right reasons of course!)
I caught this advert at the weekend, I thought it was wonderful… although it didn’t make me want to rush out to buy some Cravendale milk! Also worth noting is Cravendale have created an online campaign around this advert, encouraging viewers to follow them on Twitter or like their Facebook page, buts what’s telling is that they have 33,ooo Facebook fans but only 3,500 Twitter followers, or another way of saying it, is that 9 out of 10 cats with opposable thumbs prefer Facebook! (maybe I’m getting my advertising messages confused!)
you should follow me on twitter here
Getting your message across in an engaging and amusing way, especially when making fun of yourself is a great approach, the agency John St, have done just that. They’ve managed in a subtle way to show that they know what they’re talking about and how with their approach they can help future clients achieve the same results, but rather than showcasing a large campaign, they’re created a client case study of a child’s birthday party!
And of course, the proof is in the pudding, the video is itself becoming viral, genius!
I first saw this in Phil’s Unionversity site.
I saw this video on Phil’s Unionversity website yesterday and was blown away by this guys voice, the voice just doesn’t go with what you’re seeing, he’s amazing! Drugs and alcohol have taken their toll on his life and he’s fallen on hard times, but the social web has shown it’s a force for good again, as within a day or so of this video being posted on YouTube, it’s received almost 10million views and has lead to radio stations fighting over him, we’ll undoubtedly see or hear more from Ted Williams in the near future. The second video is an interview with him on the Early Show, warning, it will choke you up, but do watch it.
if you have no idea what this is about then watch the video below
Last Year I posted about the Volkswagon campaign named The Fun Theory, I just read on Digital Buzz that the campaign has since gone on to win the Cannes Cyber Grand Prix for a digitally led integrated campaign, which it won along side Nike’s “Chalk Bot” who took the award for the other digital solutions / digital channels category in the Cyber section.
The Fun Theory was all about generating interest in Volkswagen’s Blue Motion technologies that deliver the same great car performance with reduced environmental impact, and to do this, they found an insight around how “fun” could change human behavior for the better, and this formed The Fun Theory, a campaign that spawned over 700 user generated Fun Theory initiatives along with a number of big viral hits that generated over 20 million YouTube views, with one rushing past 12 million views alone!
Below is the 2009-2010 winner
No matter what you’re trying to market or sell, people buy into stories. If you want your idea to spread make it easy for others to spread it, a story or something they can be passionate about is the best way… so make it memorable, better yet, make it unforgettable.
To promote their exhibition stand at the Frankfurt Book Fair, Eichborn the publisher with the fly prepared 200 flies with an ultra light banner. The banner was attached with natural wax. After a short time the banner dropped off by itself. And the flies were not harmed.
The concept is certainly remarkable, if not unforgettable, but whether those experiencing this viral campaign remember the company name as well or just the fact that they saw flies with adverts attached to them is another question?
I first saw this on the Unionversity website
I saw this on Jodi’s Blog the other day and thought what a brilliant way of showing how approaching an issue in a new or fun way can have terrific results by engaging the user in a visceral experience (see Anne’s blog for more on that). What’s also interesting is that this is entirely a marketing exercise by Volkswagon.
more info at The Fun Theory
You have to admire Verizon’s audacity in creating this advert to try and snag AT&T customers over to their network, by playing upon Apple’s “There’s an App for That” tagline used in their iPhone & App Store adverts (in case you’ve been living in a cave for the past year, you’ll find plenty of them here).
But it’s not just Verizon that’s brand jacking Apple’s App Store advert, Pepsi have created a chat up application named “AMP UP Before You Score“… No doubt this will offend some, but that’s the whole point, they’ll get plenty of free publicity that way… anyway it’s an amusing and nicely designed iPhone app, plus it’s coded well.
Download AMP UP Before you Score
As I’m a bit of a closet statistics junkie & as these videos have been bouncing around the web for the past 2-3 years, I thought I’d compile a post with some of the best.
Did You Know? 3.0 (Official Video) -2009 Edition
Did You Know 4.0
Did You Know 4.0 (Convergence)
The Social Media Revolution Fad
Did You Know 2.0 (SHIFT 2008 Edit)
I dislike job titles (especially inflated ones), I never use one myself, your actions define what you do for a living, not your business card.
If you excel at your work, you won’t require a job title, you probably won’t need business cards either, as everyone will already know what you do & who you are, as you’ll be the person they’re talking about & respect, the person they go to when they need things done really well.
There are times you can put an inflated job title to good use, when you want something to talk about or set yourself apart from the rest of your field, Organic Fusion Engineer is a fun job title I saw on a carpenters business card, I used him because he was recommended, and I’ll always remember the work he did, but I’ll never forget his job title!
A couple of weeks ago I attended a Seth Godin presentation in London, produced by Mark Muggeridge of Evil Genius. I first heard of the event on Triiibes when Mark announced he’d been in discussions with Seth about putting on an event. Having been involved in live events myself for almost 20 years, I offered Mark my assistance in case he needed another pair of hands, which he gratefully accepted. On the day the whole thing ran like clock work, so I wasn’t really required, but I completely lucked out, as I got to spend all morning talking to Seth in the green room while he prepared his presentation & signed some books. Of course, Seth was on good form & inspirational as always.
Also here’s an archive of a webcast I did with Seth last September
Photo by Claes Gellerbrink
I was just browsing Mary McKnight’s blog at Sacrilicious Marketing when I also noticed the Pedophile Beard viral video below by Jon La Joie, I’ll be honest, I haven’t laughed out loud like that for quite some time. There’s plenty more videos on his website.
This is another good one, Show Me Your Genitals (I think you get the idea!?)
We’ve heard it so many times from clients & suppliers… “we’re customer focused… everything we do is with the customer in mind… we’re number one for our clients… you can trust us to deliver… we won’t let you down… yawn yawn etc” Then they proceed to say “But don’t take our word for it, listen to what our customers have to say” then they role out a series of amazing client testimonials which cover them in glory.
Brilliant idea, that’s what you should do, it’s what everyone else is doing so it must be a good idea, wrong, wrong, wrong! Don’t do it, as you’d be wasting your time.
If you want to encourage or build a new client / customer relationship I’m afraid there’s no quick fix, no matter how good your testimonials make you sound, we know you’ve edited out the mediocre or bad ones, you’re only revealing half the story (in fact probably only a 10%, as you’re unlikely to ask every client for a testimonial, only the ones that you already know are going to write something good about you). So testimonials won’t do it for you.
So how do you build trust, how do you get a customer to use you or trust you? The answers quite simple actually, you have to honest with them, you have to be open, but not just saying you are, you have to be truly transparent!
How? Ever used eBay? If you had two sellers selling exactly the same things, same price etc and one had a 90% “unedited” good hit rate and the other had a 100% “edited” hit rate which would you choose? My point exactly, the “unedited” completely open & honest seller.
So if you say you’re customer focused, and you put your customer first, prove it. Ask every single customer to give you honest & open customer feedback, at the end of every project ask your clients to fill in a satisfaction survey… but don’t ask them, why did you choose our product or how good was the project delivery, ask them why would they choose a competitor, what was wrong with your delivery, how could you improve it next time, what other things would they like you to offer!
But here’s the really good bit, if you’re truly customer focused, then put your money where your mouth is, put it ALL on display, hang your dirty laundry out on your website, the pristine white shirt hanging pride of place alongside your socks with the worn out heels & holes where your toes stick through. Nobody’s perfect, so don’t pretend to be. You’ll soon become focused on getting more of those white shirts on your line, that the holey socks will become a thing of the past, rather just hidden away when visitors come round.
If you can be honest with yourself, then you can truly be honest with your customers, they’ll respect you for it and over time, they’re really trust you!
If ever you needed evidence that web 2.0 is reversing the balance of power into the hands of the consumer, then check out these videos and the www.comcastmustdie.com website. I’ve posted previously how the tide is changing & how companies need to be in there engaging with their customers and protecting their brands, companies ignoring this strategy do so at their peril.
In a follow up from my “nobody reads my blog” post (which ironically is now my second most read individual post!?!?), I recently posted on the triiibes forum where a member was asking a question along the lines of “how to write a blog that someone will read?” well the answer is easy, don’t write a blog concerning things about you (as no one is honestly interested, except you of course)… write a blog about things that affect your audience or things they’re interested in, especially if your blog is to have some commercial relevance, then it needs to be focused & about your audience, not you.
I think my staff are trying to tell me something with my Secret Santa present this year!? So I thought I’d share this photo between the two or us!
Of course if they were really trying to help, they could of added my URL underneath.
At first this may appear as an irrelevant press release, but upon reflection it’s actually very telling of how media relations are changing in light of social media & web 2.0 plus the effect it’s having on the live events industry.
Although Apple appears to rely entirely on it’s website & blanket media advertising for it’s official direct marketing (although I’m sure it feeds the rumour sites from time to time), I don’t know of any social networks or any other web 2.0 services such as Twitter, Flickr etc that Apple actively uses. But it’s followers are actively using these networks themselves & spreading the word for them, so Apple doesn’t need to waste its time & effort at large live marketing events as these do not show the same direct ROI as their own small scale events & webcasts, that utilises the rumour mills and the web to focus attention which leverages the most it can from the media & press coverage.
“Apple is reaching more people in more ways than ever before, so like many companies, trade shows have become a very minor part of how Apple reaches its customers. The increasing popularity of Apple’s Retail Stores, which more than 3.5 million people visit every week, and the Apple.com website enable Apple to directly reach more than a hundred million customers around the world in innovative new ways.
Apple has been steadily scaling back on trade shows in recent years, including NAB, Macworld New York, Macworld Tokyo and Apple Expo in Paris.”
Full Apple Press Release
I got your press release, I wouldn’t change a single word… and that single word is on page 5!
Ouch! but in today’s fast paced attention grabbing media frenzy, you really have to get to the point in seconds or your reader is gone, there’s too many choices, yet too little time. Sticking your press release on your website hoping your audience will drop by & pick it up, is a waste of your time, as they won’t be dropping by, they’ll be reading what someone else has sent them directly. Plus writing a book every time is wasting their time, if they actually bother to read it that is!
Brevity is the way ahead, if the gist of your release doesn’t fit within the header of an RSS feed, you’ll get skipped over. Twitter limits you to 140 characters, but if that’s where your audience is then that’s what they want. The mobile platform is happening right now, if you’re not on it, you’re not being read.
So sending out press releases the old way isn’t cutting it anymore, you have to be pro-active to survive, you need to be opening up dialogue, and when someone does contact you, you need to respond to them directly. You need to focus on producing something they’ll want to discuss with others, and build a platform so they can!
If you’ve got something worthwhile of my time then let me read it, but don’t make me jumps through hoops to get it. Why do I have to register with your site first to get it?
ask yourself the following:
If I don’t register with you…
I’ll never know how great what you’ve written is, you had your chance but you lost it, I won’t be back.
If I register with you…
but it’s not up to scratch, sending me emails isn’t going to make any difference, your emails are just annoying me and have been relegated to my spam folder, I won’t be back.
If it’s just sitting there in the open and if it’s good!
I’ll pass it on to others and recommend they do the same, so in turn spreading the word about you.
If it’s good & I’m interested…
you don’t have to email me to remind me, I’ll be back anyway, as I want to hear more, plus I’ll probably want you to have my contact details.
So, say something worthwhile & I’ll make the decision to listen & contact you, not you.
For one answer click this link to the BBC dot.life article by Rory Cellan-Jones
It’s a good question to ask and anyone in a marketing or branding department should take note, as it’s not just gadgets that can be made or broken in this way, but services, reputations or even your brand!
There’s been a lot of press about the Obama Campaign utilising web 2.0 in the run up to the election, although it will be interesting to see if they continue to use Twitter & the likes as much after the campaign, odd’s on they don’t, but that’s a another conversation!
Social networks & web 2.0 services such as Twitter make the individual very powerful, and it doesn’t take long for an opinion or rumour to ripple out across a network, as per the Korean proverb “Whether it be a grain of sand or a rock, in water they both sink alike.” So size doesn’t matter as much anymore, what matters now is who’s talking & more crucially who’s listening. It’s important that businesses listen in on what is being said, plus essential they are actively in there themselves. Blanket marketing & advertising doesn’t work as effectively as it used to, we all place a recommendation from a colleague far higher than an anonymous advert, when the likes of Stephen Fry, whom is held in great esteem & is loved by his fans & followers (I’m one of them), gives an opinion on a product, we listen, because we trust him.
And there in lies the rub people, you have to be trusted, but trust takes time, you have to put in the effort and you have to be open & transparent in your opinions and take a genuine interest in what people are saying. You can’t fake it, Stephen Fry is no fake, he’s honest & open, plus he’s probably mortified that he has the power to make or break a gadget, but as “with great power comes great responsibility”, and I for one would trust Mr Fry with this power.
Here’s a link to Stephen Fry
In today’s 24/7 wired world of social networks, web 2.0 & mobile platforms, if you’re business is not networking then you’re not working!
Do you have a group or page on a social network such as Facebook?
Do you have a Twitter account?
Do you have a Blog?
Do you have a YouTube Channel?
Do you have an account on Get Satisfaction?
Do you run a Forum?
Do you have a mobile strategy?
Answer no to any or all of the above, then ask yourself why not? If you say it’s because you can’t afford the time or the resources, then find the time & the resources, as the cost to your business of not utilising these platforms will outweight your investment of time.
Answer yes to any of the above, great stuff… answer yes to all of them, that’s amazing! But remember simply registering in these places won’t mean anything if you’re not participating & engaging your audience on a one to one basis, plus it’s not just about getting large numbers. Having 5,000 people in your Facebook group won’t mean a thing if you’re not having direct two way communication with them.
It’s easier now more than ever for you to open dialogue & interface with your audience directly, but it’s also easier than ever for your audience to talk about you to others, you need to ensure what they’re saying showers you in a positive light. If you ignore the conversations going on, soon you won’t be in them anymore, as your audience will be talking about, and to, your competitors, and it will be very difficult to get them back!
Go on admit it, you know you jutted your lips out just then and said “mmm, mmm, mmm satis-fact-shun”
Well maybe you can now… if you have a niggle about something, or want to ask the guys that actually make the products you’re using, check out Get Satisfaction
What better way is there for a company to improve it’s products or services or head off disasters before they happen, than to take part in open discussions directly with their client base. Years ago you’d have paid a research company £,000’s to poll your customers, now you can do it online for pennies! Putting your dirty laundary on display by being transparent & open is the only way to ensure your customer loyalty and build their trust. But you have to become engaged, fobbing them off with pre-written FAQ’s won’t do it, invest your time to engage with them directly, as you’ll earn their respect & gain a follower for life in the process.
Well, basically it depends how much you want to spend… simply put you pay for marketing, while publicity is free! well free as far as you don’t give anyone any money, but of course it doesn’t just happen on it’s own, you’ve got to invest the time & effort, but it’s probably more fruitful than blanket marketing & advertising.
Invest your time building a dialogue with your audience, leverage social media sites & the web 2.0 revolution, find out what it is they want and give it to them. Don’t waste you time developing products then spend the rest of your time looking for an audience, invest your time in building your audience base, build a rapport with them, then develop products and services they want, stuff they will wax lyrical about to everyone else, thus in turn increasing your market share and exposure.
These early adopters become your publicity channel, continue creating products they want and they will continue spreading the message, focus on them, not the wider market, as they’re do your marketing for you, for free!