Consumer Centric + Design Thinking is a mandate


I’m a huge fan of Marketing magazine, so clicking on a Twitter link to a piece on the London 2012 Paralympics, I expected to see the article in full (on my Iphone).  I don’t object to paywalls – but how about this for design/choice complexity! 



The inclusion of sister publications (PR Week, Campaign), and a multi-choice maze doesn’t work well on a smart phone.  I have to admit to becoming a regular  ‘consumer’  and was left feeling overwhelmed, confused and frustrated – and  compelled to CLOSE the page.   

Its another reminder that consumer-centric design thinking must be enshrined through each and every brand touchpoint.  P.s. here's a link to the official games website.




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Open Letter to Drew Brees (Lifetime Value vs ROI)




The New Orleans Saints  vs Drew Brees contract negotiation is a perfect metaphor for my frustration with marketing right now. This post is a rally call for marketers and brands to work on Lifetime Value instead of ROI.

The ROI limitation 
As Brees’ current $60M/6 yr contract ends, both sides are at an impasse because of a $6.25M overspend on the NEW contract.  Let’s look at the latest numbers reported by ESPN:
  • Brees demand:   $20.5M X 5 yrs  =  $102.5M
  • Saints offer: $19.25M X 5 yrs = $96.25M 

I’ve been here before, and I know right now that  no President, CEO, CFO, CMO would entertain a marketing plan to ‘overspend’  by 6%, (and if you were having a really bad day could trigger a request for  a 6% underspend!). So here’s an innovation for Brees....combine contracts, current ($60M)  + new ($102.5M) AND change the story:

Lifetime Value Rocks!
  1. Brees should reframe his discussion as LIFETIME VALUE, and use different language.  He MUST avoid referencing ‘current’ or ‘new’ contracts .  These contracts do not impact what he delivers to the Saints.  
  2. He needs to go in right now and TELL THE STORY that he’s only asking for $14.8M a year.  
  3. He should use these words in every statement “My lifetime playing and leadership value to the Saints is $162.5M over 11 years”. 
The lifetime value story is TRUE.  Marketers must be brave enough to tell this story about their strategies and plans. Those that do will be seen as leaders, and marketing will be rewarded as a respected growth driver for the business…..

Those that don’t, well you know who you are. Enjoy fighting with your ROI tools that still wont make the calculation work for you!



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The Art of Marketing (#TAOM) - Quotes that provoke ACTION


I get it.

You’re too busy to read a full recap of what the speakers had to say at the art of Marketing Chicago conference today.

So… here are 10 bite sized quotes that provoke action:  my notes and via Twitter #TAOM.

Why Marketers should be artists
1. "commodity is just a marketer that has given up"  - Seth Godin
2. "competence is no longer a scarce commodity" - Seth Godin   

What consumers want
3. "…we use our wealth to get weirder, we use wealth to be more like ourselves" -  Seth Godin
4. (pt 1) "Give a shit first, then maybe consumers will be interested in you”  
5. (pt 2) "..yes and they [customers] talk back now, we have to respect that via good cop marketing" – Gary Vaynerchuk

Leadership in 2012  
6. "lead with generosity, intimacy, candor and accountability" -  Keith Ferrazzi
7. It's Critical to shift from "Stumbling into intimacy" to a relationship strategy. Consider what are you ‘selling’ vs what people are ‘buying’ -  "Ask how can I serve you" - Keith Ferrazzi
8. "Do exactly what I tell you" is the 'Factory' model that no longer works – Seth Godin

Digital stuff…….  
 9. all a ‘bounce rate’ tells you is that "I came, I puked, and then left" - Avinash Kaushik
10. "do you work on a brand that has the right to be on the home page of your smart phone ?” -  Mitch Joel

P.S. Im saving @avinash’s salacious quotes for a deep dive post, and will leave you with the thought, that a book calledPuke.Boom.Orgasm.Awesome is in his destiny.




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The surest way to get people talking

When have you been positively surprised by a brand ? What was the situation ? Why were you surprised ? What did the brand do so well ? I posed this question on Linked In and here's one of my favourite responses -  from Rashi Mittal today:

"Extensive Psychological Research Studies show that 'Surprise' is actually one of the 'strongest' and most 'surest' ways to get people 'talking'. Schemas is the scientific term used for the way that we understand the world. Whenever a 'schema' is broken, people are likely to talk about it. (eg. when a plane lands in water, when a girl wins a hand-fight with a boy and so on.). I'm not even surprised that a discussion on 'how have brands surprised you' has led to so many more answers on linked in, than most average questions. :)

In any case, my favourite of the most recent ones has to be Benetton's Unhate campaign. A lot of positive energy. Breaks schemas like no other campaign in recent times. A conversation-starter like no-other. Viral Marketing at its best?".

here's my email to Rashi:

"Thanks for helping me with your answer. I wanted to re-open this question in 2012 to see how people would respond, and which brands could be part of the conversation.

You rightly made me exercise my 'left' brain, and I'm going to dig up my Psychology books - for a timely refresher on some of the basics of human cognition, perception, and behaviour. I'm intrigued to see if Benetton can build momentum on their campaign and continue to stay part of the conversation and become relevant.

By the way, I love your concept of brandripples.com Its such a great universal metaphor; simple to understand and has that little piece of magic - by being able to visualise its meaning when hearing the name ! Love it."

What are your thoughts ? Join the conversation, get talking and share your answer on Linked In here.

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RE: Awareness vs Preference

I exchanged the following email with a former colleague....agree ? Let me know..

Colleague:
Awareness vs preference campaign - "Do you have a good definition? I am confused, in need of some good advice"

Me:
Hi, it could be semantics [of the client] or a true ask so I suggest to use a tried and tested model of advertising.

Awareness will drive recognition/attention - if you are a brand that wants to get people to know you or what you do that's fine but it doesn't pay the bills.

Preference would be an activity that gets people to choose your brand, or at least have the brand  amongst a considered set of competitors.

Hence in the AIDA model (Awareness, Interest, Desire, Action) - Awareness is the first step, with preference between Desire and Action.

So in summary, I don't think anybody really wants a brand preference campaign,  they want a Brand Action campaign with metrics that clearly deliver against the need of the client.

I would align a definition of what success looks like before doing anything - that way you will know if   million facebook fans is success or increasing sales by $10,000 per quarter... Hope this helps..


Re: HxHxH = #Lovemark - an apology

I put this idea out without a good explanation...Better now ?


  • H1 = Head: its what you THINK about a brand or collection of brands, perhaps interested and aware of some more than others. This is dangerous territory for a brand - as on the journey to a choice the consumer can easily be swayed by logic, price, time, convenience, competition,out of stocks, bad service..... and all other sorts of everyday distraction. 
  • H2  = Heart: its how you FEEL  about a brand...a huge step forward, because this is where you find the brands you love, those you simply cant live without...and lead you to.....
  • H3 = Hands: its what you DO with your... money/wallet/purse/credit card/time/attention... And because your so loyal you cant really explain why you do what you do, you can't justify why you upgraded to the new IPhone model, why you have the ltd edition version of the coffee maker, why you payed $150 to see Sade. 3 nights in a row !....Well not in a rational way........Those, unfortunately are symptoms of a #Lovemark as defined by Kevin Roberts work at Lovemarkscampus.com

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