Pinterest - one simple tip to avoid faliure

If you are (or know) a stressed [business owner/brand/agency/marketer/online strategist/social media get the point] driven by the fear and panic of missing out on the next BIG thing that is the Pinterest bandwagon, today I offer you escape from failure via one simple tip.  

TIP: BEFORE you DO anything, ask yourself the question - is the brand I'm 'pinning' a lovemark? ...I suspect your answer is no/not take a look at my personal list of #lovemark brands (below) and hundreds more - curated at  lovemarkscampus

Immerse in the stories, exercise your right brain.   Have the courage to tell [yourself/Director/CEO/VP/Manager/yourself] .........why you're not doing something with Pinterest right now.  Because you've got fundamental strategic stuff to take care of first....right ?



Tortured Soul



Chocolate Sushi

Cubanitas - Milwaukee


Hong Kong - Taxis
Hong Kong - Langham Place Hotel

My Life


Manchester United

P.S. if your answer was yes....will it be tomorrow ?

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 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.


RE: Awareness vs Preference

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

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

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..

Commercial Break. We'll be right back

Watching ESPN on my iPad has led to extreme agitation and frustration, because I can't see the commercials. Yes, you heard correctly - ads are a key role in my experience.  With my changed viewing context, broadcasters, advertisers and brands need to tackle new insights in order to meet my needs.

Self  Determination
Context:  I've chosen to watch ESPN Football via my iPad app
Insight: I'm enjoying the novelty and the complete control to watch it on my terms
Need: Acknowledge me 

Context: The screen is c. 12 inches from my face, I'm not doing anything else
Insight:  I want to be entertained, I'm open to a message  
Need: Stimulate me, entertain me

Inertia and Anticipation
Context: Exiting the app is a hassle, and I don't know when the game will will restart
Insight: I feel a bit stuck, I don't want to miss the next play, I guess i will just wait for you
Need: Entertain me, reassure me

Okay so on ocassions  you get a ticker..........or a static graphic....

 Stop Press: Read more here where it was reported in April that ESPN would have the technology in August ready to serve ads ....on the iPad


its the tingle of the bubbles...

..."on my tongue and the cool blast of refreshment....Ahhh, my thirst quenched". A story that  delights me, and I want to hear when I buy a Sprite at Mcdonalds!

....By pushing the envelope beyond the norm McDonalds gained a little more attention and a hint of brand love by doing this.....
...."Its those moments I crave. My Time to indulge...." amazing how you can improve the consumer experience by using the space on the disposable cup just that little bit more creatively.... If on the other hand your focus is for that caffiene hit, well, this all might pass you by as marketing blah blah....


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