Last month, you may have heard of a tiny little event called SXSW which took place in Austin, Texas. Well, that statement may have been true ten years ago but not today. Everyone on the planet has heard of, if not been to, SXSW.
It's no surprise that brands, beginning in 2010 or so, took note of the event's popularity and began their ever-expanding presence at the event. Some took a distaste to this expansion into a territory deemed by some as sacred and only worthy of attendance by geeks, coders, bloggers and the like. Others embraced the inevitable change and rolled with it.
This year, as with recent prior years, brands had a large presence at SXSW. But it's not just presence we see anymore. It's active participation social media to extend the brand's presence beyond attendees to the greater world at large. In addition to organic and paid efforts, many brands employ the proverbial social media influencer to aid in that effort.
Anyone in marketing knows that authenticity is the name of the game if you want powerful campaigns. Well, there is nothing more authentic than real "uber fans" who promote your brand to their community simply because they love it. What could be better?
The only problem is brands often have difficulty finding those super fans, and identifying those with real reach. Crowdly, a Boston-based advocacy marketing platform, has figured out how to connect brands with their biggest advocates, and in stoking that relationship create potent advertising: according to Neilsen, 92% of consumers will believe their friends and family's recommendations over any others.
On my recent trip to SXSW, I was able to speak with Doris Shu, Crowdly's business development expert. She gave me the low-down on how advocacy marketing has worked for Crowdly, and how other brands can follow suit.
First uploaded in July of 2011, this super strange faux PSA of sorts has amassed almost 26 million views to date. Supposedly it's some sort of anti-drug effort. But, all it seems to do is encourage strung out guys to have their way with a collection of super-hot pink underwear-glad bunny girls who, well, turn out to be something entirely different.
In early December, Expedia, Inc. held their annual Partner Conference in Las Vegas where the entire travel industry (or at least those who use Expedia properties which is, like, everyone) gathered to learn the latest and greatest about travel strategies and Expedia offerings.
Part of the conference focused on the offerings from the Expedia Media Solutions group which, in essence, is like a giant ad network for any brand interested in reaching travel demographics. Expedia Inc. owns Expedia, Travelocity, Hotels.com, Orbitz, Hotwire, Trivago and several others. In other words, it's basically everything except booking.com and Kayak. So, yea, if you're a brand looking to tap anything in the travel space, you'll likely be working with Expedia.
A Christmas print ad for the retailer shows an image of a woman and a man with a very questionable headline between them. The headline reads, "Spike your best friend's eggnog when they're not looking."
You would think after all these years we would have moved past the point were brands make egregious lapses in judgement knowing full well the wrath of social media outrage will rain down upon them like a ton of bricks. But, apparently, no.
A Philippine bank, BDO Unibank has apologized for an ad it ran which made light of environmental issues. In the ad, which carries the headline "Save the environment or save up to see places," a man can be seen holding a sign that reads, "Stop deforestation" behind a woman who is enjoying her travels. The word "or" is placed between the two.
In today's competitive business environment, most advertising agencies are using data analytics to hone their clients' campaign strategies and to improve their job of targeting, tracking, and engaging customers.
With mobile commerce growing at an annual rate of 42 percent, and with one-third of online shoppers making at least one purchase via smartphone over the last 12 months (and 20 percent via tablet), marketers that ignore mobile analytics are doing themselves a major disservice. The same goes for social, where tracking, measuring, and engaging consumers via sites like Facebook and Twitter is absolutely crucial.
OK so the entire world of marketing has been wetting its pants over social media and content marketing the last few years but what about that old fashion - yet, incredibly important -- thing called a website? Have you dusted it for cobwebs lately?
And after all that time and money you spend on social media and content marketing, it's still the website -- or the most part -- where all the action you care about -- sign ups, sales, etc. -- occurs. So if your website is still a piece of annoying Flashturbation or, worse, not supporting your omnichannel efforts, you might as well go unearth that Geocities version of your website from back in the day.
Here's a few tenets of a well oiled website. Maybe you know all this stuff. Maybe you've forgotten. And, hey, we all get busy and can use a good, swift reminder from time to time.
Jared Fogle, the man that taught America it was possible to lose more than 200 pounds eating subway sandwiches, has been charged with possessing child pornography and is reportedly planning to plead guilty.
Fogle was also the leading spokesperson for Subway for 15 years and contributed to nearly half of Subway's growth.
As the news of Fogle's charges became a reality, Subway quickly cut ties with their former spokesperson.
Here are 4 things brands can learn from Subway's recent crisis.
As a startup, you may not be able to afford a full-time, dedicated PR team quite yet, so you opt for contractors, outsourced agencies, or part-time PR pros. There is some great ad-hoc talent out there that you can add into the startup mix, but just be sure that you start with careful planning first.
There are many ways to cut corners for a tighter startup budget, but starting with PR fat trimming shouldn't be one of them. Without a great PR strategy and team, a business has a higher chance of failing because potential customers and investors won't see what's so great about your goods or services. The PR strategy is essential for targeting and understanding your audience, studying the competition, and crafting the most relevant campaign messaging.
In a valiant effort to illustrate the frustrating drama associated with the mundane task of downloading or buffering something off the internet with your smartphone, Del Campo Saatchi & Saatchi & Saatchi Buenos Aires has crafted a magical piece of creative.
Likening the frustration of watching the dreaded progress bar -- in this spot represented by YouTube red -- to being chased by all manner of horror such as an angry mob, a speeding locomotive, a swarm of bees and an army of rugby players, Del Campo gleefully, and in dramatic slow motion, perfectly represents the maddening practice of waiting for something to download on a slow connection.