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Support A Cause

Support A Cause

The Facts
We’ve reached a point where companies can no longer, and should no longer, stay silent about broad-reaching social issues. Employees are speaking up to hold their employers accountable to their own missions, and customers are loyal to brands they believe align with their personal values, such as Zappos, Patagonia and Nike.

Spiker Insights
It’s an exciting time for consumers and employees and is also the right time for brands to be thoughtful. Supporting causes as a brand is important. You have a platform and audience that can be used for the greater good. But beware, customers can sniff out inauthenticity – greenwashing. And you will turn them away from you as fast as you wanted them to embrace you.

Brands need to find a balance between having both a positive business and social impact while also remaining genuine to their company’s values and the causes they support. Brands can’t stay silent any longer, your customers and prospects won’t permit it, and we as marketers shouldn’t be afraid to try and affect change.

Let’s be the change.

Be Non-Traditional

Be Non-Traditional

The Facts
Part of the reason many marketers and their agencies continue to produce traditional solutions to marketing problems is because they continue to use the same traditional methods of problem solving − got to have a website right away, followed by a social media campaign to drive traffic to the new site, etc.   We can’t continue to use the same methods and approaches and expect to get different results than we what got last year or the year before.

Spiker Insights
The next time you have a new project, try some of the following methods of thinking and working differently.

  1. Don’t start with the marketing, start with the product. Look for marketing opportunities in the way the brand was designed, constructed and sold.
  2. Focus on how consumers come in contact with the brand, not just how they come in contact with the marketing.
  3. Focus on what consumers do instead of what they say. Instead of just using conventional research, what kind of new and useful insights can we get by observing behavior?
  4. Develop a channel plan instead of a media plan. What channels can you use to reach consumers in ways that might be more effective than traditional media?
  5. Make the channel as relevant as the message.
  6. Don’t just optimize media, invent it.
  7. Devote creativity to how and where brand messages are delivered, not just what they say.
  8. Make every idea sticky. Get the target audience to not only pay attention, but to participate.
  9. Help not only develop the brand promise, but deliver it.
  10. Build the internal brand as well as the external brand. Internal audiences are critical to the success of the brand.

There are of course more where that came from. If you are interested in learning more of the Non-Traditional Way, send me an e-mail and I’ll get them out to you.

 

Are Your Briefs Tight Enough?

Are Your Briefs Tight Enough?

The Facts
Trying to do more marketing with less investment this year? You’re not alone in trying to do more with less money. It can be done, it’s not as hard as you may believe, but it starts with your scope of work, and a better-managed briefing process may be the answer to your marketing team. Clients want sales, fair enough, and most client direction is flat wrong. Clients think the job of the Brief is to provide a cast-in-stone solution to the sales problem.

Spiker Insights
Creativity solves problems. If we don’t have a detailed and accurate problem, we can’t be creative. So creativity starts with the problem, not the solution. If we study the greats of our industry, their successes and failures, we will find that their thinking started long before the Client Brief. Their thinking started with redefining the problem.

As Einstein said “If I had an hour to solve a problem I’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and five minutes thinking about the solution.” Because if he got the problem right, the solution would be easy, but if he got the problem wrong, there would be no solution. In other words, the real problem is to know what the real problem is.

New Age of Storytelling

New Age of Storytelling

The Facts

We all hear the word “Storytelling” in our business. It’s gotten so over used that most people can’t actually tell a story anymore. As marketers, we are all part of the ancient, campfire-born traditions − not Blazing Saddles after a plate of beans, but something more like Dances with Wolves waiting for the buffalo herds to arrive.

Spiker Insights

The ability to share stories has never been greater what with home entertainment systems bringing high-quality sound and visuals into our homes, automobiles and mobile devices. Modern audiences have a seemingly insatiable appetite for high-quality visuals, music, sound effects and the human voice (James Earl Jones, Richard Dreyfus). We in marketing have to keep pace as we fight for the audience’s attention. Not only do we as an industry carefully craft these stories, we do so often with over direction on the client’s part to use nothing but drone footage or videos with no gifted storytellers of writers and voice actors. Sure it’s cheaper, but it lacks the power of great stories and makes a difference in our customers’ lives. You’re not telling a story, you are merely showing a quick travel guide.

At our agency, we invest in real stories and in the storytellers who have a vocational desire to craft them. We are also advocates for embracing the new, the fresh, and the break-out-of-the-box sameness. Each of our stories has its own requirements, its own need to be told in a certain way. As such, a fresh idea and creative copy can help us tell it better and fresher and bring the story to life in a way only we can. As technology and the multi-platform evolution continues, we are living in an exciting new age of storytelling.