You are currently browsing articles tagged tactics-palooza.
A growing industry is taking hold in the marketing world fueled by one-off new media helpers. Packaged as consultants, they offer social media, website, email marketing and online advertising tactics to those interested in spicing up marketing returns. Check your Twitter feed for 140 character posts that contain primary numbers such as “7 steps to, 5 surefire rules, 3 critical digital mistakes…” to easily identify these tactical helpers. People crave this stuff and it sells.
But I giggle at these tactically focused sales pitches. Tactics-palooza only works if the basic groundwork of brand strategy is set. Brand strategy must be in place for any tactic to be maximized. It’s my experience, especially with mid-size companies, that this is just not happening. Mid-size and small businesses are studying content marketing, mobile ad buys, Google AdWords, responsive design and the like, without understanding how best to position their companies for maximum result.
It’s a tactical shit show. A shiny, not-so-new thing that has captured marketing dollars with little, if any, effectiveness. It’s ingredient buying without the recipe.
Tags: Brand Strategy, tactical shit show, tactics-palooza, twitter marketing, whats the idea, whatstheidea
Brand planning is going to be huge. Brand plan is an organizing principle for product and messaging and the need for it is growing exponentially as we turn brands over to the Web…and to consumers. This came to me after driving home from Higbie Bagel Saturday morning listening to a “Coors Light Night Rules” radio promotion. “Send us your night rules” the spot asked. Coors is asking people to sign up on their website and enter a fun idea about evening drinking behavior. Oooh. Tactics-palooza. Do it on the Facebook page, I’m sure, and all-the-better.
Coors Light has fallen into a cycle of promotions that is watering down (pun) brand meaning by using by non-endemic brand values and it is confusing consumers. When everything is a promotion, game, or boutique campaign, the brand loses essential meaning. And web and digital agencies, left unmanaged, are contributing to this fast twitch, near term brand mixology.
I was reading a recipe recently for a chicken dish. There were so many spices in the dish it lost its taste focus. Like adding too many paint colors and coming up with brown. The mixology of brands needs to be well thought out, simple, compelling and most importantly managed. Think Steve Jobs.
The soap box is yours. Peace!
Tags: brand mixology, brand plan tips, Brand Planning, coors light, facebook promotions, higbie bagel, Night Rules, organizing principle, steve jobs, tactics-palooza, whats the idea, whatstheidea
Ideas are hard to trust. Tangible things like design, ads, copy, promotion, and user experience are easier to trust. You can see them, ask your friends about them, test them. “I love that logo. That ad brought in 100 new customers. My email campaign had a 1.25% click through rate.”
But ideas? You can’t scientifically parse and evaluate an idea. Brand strategies are ideas. Volvo makes you safer. Coca Cola refeshes. Cottonelle is softer. These brand strategies, like all good ones, are indelible. I’ve written a great deal about ROS or return on strategy. So far, ROS is just an idea. Though one can calculate ROI ( return on investment/tactic), return on strategy is much harder to calculate. Why? Because ROS tries to understand the value of an idea. When I sell “rebooting the phone business” to a VOIP client along with 3 organizing principles to support the claim, I’m selling an idea. This idea might be measured in year over year sales, but on paper, how it is dimensionalized and quantified is not easy. (I still have work to do.)
Because ideas are easy to understand but harder to trust, branding has lost ground in today’s marketing world. I joke that digital has created tactics-palooza and it’s true. The best brands are idea-driven. Tight ideas and tight supports. Ideas create new products. Ideas motivate armies. Ideas make you happy or sad.
Ideas are hard to sell but the top tier CMOs get them. And live them. What’s your brand’s idea? Peace.
Tags: Advertising, Brand Strategy, cmo, coca cola, cottonelle, email marketing, Ideas, ideas are hard to trust, return on strategy, roi, ros, tactics-palooza, trust., voip, Volvo, whats the idea, whatstheidea
In a Forbes interview with David Eastman, CEO, JWT North America, he speaks of his shop’s unique place in history. Of course, some of it was the same old/same old, which made sense for the audience, but what really stuck out was JWT’s commitment to integrating digital into its offering. Mr. Eastman may be the first digital officer to CEO a major holding company ad shop.
For a big global shop like JWT, digital is really the R&D department. R&D never really existed at agencies before. Sure, there were innovations think tanks and media kitchens but those were mostly window dressing. Eastman believes R&D is an investment not an expense and because JWT hangs with major consumer brands and has a strong brand planning culture, everyone gets the value of a powerful brand idea and everyone gets a seat at the table. This R&D department isn’t off campus in a lab somewhere. Even creatives are open to the manifest destiny love (ish).
So what does this mean? The outputs are better. The ads are informed by digital insights, the didge is coddled by emotional consumer brand ideas, and the media intersects at just the right moment. The work doesn’t feel like work to many consumers, it feels welcome and softly influential. “Soft influence.” Hmm, I like that.
Sometime the approach is a little sloppy, sometimes it’s quite elegant, but it’s almost always goaled (as they say) on being brand-strategic. In this tactics-palooza marketing world, a holding company shop with a transmedia team working with the wind at its back offers a superior product. But you knew that. Peace!
Tags: "soft influence", advertising holding companies, david eastman, didge, digital agencies, Forbes, JWT North America, R&D, tactics-palooza, transmedia, whats the idea, whatstheidea
Poor, poor New York Knicks. They own and play in the world’s most famous arena. They’re backed by a smart company that has more money and love (for them) than are most sports franchises, but when it comes to marketing they can’t find their fanny with their hands.
Co:, a new marketing company formed by Ty Montague and Rosemarie Ryan, most recently of JWT, touted the Knicks as one of their first clients. How’s that coffee smell y’all? What a mess they stepped into. Today’s New York Times reports the new Knicks adverting effort is a five agency ass-grab, sans an idea. Co: has really taken a small role, according to the article, with only a limited mention. Stuart Elliot, the Times advertising writer, suggests the idea is “You. Us. We. Now.” Is that an idea…or four? Is there an acronym for Cry Out Loud?
Everyone interviewed in the article says the wrong thing. The story suggests tactics-palloza — and there is a focus on “fan engagement” that is well-intended but laughable.
Last year the Knicks idea was “Declare.” What they meant to say was “Represent” but that, I’m sure, was a bit too urban. How can you be urban and not urban in one word?
The creative this year focuses on the players because they are all new. Lazy. It should be focusing on the basketball void that has been NYC for years. Hear that sucking sound? If you want some hoops in NYC this year get your shoes out to Carnesecca Arena. Peace!
Tags: carnesecca arena, jwt, madison square garden, new york knicks, new york times, rosemarie ryan, sports marketing, stuart elliot, tactics-palooza, Ty Montague, whats the idea, whatstheidea
People sometimes jokingly ask me “What is the idea? referring to the name of my consultancy. My answer, borrowed from Sergio Zyman of the Zyman Group, is “sell more, to more, more often, at higher margins.” That’s the ultimate goal of marketing, no? The quadruple crown. Interestingly, unit sales, market penetration, per capita consumption, and higher margins are different measures. Linked, yes, but different.
When writing a marketing plan I typically start out with an exercise called The 24 Questions. It’s traditional marketing, follow-the-money kind of stuff. Who’s buying? When? Who is involved in the decision? Most profitable customers? Margins? Channels?, etc. Once I get the money part of the equation I delve into brand questions — from the points of view of management, employees and customers. Some of the questions are designed to get to the truth and bypass the drama and ass-covering.
The hard work is in ranking the business objectives. Most of my decks (PPT presentations of findings) array a healthy number of business objectives. Prioritizing objectives leads to prioritized strategies which require someone at the company to put one objective at the top: “On a sinking boat which child would you save?” kind of question. These decisions are the provenance of the brain not the algorithm.
ROS (return on strategy) is a metric that measures business and marketing strategy. ROI, on the other hand, ties marketing tactics to dollar return. Not to minimize tactics, but you can buy a tactic from any marcom agency on the street. And thanks to the web – the greatest marketing tool since paper money – we’re in the midst of something I call Tactics-palooza. ROS allows you to measure business objectives through a strategic lens. ROS is the way to go. Think of it as a crop-producing farm next to a field of healthy weeds. Peace!
Tags: marketing roi, return on strategy, roi, sergio zyman, tactics-palooza, whats the idea, whatstheidea, zyman group
I read in the paper paper this weekend about O.K.R.s, which stands for Objectives and Key Results. The measures, espoused by VC general John Doerr, were developed by Intel and, supposedly, are used by Google. The idea is that “the whole company and every group has one objective and three measureable key results.” Whether the objective and results are the same across the company is unknown, but I’ll look into it. Focus is important. And strategic.
What I do know is that this O.K.R. approach nicely mirrors the schema I use for brand planning: one powerful branding idea, supported by three brand planks – the collective power of which is unique to the market and business-winning for the brand.
Return on Strategy (ROS) is the antidote for ROI. While the latter focuses on marketing transaction payout and marketing tactics, ROS works to measure strategy against key business indicators (sales, share, retention, quality, employees). As we enter the marketing landscape, here referred to as “tactics-palooza,” we need to more and more measure strategy. Peace it up!
Tags: google, Intel, John Doerr, marketing roi, okr, okrs, return on strategy, roi, ros, tactics-palooza, whats the idea, whatstheidea