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“You have the right to remain silent.”

03/23/2011

Sound familiar? If you grew up in America, you would have heard this phrase on every police show since 1966. It’s just one line from the famous Miranda warning.

Good advice if you’re ever arrested. Not so good if you’re marketing a service or product.

Your silence, or in our case – not advertising, obviously won’t help your company. You’re marketing is nowhere to be seen and you aren’t giving the consumer a persuasive reason and reminder to purchase your product. You have left the building and are off the radar! The only thing that will save you is if your competition is doing the same thing. And chances are they aren’t!

Even if you haven’t “improved” your product you can promote it with a twist in messaging and in different mediums. Anything the consumer hasn’t seen yet will get noticed. Maybe you can expand who you target? Running print ads… how about Facebook, eblasts or mobile? A new and different creative take on your product? Sure… but please make sure it’s strategic.

Resist the urge to lay low, save money and not market. The time has come to sing like a canary!


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Looking good IS looking bigger!

03/03/2011

Today’s post isn’t about joining a gym or the marketing for Bally Fitness.

No, this one is about how you can get your company to appear larger than it actually is.

I’m referring to “Good Marketing”… the clever, strategic and branded type. The must-haves that will not only help you look more substantial, but also more professional and more legit. This is precisely the message you want to send present and future customers; you’re reliable, know what you’re doing and can back it up. FYI-this is the kind a good ad agency or design firm specifically creates and specializes in.

Your marketing is your customer’s first impression, and their on-going impression. The web site, the ads, the direct mail, the eblasts, the Facebook page, the logo, the tagline all have to enhance and further the personality of the company. It’s the consumer’s default perspective of what you stand for and produce. Your reputation is on the line so your marketing needs to be done professionally and constantly supported.

Simply a game of perception vs. reality?  Sure, but if the reality is that you are trustworthy, why shouldn’t the perception also follow?

You’re proud of your company and your marketing needs to show that in all its glory.

Cabin Fever?

02/22/2011

I’ve sensed a marketing cabin fever in some companies recently. This, no doubt, being the result of three lean and frugal marketing years.

As consumers we’ve all been very careful with our money… buying what we need versus what we want.

And as the consumer goes so does business… by turning the marketing faucet off. Yes, money is saved. But that’s a knee-jerk reaction. Today out-of-sight is out-of-mind… super fast! That’s not good.

However there seems to be a thaw occurring now. Not a massive rush but some positive movement.

Three years in marketing is a long time. Social media (the new): the Facebooks, the Twitters, the Foursquares, etc. have continued to grow and now have greater share in many marketing budgets. The ROI appears to be lower by placing the promotion du jour, awareness or branding, almost literally, into the hands of the consumer.

As with traditional print, TV/radio these new marketing outlets will not be the cure-all for marketing issues… all forms need to be part of the marketing arsenal. Regardless of the medium, new or old, they all must create awareness, further both strategic strengths and the brand.

Turn your company’s restlessness into action! But know that you need to be in the water to catch the wave… not on shore.

There’s Strategy and then there’s Entertainment!

02/08/2011

Which do you prefer?

As a consumer it would have to be a resounding “entertainment!”. As a business person, targeting your core customer, it would probably still be entertainment. “Ummm, how else do you create awareness and get the consumers attention?” True. People always remember the funny commercial.

However, strategy plays a very important role in marketing. At the very least, your product uniqueness has to be shown or explained to your target – i.e.: here’s why you need to buy this! Do you know what motivates them? Reasons to buy will vary from Boomers to Gen Xers to Gen Yers.

OK… with your strategy firmly in place, now you can be entertaining. Strategy + entertainment = exciting! The idea should “grab” the public and educate them about the most important benefit. Keep it simple… no “War and Peace“. We’ve found that a wry observation about life or society will help you connect. To be fair, wit or humor doesn’t work every time. One, because some products require a serious demeanor and Two, what’s humorous to Xers or Yers may not be to Boomers.

But keep in mind, doing the unexpected pays dividends… and will help separate you from the competition. And that, is always entertaining!

Super Bowl Ad Day!

01/27/2011

Well, here we are closing in on the big day. In a week, millions of eyes will be tuned in to watch… the TV commercials!

Oh yes, there is a very important football game but it’ll be the :30 TV spots that could garner most of the attention.

Attention indeed. Starting with the media costs for the broadcast time. We’ve all heard of the astronomical pricing for a TV commercial to air during the game. And which firms will be advertising… pretty much a Who’s Who in the Advertising world. Big names and new names.

To be fair, provided you have the money, running your commercial during the game is not a bad idea… considering the U.S. and a good portion of the world will be watching. Imagine what this did for Master Lock’s awareness (fairly cheap to produce/film and product demonstration at its best). Heck, who ever heard of Monster before this aired?

We have Apple Computer to thank for this high-profile advertising. Ever since Apple ran their “1984” commercial (in the last 2 minutes of the 4th quarter) the Super Bowl has been the premier venue to advertise on. BTW-for those too young, the Apple of 1984 was not the Apple of 2011.

Enjoy the game. There have been few Super Bowls that have actually been good but I’ll be watching the commercials with a little more interest.

Expose your self! Well, actually, your company.

01/07/2011

Keep in mind, even though it’s January (BTW-Happy New Year! ), no company ever died of exposure! Let alone over exposure.

Advertising in all its forms: print ads, direct mail post cards, Facebook, web banner ads, mobile messaging, your web site (you do have one?), Twitter, public relations, radio, TV all get your company and message out there.

Now you know where to market.

There’s never been any doubt that simply inundating your target audience with advertising, will work. Something’s bound to sink in, after being seen or heard, 10+ times.

But are you communicating “why you”? Pointing out an important and unique attribute about your business and/or product creates stickiness (Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die). Meaning the consumer can’t get it out of their mind. See “Nothing but Net” for McDonalds or Nike’s “Just do It!

I know… but who has the marketing budget of a McDonalds or Nike?

Well, to that I’d say, that the exposure is important but what is said is more important.

To Advertise or Not to Advertise?

11/30/2010

Honestly, THAT is not the question.

You should be advertising! No matter what the venue is… web, billboard, print or TV, you need to be doing something.

Not advertising, is tantamount to “going dark”. Since you’re not advertising, your target audience doesn’t see you. Rather obvious. That’s not going help sales, is it?

As we explained in an eblast, below, hiding or camouflaging is comparable to “going dark”. If you’ve been following this blog, you know that we firmly believe that standing out is the point and the ONLY point.

And standing out requires getting out!

To paraphrase a good friend: “You’re not going to meet anyone by staying home”.

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