Jessica Lorenz

3 Instagram lessons you can learn from Taylor Swift

October 31st, 2014

(Editor’s note: Images are linked to the original posts)

Taylor Swift uses Instagram just like I do. She takes photos of her cats, maybe takes a short clip of them jumping into boxes or snaps a photo of something that she baked that evening.

But, unlike me, Taylor has 12 million followers.

Aside from sharing her fascination with cats and baked goods, she also leverages Instagram to tease music she’s working on through behind-the-scenes glimpses into the recording studio or photos of lyrics that are yet to be released.

The brilliance of marrying these two techniques is two-fold. Not only is she using Instagram to market her albums, but also the personal and fun posts on her Instagram account give fans a glimpse into her world. By inviting fans into her home, it makes them feel like they’re actually friends with Taylor.

Cats

 

She makes her fans feel like they’re not too different than her (despite millions billions of dollars).

This strategy is part of Taylor’s value proposition. She tries to make her fans feel like friends. To supplement this strategy, she hosts and personally appears at secret fan parties around the world for “all-star” supporters, making Swifties feel special just for being her fans (I’m still waiting for my invite, Tay).

This is in stark contrast to the “arms-length” celebrities who keep themselves locked up in giant, fancy mansions in the Hollywood Hills with 12-foot ivy-covered fences and 24-hour security, quietly posting the occasional PR-induced Tweet.

Fan-Party

 

By using Instagram, when Taylor hears her song on the radio for the first time, her fans are there. It’s not portrayed as a mass message; it’s sitting in her car with her while she’s listening.

Video-song-radio

 

Although brand marketers face different challenges and restrictions than a 24-year-old pop icon, they’re playing in the same space.

Taylor follows three simple rules that all marketers can use when posting to channels such as Instagram:

 

1. It’s a visual storytelling tool

Instagram is not a place for glossy-colored ads. It’s a journal – a way of sharing what you’re experiencing throughout the day. Its great-great grandfather, LiveJournal, was the same way.

Use Instagram as a way to record and share what’s going on with your brand. Seeing highlights and teasers of what’s to come is exciting for fans and makes followers feel like they’re getting an inside view of what’s happening.

House Warming Gifts

 

2. Integrate across social media platforms

This technology has been available for quite some time now. The ability to share Instagram posts across Twitter and Facebook lets the poster create one post on that platform and share it across other social networks.

This is a powerful way of reaching audiences despite how they process content. But keep in mind Twitter sometimes shares a link to Instagram rather than the photo – which some brands might view as problematic, unless your customers are highly motivated to view the post.

 

3. When necessary, promote

Maintaining a healthy mix of promotion and social posts is the secret to retaining followers on social platforms, especially Instagram. Posts are supposed to be a fun, visual update on what’s going on. This could include an occasional special promotion or announcement, but promotions shouldn’t be the only activity.

New York

 

You might also like

Community Marketing: 1 million Instagram impressions via creative design contest [MarketingSherpa case study]

Social Media: Leveraging visual marketing on Instagram and Pinterest [More from the blogs]

Social Media: How to turn customers into brand advocates [More from the blogs]

Social Media Marketing: Sporting goods company increases Facebook reach 366% with content contest [MarketingSherpa case study]

 

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Daniel Burstein

Corporate Creativity: Managing your marketing team (and career) to balance innovation and execution

October 28th, 2014

You, my friend, are a knowledge worker.

All marketers are.

If you’re unfamiliar with the term, it was first coined by management guru Peter Drucker in the 50s.

Of Drucker’s six factors for knowledge worker productivity, the one I want to discuss in today’s MarketingSherpa blog post is:

“Continuing innovation has to be part of the work, the task and the responsibility of knowledge workers.”

This sounds like the perfect description of the challenges facing the modern marketer today.

 

Come up with out-of-the-box ideas (while sitting in a box)

Corporate CreativityNo longer can you rely on reaching potential customers by running a TV ad on the three major networks. Marketers must find innovative ways to use an endless (and growing) array of channels to reach customers.

They must combine smart uses of data and metrics to understand what their customers want and make sure they are delivering that content effectively (while proving the effectiveness to business leaders).

They must also combine this innovative thinking with persistence and process-orientation. After all, marketers must be able to execute these campaigns in complex corporate environments while managing budgets, agency and vendor relationships and corporate policy.

Essentially, marketers need corporate creativity.

 

Is corporate creativity an oxymoron?

“Creativity” is defined as “the use of the imagination or original ideas, especially in the production of an artistic work.”

Also, the connotation of “corporate” is “Oppressively awful in that numbingly ‘cubicle in a hermetically-sealed office’ kind of way: lacking good quality, morality or ethics, excellence, creativity, spontaneity, kindness, love, integrity, beauty or intrinsic worth and meaning,” according to the ever-reliable Urban Dictionary.

In other words, these two aspects of marketing success do not necessarily go hand-in-hand  — innovation and execution.

It is your challenge as a marketing leader to make sure your team (and even your agencies and vendors) never lose that wild spark when working on your brand and campaigns.

Yet, they must be able to execute, manage projects and deliver on time and on budget.

Quite the conundrum. It’s a challenge that deeply interests me, so when I recently came across an article by Joe Robinson in Entrepreneur magazine, “The Secret to Increased Productivity: Taking Time Off,” I knew I had to talk to Jeff Stibel, CEO, Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. and author of Wired for Thought from Harvard Business Press and Breakpoint from Palgrave Macmillan Trade.

“When you’re thinking about a problem, it’s confined to one or two regions in the brain, but the solution may not be in those areas,” Jeff said. “By resting, the information sits in your brain and then percolates across other sections of the brain.”

Jeff has a unique perspective on the issue because he’s not only a businessman — his background is in studying the human brain. He earned a Masters of Science from Brown University for graduate study in cognitive and linguistic sciences.

He understands the balance necessary between the go-go-go, always-on, always-executing corporate mentality and the artist in all of us who needs what he needs to come up with creative ideas. After all, innovation cannot be captured in a project plan.

To help make this happen at his company, the approximately 700 employees at Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. can choose from recovery options such as yoga classes, spinning, surfing lessons, massages and significant flextime.

I interviewed Jeff to give MarketingSherpa blog readers some ideas for improving how they manage their marketing teams and their own careers, and he shared the importance of testing and how he uses the “failure wall.”

However, I wanted to balance this new knowledge about the brain with a discussion about the mind as well, so I also interviewed Lisa Nirell, author of The Mindful Marketer: How to Stay Present and Profitable in a Data-Driven World.

Lisa also has a unique perspective when it comes to marketing, bringing her experience in Buddhism, yoga and meditation to the world of corporate marketing. Lisa is, as the title of her book suggests, an advocate for marketers to take a mindful approach and to create healthier, more sustainable organizations.

We’ve recently given away Lisa’s book in the MarketingSherpa Book Giveaway, and this week we’re giving away Jeff’s latest book — Breakpoint.

Below is the edited interview with Jeff Stibel and Lisa Nirell:

 

“Encourage failure” and combine “mindfulness and critical thinking”

MarketingSherpa: Modern marketing takes an interesting combination of skills. You need to understand data, but you of course still need that creativity. And with the growth of digital, previous deadlines that forced marketers to have a break between projects (having to FedEx creative executions to out-of-town clients, go-to-print dates, etc.) have been replaced by always-on digital platforms that are endlessly hungry for campaigns and content.

How would you advise marketers adapt to this new way of working? What have you seen successful and unsuccessful marketers do?

Jeff Stibel: Test, test and test. Marketing today is less about big brand advertising and creative and far more about iterative design. The old adage of not knowing where 50% of marketing is going is just that — old.

The new model is to leverage data and micro-campaigns to deliver results through evolution. Marketing campaigns should start small, evolve and grow.

 

MS: Glassdoor recently released a list of the “20 Best Jobs for Work-life Balance.” Of them, five are often found in marketing departments or agencies (data scientist, SEO specialist, social media manager, user experience designer, corporate communications).

How do you define work-life balance? Do you find marketers that have a good work-life balance? And why is it important (or unimportant) to the ultimate marketing performance of their companies and clients?

JS: I think I have a different view than many on work-life balance, and it’s this: If you love what you’re doing, you don’t need to be balanced.

All too often it seems that “work-life balance” is a euphemism for a balance between things you hate to do and things you actually like to do, and I don’t think those two things should ever be balanced. I’d prefer to spend close to 100% of my time doing things I want to do, and that’s a possibility when you love your work.

All of the positions you mentioned are exciting jobs that involve challenge and growth, so it makes sense that those people feel a better sense of balance. Life’s simply too short not to love your job, and I believe that marketers have a leg up because marketing is such an exciting, constantly changing field.

 

MS: Can you tell us about a major problem or two you overcame in your career? How did your work style benefit you in overcoming those problems?

Lisa Nirell: In 1999, my dream job came to a screeching halt. At the time, I was a Senior Partner with a top sales consultancy, OnTarget. The founder of OnTarget sold the company to Siebel Systems (now Oracle), and our culture changed quickly.

We shifted from being an entrepreneurial, innovative $50M consulting firm to a pimple on the behind of a $1B elephant. Overnight, the focus went from client intimacy to optimizing efficiency, from delivering valuable services to driving more software license sales.

Neither my values nor my work style aligned with Siebel’s, and I made a horrible employee. I was a fish out of water. My business coach helped me discover my true values and ideal life. His coaching and my extended family gave me the courage to plan my exit. I created a strategy to walk away from a high-paying, ostensibly prestigious position. I have never looked back.

 

MS: We’ve mostly talked about advice to the marketers themselves, but now let’s talk about advice for anyone who runs or leads a marketing team. Jeff, you run a company with 700 employees. What do you do to maximize your employees’ productivity, creativity and effectiveness?

Lisa, you research CEOs and CMOs. What advice would you give to other leaders?

JS: If you encourage creativity and passion, the rest will flow naturally, and one way to truly encourage creativity is to encourage failure.

At my company, we converted a plain white wall into a “failure wall,” where employees, partners and guests write down their mistakes and what they learned. Putting a failure on the wall is much more of a badge of honor than an embarrassment. When failure is destigmatized in a company culture, it gives everyone free rein to do more than just make a safe choice. It gives them free rein to do something truly innovative, even if the first few times (or the first 100 times) don’t work.

LN: Mindfulness and critical thinking are the secret sauces for today’s marketing leaders. I define mindfulness as staying present and focused on the task at hand in a non-judgmental way. It is a quality that can help us navigate through this digital age and respond in a balanced, thoughtful way to whatever our customers and stakeholders throw at us.

Carol Stratford, former Vice President of Marketing of Miraval Arizona, fostered these qualities as soon as she joined Miraval in 2011. For example, in lieu of indoor, seated 1:1 weekly status meetings, she made extensive use of the Miraval amenities. Carol told me “I take one of my team members every week, and we walk around the property. We are able to discuss things we might not do in an office setting.” She also attended 60% of Miraval’s programs in her first few months of joining. This accelerated her learning curve, provided a direct perspective on the guest experience and helped her embody Miraval’s values.

Her efforts contributed greatly to Miraval’s financial performance. During her tenure, they celebrated eight out of 12 record months in the history of the resort in terms of revenue and occupancy and won an innovation award from iSpa for a new online guest tool called MyMiraval.

 

MS: What can startups learn from enterprises, in terms of keeping their knowledge workers able to come up with novel solutions to their challenges and vice versa?

LN: This question is tricky because it assumes startups can and should learn from enterprises. Let startups first focus on the “must list.” They must identify their perfect customer. They must be committed to disrupting the status quo or standing out from extant competitors. They must create a predictable stream of revenue, and they must create a sustainable, mindful culture that is driven by a noble purpose.

Once they have reached that stage, it makes sense for them to emulate companies that have reached the next rung.

 

Photo Attribution: Mr. Fish

 

We’re giving away Jeff’s book — Breakpoint — to five lucky winners in this week’s MarketingSherpa Book Giveaway.

 

You might also like

MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2015

How a B2B Marketing Team Used Zombies to Win Over the C-Suite [More from our blogs]

Internal Marketing: B2B’s employee-exclusive video series fosters team moral [MarketingSherpa cast study]

Community Marketing: 1 million Instagrram impressions via creative design contest [MarketingSherpa case study]

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Jessica Lorenz

Event Marketing: 4 questions to ask before submitting a speaking application

October 24th, 2014

Speaking at events offers a great opportunity for marketers to build their own personal brand and reputation in the industry as well as improve their career. It also provides a way for solutions providers to gain credibility through customer success stories.

However, getting on stage is easier said than done.

If you’ve ever applied to speak at an event, you probably know that it can take a while to hear back from application evaluators, if you hear anything at all.Summit Speaker

Having applied to speak at several events in the past, I can relate — but I also have the inside scoop on what happens on the agenda-building side.

Over the past couple of weeks, the MECLABS content team, myself included, has been hard at work sifting through hundreds of speaking applications for MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2015 in Las Vegas.

I’ve spent over 30 hours reading through applications, analyzing blog posts, watching videos and reaching out to applicants.

During those long hours, I began to develop four fundamental questions to ask myself when sorting applications into the “yes” or “no” stack, and I want to share those four questions with you:

 

1. Did you take time and effort to explain your story completely?

It’s disheartening to see people throw away an opportunity to win over the evaluators. Applications where you’re given the chance to tell someone about your story should take more than a sentence or single word, or, big oops, left blank entirely.

This is your chance to tell your story. Give the application reviewer a story and let them imagine how it would be presented on stage.

If you’re the hero of the story, explain the challenges that you overcame.

Be a storyteller in your application. J.K. Rowling could have summed up all the Harry Potter novels by simply writing, “Harry Potter went to school and learned how to overcome challenges.” Instead, she expanded this story into seven complete novels, detailing the events that unfolded and inviting you into the life, experiences and thoughts of Harry, not just offering the world a simplified plot.

The art of storytelling — even in a speaking application — is important and will set you apart from the hundreds of other applicants.

The effort that you put into your application is a preview of the effort that you’ll put into the content you present.

If we ask for a video and your reply is, “I have one, but I can’t find it,” we’re not going to go look for it. If you write, “Will provide video upon request” under the section where we requested a video, your application will likely be disregarded altogether.

Read more…

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Daniel Beulah

How to Craft a Viral Campaign in 3 Steps

October 21st, 2014

In 2012, only half of Americans knew of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, named after one of its most famous victims. The ALS Association, a nonprofit committed to raise money for research and patient services, raised a combined total of $19.4 million for that year.

Fast forward to today, and the ALS has raised over $100 million this year alone, most of which has been raised in the two month period of July and August.

As many of us know, it’s all due to one viral campaign: the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. The challenge, in which one records dumping ice water on themselves or donates to the ALS Association, has been shared over 1.2 million times on Facebook and 2.2 million times on Twitter.

The campaign was so successful that critics started to worry about how the challenge would affect counties under severe drought watches.

Why did this campaign, out of all the others floating around on the Internet, go viral?

There’s not a lot we have control over when it comes to the “viralocity” of an image, video or idea. However, according to Malcom Gladwell, there are three elements that increase the probability:

 

The law of the few (Know who to target)

Malcolm Gladwell states in The Tipping Point, “The success of any kind of social epidemic is heavily dependent on the involvement of people with a particular and rare set of social gifts.”

Gladwell calls these movers and shakers of the internet realm “connectors.” These are people with the extraordinary gift for making friends and acquaintances. They have a multitude of followers on social networks, and when they mention something on Facebook, it is immediately shared 100 times.

These connectors can be people, a website or a news organization. People want to be connectors.

While in today’s society a connector can translate their social network directly into money or political power, most people simply want the rush they feel when their idea or link is liked or retweeted. A good idea in the hands of a few can spread like wild fire.

 

The stickiness factor (Good content)

The two reasons the ALS Ice Bucket challenge succeeded was because it was for a good cause, and it was easily repeatable. At the end of their individual challenge, the participant then had to challenge three of their friends to replicate them. As the campaign gained momentum, it even grew to include big-name celebrities, such as Oprah, Bill Gates and Steven Spielberg, taking the plunge.

The stickiness factor correlates to your core content, cause or campaign. Is it well thought out? Is it for a good cause? Will it make a difference in someone’s life? More importantly, is it memorable? The more memorable the campaign, the higher the stickiness factor, and the faster it spreads.

Read more…

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Austin McCraw

Marketing Strategy: What is your “Only Factor”?

October 17th, 2014

Warning: I am about to offend someone. It could be you. It might not be. Either way, I wouldn’t continue reading unless you’re up for having your notion of marketing challenged and you have the time to leave a ranting blog comment — just in case you end up feeling the need to.

Let’s talk about marketing strategy for a moment.

That’s right. Put down your proverbial to-do list, and let’s talk about the force behind the success (or failure) of all your marketing campaigns — your value proposition.

A good value proposition is the key to true sustainable competitive advantage, and without one, you are simply just pushing pixels around, hoping something will stick. However, a good value proposition must have what we call an “only factor.”

There has to be at least one way in which you can say about your product, we are the “only.”

You can match your competitors in many ways, but in at least one way, you must excel. If you do not have this “only” factor, then you are, as Flint McGlaughlin, Managing Director, MECLABS, says, “simply surviving on pockets of ignorance.”

Now, customer ignorance was once a decent way to make a living (when I say “decent,” I’m using it in the old snake-oil sense of the word). Today, thanks to the internet, your customer can learn everything about you and your competition in about three mouse clicks. As information abounds, ignorance decreases.

Our marketing exists in a world where there are very few pockets of ignorance. In a world like that, a true “only factor” is the only way to survive.

If I haven’t offended you yet, I’m about to provide two more opportunities.

 

Don’t blame the “crowded market”

When teaching these concepts, I often get asked, “What about crowded markets?”

First, I generally ask a group of marketers to raise their hands (gutsy move, I know) if they are currently not working in a crowded market. You want to take a guess at how many hands get raised?

There are no good markets that aren’t crowded. I haven’t met a marketer yet who feels like their market isn’t crowded (and if there is, please introduce yourself to me). We all like to talk about how our market is so crowded, when the reality is that there are few, if any, markets that aren’t crowded.

The point is that opportunities draw crowds. If there is any inkling of an opportunity in your market, it may only be a matter of time, but it will become crowded.

Also, “crowd” is a relative term.

Meaning, the sense of crowding is completely dependent on the available space. Three’s a crowd in the back of a cab — but not so much on a football field. It all depends on the size of your market, and for many niche markets, it only takes a couple competitors to make a crowd.

Here’s the point: Dealing with a “crowd” is a basic experience of marketing. It is not unique. It does not release the marketer from needing a forceful value proposition. If anything, it makes it more necessary.

Read more…

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Andrea Johnson

How Seamless Email Turns Ecommerce Prospects into Buyers

October 14th, 2014

Only 2.6% of the people browsing an ecommerce site actually buy during that visit, but, according to Charles Nicholls, that doesn’t mean they’re not going to eventually make a purchase.

Charles is the Founder and Chief Strategy Officer for SeeWhy, a provider of cloud-based behavioral target marketing. He discussed what it takes to transform browsers into buyers with Daniel Burstein, Director of Editorial Content, MECLABS, at the 2014 Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition in Chicago.

Charles exhorted marketers to rethink the channel mindset and optimizing websites for a single session, and instead, think about optimizing the entire buying process. The key, he explained, is seamless use of email across desktops, tablets and smartphones.

Why? Customers may use all of these devices before finally making a purchase.

Consider this: SeeWhy has been tracking smart phone conversions, and, according to Charles, smartphones are outpacing tablets, which have become a desktop substitute. Also, 67% of smartphone conversions are done via email.

Watch the video below to learn about the importance of seamless emailing:

  Read more…

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Jessica Lorenz

Email Data Hygiene: When you know it’s time to break up

October 10th, 2014

I still get emails to the email address I created in middle school. This was back when having cutsie screen names was awesome, DSL was the latest and selecting your Top 8 on MySpace was the most stressful part of the week.

Although I haven’t sent or opened an email in that account for probably 10 years, the emails still come through.

It had been a while since I had actually gone to that inbox, though I needed to reset my password before I was even able to scroll through the pages upon pages of unread mail. Not one of them was a personal email. As I kept going through pages years back, I noticed that they’re all marketing emails – often from the same few companies.

I have not engaged after nearly a decade of sends. I have not read a single subject line. I have not opened any emails. I have not clicked any calls-to-action. Yet these companies keep sending.

How is marketing to that email address helping the marketers’ campaigns (other than contributing to list bloat)?

 

The importance of list hygiene

At Email Summit 2014 in Las Vegas, Laura Mihai, Email Marketing Specialist, 3M Canada, spoke on the integration of list cleansing as a regular element of its email marketing campaigns.

Laura opened her session by reflecting on a time when deliverability rates started to affect campaigns.

“We really wanted to focus on eliminating those who don’t engage with our communications,” explained Laura. The team at 3M Canada had the idea of running a campaign with the incentive of a contest to stay on the list and update contact information.

Using this campaign, the team trimmed their list by an impressive 64%. Now, they can be in touch with people who want to engage with them.

Read more…

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Daniel Burstein

Content Marketing: Harvard Business School’s Michael Norton discusses surprising consumer behavior research

October 7th, 2014

I am a skeptic. Maybe it’s from my career in marketing, advertising and editorial content, which involves me constantly receiving PR pitches. Maybe I was born that way. Or maybe I’m just your average American consumer.

Whatever the cause, it’s rare for me to have a head-smacking epiphany, but here’s one I want to share with you:

 

People don’t want fast

This subhead likely seems counterintuitive (or perhaps just plain wrong) to you.

After all, if you’ve ever been in traffic, or in a long line at a fast food restaurant, or anywhere in America for the past 30 years, you know – people are impatient.

As Louis C.K. says in his very funny bit about people who don’t appreciate how amazing smartphone technology is, “I never saw a person going, ‘Look at what my phone can do!’ Nobody does that. They all go, ‘This ******* thing sucks. I can’t get it to … ’  Give it a second, would ya? Could ya give it a second? It’s going to space, could you give it a second to get back from space? Is the speed of light too slow for you?”

Even when I search Louis C.K on Google, the search engine brags that is has returned 45,700,000 results in 0.61 seconds.

Wow. The entirety of human knowledge for millennia is at our fingertips and can be delivered within milliseconds, and yet, as Louis so accurately points out, most of your customers do not appreciate it.

Why? More importantly, how can you as a marketer use this lesson to communicate the value of your own products?

 

They want hard work (on their behalf)

This is where Michael Norton’s research gets very interesting for marketers (and, really, all humans). Michael is an associate professor at Harvard, and during his Web Optimization Summit featured session — “Trust Through Transparency” — he showed that, in many cases, people place a higher value on understanding the work involved to create a product or service than they do on sheer speed.

After he got off stage, and right before hopping on the train back to Harvard, Michael was gracious enough to let me pull him aside and ask a few questions to help marketers use his research to better communicate the value of their products and services.

We discussed:

  • How showing the work involved in creating content (for example, email list signup) can make that content more valuable to customers
  • How to make sure customers understand the complexity behind seemingly simple services
  • The power of storytelling

  Read more…

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Daniel Beulah

Do You Know How to Take Advantage of Globalization with Your Marketing?

October 3rd, 2014

The world is getting faster.

In the past few years, the term globalization has been used to describe an unprecedented cultural, economic and political phenomenon that has fundamentally changed the world.

With faster intercontinental travel and almost instantaneous communication technologies, societies, economies and individuals have become more interdependent than ever before.

As globalization spreads more wealth from developed nations and into developing ones, a new global middle class has risen with an even greater desire to consume than 1950s America. According to Internetworldstats.com, the amount of people who have access to the internet has increased 676.32% in the last 14 years. Most of that growth occurred in the continents of Africa and Asia.

So what does that mean to a 21st century marketer?

It means that a taxi driver in Senegal can watch a Yankees game, purchase Yankees related merchandise and spread the Yankees brand to a whole new generation of consumers.

Now imagine if you could deliberately break into this new emerging market.

What would you do? How would you connect with your new potential customers and increase your brand awareness at the same time?

Most companies do it by creating and promoting culturally specific products that vary depending on the region. McDonalds is great at this. Ever heard of the Teriyaki McBurger?

Teriyaki_McBurger

 

It’s a product exclusive to its Japanese market and one of McDonalds Japan’s biggest sellers.

Read more…

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Andrea Johnson

How a B2B Marketing Team Used Zombies to Win Over the C-Suite

September 30th, 2014

When Christine Nurnberger joined SunGard Availability Services in 2012, Marketing and Sales were clearly out of alignment. Marketing’s contribution to the sales pipeline was less than 3%, even though they executed more than 1,100 marketing tactics over the previous fiscal year.

By the end of 2013, that relationship had shifted dramatically. Marketing’s contribution to new revenue skyrocketed to 40% with the average deal size tripling.

At MarketingsherpaEmail Summit 2014, Christine revealed her secret to success: smart content marketing built on intense research, analysis and creativity. It culminated with chief technology officers preparing for the zombie apocalypse and eager to engage SunGard.

In the video clip below, Christine outlines setting the stage for that success with a two-stage direct mail pilot, targeting 56 CTOs in the later stages of the buying cycle:

  • Part one was a direct-mail piece made up of a  shadow box with a thumb drive, which included a personalized video announcing that, in the coming days, they would receive everything they needed to survive a zombie apocalypse.
  • Part two was a zombie apocalypse survival kit — a backpack that included a copy of World War Z, two tickets to the movie and “zombie repellant,” aka silly string.

 

The response blew the sales team away.

Read more…

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