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May 2015
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July 2015

Networking Groups - So You Are Hoping For....

Over the years I've been asked to become a member of several networking Networking Groupgroups and I've also had the pleasure of speaking at some.  I've declined the invitation to join because, frankly, I've wondered how effective they might be. 

Consider that the hope of a networking group is designed to do business with somebody else in that group. But, if what you are selling is valuable, responsive, established and on target...why would you join?

Last week my friend Jim Connolly posted his thoughts on Networking Groups and I pass it on to you for your consideration.

So are we right or are we all wet?  Maybe a little...damp?  

Go! 

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Marketing: B to C or B to B - Emotion Still Rules

Last week I had the opportunity to present "Five in 24" for the Iowa B to B and B to C MarketingAssociation of Business and Industry. If you want more on what "Five in 24" is and want me to come and share with your group...here's a link.

One of the segments in the presentation deals with "Creating Advertising that is Effective". It's our opinion that creating messages using emotion is far more effective than "fact based" creative. One of the attendees asked a great question: "How about business to business advertising? Your thoughts seem to pertain to business to consumer advertising."

Using emotion in B to B advertising works just as well as B to C.  Why? Because no matter what you are selling; people still (and I know this is wacky talk) buy from people.  And because that's still the way we conduct our business, building on those relationships buy using emotion works...every time.

It's how you build the creative that is important.  

While that was a great question it is also a prime example as to why internal marketing departments of corporations could use some professional outside help. Here's why: If your business is focused on how technologically superior your product is the marketing will often focus on the hard-core nuts and bolts of your "Frapinstat" and not on the human outcomes of actually using it.

Yet your "Frapinstat" might change lives, might save lives, might make work easier, might change the way people live, might alter production, might save money so that going about life is easier.

Get it?

And, this doesn't mean you scrap all the "high-tech" jargon but you should use a mix that is effective.  It doesn't mean your message has to be tearful or sappy but it should move something in the viewer that connects with the human vs. the cold, hard facts of why you think your company is...superior.

Hope that helps and thanks for reading!

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Grab the Tissues - Emotion Rules

This week I get to travel to Davenport, Iowa for the Iowa Association of Man TissuesBusiness and Industry "Taking Care of Business Conference" where I'll do a presentation of "Five in Twenty-Four - Five things a business can do in 24 hours to refresh their brand message and sell more...stuff."

One of the "Five Things" I'll share is that good creative works. And, creative messages that have an emotional appeal work much better than the campaign that simply offers "the facts".

Want proof?

Whirlpool sells cold, hard metal products.  Recently they launched a campaign that warmed the appliances. It's called "Every Day, Care" and features some tear jerking images of people caring for people with the underlying message that we do daily chores because we care for the people we love.  Here's an example.

 

The result?  Whirlpool's sales have risen 6.6% in the first six months after the campaign started vs. the year-ago period, four points ahead of the appliance industry. The brand's positive social-media sentiment has risen more than six fold. Purchase intent scores are up 10% from pre-campaign levels, which has translated into a comparable lift in market share.

So, if Whirlpool can warm cold steel appliances and that drives sales what can your business do to appeal to the emotions of the consumer?  Think about it because...it works.

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Made The Way You - Hills Pet Food

We get it. We also do design work for our clients.  From packaging to direct Hills Flyer June 2015 mail to billboards to flyers.  And, yes, we've made an error or two in the years that we've been at it. (Once we failed to spell an ingredient correctly in on a tiny list on the back of a bag.) So, yes...we understand that mistakes happen and not only to small advertising agencies like ours or maybe even in your business.

The image here is from a direct mail piece that came in the Sunday Des Moines Register. If you look at it carefully you're left with a question: "Made the way you...would what?"

This happens when text boxes are left out of the final design and print run. So, how do you make sure something like this doesn't happen, even if you don't have a staff?  Some tips:

  • Pass It Around - Often the person who writes the copy is expected to proof the copy. Big mistake because often writers may "think" they included the information and on proofing just don't see it.  Pass the piece around to others to review;
  • Print Run - We nearly always demand that if the printing is done locally that somebody from here is at the print run to check color, layout, bleeds, etc. It takes some extra time but worth it;
  • Create a Mock-Up - What we see on a computer screen often just isn't the same as holding the actual print piece. So before it goes to press create a mock-up so you can handle, circle changes, etc.
  • One More Time - We've even gone so far as to take a technical item out of the office for a review from another technical writer.  Again, it might take some time but perhaps he/she might find a goof.

Speaking of Goofs - Before writing this we posted the image on our Facebook Page and asked folks to see if they "noticed anything odd". Many didn't but, once it was pointed out it was, to some, a "brand ding". A negative impact of the brand seemed a little harsh but, for some folks...that may be all it takes. 

Take a little extra time...and thanks for reading!

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