No, we aren't referring to the 80s clothing line, rather we are referencing the mixed messages professional tennis is sending to the public. Both authors are tennis fanatics. However, despite our love of the game, as brand strategists we are baffled by the sport's inability to evolve, notwithstanding its stated intention to do so.
Tag: new media
Thinking back, I've always considered news as a dialogue rather than a monologue. I've preferred conversations to speeches. That said, I don't often hang out on street corners or in neighborhood bars partaking in random conversations about the weather or the Mets. I like my conversations curated.
It isn’t any of the newest sci-fi flicks that got me thinking about the collision of real and virtual time and space, but a recent breakfast I attended that dealt with the challenges and opportunities in the realm of social media. It was hosted by the Newhouse School and moderated by The New Yorker’s media writer, Ken Auletta. The panelists, Dennis Crowley, co-founder of social network site, Foursquare, David Karp, founder of the micro-blogging platform, Tumblr, and Clay Shirky, author of “Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing without Organizations”,” talked about everything from 40,000-foot issues like whether social media is narrowing or advancing democracy, to more down-to-earth issues, like how social media tools can be used to build brands more effectively.
At a recent Chictopia meeting, among panels and discussions on fashion, retail, and the growing presence of new media, an interesting topic was raised: how should companies be approaching bloggers to promote their products? The event’s speakers, who ranged from Rebecca Stice (TheClothesHorse) to Michael Tennant (manager of Vice Magazine), had come from different backgrounds but all had experienced a deluge of marketing pitches- sometimes having little or nothing to do with their blog or publication.
It was not that long ago when Madison Avenue believed that Web video — also known as webisodes, online video and Web series — would replace television, or at least put a big dent into the ability of TV to reach consumers. Now, however, as more marketers turn to Web video, many are increasingly doing so along with — rather than in place of — television.
Social networks share a common ingredient in design and intent, the connection of people and the facilitation of conversations, sharing, and discovery. What they do not share however, are culture, behavior, and prevailing demographics. Each network is unique in its genetic and cultural composition and it is for that reason that we benefit by becoming digital anthropologists in addition to new media marketers. Demographics are distributed within all social networks, but only concentrated within a select few. Where specific demographics materialize varies from network to network and as such, the more effective social strategies and tactics are designed to reach target audiences where, when and how they engage.
We’ve got to hand it to Ralph Lauren, they’ve certainly been keeping their game fresh. While other fashion houses languish behind in the new media world, Lauren have been pioneers. There have been “Make Your Own” designs, QR code exploration, and many other ventures which have made simply designing an iPhone app seem pedestrian. That’s why it came as no surprise when it was brought to PSFK’s attention that Lauren by Ralph Lauren would be hosting their first ever online fashion show on their site today. On the runway, models will be sporting the Spring 2010 collection while viewers at home can literally “shop” by selecting and purchasing the styles directly as the models walk the runway.
That limited, old-school perception of design is missing out on something important: Today's increasingly complex and multi-faceted marketing campaigns are, in essence, design projects. With the splintering of "old" media and the explosive rise of social networking, marketing messages now are constantly morphing and being reinvented--taking new forms that range from highly innovative viral stunts and films (such as Volkswagen's Fun Theory) to branded social networks (Nike Plus) and even sponsored save-the-world movements (Pepsi)'s "Refresh Everything" project).
The Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) has become one of the more commonly talked about corporate designations in recent years. Given the tremendous marketing potential offered by the new media and proliferation of distribution channels, companies have begun to realize the huge potential of marketing in guiding corporate level strategies and substantially contributing to the financial bottom line. In spite of such an understanding, it is startling to note that the average tenure of a CMO is merely 23 months compared to a CFO that typical lasts 4-5 years on average. Further, not many companies have a senior marketing representative in their C-suite. This begs the question – do companies need a CMO or is the role of a CMO a mere hype? This article probes this question and offers companies some guide posts for better strategic directions.
One of the most common fears I focus on defeating among executives and brand managers is that in new media brands lose control by publishing content and engaging in social networks. The general sentiment is that by sharing information and creating presences within public communities that they, by the nature of democratized participation, invite negative responses in addition to potentially positive and neutral interaction. By not fully embracing the social Web, many believe that they retain a semblance of control. The idea is that if brands abstain from providing a forum for hosting potentially disparaging commentary, it will prevent it from earning an audience – in this case, an audience that can impact the business and the reputation of the brand.
According to the 2009 Cone Consumer New Media Study, an online survey by Opinion Research Corporation among a representative U.S. sample of 1,048 adults, comprising "new media users," 44% of American new media users are searching for, sharing or discussing information about corporate responsibility (CR) efforts and programs and are highly confident they can have an effect on business.
What in the name of Steve Jobs is Ashton Kutcher doing here? It’s 11 on a September morning in Silicon Valley — a time when any decent Hollywood celebrity should be sleeping off yesternight’s revels in a hyperbaric chamber at the Chateau Marmont, or, at most, Tweeting what’s in today’s egg-white omelet. Yet here’s Kutcher, the Puckish prince of Twitter (over four million followers and counting), emerging from the back of a dowdy Lincoln Town Car and stepping into Downtown Nerdburg. He’s fresh off the plane, and looking about as casual as a shaggy six-foot sex symbol is capable of looking against the pleated-khaki backdrop of Mountain View, CA. Which is to say, he looks perfect (the well-tempered bedhead peeking from beneath the carefully selected ball cap, the zippered sweater hanging just-so on that vertiginous Rem Koolhaas boneframe) and also perfectly out of place, his personal perihelion of Dionysian awesomeness at odds with these Dilbertian precincts.
Marketing may resemble warfare from time to time, but if you play by the rules of war -- dividing commerce into winners and losers -- you will eventually be defeated. The relationships which are the true foundation of marketing have always been consensual. Misunderstand this in this, the Age of Limitless Choices, and you're cooked.
Sit next to your audience, listen to them, and give them what they want and need - whether it's yours or not. This is the winning model of a new media company, Amazon. Yes, you heard that correctly. It was one of the two examples I discussed with John Hagel, co-chairman of Deloitte's Center for the Edge recently. Amazon answered the question "what business are we in?" and used that answer to create value. Ask that question in your business when you're ready to challenge your assumptions and mindset. If you're in technology, telecommunications, media and automotive, you might want to do that sooner rather than later.
Waterford, which provides the crystal ball that descends in Times Square every New Year’s Eve, has its own brand resolution for 2010: more sparkle. The ad copy on a new poster for Waterford crystal, starring a pair of champagne flutes, reads: When two people are meant for each other to come together, you can see it. It’s a sparkle that lights up a room. A sparkle that grows brighter with each passing year. The sparkle of a new beginning. The poster could be optimistically referring to Waterford itself, which is undergoing its own “new beginning” and hopes that its $2.5 million ad campaign will result in a very sparkly 2010.
AOL is putting the finishing touches on a high-tech system for mass-producing news articles, entertainment and other online content, the linchpin of Chief Executive Tim Armstrong's strategy for reviving the struggling 25-year-old Internet company after Time Warner spins it off next month. Mr. Armstrong's goal is to make AOL, which has been losing visitors and revenue, a magnet for both advertisers and consumers by turning it into the top creator of digital content. He hopes to do so in part by turning some media and marketing conventions on their ear, and potentially blurring the lines between journalism and advertising.
As you likely know, Tiger Woods was in an accident under apparently mysterious circumstances early Friday morning. Predictably, the reports and reactions thereto pertaining varied somewhat in quality and timeliness, and predictably, this has led to paroxysms of futurist glee in some and sullen condemnation by others. Now that the smoke has cleared, we can examine the event, which is certainly worth a little inspection despite its obvious triviality, with a little perspective. I’m not going to speculate on Woods’ injuries, the cause of the crash, or rumors of fights and affairs. I don’t care, personally. But how the information proliferated makes for interesting dissection. And the fun part is that there’s something for everybody’s agenda! Many will choose to ignore or emphasize unduly one party’s role in this drama, but the fact is that it very neatly exposes both the strengths and weaknesses of both traditional and so-called new media. I hope you’re sitting comfortably.
I recently wrote about reports on the documented decline of visitors to Twitter.com. A good friend encouraged me to take a deeper look at the reports as a way of discerning hype from reality and to also examine the potential trends that will most likely set the stage for something more meaningful. At the very least, Twitter has been nothing short of a cultural catalyst that transformed how people communicate as well as how messages are distributed and disseminated. Twitter as a platform has also effectively served as the social OS for many of its loyal and enthusiastic users.
Have digital and social media leveled the marketing playing field so much that scale is losing its power?That this prospect has big marketers increasingly worried -- and smaller ones pleased -- was clear at the recent Association of National Advertisers conference in Phoenix. But while much evidence points to a leveling effect, plenty also points to scale remaining a powerful and even growing force in marketing.
Monday, I reported my recent culturematic experiment, the tweeting of my train ride from Chicago and Detroit. Today, I thought I'd look at the marketing implications. Specifically, can a culturematic help a marketer help a client? Can it help build the brand? Can it help the brand participate in culture? I think the reply is emphatically "yes."
If you want to understand how ESPN went from a two-story building surrounded by satellites in 1979 to the world's largest sports-media brand, spend a day at the company's campus in Bristol, Conn. On the eve of ESPN's 30th anniversary, MediaWorks took a trip up north to the company's Media Workshop, where dozens of sports-media reporters and bloggers convened for a detailed tour of what makes the Walt Disney Co.'s top-grossing cable property tick. Here are some highlights from the day's sessions.
Advertising and public relations stand at a crossroads -- at once battered by recession-driven corporate downsizing and confronted with a bevy of new and often untested online platforms. Amid the uncertainty, firms have battled back with disparate strategies: eschewing general advertising to reach smaller target audiences; rushing to integrate the once separate fiefdoms of PR and advertising; and seeking to capitalize on the disintegration of multinational firms by buying up local branch offices.
Successful businesses are always making choices and sacrifices, strategically looking as to how they are going to prioritize their resources, including human capital, budgets, and, of course, time. As the world around them adapts, so too do they need to make changes internally to respond, or to predict where trends are going – and if they guess right, the business could catapult ahead of less-agile competition.
Here's an irrefutable fact: Marketing and advertising agency models are completely broken. With the rise of the Internet and the evolution of new-media offerings--from mobile to social media to word of mouth--client needs have changed. Yet the models of most agencies, built on the traditional foundations of TV, print and radio, have not.
As the economy declines and consumer spending habits undergo a vast reevaluation, there is nowhere left to hide. The media industry, in other words, must adapt or die.
Digital strategy should be a continuous and iterative process, informed by a steady flow of measurement and used to guide tactical adjustments in pursuit of the client's primary online objective.
Joe Rospars, the man behind President Barack Obama's new-media effort during his election, said the campaign didn't win because it used the latest technology. Rather, its secret was a holistic approach -- one easily copied by regular marketers -- that integrated digital tools into the overall strategy.