Marketing Maestros

Let Me Tell You About Don

By Michael Berberich, manager, marketing knowledge center
Posted: Jul 1, 2014 12:30pm ET

Don’t think your category can “work” on social media? Think again.

For certain categories, social media marketing is easy (or at least it’s straightforward): sports teams (fan pictures!), beer companies (full cooler at the beach party!), and TV shows (who’s YOUR favorite character?) “make sense”  on social because they are inherently fun, social categories. But what about construction supplies? Or health insurance? Or financial advisement?

It’s crucial for marketers to remember that consumers are on social media for conversations, not necessarily entertainment. A common misconception of social marketing is that its successes are extravagant, “home run” pieces of content that align with something culturally relevant, seemingly out of nowhere. The truth is successful social marketing comes from creating a “slow drip” of content a brand believes will be relevant to its audience based on listening to what they want and value. “As far as content creation is concerned, from day one brands have got to create content like they have 1,000,000 fans,” says author and social media expert Ben Blakesley. “Keep trying, because you’re going to fail a lot, but that will teach you what works and why it works. In the beginning you have very little to lose, so try everything.”

After a brand enters a social space and delivers content to engage consumers and spark conversations, it is vital to monitor these interactions and identify its “diehard” fans. Too often, brands will only respond to negative comments on social, and by ignoring the positive comments, waste valuable relationship building opportunities. While working at Vanguard, a financial service company, Blakesley noticed that “Don,” one of the firm’s clients, was interacting with the Vanguard Facebook page on a regular basis. To show its appreciation, the company sent Don a Vanguard mug, a four dollar investment in total. In return, Don wrote and posted a seven stanza poem on Facebook describing his excitement and thanking the brand. Several months later, on the day of Don’s retirement, Vanguard made its Facebook profile picture one of Don and his wife, and posted a song written in Don’s honor. For almost no money, Vanguard established an actual relationship with Don, ensuring his continued loyalty and advocacy. Furthermore, it positioned Vanguard as a brand that deeply, personally cares about its clients.

Social media success begins with listening. Instead of coming up with ways to make financial advice funny, sexy, or cool, Vanguard listened to its consumers and developed content based on what mattered most to them. Every brand has a “Don,” it’s just a matter of whether they’ve engaged him.

For more about effective social media marketing: http://www.ana.net/miccontent/show/id/s-mocmar14e2-vanguard

Catchy Jingles and Theme Songs

By Jesse Feldman, manager, marketing knowledge center
Posted: Jun 26, 2014 2:00pm ET

I’ve had a lot of songs stuck in my head this week, and I put most of the blame on marketers. Presenters at recent ANA events have reminded me how much a catchy song can linger long after a commercial or film has finished. Check out some of our Marketing Knowledge Center’s most recent content… and catch an earworm or two:

(Oh, and the original Chiquita Banana Jingle is on YouTube. Enjoy!)

Jesse Feldman works in the ANA’s Marketing Knowledge Center (MKC), a rich suite of insights, case studies, event recaps, and research. You might notice her taking notes for the MKC at committee meetings, members-only conferences, or (virtually) webinars. She’ll be popping onto the ANA blog to regularly highlight some latest and greatest MKC content.

ANA at CES 2015!

By Bill Duggan, Group EVP, ANA
Posted: Jun 11, 2014 10:51am ET

ANA and the Consumer Electronic Association are teaming up at the 2015 International CES in Las Vegas.  “C Space” is a new central headquarters at CES curated for the marketing, advertising, content, and creative communities.  ANA will be developing programming specifically tailored to the C Space audience.

Attendance at CES is 150,000+ and CEA estimates that 30,000 of those are CMOs, brand professionals, content creators, and digital advertisers.  C Space will tell the story of how content, creativity, technology, CMOs, brand marketing, influencers and the consumer come together as part of the CES experience.

CES has become one of the “must attend” events for client-side marketers and ANA is thrilled to partner with the Consumer Electronics Association on this initiative.  Digital marketing is an urgent priority for our members and an ANA presence at C Space will help marketers get the most out of their CES experience.

C Space will be located at ARIA and open between January 6-9, 2015.  Mark your calendars!

What B2B Marketers Can Teach the Rest of Us!

By Bill Duggan, Group EVP, ANA
Posted: Jun 10, 2014 11:00am ET

I recently came back from three inspiring days in Chicago, attending the BMA (Business Marketing Association) annual conference.  There were some great lessons there, and not just for B2B marketers.  Here are five that stood out to me.

Congrats to BMA for a terrific event.  And thanks to Radio & Television Business Report for publishing this blog first.

What’s New at the MKC?

By Jesse Feldman, manager, marketing knowledge center
Posted: Jun 4, 2014 2:30pm ET

Notice anything different about us? We’ve made some changes to the MKC’s online content hub (found under “Insights and Research” on this site).

We’ve given one of our core knowledge products a light makeover just in time for summer: “Snapshot” content items are now listed as “Event Recaps.” Only the name has changed — we’re still bringing you easy-to-read, informative executive summaries and in-depth coverage of presentations from ANA events like committee meetings and members-only conferences.

In addition, presenters’ PowerPoint decks are now available for download directly from the event summary page. You’ll no longer be directed to a new page before you can download a presentation. This change was made with your user experience in mind. As an example, clicking “Presentation” in the right corner of the Event Recap page for our webinar “Eight Social Strategies Proven to Drive Marketing Results” will immediately open a dialogue box to download the presentation. Convenient, right?

As always, you can browse Event Recaps by key topics of interest, direct search, and through calendar agenda items. Happy reading!

Jesse Feldman works in the ANA’s Marketing Knowledge Center (MKC), a rich suite of insights, case studies, event recaps, and research. You might notice her taking notes for the MKC at committee meetings, members-only conferences, or (virtually) webinars. She’ll be popping onto the ANA blog to regularly highlight some latest and greatest MKC content.

The Case For Media Procurement

By Bill Duggan, Group EVP, ANA
Posted: May 20, 2014 11:00am ET

The annual ANA Advertising Financial Management Conference just wrapped up. There were 600+ attendees and many of those were client-side marketing procurement professionals. Procurement has traditionally handled areas including contracts, RFIs/RFPs, agency evaluations, scope of work development, and supplier diversity. Agency compensation has long been a priority of marketing procurement; production has more recently become a focus.

Now, procurement needs to spend more time on media. When looking at the combination of media, production, and agency compensation, media comprises 80% of those dollars … but agency compensation and production account for 90%+ of the focus for most marketing procurement organizations.

A new trend is on the rise – media procurement – and those individuals have a laser-like focus on media. Kudos to those companies that already have media procurement. More companies now need to realize the benefit. It’s where the dollars are!

Responsibilities of media procurement include: media auditing – checking that the media a client has bought is in the right places, at competitive prices; media agency evaluations; and investigating media transparency issues. Media procurement can provide an overall company perspective and the benefit of visibility of media supplier pools across businesses to help leverage a company’s total investment.

Media procurement should ask, “Do we know what we’re getting?,” and see how and where digital advertising gets placed (e.g., frequency caps, inappropriate content, share of voice, above-the-fold) and push for greater visibility into data used to define audience targeting, especially in digital media. Media procurement should ask, “Are we getting what we paid for?,” and investigate issues such as click fraud and reliance on served versus viewable impressions.

Given the strong negotiating skills of procurement, the day will even come for some advertisers when media procurement will be at the negotiation table helping to cut deals with media suppliers.

For now, more companies need to recognize the very big value of media procurement.

Thanks to Radio & Television Business Report for first publishing this blog.

You don’t know what you don’t know: More marketers worry about media buying transparency

Posted: May 15, 2014 10:00am ET

Transparency issues between marketers and their media agencies are on the rise, per a new ANA/Forrester Research survey.

Forty-six percent of marketers have concerns about the level of transparency between themselves and their media agency(s). Further, concerns about transparency have increased for 42 percent of marketers over the past year, and have decreased for only 13 percent. 

The issues that cause the most concern are:

As stated in a previous blog, there is a transparency crisis in the advertising industry and this new research further confirms that. What are the implications for marketers?

As our industry continues to evolve, transparency issues between clients and agencies are likely to remain concerns. For example, programmatic buying—which has various intermediaries between the buyer and seller—appears to be an issue with emerging transparency concerns. Marketers would be wise to pay attention!

Thanks to The Economist for first publishing this viewpoint in their Lean Back marketing blog.

Metrics & Procurement

By Bill Duggan, Group EVP, ANA
Posted: May 7, 2014 3:00pm ET

ANA’s new research, “Optimizing the Procurement & Marketing Relationship,” looks at the relationship between procurement and marketing.

There was a notable disconnect when respondents were asked to rate the importance placed on various metrics.

A key learning in this research: better alignment between marketing and procurement on success metrics is required. While cost is important, procurement should pay closer attention to the metrics of highest importance to marketers – specifically sales/market share increases, improving marketing ROI and improving brand health metrics.

Is On-the-Job Training Enough?

By Jesse Feldman, manager, marketing knowledge center
Posted: May 7, 2014 11:00am ET

My team has had a busy month strategizing how to best bring insights from our Marketing2020: Organizing for Growth survey to members. Marketing2020 was a joint ANA and EffectiveBrands study and the most comprehensive global marketing leadership initiative ever undertaken. For a further overview of Marketing2020, check out this ANA webinar summarizing how CMOs, CEOs, and other leaders can align their strategies, organizations, and capabilities to build their brands in the years ahead.

New, “snackable” articles from Marketing2020 will go live once a week on a dedicated section of our site. You won’t need a password to view the articles — so if you find the findings as fascinating as we do, share the links across your social networks (hint: your LinkedIn connections will find them fascinating). This week I wrote about the direct correlation between companies offering more days of formal training and overall performance. You (or your boss) might be surprised to see how few respondents felt they received adequate on-the-job training.

Upcoming topics we’ll be covering include marketing leadership traits that drive growth and top motivators for successful marketers. We’ll also be publishing infographics and key findings reports to help marketers align their strategies, organizations, and capabilities to generate growth in the years ahead. You can also follow the conversation on Twitter with #Marketing2020.

Jesse Feldman works in the ANA’s Marketing Knowledge Center (MKC), a rich suite of insights, case studies, event recaps, and research. You might notice her taking notes for the MKC at committee meetings, members-only conferences, or (virtually) webinars. She’ll be popping onto the ANA blog to regularly highlight some latest and greatest MKC content.

Insights from Day 2 of AFM

By Constantine von Hoffman, editor of ANA Magazine
Posted: May 6, 2014 1:30pm ET

Tuesday at the ANA Advertising Financial Management conference got off to a great start with a lively, informed — and PowerPoint free! — talk on the future of marketing by Rishad Tobaccowala, chair of DigitasLBI and Razorfish.

He began by pointing out all the assumptions the marketing industry has about the future — how it will be increasingly digital, social, data driven, mobile, and focused on emerging markets. No great surprise there, but then he started dissecting those assumptions and looked at what is left out of them and their implications.

First, he looked at how important analog’s ideas and actions remain despite the seeming triumph of all things digital. For example, there is the way mobile is putting more emphasis on people and places, like how people go into a brick-and-mortar store and then look online to see if they can get a better price. That’s digital supplementing analog.

One of the reasons analog will always be important is because digital is binary – yes/no, on/off – while people are not. We are a “maybe” species that frequently rejects data we know to be true in order to follow our preconceptions. “People choose with their hearts and then use numbers to justify what they just did,” he said. While this might seem a critical flaw at a time when all the talk is of “data-driven decision-making,” it’s actually a strength we need to understand. “The underlying basis of our business is storytelling,” Tobaccowala added, “and storytelling is analog.” In other words, if Beauty had stepped back and made a well-thought-out rational decision about falling in love with the Beast, no one would have been the least bit interested.

Tobaccowala then warned about the risk of always looking to the market leaders for innovation. “TV and video is going to come from the slime, not the heavens,” he said, turning a phrase which I bet made everyone think. His point was that just as Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu have become big by being disruptors, they didn’t start that way. The next disruptors are already out there, it’s just that no one has caught on to them yet. “Don’t pay too much attention to your bosses,” he said. “They are the past.”

The future of marketing is less about ads and more about utilities and services. He pointed out that for $60 or $70 a month people can get much of their media ad free by subscribing to things like HBO GO, Amazon Prime, Netflix, and Spotify. While not everyone will or can do this, the 30 percent to 40 percent who do are going to be the ones most desirable to marketers. The only way to reach them is by providing something useful which they will use. He summed up the consumers’ view perfectly by pointing out that ads tell consumers the brand doesn’t value their time.

That really was just the first third of his talk and the rest was every bit as interesting and iconoclastic. Tobaccowala is @rishad on Twitter and I just became a follower.

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About This Blog

To complement our two leadership blogs and build dialogue on the seismic changes happening in marketing, we launched Marketing Maestros. Our in-house citizen journalists will talk about everything from marketing technology to accountability and everything in between. This blog is written for marketers by ANA's marketers whose insights are drawn from the voices of the client side marketing community.