According to the AAA newsroom, 41.9 million travelers will journey at least 50 miles from home this Independence day. It’s no surprise 84.7% of those traveling will travel by car as the average gas price for the 4th of July has decreased significantly compared to recent years. Yesterday, June 29 the national average gas price was $2.77 per gallon, compared to $3.66 in 2014 – that’s a noticable $0.89 difference per gallon. Check out the great graphics below for data on the National Average Gas Price and The Ten Most Expensive Averages. Safe Travels to all!
As marketers, we are constantly looking forward. Never able to “take a moment” because of fear of losing market share to a competitor or not having a plan in place for the next big thing. This continuous battle is fought by both brands and agencies alike. This drive makes us naturally curious as to what the future will hold.
Jeff Beer of Fast Company Create aimed to satisfy some of this curiosity in his recent article, 25 Predications For What Marketing Will Look Like in 2020. Speaking to elite players at a few of The Most Innovative Companies of 2015 in Advertising/Marketing, Jeff documents predictions for the marketing landscape over the next five years. Contributors represent voices from brands, creative agencies, marketing technology startups and media platforms.
While each of the constituencies has a unique perspective, the overall message is clear: the complexity of modern marketing is only going to keep increasing.
Cultural relevance is a key theme many of the contributors speak to. The fact that it will continue to be a central issue for marketers and, as Matt Jarvis of 72andSunny states, “people will continue to care more about culture than products, so brands that operate on a cultural level will be the winners of the future as they are of the present.” It’s the marketers role to facilitate the conversation that encourages cultural relevance and foster the branded content that consumers will undoubtedly create.
Other predictions include:
- Role of advertising agencies and the idea that “good agencies will act like product companies, not service companies.”
- How Millennials will still be Millennials when they turn 35, taking all the brand preference and media habits they have developed today. And, according to Spencer Baim of Vice Media, “brands need to recognize that the millennial consumer is a generation of people, not just a niche ‘youth’ market.”
- Measurement of campaign success and the evolution of the metrics tracked the define success. (And that the banner ads will soon work!)
- Shrinking product life cycle and the impact on marketing and advertising, forcing product and marketing campaign development to be on similar time frames.
- Impact of technology, mobile, social, video, connectivity, and virtual reality.
In 2014, Blackberry was determined to recapture their B-to-B audience. The company had been forced into a B-to-C market that lost them almost $2 billion dollars a quarter.
But in the last 18 months, Blackberry has focused its attention on a strategy that recaptures the original B-to-B audience. Its very first step was to hire Gyro, an agency specialized in the market. Through the partnership, Blackberry launched the “Work Wide” campaign to grow interest in its new Blackberry Passport device. Blackberry was positioned as a serious business tool, with key security features that made it a hit. Other smartphones were portrayed as games. In one week, more than 200,000 devices were sold.
“Here were two factors: fun and trust,” Christoph Becker, CEO of Gyro, said in this year’s BMA. “We had so many edits coming out, and we had to turn them around quickly. BlackBerry is a challenger brand, and we are a challenger agency, so it worked well. Who doesn’t want to bring back an iconic brand?”
The partnership’s main priority is to keep Blackberry’s focus on security and privacy in addition to making it relevant by offering ‘the internet of things,’ software and services.
This monthly blog post highlights one W5er with a fun questionnaire that will provide a snapshot of who we are as a company and as individuals. Today we meet Danielle Musselwhite, a client-relations consultant/all things marketing pro.
A city that grows from within reclaiming yet-to-be gentrified neighborhoods, promoting the arts, new food, and generally alternative ways of doing things is a distinct place, unlike many others. Such places and activities are often deemed “cool.” Coolness incubates, sometimes over a generation or two, with new ways of perceiving, making, and doing things. Eventually these elements collide, and a zeitgeist emerges.
Coolness offers people a chance to explore, to go beyond their prescribed boundaries and mix things up. Un-gentrified, or less polished cities, take on little risk in letting people do these things in their backyards, with little to lose. Creativity ensues, and coolness follows.
Cool cities take time to boil over and be noticed by those who are not in attendance. Arguably, a place isn’t cool until outsiders make note of it, thereby designating it so. Critical to being a cool city is that the people from within aren’t interested in defining themselves as such, since they’re too in-the-moment creating than caring about such a moniker; labeling oneself cool has always been the kiss of uncool.
Not nowadays though. Read More
This case study highlights W5’s approach and the resulting deliverables for a performing arts organization experiencing lagging ticket sales and interest among local audiences. W5’s customized research approach allowed for an initial deep dive into local community members’ entertainment attitudes and preferences before measuring the results among larger population. This process allowed W5 to not only identify preferences for the entertainment experience specific to the market itself, but also larger cultural trends influencing a movement away from the art form’s current mode of offerings.
IDENTIFYING CHALLENGES TO INFORM STRATEGIC ACTION
Though nationally renowned and highly respected, a nonprofit performing arts organization acknowledged a need to better connect with local residents to improve performance attendance. W5 partnered with the organization to identify and quantify motivations and barriers to inform sales and marketing communications.
W5 conducted two successive and complementary phases of research: qualitative focus group discussions with areas residents–some of who did, and some who did not visit the downtown arts district for entertainment and a quantitative online survey with season ticket holders, past attendees, performance hall patrons, and general area residents.
Planning-ness 2015 went off without a hitch and Toronto welcomed the crowd with open arms. The Distillery District, where we spent most of our time, included a great coffee shop (always necessary), several unique watering holes, and some killer restaurants. I especially loved having the garage doors open in the afternoon at the venue, Airship 37. We spent the first day learning to negotiate our way out of hostage situations, speaking like actors and using data to change the world. The second day, we explored how to have better relationships, played with drones, and learned to maximize our body language.
One of my favorite take-aways this year came from Clay Jones and Mark Raheja’s presentation on Organizational Design in the 21st Century. They presented the idea of identifying rituals and rhythms within your organization and implementing/repeating these rhythms for optimization and efficiency. It sounds lofty, but when you identify rituals and rhythms within your day-to-day and use those rhythms to maximize your time and productivity, it opens up more opportunities to be creative in other areas of your work. I’ve been working on streamlining and systemizing the rituals in my day-to-day to better use my energy and alertness. So far, so good.
Thank you to everyone who made Planning-ness a success. It’s an event we always enjoy and a community we are proud to support. We’re looking forward to Planning-ness ’16 in San Francisco! Hope to see you there.
Memorial Day is fast approaching. By land, air, and sea, a projected 37.2 million U.S. travelers will venture 50 miles or more from their home this year during this holiday period, according to a travel forecast from AAA. With gas prices down from last year, the number of projected travelers is up nearly 5% from last year.
Thanks to AAA, we have this great infographic below providing a snapshot Memorial Day travel behavior.
Two brands are concentrating branding efforts on Surprise-and-Delight tactics, proven efforts to build long-term brand loyalty. As AdAge recently reported, Surprise-and-Delight branding efforts are “far less random” and is “the driving force behind several nationwide, multimillion-dollar marketing campaigns.”
Mastercard took its ongoing “Priceless” campaign a step further, merging with Twitter to gift members with lavish surprise such as meeting Justin Timberlake and VIP tickets to the Grammy awards. It also developed an app where partners (Staples, for example) can gift Mastercard members sporadically. The results are doubled; retaining happy members while also capturing curious new consumers.
If Starbucks were a person, who would they be? Male or female? Young, old or somewhere in between? What kind of car would they drive? What about their MO?
You can tell a lot about people’s brand perceptions when you ask that they imagine them as a person. Brand personification exercises are great tools for illuminating who consumers feel a brand is for as well what kind of permission they give to shift, alter or expand that audience. It can speak to identification, aspiration and alienation, and is particularly helpful when contrasting brands within a competitive set. For example, would the Gap like the same bands as Old Navy?
Advertisers are no stranger to this technique too. A perfect example is Apple’s ‘I’m a Mac/I’m a PC’ campaign. A recent article in the Harvard Business Review looks at how brands capitalize on our propensity to anthropomorphize just about everything from pets to cars, and discusses how brands use gendered messaging to build equity and affinity.