We Loved 2016
Locally, nationally and globally, 2016 has been an interesting year, to say the least. Here at Target Marketing, we kicked off the year with a rebrand of the magazine that not only informed our print content but online, as well.
We promised the rebrand would offer a bold design and fresh content, with the focus extending beyond the realm of traditional direct marketing. Running with this, the editors took a good stretch and extended our reach into the worlds of MarTech and brand strategy, added a sprinkling of relevant pop-culture marketing stories, increased our daily Today @ Target Marketing e-newsletter content by 50 percent, and upped weekly video production by 200 percent. Suffice it to say, we’ve been busy while having a good time!
I really enjoyed working on the “Marketers of Tomorrow” piece for the September/October issue. I got to talk to a bunch of marketers doing awesome things for their companies all over the country — and England, too! As someone who’s starting off her career, it was really inspiring to see these people making an impact.
—Taylor Knight, Associate Content Editor
When announcing the rebrand back in January, Editor-in-Chief Thorin McGee said, “We’re going to connect those dots and help our readers become the kind of businesspeople who can thrive in that modern marketing role. Target Marketing won’t just help your marketing, it’ll help your marketing career.”
In a celebration of a great year in marketing and marketing coverage, here’s a mix of content that our audience loved (thanks, analytics!) and that we loved working on.
Okay, my fave part of Target Marketing this year is Sass Marketing — WWTT videos, specifically. I think they are fun, fresh, informative and, most importantly, sassy! I especially liked the Doritos vid — thought that was awesome.
—Julia Rice, Marketing Coordinator
What Were We Thinking?
In June, Melissa Ward and Taylor Knight launched the weekly video series, “What Were They Thinking?” Melissa hunts down new bits of marketing to discuss — from KFC fried chicken-scented sunscreen to Zappos’ #ImNotABox — then dishes up her sassy shenanigans on camera, while Taylor covers all the filming and expert editing.It’s become a quick favorite of the team — many of whom have guest-starred in it — as well as the audience. It’s also been Target Marketing’s most successful video series to-date, contributing our two most-viewed videos of the year, and five of the Top 10.
Plus, as Taylor says, “No matter how crazy of a week it is, I know I always have an hour set aside to film with Melissa (or any guest she brings in for the antics) that’s filled with laughs and sass.”
Group President Chris Lyons also chimed in: “Melissa has created a voice in the marketing landscape that is crisp, insightful and fun for our audience, and it shows in the number of folks who follow her and share her insights!”
Seeing the team find interesting, non-traditional stories that they can still tie back to marketing makes me feel really good about the direction we’re taking Target Marketing. From Sass Marketing’s post “David Bowie: The King of Reinvention” to Thorin’s provocatively titled post, “Good Morning, You’re Gonna Die” … and of course, not to forget the work the team did to select a Target Marketer of the Year who isn’t the same old “Marketer of the Year” hailed by everyone else in the industry.
—Drew James, Publisher/Brand Director
Even though the Target Marketing editorial team has expanded coverage to Pokémon Go’s revival of augmented reality, the MarTech Universe and more, we also realize direct mail continues to make a significant impact on our audience’s bottom line. Articles like Paul Bobnak’s “3 Easy Takeaways From the Worst Direct Mail Ever” give straightforward advice, such as the importance of subtlety, how hiring a good copywriter truly pays off, and why a marketer should leave no opportunity unused.
"I like direct mail or email that provides valuable content to a customer. But I love it when it’s “how-to” content that requires active engagement with the target audience. For one of my videos, I demonstrated how it can work well, using an email from Jack Daniels. I printed out an outline to make a shot glass with folded paper and a little Scotch tape. And it held up long enough for me to not spill it on myself! Next time … brownies."
—Paul Bobnak, Director, Who’s Mailing What!
After doing a little digging, we were able to determine that our most socially shared piece of content this year so far was a blog post by Michelle Robin, Chief Brand Officer at Brand Your Career and author of the Market You blog. The post, “How to Write a Killer Marketing Resume” walked marketers through the ins and outs of prepping a resume that will make them stand out from the competition — definitely worth a share or two!
The second-most-shared article was our annual Target Marketer of the Year cover story; this year, honoring Windsor Hanger Western. It’s no surprise that this would be a popular piece — marketers love hearing about what the best in their class do — but this year’s piece really took off (and it’s only been live on the site for five to six weeks). Heather Fletcher, who wrote the article, says, “Windsor Hanger Western was such a fun Target Marketer of the Year to interview. She doesn’t conform to any stereotype — she’s young, yet is an experienced marketer; she’s career-driven, yet committed to her family and young daughter; and she seems universally loved, yet is a savvy business owner.” Obviously readers agreed!