You ALWAYS want STRATEGY to go FIRST!
If there is one thing that I am learning at the InterACT! Conference this week it is you really do need to keep to the marketing principles you understand and follow them throughout all of your marketing. There is such a proliferation of new media that it’s causing major changes in how companies communicate and this impacts where they place their marketing dollars. One trillion text messages were sent in 2009 and the volume is growing each month. No small change in how people communicate.
Many of the conference presenters have urged several key points to both brand owners and brand marketing firms:
1. Innovation should drive strategy. Sounds obvious, right? But slide after slide showed companies using new media without a strategy and experiencing dismal results. Simply doing something with a social media does not a campaign make!
2. Digital is innovation. And I would add that brings disruption to most businesses. To balance innovation with disruption takes someone at the helm who can maintain a strong brand strategy predicated on customers’ interests and use the correct media mix to deliver the most message impact.
3. Create marketing that makes people think, not just react to a product pitch.
4. Always be creative. This can take many forms, including funny, serious, factual and whimsical. No one solution fits all, which is what makes creativity so amazing.
A great campaign I saw was from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas. The organization and its agency, Meers Advertising, started with understanding the problem. Their target age demographic of 19 to 39 year olds didn’t believe in health care and didn’t want to talk to anyone about it. So the insurer started with radio stations and DJs and paid them to talk about why health care was either important to them or to their listeners.
Tom Marin is the Founder and President of MarketCues, Inc., a national consulting firm. He has worked for some of the world’s largest corporations and middle-market firms. Tom’s focus is to help CEOs drive their strategy shifts and strategic growth programs. Follow MarketCues on Twitter. Tom also welcomes emails new LinkedIn connections or calls to (919) 908-6145.