Your Brand and a New President

Tuesday, Jan 27 2009

Change is definitely in the air, but don’t get overzealous about transferring the mobile marketing success of Obama’s campaign on to your brand.  Here’s what I mean by that.  Did the campaign strategists for the  44th President of the United States do a great job with their mobile marketing strategy?  Absolutely!  Who is going to argue with nearly 3 million text messages sent to an opted in audience announcing Obama’s choice for vice president?   But they also were working with a strong and growing brand – and they utilized many different channels of communication.

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The “Anti-How-to-Market-In-a-Down-Economy” Post

Thursday, Jan 22 2009

The world needs another “how to market in a down economy” blog post like a hole in the head.  For every person who touts the fact that “now is the best time to advertise” there is someone else writing about the virtues of shifting all efforts to measured online media, or shifting everything to the more economical social media.  In fact here’s a link to Business Week’s conglomeration of related articles - http://bx.businessweek.com/advertising-in-a-recession/blogs/.  Enough!

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Grow your e-mail file

Tuesday, Jan 6 2009

If you visited either presidential campaign site this year, you were greeted by a simple page that was 100% focused on one result:  getting your email address. Everything else—policy views, press clippings, and personal histories—was tucked behind this signup curtain (with only a subtle option to “skip signup.”)

Last week, the Houston Chronicle reported that “the Obama campaign collected about 10 million email addresses, and its database contains details of the issues of concern to many of those citizens.”  Well.

Whether you’re a business looking to engage new customers, a trade association going after new members or a non-profit trying to grow your donor base, e-mail marketing is likely the sledgehammer in your marketing  toolkit.  So here’s the basic blocking-and-tackling on how to grow your list.

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Happy Holidays from Brunner

Friday, Dec 19 2008


Common Sense Steps To Protect Yourself From Customer Attrition

Wednesday, Dec 10 2008

Brunner and a lot of other savvy Direct Marketers have always known it’s all about building and maintaining a strong customer base. And during this particularly challenging economy, it’s even more important to protect core customer relationships.

A healthy customer database sustains core revenue streams; can provide organic growth through up sell and cross sell opportunities; existing customers can easily become a new acquisition source through referrals and very importantly - intelligence gleaned from your customer segments can help you be much smarter in targeting, attracting and keeping new customers.

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The 31st Second

Saturday, Nov 29 2008

So you’ve developed a great TV spot for your brand. It’s entertaining, attention-getting, and delivers the message that you want people to remember about your company or product. Or maybe you’ve created a campaign of print ads, beautifully crafted to summarize your primary point of differentiation. But now what? Is that all there is?

There is an old rule of marketing that says people need to be aware before they consider, and consider before they buy. Television and print are great tools for generating awareness. But for many consumers to really consider a product today, they need the richness of information that can’t be delivered in30 seconds or in a few printed lines. Such encounters with a brand are fleeting. To really engage and begin to form a relationship with consumers – to give them the tools that they needs to consider your brand – a greater depth of information and interaction is required.

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Ongoing Lessons of the Obama Brand

Wednesday, Nov 19 2008

In October, I predicted that Obama’s use of the Internet and social networking would prove vital to his election; that the engagement of younger generations and the dialogue taking place online would catapult the youth vote front and center (even over the women’s vote) and offer a new way of managing a brand.  Less than 2 weeks after the election, the media’s all over it.

In the Sunday NY Times (11/9/08), David Carr wrote about Obama’s Internet strategy dating back to 2007, http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/10/business/media/10carr.html?em.  How, at the time, the proposition of leveraging social media seemed ridiculous and unlikely. Carr goes on to write about the campaign’s success and the implications of Obama’s social network resources as he turns to governing, “The juxtaposition of a networked, open-source campaign and a historically imperial office will have profound implications and raise significant questions. Special-interest groups and lobbyists will now contend with an environment of transparency and a president who owes them nothing. The news media will now contend with an administration that can take its case directly to its base without even booking time on the networks.

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Paul Boutin, Blogging and a Puerile Understanding of Mass Communications

Wednesday, Nov 12 2008

In Issue 16.11 of Wired Magazine, Paul Boutin, a correspondent for the Silicon Valley gossip site Valleywag, wrote an essay advising his readers to give up on blogging.  He writes:

Writing a weblog today isn’t the bright idea it was four years ago. The blogosphere, once a freshwater oasis of folksy self-expression and clever thought, has been flooded by a tsunami of paid bilge. Cut-rate journalists and underground marketing campaigns now drown out the authentic voices of amateur wordsmiths. It’s almost impossible to get noticed, except by hecklers. And why bother? The time it takes to craft sharp, witty blog prose is better spent expressing yourself on Flickr, Facebook, or Twitter.

Paul concludes:

As a writer, though, I’m onto the system’s real appeal: brevity. Bloggers today are expected to write clever, insightful, witty prose to compete with Huffington and The New York Times. Twitter’s character limit puts everyone back on equal footing. It lets amateurs quit agonizing over their writing and cut to the chase. @WiredReader: Kill yr blog. 2004 over. Google won’t find you. Too much cruft from HuffPo, NYT. Commenters are tards. C u on Facebook?

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Election 2008 vs. 1808

Sunday, Nov 2 2008

How vastly different is the election of 1808 vs. that of 2008 when it comes to communication strategy? You decide. With so much being made about how “new” tactics for getting out the vote and distributing messages for one party or another is being used today and how these “innovative strategies” for speaking to potential voters has evolved, I decided to take a very unscientific and admittedly very shallow look at how different things are.

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The end of the integrated marketing era?

Friday, Oct 10 2008

I’ve been surprised recently to hear so many people in our industry claim the era of integrated marketing is coming to an end. They say it’s an overused term, and its meaning has become diluted. If that’s the case, then why did my Google search of “integrated marketing” just turn up 6.6 million hits? A Blog Pulse snapshot indicates the topic is hotter than ever. Clearly, integrated marketing is more than an industry buzz word. It’s actually a concept that isn’t going away any time soon, but the focus has definitely shifted. As digital media becomes ever more prevalent in our society, marketers—clients and agencies alike—are struggling more
than ever to get their arms around how to effectively integrate digital into their marketing programs. MORE