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The weekly recap - April 14, 2014.

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Social media is constantly evolving, with vigilant bloggers following every new app, rule and Facebook flicker. We sift through hundreds of blogs weekly to keep on top of developments and seek out new client opportunities. It’s our job. And we like to share. So, don’t fret about what you might be missing. We’ve got your Cliffs Notes.

How Big Advertisers Are Using Next-Gen Messaging Apps Snapchat, Kik, Tango, Line and WeChat
IPG Media Labs Offers Tips For Marketers Aiming to Cash In On Mobile Messaging.

Brands Need to Stop Trying to Play Hero
The goal should be participation.



Don't Count Out Email Newsletters
Loyalty and premium ad dollars still make the medium lucrative.

Keeping Your Company/Product a Secret Could be the Secret to Creating a Viral Video
For a brilliant example of this approach, check out World’s Toughest Job, which immediately went viral upon its release on Monday.

A Guide to the Best Times to Post on Social Media (Infographic)
Do you post social-media updates when your audience has the highest chance of seeing them, or just whenever you think of it or happen to have a free minute?

Keeping Your Company/Product a Secret Could be the Secret to Creating a Viral Video

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Everybody in advertising has heard this one: “Can you make a video about our product? And by the way, we want it to go viral!” Alas, the surest way to fail at making a viral video is to try to make a viral video.

That said, I have seen a trend in some recent blockbuster vids that’s worth noting: the spots all give their products the softest of sells. In fact, the name of the company is usually not mentioned until the video’s last seconds. You could call it a surprise ending.  

For a brilliant example of this approach, check out World’s Toughest Job, which immediately went viral upon its release on Monday.

In the four-minute video, a diverse group of gobsmacked job applicants interview for an “insane, unpaid, 24/7 job. The punchline? This is a job that billions of women do every day.

The job is being a mom.

After the applicants (and the viewers) dissolve into tears, we see a caption: “This Mother’s Day, you might want to make her a card.”

Only then, over quietly touching piano plinks, comes the sell: “Visit www.cardstore.com.”  

P&G employed the same subtlety in its 2012 Thank You Mom and 2014 Pick Them Back UP Olympic spots. Those tearjerkers briefly featured moms at work in their laundry rooms and babies toddling around in diapers, but not until the very end of the videos did you learn who was behind them.

And when that P&G logo did appear? It was next to a humble expression of gratitude: “Thank you, Mom.”

P&G’s 2012 spot won an Emmy. It was also a boon to the companys bottom line, according to an Ogilvy case study. It was the strongest Olympic sponsor ad measured and its performance was 40 percent stronger than P&G’s ads during the Vancouver Olympics.

It’s too early to gauge the impact that World’s Toughest Job will have on its company—American Greetings. But it’s impossible to imagine, after more than seven million views, that Cardstore.com won’t see an uptick in sales.

This kind of spot makes a big impression on those of us in advertising and marketing as well. It shows us one truth about videos: The ones that sell to a viral degree are the ones that don’t sell. This was also famously illustrated a few weeks ago with First Kiss. That video’s product—Wren clothing—was so subtly presented that at first, none of the entranced viewers even recognized that it was an ad.

I love this notion of selling a product or company by focusing on characters; on story. In the spot, that company may look like an afterthought. But for consumers, sensitive storytelling and humility are likely to make a more profound impact than a hard sell.

The weekly recap - April 7, 2014.

brogan

Social media is constantly evolving, with vigilant bloggers following every new app, rule and Facebook flicker. We sift through hundreds of blogs weekly to keep on top of developments and seek out new client opportunities. It’s our job. And we like to share. So, don’t fret about what you might be missing. We’ve got your Cliffs Notes.

Hey Brands, Facebook Isn't Screwing You
Fans may be fake, but brand advocates are real.

Dove Launches Fake 'Beauty Patch' in Latest Play for Viral Glory
Women See No Effect from Placebo at First, Then Tearfully Do

Millennials Aren't Afraid of the Phone, or Human Connection
Prized demographic wants to talk to a person when deciding on a purchase.

Amazon's Fast-Growing Video Service Has Already Overtaken Hulu, Apple
Netflix should probably start checking the rear-view mirror.

Facebook Goes Big With Right-Hand Rail Ad Redesign
Now it looks more like news feed posts.

Makeup that promotes inner beauty. Sounds conflicting, doesn't it?

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By now, you’re probably familiar with The Dove Campaign for Real Beauty, one of the leading campaigns in marketing to women. This campaign was initiated as a way of widening the definition of beauty. It encourages women to embrace their natural selves.

With this powerful message in mind, it makes us wonder how other companies are responding to this movement of redefining beauty. Cosmetic brands and makeup companies are in business because they provide an avenue for women to cover up the dark circles under their eyes, to prevent future wrinkles, and to enhance and highlight certain features while hiding other ones. So how can they effectively market to the same group of women, when their products seem to do to the exact opposite of embracing natural beauty? It sounds conflicting, doesn’t it?

Dermablend, a cosmetic brand, makes it possible. You may recall Dermablend from its well-known adGo Beyond the Cover,” which went viral in 2011 starring Rick Genest, or better known as Zombie Boy. The video displayed Dermablend’s makeup products and its ability to cover up just about anything, even a full-body tattoo.

Dermablend has recently released a new campaign. Same product, different approach. It promotes the same message of inner beauty that moved so many women – but twists it in a way that suggests cosmetics to be a tool to empower women. Using emotional testimonials, Dermablend introduces a new perspective on makeup: “Blend in to stand out.” It suggests that makeup covers imperfections so that women can reveal who they are inside. This claim challenges the message we so often hear from beauty campaigns such as Dove – that true beauty exists when we reveal our natural selves. Cassandra Bankson, a Youtube star who battles with severe acne, states in her Dermablend testimonial, “I used to use makeup to cover up and hide who I was. Now I use it to express myself and show the world who I truly am.”

Dermablend makes a strong emotional connection to women and gets at the heart of their desire to be accepted, understood, and loved – despite their imperfections. The ad provokes all kinds of emotions as we watch the two women tear up and share about their struggle with being judged and bullied for their skin conditions. As Adweek puts it, the sincerity of this ad challenges society’s association of makeup and vanity. It redefines makeup to be a tool for women to experience the freedom of shame in order to find confidence in who they really are.

Do you agree with Dermablend’s outlook? Take a look at their moving Camo Confession campaign and listen to women reveal their story about how makeup has allowed them to ‘blend in to stand out.’ Here’s to marketing to women – with a twist. 

 

 

 

 

The weekly recap - March 31, 2014.

brogan

Social media is constantly evolving, with vigilant bloggers following every new app, rule and Facebook flicker. We sift through hundreds of blogs weekly to keep on top of developments and seek out new client opportunities. It’s our job. And we like to share. So, don’t fret about what you might be missing. We’ve got your Cliffs Notes.

A Growing Number of E-Commerce Sites Are Moving Into Print
While countless publishers are struggling to drive dollars via online shopping, there are a growing number of e-commerce companies moving in the opposite direction.

As Companies Evolve, Women Will Lead the Way
Women are creating a more open, empathetic and driven workplace.

Build Your Own iAd: Apple Throws Open Door to Platform
Starting today, anyone with an Apple ID will be able to open an account with iAd Workbench, the company's mobile-ad management tool.

Supreme Court Decision Could Mean More Ad Lawsuits
Marketers beware: A Supreme Court ruling this week could lead to more false-advertising lawsuits.

The 7 Deadly Sins of Marketing Automation
How B-to-B marketers can avoid the common pitfalls and reach full potential.

Taco Bell enters the breakfast ring by calling on influencers.

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Look out McDonald’s and Burger King, pioneers of “fourth meal” are moving in on the first one. Taco Bell rolled out their breakfast menu on March 27, and it’s causing quite a buzz.

According to market researcher Technomic, McDonald’s has about a quarter of the fast food industry’s breakfast sales. Knowing it wouldn’t be easy to compete with those numbers, Taco Bell used none other than Ronald McDonald to get the public’s attention. Well, not THE Ronald McDonald, but they did find 400 men and women with the name Ronald McDonald—or some variation—who claimed to love the new breakfast meals in their most recent television spot and viral videos. In an effort to beat their newest competitor, McDonald’s announced they will offer a free small coffee to customers for two weeks starting March 31, according to the LA Times.  

So how else did Taco Bell get the word out about their first meal options? With the idea of getting up close and personal with fans of the food chain, they came up with feature phones. According to Mashable, Taco Bell mailed out 1,000 Samsung phones to super fans and social influencers. Recipients of these phones were unaware of the task until it came in the mail, and to the delight of Taco Bell, hopped onto their social media pages and started the conversation. The recipients were then given random challenges to complete at any time of day with the hopes of winning Taco Bell prizes (some of the prizes included a button-down waffle taco shirt or Crunchwrap Supreme bed sheets).

So did it work? Well take a look at Twitter and Instagram. The buzz is still rolling even after the feature phone clues ended Wednesday night. Popular hashtags #WakeUpLiveMas, and #BreakfastPhone are still going strong, even after the breakfast debut. Taco Bell has over 1.1 million followers on Twitter, and the recent television spot with the Ronald McDonald testimonials has almost 700,000 views on the YouTube channel. 

 So is Taco Bell’s breakfast menu here to stay? Is it as delicious as the Ronald McDonalds say it is? Well you’re just going to have to wait in line at one of the 6,000 stores in America—now open at 7 a.m.—to find out.

The weekly recap - March 24, 2014.

brogan

Social media is constantly evolving, with vigilant bloggers following every new app, rule and Facebook flicker. We sift through hundreds of blogs weekly to keep on top of developments and seek out new client opportunities. It’s our job. And we like to share. So, don’t fret about what you might be missing. We’ve got your Cliffs Notes.

Most Marketers Have Yet to Embrace Twitter Advertising
More than 90% of Twitter's revenue comes from advertising and promoted accounts, especially via mobile, but studies show that the social network is struggling to attract marketers.



Second-Party Data Can Help Brands Get Unique Information at Scale

Second-party data is someone else’s first-party data, so it’s a gold mine of unique information. It takes the most essential benefits of first- and third-party data to create an asset that is unique and that competitors don’t have.

10 Big Brand Facebook Tactics Any Business Can Use
Learn how some of the top brands keep their fans coming back, and how you can follow their lead to build an engaging page of your own.

Brands Must Turn to the Dark Data Side
People today interact with hundreds of brands in infinitely different ways, and each touchpoint is not just a data point, it’s part of an interconnected story that is the total brand experience.

Reinventing the Banner Ad
In order to get that much-desired attention, companies are turning banner ads into a participatory activity.

The weekly recap - March 17, 2014.

brogan

Social media is constantly evolving, with vigilant bloggers following every new app, rule and Facebook flicker. We sift through hundreds of blogs weekly to keep on top of developments and seek out new client opportunities. It’s our job. And we like to share. So, don’t fret about what you might be missing. We’ve got your Cliffs Notes.

With Facebook's New Tech, You'll Never Need to Know Friends' Faces Again
Sure, Facebook has a suggested prompt that predicts who you're trying to tag, but now the company is working on a technology that promises "near-human accuracy" so you won't have to do it yourself in the future.

When Good Logos Go Bad
Take a look at some brand revamps that haven’t gone over well.

New Social Media Research That Could Change Your Strategy
Here are four surprising social media research findings you should leverage for your social media strategy.

5 Tips for Developing Better Blogger Outreach
Read more to learn five ways to promote your brand through blogger outreach.

How to Use Facebook Website Custom Audiences
Facebook now offers a website custom audiences (WCA) option that lets you create Facebook ads that target users who have visited your website.

Stop Marketing, Start Engaging: How to Get Social Media to Really Work
Learn how to fix common mistakes social media marketers make.

The weekly recap - March 10, 2014.

brogan

Social media is constantly evolving, with vigilant bloggers following every new app, rule and Facebook flicker. We sift through hundreds of blogs weekly to keep on top of developments and seek out new client opportunities. It’s our job. And we like to share. So, don’t fret about what you might be missing. We’ve got your Cliffs Notes.

5 Ways to Use Pictures to Tell Visual Stories With Social Media
Are you sharing your stories with your fans?

Google Tests Desktop-to-Mobile Retargeting With Brand Data
Google is pitching advertisers on a new kind of ad targeting that aims to improve on the ubiquitous tracking cookie.

Facebook Reveals 'Premium' Autoplay Video Ads
Those Facebook autoplay video ads—well, call them Premium Video Ads.

Seeking TV Ad Budgets, Facebook Goes Wide With Video Ads
After launching a test of its long awaited video ads in December, Facebook is now formally rolling them out to a larger group of advertisers.

10 Social Media Tips to Enhance Your Marketing, From the Pros
Twitter chats are a great way to boost your marketing results.

9 Facebook Changes Social Media Marketers Need to Know
Facebook has been around for 10 years this month.

Marketing to Women Insight #2 - Health plans need to make it less confusing.

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Our second Brogan talks to women survey went out last month and we asked our female respondents about the health insurance marketplace.  With the deadline to sign up for health insurance being March 31st 2014, there is a sense of urgency to make sure that everyone is covered by some form of health insurance. However, one of the most common barriers to choosing a plan happens to be the confusion surrounding the process of selecting a plan. Our survey found on a scale of 1-5 (1 being least knowledgeable and 5 being the most knowledgeable) that 47.1% of our respondents rated themselves as a 2 on being knowledgeable about how to select and navigate health insurance options.

Survey Population Data

Now, this issue does not just exist in our survey population. Rather, this is an incredibly common theme and a true barrier to getting individuals to sign up for health care.

Interestingly enough, consumers have reason to be confused.  According to the Washington Post, since the inception of the law in April 2010 there have been roughly two dozen changes to the Affordable Care Act. Some of these changes are minor, while others extended deadlines for employer groups and private individuals. All of these changes have just complicated the issue more.

Bottomline, what can be done to help consumers?

Well, there have been attempts to simplify the process by streamlining the healthcare.gov website, but that may not be enough. Consumers need to have an advocate and a resource to understand the cost/benefit to each plan. Perhaps health insurance companies can offer free assistance without the pressure to buy their plan or independent agents should step up to provide 3rd party consulting.

The insurance landscape is a complex one to say the least. But, when it comes to health, consumers do need help. And without that help, they will remain in a certain limbo of balancing costs and benefits to each plan without knowing if they are getting the best bang for their buck.

Velveeta's skillet mom gets women in a way the Enjoli Woman never could.

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Remember the Enjoli Woman?

She was the every-woman of the 80s. She could bring home the bacon, fry it up a pan, and never let you forget you’re a man. She could work ‘til 5 o’clock, come home and read the kids tickity-tock.

 

Career woman. Hot wife. Caring mom. She cooked too, all while wearing a smart business suit and heels. That is, except for those times when she was slinking around in a silky dress giving her man the shivering fits.

The Enjoli Woman was a response to a new breed of wives and moms: Women who worked outside the home, but were still expected to manage the home and family as well.  Enjoli was the magic elixir that held her together. 1. Spray liberally. 2. Conquer the world.

Marketing to women? Hardly.

My career mom of five harrumphed indignantly, shaking an imaginary skillet at the TV (and my dad) every time the commercial dared interrupt her 60 minutes of relaxation.

It was a rough time for brands that marketed to women. The female consumer was gaining economic strength, and becoming all the more elusive. In fact, Brogan & Partners was founded around this time and worked with dealerships to connect with the new female breed of car buyers.

Marketing to women remains as challenging as it is lucrative today.Market estimates about their total purchasing prowess varies, ranging anywhere from $5 trillion to $15 trillion annually.Fortunately more brands have discovered how to connect more effectively with her.

Have you seen the new Velveeta skillets campaign?

Now, here’s an every-woman we can relate to.  She doesn’t waste time dancing around the kitchen with a cast iron skillet, a la Enjoli Woman. She puts it to use until she finds its true utility, making her life easier. Not prettier. Not sexier. Not more glamorous. But more manageable.

Marketing to women? Velveeta’s campaign is liquid gold.

The week in review - March 3, 2014.

brogan

Social media is constantly evolving, with vigilant bloggers following every new app, rule and Facebook flicker. We sift through hundreds of blogs weekly to keep on top of developments and seek out new client opportunities. It’s our job. And we like to share. So, don’t fret about what you might be missing. We’ve got your Cliffs Notes.

Facebook News Feed Update Gives Brands More Reach
A new change to Facebook's News Feed algorithm means brands will have greater reach than ever.

Your Next Job Application Could Be Via Smartphone
Serious job seekers should be ready to apply for a job at any moment’s notice — even if that means resorting to unconventional methods such as applying via mobile devices.

Your Twitter Search, Now Served With a Side of Ads
Twitter is getting into the search advertising business — sort of.

You Won't Believe How Big TV Still Is
As the upfronts approach and the NewFronts try again to imitate them, expect to hear a lot about the twilight of traditional television with the rise of digital video.

How to Create Visual Social Media Content
Creating compelling visuals for your social media marketing can be challenging.

6 Ways Twitter Chats Can Help You Connect With Your Audience
Twitter chats are a great way to boost your marketing results.