CategoryMarketing

B2B Digital Marketing Doesn’t Work for Everyone

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In December 2021, Plexus Holdings, a drilling technology firm based in Aberdeen, Scotland, signed a new contract. The deal, with Cameron, a supplier of wellheads, extended a license agreement for Plexus to provide special equipment that prevents gas leaks during drilling operations. The agreement was an expansion of a series of previous deals between the two firms. “Following our recent...

The Real Costs of Cause Marketing

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Pepsi probably thought it had its timing exactly right. In 2010, the brand skipped its traditional Superbowl ad spot. Instead of spending millions for half-a-minute of audience time, and millions more for images of can-opening and lip-smacking, the brand decided to give money away. Its Pepsi Refresh campaign invited people to vote online for causes to which Pepsi would make financial donations...

When Social Media Users Steal Your Marketing Campaign

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In May 2017, Walkers, a British potato chip brand, launched a social media campaign. Fronted by retired soccer player and television personality Gary Lineker, the company invited people to publish their selfies on Twitter with the hashtag #WalkersWave. The selfies would be automatically incorporated into a frame held up by Lineker in a video that also showed a Mexican wave in a soccer stadium. A...

What Effective Social Responsibility Marketing Needs to Do

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The campaign should have been everything that Keurig needed to stand out and win the coffee company a new, young audience. Nespresso had George Clooney. De’Longhi had Brad Pitt. Keurig would have recyclable coffee pods. All customers had to do after they’d finished making their morning cappuccino, was peel off the silver top, dump out any coffee grounds, and toss the plastic cup into the...

Why Audiences Should Fear Your Ads

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A baby doll sits with its eyes closed in almost empty room. The walls are white and bare. Opposite the toy is the black box of a PlayStation 3. The doll’s eyes snap open. It gurgles like a baby and reaches towards the console. The doll’s laugh shifts from a baby’s giggle to an adult’s maniacal laugh. Then it releases a scream. Tears flow as fire flashes in the doll’s eyes before the tears roll...

Marketing After Facebook

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Whistleblowers are supposed to come out of defense institutions. They’re supposed to alert the world to abuses of power, expose egregious cover-ups, or reveal atrocities that have been swept under the carpet. They’re not supposed to come from Silicon Valley hi-tech companies built to help people show pictures of their cats. But when Frances Haugen sat down with 60 Minutes in October 2021, what...

The Best Way to Tell a Story

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How do you tell a market to buy your product instead of your competitors’ products? One approach is to focus on your product’s unique features. Your product is faster, cheaper, and generally does the job better. It’s like the other products but gives customers more bang for their buck. The other approach is to tell a story. Ignore the characteristics and build an emotional engagement that will...

The Right Way to Choose a Marketing Agency

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It should have been the moment the fast-growing shoe company made its breakthrough. Just for Feet had started in 1977 with a single shoe store in Birmingham, Alabama. By 1999, it had grown to 140 superstores in 25 states, was making $775 million of annual sales, and was ranked sixth in Fortune magazine’s list of “America’s Fastest Growing Companies.” Now, as the new millennium came...

What’s Really In a Name

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It was one of the biggest—and at the time, one of the most head-scratching—brand re-naming events ever. In 1993, rock star Prince declared that he was changing his name… to an unpronounceable love symbol. Faced with having to mime a combination of gender ideograms whenever anyone wanted to talk about the man behind Purple Rain and Sign O The Times, people soon started calling him “the artist...

Top the App Store in 2021

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For mobile app developers in 2009, life was easy. The iPhone was just two years old and had sold little more than 40 million units. The App Store had launched the year before, with an initial offer of just 500 applications. By November 2009, the store had generated two billion downloads from only 100,000 apps. The number of apps available varied from region to region though. So when Rovio, a...

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