29 May

Jack Trout on CEO’s – via Branding Strategy Insider

jack_trout.jpgDerrick Daye from Branding Strategy Insider met with Jack Trout, the marketer who developed the classic “Positioning” concept with his co-author Al Ries. It’s an interesting read, and this is one of the thoughts Jack shared with Derrick:

Not enough CEO’s are intimately involved in the marketing process. They are the ones usually failing.

He has met more CEO’s than I have, but could it also be that the CEO’s he refers to consider “the marketing process” as a tactical activity? Do they see marketing as advertising, selling and PR rather than building a valuable brand?

I would argue that most CEOs are intimately involved in the marketing process, but they probably wouldn’t call it that.

When they make fundamental marketing decisions like going into a new market, acquiring a new company or developing a new product, they involve technical and financial people, but not too often marketers, because marketers only come in when it is time to sell and promote. Yet as the representative of their customers, marketers should be very much involved.
Maybe the issue therefore is not that CEO’s are not intimately involved in marketing, but that that they could involve marketers more in marketing.

23 May

The Age of Conversation 2

Where we had 100 people collaborating on the first book, “The Age of Conversation”, the sequel, “The Age of Conversation – Why don’t they get it?” involved 237 people from around the world. My contribution this time around is called: “The rising water level of B2B Marketing”, looking at how B2B marketers will have to change to adept to a new environment.

The topics people have written on are broad ranging, so there is a nice mix.

  • Manifestos
  • Keeping Secrets in the Age of Conversation
  • Moving from Conversation to Action?
  • The Accidental Marketer
  • A New Brand of Creative
  • My Marketing Tragedy
  • Business Model Evolution
  • Life in the Conversation Lane

I’ve chosen Business Model Evolution; here is a short bit of the intro:aoc2cover1.jpg

In B2B, there is more often than not a lot of careful evaluation before any purchase decision is made. After all, a bad decision could potentially harm your career, or cost you your job. You look for recommendations through personal networks and word of mouth. Now, through social media, there is a network at your fingertips that is easier to access, and more powerful than anything you’ve ever seen. Suddenly, as a buyer you have more knowledge, more choice, more power and higher expectations.

All the proceeds are going to the Children’s charity, Variety. If that alone is not enough reason to buy a book, consider this:

The 237 people who have participated are all passionate about the changing face of marketing. Some of these people are now recognised by the wider business community as experts in the rapidly evolving field of digital marketing/pr, social media, whatever tag you like to use. Some are not, but maybe they should be.

So what do you get for your money?

For $US 12.50 you can buy the e-book here.

For US$ 19.95 you buy the soft cover here, or the pretty hardcover for US$29,95 here.

A great effort again by Drew McLellan and Gavin Heaton for organising this. An enormous effort for charity.

Check out the list of contributors:

Adrian Ho, Aki Spicer, Alex Henault, Amy Jussel, Andrew Odom, Andy Nulman, Andy Sernovitz, Andy Whitlock, Angela Maiers, Ann Handley, Anna Farmery, Armando Alves, Arun Rajagopal, Asi Sharabi, Becky Carroll, Becky McCray, Bernie Scheffler, Bill Gammell, Bob LeDrew, Brad Shorr, Brandon Murphy, Branislav Peric, Brent Dixon, Brett Macfarlane, Brian Reich, C.C. Chapman, Cam Beck, Casper Willer, Cathleen Rittereiser, Cathryn Hrudicka, Cedric Giorgi, Charles Sipe, Chris Kieff, Chris Cree, Chris Wilson, Christina Kerley (CK), C.B. Whittemore, Chris Brown, Connie Bensen, Connie Reece, Corentin Monot, Craig Wilson, Daniel Honigman, Dan Schawbel, Dan Sitter, Daria Radota Rasmussen, Darren Herman, Dave Davison, David Armano, David Berkowitz, David Koopmans, David Meerman Scott, David Petherick, David Reich, David Weinfeld, David Zinger, Deanna Gernert, Deborah Brown, Dennis Price, Derrick Kwa, Dino Demopoulos, Doug Haslam, Doug Meacham, Doug Mitchell, Douglas Hanna, Douglas Karr, Drew McLellan, Duane Brown, Dustin Jacobsen, Dylan Viner, Ed Brenegar, Ed Cotton, Efrain Mendicuti, Ellen Weber, Eric Peterson, Eric Nehrlich, Ernie Mosteller, Faris Yakob, Fernanda Romano, Francis Anderson, Gareth Kay, Gary Cohen, Gaurav Mishra, Gavin Heaton, Geert Desager, George Jenkins, G. Kofi Annan, G.L. Hoffman, Gianandrea Facchini, Gordon Whitehead, Greg Verdino, Gretel Going & Kathryn Fleming, Hillel Cooperman, Hugh Weber, J. Erik Potter, James Gordon-Macintosh, Jamey Shiels, Jasmin Tragas, Jason Oke, Jay Ehret, Jeanne Dininni, Jeff De Cagna, Jeff Gwynne & Todd Cabral, Jeff Noble, Jeff Wallace, Jennifer Warwick, Jenny Meade, Jeremy Fuksa, Jeremy Heilpern, Jeroen Verkroost, Jessica Hagy, Joanna Young, Joe Pulizzi, John Herrington, John Moore, John Rosen, John Todor, Jon Burg, Jon Swanson, Jonathan Trenn, Jordan Behan, Julie Fleischer, Justin Foster, Karl Turley, Kate Trgovac, Katie Chatfield, Katie Konrath, Kenny Lauer, Keri Willenborg, Kevin Jessop, Kristin Gorski, Lewis Green, Lois Kelly, Lori Magno, Louise Manning, Luc Debaisieux, Mario Vellandi, Mark Blair, Mark Earls, Mark Goren, Mark Hancock, Mark Lewis, Mark McGuinness, Matt Dickman, Matt J. McDonald, Matt Moore, Michael Karnjanaprakorn, Michelle Lamar, Mike Arauz, Mike McAllen, Mike Sansone, Mitch Joel, Neil Perkin, Nettie Hartsock, Nick Rice, Oleksandr Skorokhod, Ozgur Alaz, Paul Chaney, Paul Hebert, Paul Isakson, Paul McEnany, Paul Tedesco, Paul Williams, Pet Campbell, Pete Deutschman, Peter Corbett, Phil Gerbyshak, Phil Lewis, Phil Soden, Piet Wulleman, Rachel Steiner, Sreeraj Menon, Reginald Adkins, Richard Huntington, Rishi Desai, Robert Hruzek, Roberta Rosenberg, Robyn McMaster, Roger von Oech, Rohit Bhargava, Ron Shevlin, Ryan Barrett, Ryan Karpeles, Ryan Rasmussen, Sam Huleatt, Sandy Renshaw and James G. Lindberg, Scott Goodson, Scott Monty, Scott Townsend, Scott White, Sean Howard, Sean Scott, Seni Thomas, Seth Gaffney, Shama Hyder, Sheila Scarborough, Sheryl Steadman, Simon Payn, Sonia Simone, Spike Jones, Stanley Johnson, Stephen Collins, Stephen Landau, Stephen Smith, Steve Bannister, Steve Hardy, Steve Portigal, Steve Roesler, Steven Verbruggen, Steve Woodruff, Sue Edworthy, Susan Bird, Susan Gunelius, Susan Heywood, Tammy Lenski, Terrell Meek, Thomas Clifford, Thomas Knoll, Tim Brunelle, Tim Connor, Tim Jackson, Tim Mannveille, Tim Tyler, Timothy Johnson, Tinu Abayomi-Paul, Toby Bloomberg, Todd Andrlik, Troy Rutter, Troy Worman, Uwe Hook, Valeria Maltoni, Vandana Ahuja, Vanessa DiMauro, Veronique Rabuteau, Wayne Buckhanan, William Azaroff, Yves Van Landeghem

08 May

“Do Not Call” register in Australia – another nail in the coffin for interruption marketing

Australia has just introduced it’s “do not call” register and the sigh of relief around Australian dining tables is audible. There are plenty of companies who have telemarketing as their only or main form of promotional/sales activity; it is direct, it is measurable and relatively easy to implement.

I wonder what they will do next. Will they realise that this is not some bad weather, but climate change?

The only reason this register exists is because people are so fed up with being interrupted they actually got politicians to do something about it. And the politicians did, because there is no downside; you can’t loose votes on this issue.

On the first day, the “do-not-call” web server suffered meltdown with the demand from people wanting to register. That just shows how passionate people are about this issue.
I wonder what companies who relied on telemarketing will do now. I’ve heard of companies considering going back to door-to-door sales. Really.

sledgehammer courtesy Rich Baker
Hopefully they will realise that blunt instruments and short cuts won’t work in todays’ market. The sledge hammer approach, the one-step sales/marketing process from stranger to customer is less and less likely to generate results. Unless they are willing to work the telephone in with more targeted, permission based campaigns they will run into the same wall of opposition that has created the “do-not-call” register in the first place.

Time to re-think the strategy.