E x c h a n g e o f I d e a s | September/October 2009 | $10.95
M A G A Z I N E
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M A G A Z I N E
Call & september/october 2009
S ome people say that there’s no such thing as new
media or old media, that it’s all just media. We now
know that this just isn’t so.
Old media were just channels through which
messages were communicated in hopes of influencing
attitudes or, even better, changing behavior.
they are starting to look rather primitive compared to
Those media can still pack a punch sometimes. But
new media, which are more than just vehicles for our
Hewlett-Packard CMO Michael Mendenhall
says the future of media calls for blue skies with
advertisements and promotions. lots of clouds. An exclusive Q&A interview by
These new media — which are usually (but not
necessarily) digital media — are different because they’re
all about call and response.
Sometimes it’s the brand calling
May the old
and the shopper responding, while
media rest other times it’s just the opposite.
in peace. These new media are also ROUNDTABLE
different because, while they’re
still about the delivery of messages, they are not the neat Being Social
and tidy messages of marketing’s ever-present past. The dawn of marketing communications as
These new media messages can be upbeat, positive and conversations is here. A discussion featuring
Bonin Bough of PepsiCo, Aaron Magness of
cheerful, but they can also be angry, negative and mean. Zappos, Richard Binhammer of Dell, Bert
In other words, these new-media messages are about DuMars of Newell Rubbermaid and John
real people living their lives in the real world, and that’s Andrews of Collective Bias.
the real beauty of new-media.
Marketing has a problem, and it is precisely this
disconnect between what happens in marketing and
what happens in real life. It is a gap that new media
bridge with astonishing efficiency and effectiveness.
Can we measure that? Maybe, maybe not — certainly SUMMIT REPORT
not in the traditional sense. But we can count on it to
connect with our shoppers in ways we have only begun to Screen Gems
imagine. This issue of the Hub is about those possibilities. The convergence of digital media at retail
is re-defining the shopping experience.
Featuring: Mike Linton, Jim Hood and
Andy Austin. By Vince Weiner.
ALSO Peter F. Eder
4 COOL NEWS
The Storefront Project, Amish Internet and Printcasting.
10 R ESEARCH R EPORT
The Media Feast | What’s up with media? What’s down? What’s holding
steady? An executive summary of a Reveries.com survey.
Alexander Isley Inc.
John S. Dykes
12 CASE STUDY
Burt’s Buzz | At Burt’s Bees, a culture of caring is both the medium and
the message. By Dori Molitor.
EURO RSCG Discovery
W H I T E PA P E R
Henry Rak Consulting Group
Open Up! | Are you up for the challenge of open branding? Hoyt & Company
By Alex Do. Insight Out of Chaos
18 W H I T E PA P E R Marketing Drive
Shopper Marketing Online | Walmart sets the standard for engaging Miller Zell Inc.
consumers online. By Greg Murtagh. TracyLocke
Triad Digital Media
25 W H I T E PA P E R
Activating Creativity | Bringing brands to life across channels and
disciplines moves people to action. By William Rosen.
28 W H I T E PA P E R
Digital Bridges | New research uncovers keys to successful digital-media
integration. By Jim Garrity and Kerry O’Connor.
The Bellwether Group
David X. Manners Co.
107 Post Road East
30 W H I T E PA P E R
Codeword: Partnership | Television is alive and well for advertisers who
innovate and collaborate. By Cindy Jolicoeur.
Westport, CT 06880
203-227-7060 ext. 227
n brought to you by the editors of Reveries.
com and Cool News of the Day, The Hub
W H I T E PA P E R
magazine is dedicated to exploring insights,
Feeling the Media | Making shoppers feel the love means making the media ideas and innovation as the ultimate drivers
feel their pain. By Al Wittemen. of success in marketing.
n published bi-monthly since July
2004, The Hub’s circulation is exclusive
38 COOL BOOKS
Ripped, The Beckham Experiment and Losing the News.
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cooL Ne W s
The Storefront Project Amish Internet
What started as an “artistic social experiment” has turned into a While other newspapers retreat to the internet, The Budget
hip, trendy and successful restaurant. At the Waffle Shop, customers is succeeding by avoiding electronic media. The Budget is no
enjoy fluffy waffles and coffee and are videotaped as they discuss ordinary newspaper, though. It is written by, and for, the Amish
whatever is on their minds — “politics, society, culture.” community. And it does have a bare-bones website, but it carries
“only local news briefs.”
Located in a lively Pittsburgh neighborhood, the Waffle Shop is
“part of an advanced undergraduate course at Carnegie Mellon That’s because of the newspaper’s writers, “known as scribes,
called the Storefront Project.” feared their plainspoken dispatches would become fodder for
entertainment in the ... non-Amish world.”
The idea is to “develop a concept and take it out into the community
to see how people react and interact.” And so students created Staying offline turned out to be a good move, as the newspaper
The Waffle Shop, as part restaurant and part reality show, in what “solidified its steadfast fan base,” continuing a tradition dating back
was supposed to be a two-semester project. to 1890. The Budget began “as a series of letters swapped among
Amish families who had dispersed across the Midwest,” and in
some ways hasn’t changed all that much.
While the paper’s local edition, published in Sugarcreek, Ohio, is
written by a paid staff of twelve writers, its national edition is
filled with contributed letters, faxed or mailed in by unpaid scribes.
These letters sound uncannily like Twitter feeds: “Supper and
singing were held at our house last night, so have been busy this
morning getting dishes away and house in order,” for instance.
And: “We’ve had some nice rain the last few days and the grass is
greening up nicely.”
“People call The Budget the Amish internet,” says Keith Rathbun,
its publisher. “It’s non-electric, it’s on paper, but it’s the same
thing.” Business is good enough that The Budget plans to hire a
couple of more reporters.
[S o u r c e : Meghan Barr, Associated Press, 8/17/09]
“All my assumptions about print were wrong,” says Dan Pacheco.
“Advertisers wanted to be in print, and young people are interested
in magazines.” Dan first realized this after creating a website about
But it has proved so popular that it is now in an extended run, with the local music scene for the Bakersfield Californian newspaper:
extended hours. Originally, the Waffle Shop was purely “a night- “Advertisers kept asking him when the magazine was coming, he
owl hangout drawing a generally young, hip and vocal crowd.” said, because they preferred to appear in print.”
But now it’s open for brunch, too, and is also “attracting many
families, people from the neighborhood and curious passers-by.” So, now, Dan is pioneering a new kind of magazine that “lets
readers pick which articles they want in their magazine and then
In a new twist, the Waffle Shop’s manager, Dawn Weleski, listens print it themselves.”
to internet news feeds via headphones and then repeats the news
so customers can hear, with videos of the novel newscast carried The enterprise is called Printcasting, and since its introduction
live online at waffleshop.org. The site also now allows “users to last March, it has spawned some 250 magazines.
sign into Facebook and Twitter feeds and talk back to the talk shows.” The concept takes “advantage of advertisers’ willingness to pay as
Jon Rubin, the professor who runs the Storefront Project, is now much as 40 times more for print ads than for online ones — while it
looking at various business models to make the Waffle Shop removes the costs of paper, ink, printing presses and a pavement-
permanent, either as a for-profit or not-for-profit venture. pounding sales force.”
[S o u r c e : Adrain McCoy, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 6/29/09] Printcasting keeps 10 percent of revenues, gives 30 percent to
writers and 60 percent to publishers. The venture “is backed by
an $837,000 grant from the Knight Foundation’s program to find
Cool News of the Day, a daily e-mail newsletter of marketing insights, digital models for local news.”
ideas and inspiration, is edited by TIM MANNERS. For a free subscription,
visit www.reveries.com [S o u r c e : Claire Cain Miller, The New York Times, 7/20/09]
The dawn of marketing communications
as conversations is here.
What are the greatest Now, it’s like you’re buying from that’s still most untapped — is
a friend, and you know they’re on the customer service side.
opportunities in your friend because they have a Customer service is the Holy Grail
social media? personality and they tell you what of social media because building
they’re doing. customer relationships is all
Bonin Bough: The opportunity about service.
is to move from impressions to They show you what it’s like to
connections, and from campaigns work inside their company and If a consumer is having a problem
to conversations. We have an that’s where the real value comes and you can help them proactively,
in. It’s really about breaking down that’s a huge word-of-mouth
opportunity to be closer to the
that barrier of customer versus builder as well as a big benefit
customer than ever before and to
co-create and react to the customer corporation, and allowing people to both the consumer and the R oundtAble
like never before. to interact with other people. brand. For example, one of our F eAtuRing
The double-edged sword is that Bonin Bough
if we treat digital like any other
communications channel, then we
The opportunity is to move from
miss the value of it as an enabler impressions to connections, and from Aaron Magness
across the business. Then we
want to plan against it and carve
campaigns to conversations.
out specific opportunities to use BON i N BOugh Binhammer
it. You can do that, but that’s not Dell
the largest opportunity. It can
provide real-time customer insights Bert DuMars
Richard Binhammer: The best garage organization products had a
and trends that are valuable for Newell rubbermaid
opportunity is to listen, learn manufacturing flaw and we found
research and development.
and engage directly with your out about it through a negative John Andrews
Aaron Magness: The greatest customers, but also to share product review on our website. collective bias
opportunity is to form more of a information. We have had product
We had a product manager contact
personal relationship with employees, ideas come forward that we’ve
the consumer and quickly had the
partners, customers and everything implemented, such as becoming
product replaced. We took someone
that goes along with that. You’re part of Product (Red). We’ve
who had a bad experience, turned
really able to get out the true voice engaged with customers online,
him around and he was thrilled.
of what your company is and that solving problems, learning about
So, we see social media as a way
allows people to form a stronger their experiences and improving
to solve problems through the
relationship with you. business processes as a result.
customer service organization to a
It’s not like the old days of buying Bert DuMars: The greatest point where it’s just the way we do
from a faceless corporation. opportunity — and it’s the one business here.
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 5
John Andrews: The biggest You can either be part of it or you DuMars: One big issue is changing
opportunity in social media is to can be against it. If you’re against the metrics, which also ties in with
build a collective conversation it, it’s going to have a pretty incentives. You need to discern
between brands, retailers and adverse effect. So, it’s really about how much time should be spent on
consumers. Done correctly, social embracing it and embracing the the channel and how to measure it
media is now activating consumers transparency that goes with it. to show that it’s delivering results.
as part of the brand management Another big key is integration
You shouldn’t have a lot of
process in a real and authentic way. of social media with traditional
reasons not to be as transparent
That’s been done at some point in as possible or embrace these tools
the past where consumers did focus that allow people to communicate. So if you’re doing TV commercials,
groups or surveys, but this is a You should want to communicate radio or print or any other mass
longer-term activity where you’re with your customers and external media, integrate that with your
actually building a community partners. That’s where I hope social media efforts, and vice
that has an affinity for your brand.
You are building a longer-term
relationship with that community
and including that as a standard part
If you look too hard for a return-on-
of your brand management process. investment on social media you’re going
to lose the authenticity of it.
How must organizations A A RON M AgN E S S
change to realize social
more businesses understand the versa. It amplifies the social media
Bough: You need to take an
potential impact of social media. effort and also ties into your mass
integrated approach. First, it means
media effort, so they start working
rethinking internal process, which Binhammer: Dell’s interest in
together to benefit each other.
is everything from policies and being directly connected to our
guidelines to encouraging outward customers has always been part of The one other thing — and this
conversations across your entire our corporate culture. So, social is really difficult — is showing
employee base. media is just a new tool to deploy that your brand cares. A lot of
in doing that, and in a lot of ways traditional marketing is about
The next piece is integration. How
it’s a more effective tool. getting the message out. When
do you integrate divisionally?
you add the social media side to it,
Where do customer relations in For example, a conversation could
it’s about people; it’s about people
this world live? Where does public be going on at Starbucks right now
caring. So, how do you show that?
relations live? Where does marketing in Minneapolis between two Dell
That’s another key success factor.
live? How do they build more of an customers and I haven’t a clue
ecosystem than just a channel? what they’re saying. On the other Andrews: You have to immerse
hand, a conversation can be going yourself in it. The biggest mistake
The third piece is changing the
on between two Dell customers on is just taking the standard
way that we measure the success of
Facebook or Twitter and I know approach you’ve taken with
exactly what they’re saying. traditional media and adding it to
Magness: Organizations need to the space. Social media is not just
But those aren’t necessarily
realize that people are going to a new communications vehicle to
changes in the organization;
be using these tools anyway. Your layer traditional tactics on top of.
they are changes in our ability to
ability to dictate your brand to It’s not just a PR vehicle either.
listen, learn, engage and connect
the consumer is long gone and in What’s different about social media
with our customers. I see it as an
actuality the consumer is telling is the participation.
organization deploying tools to
you what your brand is. Not only
increase those opportunities to be The first thing that I had to do was
are they telling you, they are also
able to connect and take advantage to learn how people communicate
telling all their friends.
of the information that’s out there. and influence one another in
6 tHe HUb september/october 2009
Customer service is the Holy Grail of building that’s really the focus
of most brands at this point. The
social media because building customer next step is to get them excited
relationships is all about service. about our brand and then go to
Walmart or Target or any one of
BE RT Du M A R S our retailers and purchase them.
We have to have metrics all the
communitites. I involved myself trying to have today’s Facebook way through the process of
in communities that had nothing update or today’s “tweet” from interest, excitement and brand
to do with me, or my message, 450 of our employees turn into an love. Once we have them excited,
but just as an active participating immediate sale. we need to be sure we then get
member. That helped me learn not them to a place where they can
What we are really trying to do is buy our products.
only the pathways but also about
form that lasting relationship. If
the relationships that are involved Andrews: We’ll start with very
you look too hard for a return-on-
in that. simple metrics, such as: What kind
investment on social media you’re
going to lose the authenticity of it. of 30-day conversation is there on
How can results of We focus more on forming good Twitter? Then we set up some kind
social media efforts relationships as opposed to trying of messaging baseline: Where does
our core messaging response with
be measured? to get the most out of today’s sale.
consumers exist today?
Binhammer: There’s always this
Bough: We do something called great question about the return-on- We look at a grid of the
“brand health measuring,” where investment. My point is this: What’s competitive set and where we
we have a set of metrics that includes the business objective? Business want to end up, agree on which
everything from impression data to objectives vary across the business, metrics we want to track as
share-of-voice. We also look at the so there is no single ROI. Once you forms of success. We need to
frequency with which customers understand your business objectives, move away from the traditional
want to have relationships with us then you can go and measure. metrics of traffic, because traffic
and how they want to have those isn’t very valuable. I would rather
relationships. You’ve probably seen the stories have a thousand high-quality
online that Dell has done two engagements than a million hits.
Anecdotally, we know there is million dollars on “DellOutlet” on
value that’s moving the needle. Twitter. Is Dell’s objective in social Ultimately, we want to connect
What we all struggle with is how to media being reached? Absolutely. with shoppers and drive that
measure that movement. We start We moved a few million dollars connection to the shelf. We’re
by trying to align with traditional of product and did so faster and working with a couple of retailers
metrics that we do understand — better and more efficiently than we on experiments on a social version
impressions, share-of-voice, and would have otherwise. of the circular that activates
those kinds of basic things. communities around offers.
Since we became involved in social
Then we look at a series of media in early 2006, we’ve also
comparatives versus our seen significant change in sentiment What is the most
competitors as well as “gold towards Dell. When we first started surprising thing
standard” programs from outside out, 50 percent of what we saw you’ve learned about
our competitive set that may help online was negative, whereas today
us improve our effectiveness. social media?
it’s below the 20 percent mark. But
Magness: A million and one that’s a very different business Bough: The most surprising thing
companies and consultants are out objective and a very different is how empowering social media
there who will tell you that if you business result to measure. is as a movement. It has the ability
pay them enough they’ll be able DuMars: Today, it’s all about to be bigger than just, “hey what a
to measure results. What we look tonality; it’s the positive brand great thing it is for marketers and
at is more directional — we’re not awareness and the positive brand customers to be able to talk.”
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 7
t HoUGHt L e ADer s
For example, we are a huge in interacting with you on all
supporter and sponsor of the kinds of levels.
BlogHer conference. I walked into
Out of the blue, I’ve had customers
this conference and there were
tell me that they’ve been
- 2,000 of the world’s most influential
customers for years, that they are
online women sitting in a room.
looking at their next Dell purchase
BONIN BOUGH is the global
director of digital and social You could feel the amazing power and ask for my recommendations.
media at PepsiCo, where he that they have in terms of what That’s reassuring, nice to know
oversees digital strategy and the they are doing to change society. and fun to interact with.
implementation of social media It’s pretty exhilarating when you
tools and techniques. He formerly DuMars: I’ve been surprised
think about how digital media is
was with Weber shandwick and by how integrated social media
ruder Finn Interactive. becomes into what I do. I’ve had
Magness: The most surprising conversations on Facebook, Twitter
AARON MAGNESS heads thing about social media is and LinkedIn that have continued
marketing, public relations, how quickly businesses try for the last year or two. I learn a
social media and business to bastardize it and make it lot from them and I’m assuming
development for Zappos.com.
more about how many fans or they learn a lot from me. It’s not
He is a graduate of the University
of Wisconsin and survived
followers they have as opposed to just a broadcast tool.
the running of the bulls in really forming relationships. I’m
I’ve also been surprised to learn
pomplona, spain. surprised at how quickly people
through social media how artists
lose sight of that.
use our Sharpie pens, doing things
RICHARD BINHAMMER leads I think they are losing sight of you would never have thought.
digital media outreach and blog
where the real value is, which is in Some are actually taking white
response, with special emphasis
on communities and corporate forming these lasting relationships. Ferraris and doing Sharpie artwork
reptutation for Dell. He has also
held corporate communications
positions with Golin Harris and The most surprising thing is how
generous communities can be and how
BERT DUMARS is vice president, welcoming they are to brands.
e-business and interactive
marketing for Newell Rubbermaid. R iC h A R D Bi N h A M M E R
previously, he was director of the
electronic tax Administration
for the Irs, and held marketing
positions with Dell, Intel and Our CEO, Tony Hseih, said, “So all over them. They’re beautiful,
Learning tree. many people are trying to be but I never thought anyone would
interesting as opposed to being modify a $300,000 vehicle with a
JOHN ANDREWS is managing interested.” That is just so spot on. Sharpie pen.
director of collective bias at
Binhammer: The most surprising But those are the things that you
Mars Advertising. He previously
thing is how generous communities find out about when you engage in
was responsible for social media,
community, mobile and in-store can be and how welcoming they social media. You find out about
media for Walmart. He can are to brands. I would have the really cool and the unusual
be reached at johnandrews@ thought people would want to be things that people do with your
collectivebias.com. left alone or not want Dell to be products. We are finding out that
part of their communities. there are whole new markets out
there for us.
But, in fact, as long as you’re
genuinely interested in engaging, Andrews: As soon as you launch
listening, learning and participating, a digital campaign it begins to
people seem to be a) interested in change, so you better have a
having you around and b) interested flexible plan. You build guardrails
8 tHe HUb september/october 2009
and stay within a certain place interact with customers and answer I thought that was great. It showed
but no matter how much you questions are doing the best job. that they really valued their fans,
plan, it will change the moment who had built up this great base of
you launch it. People are going to consumer love for the brand and
communication is really what it is
approach it in their own way. they were willing to take the risk of
all about. Twitter is one way to do
letting their consumers control it.
That’s why building long-term that, but the one thing that gets
communities helps you be a little overlooked the most is the phone. Giving that control up is a big
more predictive about what those step for a brand, especially like
I think Zappos does an incredible
changes might be. When we Coca-Cola.
job in social media over the
launch programs, we’ve already
telephone. You’re talking to real Andrews: I admire Zappos, where
spent three months talking to
people, employees of Zappos.com, everybody in the company is
someone in the community about
and they’re there to help you. encouraged to interact with
what those things are.
We’re just trying to get that same customers in the social space.
This goes back to allowing your
community to share in the branding
process. You get better ideas that As soon as you launch a digital campaign
way. By the time you launch,
you’ve got some people who take it begins to change, so you better
serious ownership because they have a flexible plan.
feel like they helped build it. So,
they want to talk about it. JOh N A N DR E WS
Who is doing the
cultural commitment that we have Zappos really lives this idea that
best job with social
on the phone and apply it to these we’re all the brand. In a short
media and why? various tools. amount of time they’ve built a
company in a pretty competitive
Bough: I love some of the work Binhammer: It’s really our
space. I don’t think we have a
that we’re seeing done by the Ford customers who are doing the best
shortage of shoe retailers, but
folks. I think the Ford Fiesta job with social media. In many
they’re evidently worth close to a
movement is genius. Dell is selling ways it is like having a customer
millions of dollars’ worth of product in the halls of Dell everyday. If I’ve
over Twitter. Wow! I also love been on Twitter for 20 minutes and From a retail standpoint, Walmart
what John Andrews did at Walmart, then go into a meeting, I know is doing a very good job. They
where he created a real value what our customers are saying. had a big presence at the recent
exchange with mom bloggers by BlogHer conference. It’s less about
Other people, smarter than me,
providing them with exposure. marketing right now and more
have certainly equated social media
about learning. It’s impressive that
If digital lives just in marketing to the concept of a village because
an organization as big as Walmart
as a marketing channel, then it it closes that communication gap.
is sending people to events like
fails to capture the power of the
Using technology is now like being BlogHer.
organization, which is everything
back in the village of 1800’s where
from strategic planning to R&D to We have a great opportunity in
everybody knows everything, just
innovation. this space. I’m a big Mad Men
by walking down the street.
fan and feel like it’s 1950 and
All the folks who are thinking
DuMars: Coca-Cola looked at what television has just been invented.
about how we game-change our
a couple of Coke fans had done on Who’s going to be like P&G and
business should be thinking
Facebook — they built this fan page immerse themselves in this
around digital alongside us. That’s
up to three million fans of Coca-Cola. medium, blow up old models
the integration that we’re driving.
Coke had the legal right to take back and capture everything that
Magness: Businesses that are really the page, but instead chose to let digital could be? That’s a pretty
utilizing social media as a way to these two guys to keep running it. cool opportunity. n
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 9
re se ArcH rep ort
What’s up with media? What’s down?
What’s holding steady?
Google, Bing, Twitter, Facebook, CNN, The
New York Times ... for this Cool News survey,
we asked readers whether the ability of various
media brands to build national brands appears
favorable, unfavorable or neutral these days.
Google scored highest (82% favorable) Favorable 82.4%
and MySpace the lowest (50% unfavorable)
in our survey. That’s not terribly surprising.
Google also scored the lowest unfavorable (5%), Neutral 12.9%
followed by YouTube, one of its acquisitions, at 6%.
“If building traffic to a brand or its marketing Don’t Know 0%
initiatives can help build a brand, there are
No opinion 0%
few more powerful tools than Google,” said one
survey respondent. “More utility than a medium,
but indispensible the way that a water main is to
an urban center,” said another.
Our survey was taken shortly before the Favorable 17.2%
Microsoft-Yahoo deal was announced, but
neither of the new partners finished particularly Unfavorable 8.9%
well. For Microsoft’s Bing engine, the result was
no doubt affected by its newness, with 66% Neutral 32.0%
rating Bing either “neutral” or “don’t know.” Don’t Know 34.3%
The big issue for Bing is weaning people off
of Google: “I have used Bing and like it, however No opinion 7.7%
I still return to Google for most of my search
work,” a reader wrote. Like Bing, Yahoo scored
highest on “neutral,” at 44%, with “favorable” at Yahoo!
33% and “unfavorable” at 18%.
Perhaps more surprising is how well The Favorable 32.5%
New York Times fared (66% favorable). The Times
certainly has its business-model challenges like
every other newspaper, but there seems to be a Neutral 43.8%
certain reservoir of good will toward the
publication. Don’t Know 3.0%
On the other hand, a number of respondents No opinion 3.0%
said the paper is hurt by a “liberal bias.” As one
reader put it: “Agenda-driven news outlets do not
make a good news brand.”
The political flavor of some of the responses
was striking, and it came from both sides of the Favorable 47.9%
aisle. “Steve Forbes is the closest thing America
has to a fascist 19th century robber baron, and Unfavorable 24.9%
it’s reflected in the book’s editorial,” a respondent
wrote, referring of course to Forbes magazine.
Even the mighty Google was not immune Don’t Know 4.7%
from such attacks: “China, censorship, big
brothering ... not cool,” a reader commented. No opinion 1.2%
10 tHe HUb september/october 2009
tHe HUb september/october 2009
The New York Times
CNN also took its political lumps, although
it fared reasonably well, garnering a 51%
“favorable” and 20% “unfavorable” response. A
few took issue with the quality of its reporting.
“Can’t stand the repetition of the same old
stories,” a reader complained.
Our readers continue to take Walmart to
task — in this case, Walmart.com, with “favorable”
Favorable 66.1% at just 35% and “unfavorable” at 24%. This
contrasted dramatically with Target.com, whose
Unfavorable 14.3% “favorable” score, 62%, was one of the survey’s
highest, and its unfavorable, 8%, one of the lowest.
It’s a curious result, given Walmart’s
Don’t Know 1.8% extraordinary marketplace reach versus Target’s
cheap-chic challenges in a depressed economy.
No opinion 0.6% Many questions remain about Facebook
(58% favorable) and Twitter (48% favorable) and
their potential abilities to help build national
Walmart.com brands. LinkedIn did better than either, with
60% “favorable,” perhaps a function of its appeal
to our business-oriented readership.
Unfavorable 24.4% Despite its relatively high “favorable” rating,
Facebook faces questions. Some expressed concerns
Neutral 29.2% about privacy issues while others were conflicted
about its value as a medium for marketing.
Don’t Know 6.0%
However, others credited Facebook for its
No opinion 6.0% ability to build fan clubs.
Twitter’s strong suit seems to be its potential
as a customer service tool. But there are still
Target.com plenty of folks who think both Twitter and
Facebook are a waste of time. Twitter, especially.
Favorable 61.9% Some of the Twitter-length comments were
particularly amusing, such as: “The capability
to assist in the building of a national brand
Neutral 19.0% encumbered by a 140 character limit is an
interesting one. Few have the discip …” And,
Don’t Know 8.3% ironically: “How can anything with only 140
characters communicate in a logical, meaningful
No opinion 3.0%
manner? It cannot.”
Clear Channel Radio
A total of 170 survey respondents included
Favorable 12.9% agencies (24%), brand marketers (24%) and
consulting firms (18%). Twenty-five percent
Unfavorable 26.5% worked in packaged goods firms, 12% in media/
entertainment and nine percent in retail. A majority
Neutral 28.2% were senior-level executives with 78% reporting
Don’t Know 21.2% more than ten years of experience in marketing.
No opinion 11.2% Survey Results:
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 11
september/october 2009 tHe HUb
c A se s t UDY
e marketers spend a lot of time talking It’s a culture that says, “we care.” We care about
about this medium or that medium, our family, friends and business associates. We care
especially these days. In fact, it’s hard about public policy issues. We care about the brands
to go anywhere — either in business or we use. We care enough to show up every day — in
in personal life — without being asked some cases every five minutes — and speak our minds.
if you’re on Twitter and Facebook. The question is, do we, as marketers, care as
This is all great and certainly very exciting. But it much as our consumers? Certainly many of us do,
tends to skip over what matters most, and that is but just as certainly some care more than others.
creating a culture of shared values with our consumers. My point is that those companies that care the
As I look across the many Facebook fan pages and most — that have a culture of caring — are most likely
Twitter posts, I see huge potential to create the kind of to see the most success with social media.
communities promised by these new social media. It’s What is a culture of caring? I immediately think of
Burt’s Bees, the personal products company. At Burt’s,
a culture of caring permeates everything they do — in
At Burt’s Bees, fact, “we care” is their company’s mantra. Its culture
of caring encompasses its products, packaging and
a culture of caring is both facilities. It extends to its suppliers and, most important,
embraces its employees and ultimately its consumers.
the medium and the message. So extreme is the culture of caring at Burt’s Bees
that some might look at it and conclude that it is an
anomaly, a product of some crazy ‘60s hippie sensibility
that doesn’t pertain to many other companies. There’s
amazing to see the passion and excitement from so no denying the obvious countercultural roots at Burt’s
many consumers about the brands they love. Bees, but to dismiss it as radical to the point of
However, I also see a lot of old-school attempts irrelevant would be a mistake.
at fitting into this new kind of communication. I see True, Burt’s Bees may be different than your
Facebook fan pages that are really nothing more than company because it has a single product line, which
advertisements and Twitter posts that amount to might make it easier to build the kind of culture it
nothing more than 140-character promotions. has. But the fact is that every enterprise has a culture
This is obviously a huge missed opportunity of one kind or another — and a choice as to what kind
because as most of us well know, these new media are of culture that is.
about conversations, not commercials. This is nothing Like every other company, Burt’s Bees has values,
new — it’s part of internet culture, which has always a vision and a mission statement. It has goals and
been resistant to commercial interruptions. objectives, both long-term and short-term. It measures
It also suggests that many brands have more work its progress against those goals and objectives and
to do than they think when it comes to getting the offers employees incentives to achieve those goals.
most out of social media. Twitter and Facebook may It communicates with its shareholders, its
fade over time, or even go away, but the culture that employees and its consumers. It has an image and a
makes them so wildly popular is here to stay. marketing strategy to build its brand equity. In short,
12 tHe HUb september/october 2009
Merging Strategy and Culture
the framework of the company Cultural Social media is, in fact, a part of
is no different than that of any other the mix for Burt’s Bees, but they aren’t
company. In most ways, it’s a very
Way just jumping on it because it’s the latest
conventional company. cool thing. In many ways, it’s old hat for them.
The only difference is that it chooses The culture of social media — the
to care about certain things — like using openness, dialogue, creativity, the sense of
natural ingredients, minimizing its carbon caring — is an exact fit with the culture at Burt’s
footprint and not testing on animals, for instance. Bees, and at least generally the way it’s been from
Above all, it chooses to care about the wellbeing of its their beginning. Jim stresses that it’s a journey,
people, both those who work for the company as well though, and that getting things right is still very much
as those who purchase its products. a work in progress.
Burt’s Bees is also very clear and strong about But it’s paying off for Burt’s Bees, at least for now.
its choices, which has big implications for how it is For the most recent year reported, ending June, 2008,
perceived in the marketplace. I recently spoke with the company grew by 18 percent, while reducing its
Jim Geikie, General Manager, International, at Burt’s waste to landfill by 50% and energy consumption by
Bees, who said that it is the company’s clarity of seven percent.
purpose that defines the brand. Burt’s Bees lives and breathes a culture of caring,
“When you’re very clear about what you are and which naturally results in growth, even during this
aren’t, it ends up being a magnet for consumers and recession.
also employees who share those points of view,” he Now that’s something to Tweet about! By the way,
said. While Jim does not lead marketing, he observed you can follow me on Twittter, @WomanWise. n
that this changes the way Burt’s Bees communicates
from a marketing standpoint.
“It comes down to push marketing versus pull DORI MOLITOR is founder and ceo of
marketing,” he said. “We don’t push our marketing on WomanWise LLC (womanwise.com)
a Watersmolitor company, a hybrid
people. It’s all pull — public relations, point-of-sale in
consultancy-agency specializing in
the retail environment, product education and training marketing brands to women. Dori can be
on the web. We’ve started to do some print advertising reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
in the past year, but for the previous 25 years we hadn’t or (952) 797-5000.
done any. And no television.”
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 13
WHI t e pAper
Open Up! By Alex Do
l A n D o r A S S o c i At e S
pen source, open access, open standards, open architecture — all are part of why
so many have fallen in love with Facebook, Firefox, WordPress, and — I’ll say it
because everyone else is saying it — Twitter. They’re all flexible platforms, invite
user opinions, and enable co-development and co-creation to varying degrees.
The “open web” and its underlying set of Can brands be fluid, free-flowing, flexible, and
technologies have indeed made a big impact on how yet still consistently stand for something compelling,
we interact and engage with online properties, sites, differentiated, and relevant — the key tenets of a
social networks, and the like. strong brand as we know it?
Okay, “open” may be one of the most overused — Brands can and, in my opinion, should. And I
if not abused — buzzwords in the digital space right think consumers want to see brands open up and
alongside Web 2.0. But few would disagree that it want to participate more actively in user communities.
is a catalyst for changing the way businesses think Consumers today are more skeptical and less trusting
about soliciting feedback, understanding consumers, of corporate businesses and are hungry for personalized
interacting with users and prospects, collaborating on experiences.
innovation, and more. Inviting them into a community of like-minded
Let’s start with how “open” is defined for the individuals is a great way to regain their trust. In other
computer software field. From Wikipedia in June words, to resonate with today’s consumers, marketers
2009: “The source code and certain other rights can’t rely on the same old tricks.
normally reserved for copyright holders are provided This wouldn’t be an opinion-piece without a
to the public, which is permitted to use, change, public challenge, so I’m challenging the world’s
and improve the software, and to redistribute it leading brands to explore various degrees of
in modified or unmodified forms.” For a business, openness, and how it can offer a more valuable and
perhaps the proper angle from which to appreciate certainly more provocative platform for interactions,
“open” is either from a technology point of view — communications, and true relationship building.
what is feasible? Or from an economic point of Here is a series of what-if statements for you to
view — what is made easier, or more affordable? consider. (Note: “user” is defined in the broadest
But what about brands? How about an open sense — anyone who has any interaction with a brand,
brand? It’s hard to imagine how “open” could be but is not necessarily involved in a transaction.)
applied to the branding world, which is more about WHAT IF brands enabled users to modify a
centralized control, strict guidelines, and carefully brand, product or service, take it apart, put it back
crafted brand communications — far from open. together in unexpected ways, and offer it back up for
The challenge for marketers is negotiating public consumption?
the battle between two important and competing WHAT IF brands provided for those possibilities
advantages: control (traditional methods) and above and balanced them with some guardrails — a
customer participation (open methods). baseline of parameters, controls, limitations to
14 tHe HUb september/october 2009
Are you up for the challenge of open branding?
account for taste levels, cultural nuances, biases? web brands are doing this well: Web 2.0 brands like
WHAT IF brands enabled users to create their Facebook, Twitter, and Amazon.com, and open-source
own future, describe what cannot be seen, and brands like Linux and Mozilla. And both seem to
encouraged them to be active innovators? be more successful and faster growing than their
WHAT IF brands truly (and I mean, truly) traditional web competitors.
welcomed what users had to say beyond feedback Going forward, marketers need to focus less on
and suggestions, openly inviting user opinions and who’s in control and more on (1) ways to invite users
committing to implementing viable user ideas? into a meaningful experience and (2) ways to engage
WHAT IF brands respected people and their community interactions. But how to do this is the
identities outside of their domain? Said differently, challenge.
what if you “owned” your profile on Facebook, what While open-source brands and Web 2.0 properties
if you “owned” the rights to your user credentials on are inclined to facilitate user communities by the very
Gmail, and what if you controlled your profile as a nature of their business models, other companies,
Safeway Club cardholder? such as consumer packaged goods, e-commerce,
media/entertainment, and manufacturing, find it
th e ne w Rol e foR MaRketeRs more of a challenge to figure out how to build a
Digital has changed marketing and branding, community of users.
period. The role of the brand manager has changed,
and the role of the brand has changed even more a new BRand Model
dramatically. Gone are the days when marketers tried There is no single model for an open brand. A
to obsess over and micromanage outbound messages company’s approach to open branding should be
in attempts to control perceptions. based on its business model, market strategy, and its
Today, to keep pace with consumers, many customers’ appetite for community engagement. Here
successful brand managers have shifted the way they are a few common approaches that can be found in the
engage with consumers — from acting as manager marketplace today, though certainly many others exist.
to becoming a facilitator. They see that consumers
Open to ideas: Soliciting feedback about existing
welcome a world, more specifically a “community,”
products and services or improvements (future
of participation, co-creation, and constant
scenarios). For example, Starbucks launched its
dialogue — and this is the way of the future.
Mystarbucksidea.com site as a virtual suggestion box
For brands to facilitate a community of users
effectively, it is imperative that companies open
Users can submit ideas to the Starbucks team but
themselves up. By that I mean companies need to
also make their submissions viewable by the community
encourage users to be more actively involved in their
of users. Community members get to rate submissions
business activities — whether helping ideate future
so the best ideas rise to the top; it’s then Starbucks’
offerings, evolve existing ones, or provide feedback
job to ensure top suggestions get implemented.
across the board.
In many ways, this is a democratic way of
The key to success is understanding your core
innovation and business improvement and has a
users and then arming them with the tools they need
direct impact on brand perceptions. Most important,
to be active. One of the biggest benefits of building
it’s a way for companies to listen to the voice of
a community is that you’ll gain a considerable
amount of customer intelligence — from feedback and
➜ Good for companies that are set up to implement
observed patterns in user behavior to a stockpile of
changes and improvements quickly and cost-effectively.
user-generated content and insights.
In fact, some brands have successfully managed Open for me: Providing tools for personalization
to integrate their consumers into their business and customization (remixability, open architecture).
strategies and activities. No surprise, two types of For example, the NikeiD program has given online
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 15
An Open Exchange
recently wrote an entry on Landor’s blog titled gain and increased brand equity. I don’t feel like they
“open branding” (www.landor.com/?do=thinking. reALLY care about their consumers’ opinions, except
blog). In it, I discussed how open a brand could where they can boost the bottom line.
be and how effectively a company could integrate
In the service of full disclosure, I must admit this
customers into its key business activities.
is a skepticism born of being a designer and design
my blog post, similar to this article, encouraged com- strategist and thus part of the industry that creates
panies of all sizes across various industries, to explore these open, faux-public-embracing brands.
what it would be like to be an open brand. truthfully,
business is business, and capitalists want to make
the picture that I painted was utopian and could be
money—but I keep getting this sneaking feeling that
somewhat difficult for most brands and businesses to put
if they “get their hands on” the lovely idealism of
in place. readers of my blog echoed similar sentiments.
open source ideology, they’ll pollute and ruin it.
We’re in an exciting and perhaps time-limited period
n Aaron Templer. this is contextual, no? Great where the people have the power. open source ideas
thoughts for some business models and under some are vibrant and pushing technology and thought in all
strategic contexts, but certainly not all. the first sorts of great directions—and for the most part, it’s
example of this that comes to my mind is a law going so far because it’s a labor of love for the people
firm. opening a brand like that could open doors of involved. I really worry about mixing this with the
misconstrued as solicitation or legal advice proffered ulterior motives inherent in old-school, traditional
from the firm, which could put them out of business. business and branding. Just makes me nervous.
but great thoughts for a thursday morning!
n @ryanmilani. Great overview of the open culture
n Annie Smidt. When it’s a brand, I suspect use of we’re moving into. I’d also throw open Government
“open” paradigms as attempts to sell more rather than into the mix as well. It’s interesting to see how people
playing fair in a give and take exchange. When a sneaker talk about brands and how brands are each uniquely
company lets you “design your own” shoe or a company adjusting to the open culture.
/brand twitters or facebooks to solicit ideas and
We’ve built a twitter app called openbrands.org that
feedback from customers and potential customers, I
funnels conversations around brands into channels. If
don’t get the same warm fuzzy feeling that accompanies
you’re reading this, then you might find it interesting.
interacting with individuals (not brands or companies)
who blog or tweet or release open source software . . . .
because they are passionate and authentic.
my simple response to these comments is that I
I feel like, for the most part, companies that open up, agree. It’s a big challenge for all brands out there.
and even allow some consumer-driven morphing of but, I’d argue that for most companies, the benefits
their brand, are just doing it for, ultimately, financial are too compelling to ignore.
shoppers a way to personalize their athletic sneakers. IBM ThinkPlace is a site where customers
At the end of the day, it’s still a pair of Nikes, but (external to the organization) can generate new ideas,
customers can take pride in some customizations that whereas IBM Innovation Jam is a destination for
they’ve made with their purchases. employees to participate in the innovation process,
➜ Good for companies that are willing to modify irrespective of their roles in the organization.
existing products and services in a modular way. ➜ Good for companies that have a structure in
place for taking new ideas from a wide range of sources
Open to collaboration: Inviting users in to help
and seeding them for further consideration.
reveal new product or service opportunities (co-
creation). For example, IBM has two programs in Building on open: Enabling a platform for users
place that invite users into the innovation and ideation to drive content creation (prosumer/crowdsourcing).
process early on in product development — where ideas For example, Lego Mindstorms is a community built
are still half-baked, even before a plan is put into place. around creation — that is, the creation of robots.
16 tHe HUb september/october 2009
It encourages its users, either individually or in monetization, increased efficiencies, higher
groups, to create the smartest, strongest, and most engagement, etc.?
advanced Lego robot ever. And, it’s less involvement
5. Put into operation your strategy and approach
than you might think; the innovation can occur in
(e.g., get management buy-in, define key program
less than 30 minutes.
and support teams, document processes).
➜ Good for companies with high market-share
and few competitors that compete directly with existing 6. Manage internal adoption, processes, and risks.
product lines or service offerings.
7. Create tools for communities to use as they
Open book: Being transparent, as much as participate in the brand-building process (e.g.,
appropriate, with business plans, processes, and enable feedback to be easily submitted, enable
operations. For example, American Apparel has well customized experiences, provide content and
documented details of its operations and business widgets).
matters on its site — the good, bad, and not-so-American.
8. Use the technology, channels, social media
American Apparel provides a glimpse into its
outlets, and custom-built online environments
manufacturing plants, highlights highly debated
that are right for your approach.
topics such as immigration hiring practices, expresses
its point of view on gay rights, and more. It even 9. Facilitate your community and its ongoing
includes links to bad press and offers its own dialogue, which takes significant investment
perspective. For the most part, it’s an unfiltered and and commitment (e.g., start conversations and
unapologetic look inside the company. facilitate the participation and content, both user-
➜ Good for companies that are highly visible in generated and brand-driven).
the marketplace and constantly under the microscope. 10. Track, manage, refine, and continue to keep it
A good way to beat the press, potential critics, and fresh and lively (listen and learn).
speculators to the punch. Also, a great way to connect
th e Ch a l l e nge
te n st e p s to an open BRand Businesses need to focus on ways to facilitate
the right dialogue and interactions with users to
If you’ve got an experienced team, a solid budget,
drive business value. If brand managers can focus on
and an appetite for innovation, you can create an
developing tools to involve consumers in key business
open branding program that engages your customers
activities instead of focusing on more traditional
in an entirely new way.
marketing methods, they will be rewarded with an
Be aware that implementing an open branding
active community of fans and evangelists.
initiative as a standalone project — without mandate,
Open branding programs can be the platform for
without clear corporate vision, and without a
this community building — and enable brands to truly
well-defined strategy — will often lead to wasted
engage with their best customers.
investments and resources.
Most important, if a brand is able to establish a
Here are ten basic and cost-effective steps to get
community that draws in users time and time again, it
started — building on existing tools and established
has succeeded in creating the ultimate platform for
driving loyalty. And what brand can do without loyalty?
1. Crystallize your brand positioning and promise Of course, I’m “open” to thoughts and comments! n
(at Landor, we call this the Brand Driver).
2. Get to know the community you want to interact
with — who are your supporters and contributors, ALEx DO is digital branding director
in the san Francisco office of Landor
your influencers, employees, engaged consumers?
Associates, responsible for building
3. Agree on an approach to open branding that brand-led digital strategies for companies
makes sense for your business. including Accenture, Yahoo!, microsoft,
and expedia. He can be reached at
4. Align strategies and objectives back to your email@example.com.
business model — is your program about
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 17
WHI t e pAper
ithout a doubt, the two hottest subjects because it placed a quality, online brand message, along
in marketing today are digital media with related content, in front of consumers at exactly
and shopper marketing. The question the right time. In many ways, these were the first
is, how can we best combine the two online shopper-marketing executions — circa 2001.
to drive awareness, trial and shopper engagement in It was powerful stuff, because it gave the
advance of the retail store visit? packaged-goods brands a leg up in the online shopper
It’s really not a new question. In fact, I’ve been marketing space when nobody else was sharing digital
working on answering it for both retailers and packaged- content with channel partners. For example, perhaps
goods brands for more than ten years. My passion for a consumer might not click a link to a box of cereal,
online began in 1998, when consumer packaged-goods but they certainly would click a link for useful recipes
companies were building their first brand websites and content about how to be a great parent and give
and still deciding whether they should put brand your kids a fast, nutritious breakfast — sponsored by
website URLs on their packaging. General Mills’ Box Tops for Education.
When it comes to online media, even the world’s
most powerful brands must wrap themselves around
Walmart sets the relevant insights and contextual content. Maybe
consumers aren’t interested in having a “relationship”
standard for engaging with dry cereal, but when Mills added the Box Tops
for Education wrapper, it shifted that perspective.
consumers online. wa l M a R t : “ i n s t o R e s n o w ”
Since those early days, I’ve worked with retailers
The problem was, even though we built great all across the country to develop this concept to its
websites full of interesting and relevant consumer maximum potential for them and their packaged-
content, the sites received little traffic. Brands simply goods partners. My first big client, starting about five
did not know how to get shoppers to their sites. years ago, was Walmart.
This was about the time that chief marketing Walmart.com’s goal was to reach their customers
officers started questioning the return-on-investment before they got to the store. This made sense for
of their early forays into online marketing, and began two reasons: 1) Shoppers were visiting the Walmart
folding standalone “internet groups” back into core website to do research before their shopping trip —
brand-manager responsibilities. yes, even for CPG brands; and 2) Walmart saw their
For me, the turning point came in 2001. That’s site as a shopper marketing and communication
when I began working with leading-edge retailers vehicle as well as an e-commerce site. They are
like HEB.com and Walmart.com to syndicate branded smart multi-channel marketers and turned
content (recipes, health tips/tools, seasonal articles, consumer insight into action.
and so forth), sponsored by packaged-goods companies, Today, Walmart.com has evolved into a leading
onto their sites. e-commerce site that offers all the necessary features
Retailers liked this because it made their websites for media agencies to consider it as a true media
“stickier” and added functionality. Brands liked it property.
18 tHe HUb september/october 2009
They have set the gold standard by acting like a
publisher, and making it worthwhile for a brand or Retailers as Publishers
media agency to invest real marketing dollars in retail
media (see sidebar). To deliver a quality media experience,
The Walmart site offers brands an opportunity retailers need to act like publishers.
to reach consumers with video, interactivity, n Use IAb standard ad placements.
downloads, links back to their websites, free samples
and sponsored content. This content is featured on n Allow use of national campaign creative.
the homepage, via a link called “In Stores Now,” and
n Use rich media options (Flash and video).
promoted in every email. Brand banners are targeted
by department and by category. n Feature brand ads above the fold.
Pages are also optimized for search-engine visibility:
n execute ads via a mainstream ad-serving tool
Try Googling “free samples” — the Walmart.com
online sampling program comes up number two or
three in the organic listings. n provide as much ability to target as possible.
As a result, click-through rates are five- to
n provide the advertiser data on site consumer
20-times the national display advertising average.
demographics and behavior.
Brand message engagement time as measured by time
spent on the brand experience pages measures more n Deliver a full metrics report after each
than 1.3 minutes. That kind of brand engagement campaign.
would be hard to match in the store. n price options competitively.
With some creative thinking, new possibilities
emerge. Why not feature laundry tips next to major n provide sponsorship opportunities where
appliances, sponsored by a laundry detergent brand? brands can “wrap” themselves around an
activity (e.g., home decorating), a recurring
That’s actually already happening: See the Tide
event (e.g., back to school), a health issue
partnership in the washer and dryer department on (e.g., diabetes) or a seasonal hub (e.g.,
You can also find “how to video” libraries on
CVS.com’s “CVS Today” hub — engaging consumers
on topics from beauty to health to holiday decorating.
It all comes down to a clear definition of your shopper Shopper marketing, brand marketing and media
and what is likely to be most helpful or engaging. teams need to create multi-channel, online media
The future for retail online media certainly is experiences that can extend their national brand
bright. A recent study by comScore, in partnership campaigns onto their channel partners’ sites with
with dunnhumbyUSA, on the effectiveness of online impact, efficiency and metrics reporting.
advertising in building retail sales of consumer Retailers are just beginning to understand
packaged-goods brands, highlights the opportunity. what they need to do to offer a high quality shopper
According to this study, which was conducted marketing experience online. They are making the
over a 12-week period, “online ad campaigns with an commitment and getting great results. Said another
average reach of 40 percent of their target segment way, it’s the promise of shopper marketing — a better
grew retail sales of advertised brands by an average shopping experience — online. n
of nine percent. This compares to an average lift
of eight percent for TV advertising as measured by
Information Resources, Inc.” GREG MURTAGH is ceo of Triad Digital
Media, an Inc. 500 company that
Bill Pearce, senior vice-president and chief
manages and operates online media
marketing officer of Del Monte Foods, is optimistic
programs for retailers including Walmart,
about these findings: “These are precisely the types cVs, sam’s club, Dell and bestbuy. Greg
of persuasive studies we are looking for at Del Monte can be reached at (813) 286-6586 or
as digital plays an increasing role in our marketing firstname.lastname@example.org.
strategy,” he says.
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 19
coVer s torY
eventeen years at Disney, ultimately as marketing chief of Disney
Parks & Resorts, left Michael Mendenhall with a keen appreciation
for quality content and the importance of keeping a sharp focus on
the customer. It also gave him a healthy respect for a story well told.
Michael’s own story is that, about two years ago, he left Disney to join
Hewlett-Packard as its chief marketing officer. It’s not as unlikely as it
might sound. The two companies actually go way back — in fact Walt
Disney was Hewlett-Packard’s first customer, having bought from them the
audio oscillator used to film Fantasia in 1939.
More recently, Disney and HP became
strategic partners, developing technologies
to help adjust to changes in the way content
is consumed and distributed. This
captured Michael’s imagination.
“The industries that sustain society —
energy, healthcare, education and
others — are experiencing information
explosions that need to be managed in a
way that provides insight so that they can perform better,” he explains,
adding, “We’re providing innovations that make this possible, and that’s a
very important story to be told.”
It’s also a happy story, in that HP is doing well, even in today’s turbulent
economy. That’s because HP’s trajectory was already set before the stock
market crashed last year — tracking skyward, literally into the clouds —
a “digital ecosystem” as Michael calls it, in the sky.
Well, maybe not literally in the sky, but pretty close. HP’s strategy
is premised on harnessing the power of massive computer
networks in remote locations, which even most non-geeks
now refer to as “clouds.” Cirrusly.
20 tHe HUb september/october 2009
Hewlett-Packard CMO Michael Mendenhall says the
future of media calls for blue skies with lots of clouds.
How will clouds change our lives? the MySpace pages where 125 million MySpace users
Clouds allow for dynamic and adaptive store and display more than four billion images. HP’s
infrastructures in how you manage, store and secure technology enabled these images to be easily printed
information. They also allow for real-time, intelligent and shared. We were connecting these users directly
interaction and interface using software. to the benefits and functionality of HP’s printing
Clouds let you scale quickly and more affordably, business and doing so in a highly personal way.
and to engage customers with great efficiency. They
allow you to pull analytics that have been somewhat Do you think Twitter works
difficult to access in many companies because the as a medium for marketing?
information is stored in multiple places that really When you look at the amount of engagement that’s
don’t speak to each other. going on with Twitter, certainly it’s working and can
Clouds enable you to centralize that function, pull be a valuable tool in a company’s mix. We know there
those analytics — business or consumer — very quickly are a lot of passionate social consumer or customer
into your dashboards and into your planning. It’s about groups that are very interested in following a company’s
effectiveness, efficiency and being very dynamic. dialogue and are very passionate about a brand.
What’s very exciting is that clouds allow marketers So, Twitter becomes a way to engage and gain
to build applications that drive their business strategies insights. I think you’re going to see Twitter applications
and help drive transactions. HP has some great that will allow marketers to pool and aggregate
offerings in this area, from MagCloud to CloudPrint the insights that exist in the streams around their
to BookPrep to SnapFish, which is one of the largest products and services on Twitter. That will be the next
photo sites online today. innovation from Twitter.
What’s the thinking behind MagCloud? Is it still as important to create
MagCloud (see sidebar) has taken away all the mass awareness as it used to be?
pre-production and pre-publication costs associated It really depends on your industry. I’m not saying
with magazine publishing. In the U.S., 62 percent of you can’t generate mass awareness online — when you
magazines sent to newsstands are never sold. That’s think about the number of people engaging in many
more than two billion wasted magazines, enough to portals today, there are a lot of eyeballs there. But you
circle the earth 18 times. will have certain people who need more of a mass level
It’s economically viable now to print 1,000 of engagement, depending upon the type of product.
copies of a magazine, 100 or one copy. MagCloud If it’s a largely commoditized product that has a
takes full advantage of the “long tail,” as you think very low price point and low margin, it may be more
about audiences fragmenting against topics and effective to pursue mass communications. Of course,
niches. Here’s a service, through the clouds, that has they don’t necessarily have to go the conventional media
democratized print and allows anyone to participate. route to do that, either. It has also become incredibly
important to have a relationship and to follow this
How about your partnership with MySpace? macro-trend of personalization and customization.
That’s another example of engagement that was
more in line with our marketing strategy from our How has HP’s marketing organization
imaging and printing group. We were trying to unlock changed with the emergence of digital media?
the content from the digital world and bring it into the Given the increase in the amount of digital
physical world. information, marketing organizations are struggling
So, we embedded an HP “hit print” button on to manage disparate pieces of information into a
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 21
comprehensive program that engages customers. People What’s it like being a marketing
have to figure out how to maximize this potential. guy at a technology company?
In doing that, they need to apply sophisticated It’s very interesting, because both Shane Robison,
technology and applications that capture a customer’s our chief technology officer, and Mark Hurd, our CEO,
or consumer’s digital footprint, and that will allow have brought change to HP. This is a very different
them to measure the ROI in the digital world. A digital company than it was four years ago. They understood
footprint is more exact than some other measurement very quickly that the customer should be at the center
tools. It’s something that you can see, monitor and of our dialogue, and how we think about research and
Today, there is sophisticated technology and The fact that they brought me into the office of
applications that really give marketers more visibility strategy and technology means that the consumer and
into behaviors, that track immersion into brand business insight that marketing brings to the table
experiences, give you lead generation and drive the helps direct HP in the R&D space.
digital or retail commerce. So, it becomes important So, I have not experienced any friction. In fact,
for a marketing organization to bring a digital we brought in some great capabilities that have really
capability into their mix and into their organization. helped give R&D far more specific direction. The
more you are armed with great, specific information
How is measuring digital media different about your customers, their behaviors and the market
from measuring analog media? opportunity, the more rewarding it is for any person
Regardless of type of media, metrics really need to who’s in research and development.
be tailored based on specific objectives and goals that
the marketing program is trying to achieve. At HP, we What’s the best way to budget
measure engagement, brand preference and reputation. for experiments with newer media?
We continue to work on refining metrics as We are constantly re-evaluating our mix and
software applications become more sophisticated, looking at tools that are going to provide for far more
so that we are looking at how our entire media and engagement. It’s not about building an interruptive
communications portfolio works together to drive plan as much as it is about building an engagement
sales. Many of those applications are different than plan. It should not be about distracting customers; it
what you would have found in conventional media. should be a model of engagement.
We must avoid the temptation to only dip our toes
Is creativity different for in and budget minimal resources. Clearly, it has been
digital than other media? demonstrated over the last three to five years that these
It can be, but ultimately the answer lies within are important networks or channels that can really be
the power of storytelling. No matter the channel or deployed in strategic ways to produce greater success for
medium, it’s about great storytelling, and creativity is companies. That’s true whether they are launching new
an essential piece of storytelling. products or services, or they’re just in a sustain mode.
Storytelling and the idea of co-creation are at the Far too many marketers have only allocated
core of what we do now as a brand. The paradigm is minimal resources toward small tests. Given the
no longer based on interruption — grabbing attention speed at which consumers are adopting and engaging
for your product — but on a more nuanced approach of with these technologies, it becomes incredibly
engagement in an increasingly digital world. important that one commits to the digital space as a
marketer, even if it makes you uncomfortable sometimes.
Has the advent of digital changed the
way that you work with your agencies? How do you create “models of engagement”?
It has changed our focus, the importance of an To give you an example, HP produced user-
integrated marketing mix and how we look at the generated online support forums this past year that
optimization of that mix. We have made it a very allow us to tap into the collective intelligence of our
strong practice within the company and we expect customers. This enables our customers to help each
our partners within the digital space to bring some other with solutions or with the various products and
great talent and resources to bear. services HP offers.
22 tHe HUb september/october 2009
tHe HUb september/october 2009
ewlett-packard is riding a “cloud” to a new partners scattered around the globe and takes care of
service that could be magazine publishing’s billing and shipping for people who order the magazine.”
answer to Youtube. the service is called
However, the service itself is not necessarily Hp’s
magcloud and it allows niche publishers to “crank
intended profit center — that would be sales to print
out” special-interest magazines one copy at a time,
shops of digital printers made by its Indigo unit. the
for just 20 cents a page.
machines “range in price from $300,000 to $600,000
publishers can then charge as much as they want to each” but are capable of printing “one copy of 10
readers, who can order copies online. “there are so magazines or 10 copies of one magazine for about the
many of the nichey, maybe weird-at-first communities, same price,” at the push of a button.
that can use this,” says Andrew bolwell, who heads
magcloud could also be a boon to local print shops,
magcloud for Hp.
which can also use the Indigo printers to let
so far, magcloud has produced hundreds of magazines, customers customize “invitations, stationery and
“including publications on paintings by mormon announcements.”
artists, the history of aerospace, food photography
Hp is keeping all options open: “We are trying
and improving your personal brand in the digital age.”
to experiment with these new types of business
publishers can either upload their own finished pDF, models,” says Andrew bolwell, noting that the foray
or use provided templates to design and format their into on-demand printing is low-risk for Hp.
magazines. Hp then “farms out the printing jobs to
[S o u r c e : Ashlee Vance, The New York Times, 3/30/09]
In January, we had more than five million page- also help you market, communicate and hopefully
views alone in this space, with more than 10,000 transact. When you look at the number of transactions
posts and about 400,000 searches. That’s just in one and amount of e-commerce taking place and the
month. Now, think about the collective customer growth in that space, it becomes an incredibly
intelligence relative to our products that we’re seeing important part of the mix.
as a result. Those insights and that information So, the opportunity is not just one of R&D; it
become incredibly valuable. touches the entire marketing mix and becomes a
Another type of engagement happens with HP very valuable and important tool in the marketer’s
Idea Labs. This is a site where we actually opened tool chest. It should be an ecosystem strategy around
up to the collective intelligence and untapped talent your entire marketing mix. It should be a legitimate
among the 1.3 billion people in the online community. resource and funded practice.
It gave these 1.3 billion people the ability to
engage and interact with several of our labs. It gave Is there a direct link to generating sales?
information and instructions on each of the featured The value that is generated can be direct or
technologies, and allowed that end-user to immerse in indirect, tangible or intangible. Much of it is indirect
technologies that were in development. That gave us because it is about customer service, which plays an
speed-to-market with products and services. important part in a company’s brand and reputation.
Consumers are increasingly looking to the digital
Is the digital opportunity bigger in space as a place to help them solve their problems,
R&D than in marketing communications? which builds their loyalty and ultimately helps drive
No. Those insights help not only R&D, but sales through new, innovative customer service
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 23
september/october 2009 tHe HUb
models. So innovation and the role of R&D cannot many marketers and companies have great data that
be underestimated in all areas of your operations as would give them terrific insights into where, when
there can be clear direct and indirect benefits. and how to engage with their customers, and where
they should be innovating in R&D.
Does innovation at HP necessarily But they don’t have the resources to manage that
involve these social networks? information, tap into it and pull out those very smart
No. We have 23 labs all around the world that are business and consumer insights. And, by the way,
innovating, of which six are open to social networks. many of them have the information. They just don’t
So, all of our labs don’t work within this given know how to get access to it and or how to manage it.
environment, but we believe in the power of open
innovation. What is your greatest challenge?
As you think about the macro-economic climate
How do you see the potential for digital and the fact that we are in a global recession, I just
media in the retail environment? hope that there isn’t a protectionist, anti-American
That’s incredibly important. We’ve installed sentiment that starts to emerge. We truly are all in
some digital kiosks with touch capabilities and this situation together and have to solve it together.
people are becoming very comfortable with them. We are much closer to each other economically than
We’ve installed kiosks in Chicago at the airports, we are geographically.
which is really just an interface on things to see and
do — restaurants, dining, entertainment and places Does digital media make your
to stay. We’re seeing more and more of that type of challenges easier or harder?
technology at retail. If you think back to the advent of mass media,
When you go around the world, outside of the you would have found people who would say, wow,
United States, where mobile transactions and interfaces isn’t this difficult, now we have radio, now we
are even more sophisticated, you see where it provides have TV, now color TV. As things iterated through
and plays a very important role in consumer and platforms, people would say, wow, this looks so
customer engagement. It has demonstrated to be quite challenging now — how are we going to do this and
a success around the world. how should we change our strategy?
The biggest change has not been that it’s more
What’s the best way to integrate difficult; it’s the speed at which it changes. You’re
online and in-store? finding consumers becoming very comfortable with
It’s one complete strategy and how you approach adopting newer technologies and software much more
all of your customer touch points in both the digital rapidly. That’s the change that becomes challenging
and physical worlds, and how that impacts your for marketers. I don’t think it’s the actual platform or
future strategy. It’s about following the technology the hardware itself, but rather it’s the speed at which
form-factor that is creating and driving the behavior it changes.
around which you want to build your strategy. You need to build an organization that is
Mobility and retail certainly are big pieces of fundamentally more dynamic, that can respond to the
this — whether that’s retail in a physical location or in global landscape in real-time and be more adaptive
the e-commerce space. It becomes very important that than it’s ever been in the history of marketing and
this is built into your overall strategy. communications as we know it. n
What is the most important thing
you’ve learned about digital media? MICHAEL MENDENHALL is svp and
chief marketing officer at HP, where
That would be the importance of having a strong
he directs all aspects of the company’s
technology foundation within any company, or within corporate and communications
any industry, that has the capability of pulling the marketing operations globally.
right business or consumer analytics and insights out previously he was evp of marketing for
of the information. Walt Disney parks and resorts.
As I’ve traveled around the globe, I’ve seen that
24 tHe HUb september/october 2009
tHe HUb september/october 2009
WHI t e pAper
By WilliAm roSen voicing interest in the team. Adidas was at the center
of it all, demonstrating its mantra, “Impossible is
Arc WorlDW iDe
Nothing,” along with fans around the world.
hen the legendary New Zealand All inspiRing people to aCt
Blacks rugby team lost unexpectedly
Fueled by new technologies that give people more
at the 2007 Rugby World Cup, its
options, more control and higher expectations, the
sponsor, Adidas, realized it had an
marketing landscape is changing dramatically. No
opportunity to restore the team’s close ties with its
longer can marketers rely on the brand or “the deal”
disenchanted fans and, in the process, make real its
alone to inspire action or make the sale at retail.
own brand purpose.
In this new world, getting people to change
To do this, Adidas employed a “new world”
their minds and, ultimately, their behavior requires
manifestation of creativity to bring the brand to life
a new type of creativity. It is creativity that moves
for its fans. Specifically, the sports footwear and
people — to experience, to purchase, to recommend,
apparel maker drew from the fans’ deep connection
and to return. It puts an activating idea at the
with the ultimate symbol of the All Blacks, their
center of marketing efforts — an idea that triggers
jersey. Adidas made it both the message and medium.
involvement — and unites all of the marketing
disciplines and media channels around it to connect
more effectively with people and inspire them to act.
Bringing brands to life Whether the concept plays out in-store, online,
over the phone or via underground events, the result
across channels and is creative work that resonates with people to such a
degree that they actually want to participate, engage
disciplines moves and become part of something.
people to action.
These are ideas that stimulate action — from
trying a new product or visiting a store to subscribing
to a Twitter feed or joining a global movement.
Sometimes they inspire individually and directly,
In what’s considered a first, it employed nano- sometimes en masse. Often they drive an immediate
technology, also known as “molecular manufacturing,” purchase, but they always elicit an observable response.
to “sign” the names of nearly 10,000 fans who submit- This kind of creativity is channeled against a
ted their signatures via a website onto a real, nano- specific behavioral opportunity and linked to a specific
imprinted thread sewn into the captain’s jersey. business opportunity. It’s about using all of the marketing
The result: Ten thousands fans symbolically disciplines to connect with people and change what
accompanied the All Blacks onto the field for the Tri they do. Of course, it must start with people and what
Nations rugby championship (which the All Blacks has value to them. Just as products and brands need
won for a fourth consecutive year). Intense interest to have value in people’s lives, so do our actions. And
in the All Blacks returned, with 18 percent more fans people’s expectations of value have changed.
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 25
Everyone loves bribes and entertainment, but donations to the Red Cross. It offered different sizes,
there is a new, broader, more technologically enabled values and kinds as they related to different causes.
face to value: Simple, straightforward utility, which People might have left the store with their hands
is behind the booming iPhone App store; experience empty, but they left with their hearts full. The results:
and access, that offer the things money can’t buy; Hundreds of people lined up to buy hope on opening
personalization, embodied in the numerous design- night, and on the first day, the store reached the
your-own sneaker websites; and social good are just mall’s top 10 in sales. The Red Cross itself found its
a few examples of what people value today. Brilliant own awareness climbing among the public. Why?
examples of new, creative, approaches that leverage Hope changed the way people see the act of giving.
these many dimensions of value radiate around us. Then there’s the bankrupt Japanese city of
Yubari, population 13,800. Once a thriving coal-
Retailing hope mining town, it found itself $353 million in debt when
Consider what the Red Cross in Lisbon did to the coal mines shut. Yubari officials decided they
raise funds for its main causes during the Christmas needed a marketing miracle and in their research,
season. The non-profit agency decided to promote the they discovered Yubari had the lowest divorce rate
sale of an unusual product as the perfect holiday gift in Japan.
alternative. It is a product you can’t see, touch, wear This laid the groundwork for a unique “No
or hear — but you can feel. That product is hope. money but love” tourism campaign. The city opened a
The Red Cross built a pop-up retail store inside Department of Happily Married Couples and designed
a popular Lisbon shopping mall. Alongside the usual a lovable character, Yubari Fusai.
holiday gift options, the concept enabled people to More than 3,000 couples have flocked to Yubari
feel the experience of purchasing hope. The store, to obtain official “Happily Married” certificates issued
promoted through traditional advertising media, by the department. The couples also could purchase
featured the expected fixtures and displays, but “love”-related CDs, plush toys and even special-
each sold photographic cards valued at 10 euros as edition beer. The efforts have generated more than
26 tHe HUb september/october 2009
$30 million to help Yubari whittle down its debt and catalogue featuring them as the cover model.
tourism has grown by double digits. This personal marketing campaign boosted the
Like Yubari, companies and organizations are IKEA brand appeal. More than 7,100 people had their
finding that people will engage — or act — when they pictures taken, and the promotion increased traffic
connect around shared values. New technologies are and sales in IKEA furniture stores. You can also
helping them do that. imagine how much longer the catalogue was proudly
When Hallmark Cards began exploring displayed on coffee tables around the country.
ways to be more relevant to socially conscious
millennials — primarily the offspring of Baby inspiRation to aCtion
Boomers — it joined in the fight to eliminate AIDS These examples just scratch the surface. More
in Africa through Project (RED). Employing social and more of the world’s leading marketers are
media, the company launched a campaign on realizing that activation is not a channel. It is a
Facebook to raise awareness of AIDS among its more discipline that unites all channels — to spark life into
than 200 million members. brands and inspire people to act.
The “Card for Africa” Facebook application lets So why, in these challenging economic times
people sign and send a virtual card for Africa. It when building both brand and sales would seem
calculates the real-world distance the card travels a mandatory, are so many marketers missing the
and draws people’s attention to the impact Hallmark opportunity to apply this new kind of creativity?
Product (RED) cards and gifts can have in the fight Clearly, developing deep, activating insights into
to end AIDS in Africa. The results: More than 40,000 people and their behavior across marketing channels
people have signed the card and it has traveled more requires sophisticated techniques, experience and
than 50 million miles. expertise that not all partners can bring to bear.
Also, a new form of creativity requires a new
pRoMoting a Cool CultuRe form of creative thinkers — capable of developing
Other companies also are promoting and ideas against behavioral opportunities that cross retail
marketing their products by embracing advanced channels, customer databases, mobile applications
technology that engages consumers. UNIQLO, the and social networking platforms.
Japanese apparel maker that combines high tech and It requires a commitment to focusing on
cool culture in its casual clothes, did that last year actions — namely, what one is going to do to bring
by combining video and interactivity. The marketing the brand to life and connect with people. Not what
campaign featured a downloadable application, are we going to say, or what are we going to promise.
UNIQLOCK, a blog widget that told time through an What are we going to do?
ongoing fashion show. So what are you going to do?
As young Japanese women wearing UNIQLO Try asking yourself what behavioral opportunity
apparel danced to catchy music, the screen changed lies at the core of your most important business
in time with the clock. The music-dance-clock opportunity. Then consider the people at the center of
application could be used as a computer screensaver, it and what they value. Where can they connect with
a mobile screen, or embedded in a Facebook page. your brand’s purpose? How can you bring your brand to
A World UNIQLOCK page on the company’s life in a way that engages them around shared values?
website showed how successful the campaign was. That’s the brief you’ll need to create the activating
A world map there displayed the number and location idea that will bring your brand to life so powerfully
of users who incorporated UNIQLOCK parts into their that people will participate. I’d love to hear what you
own blogs. More than 41,600 blog parts established come up with — and where you go from here. n
in 83 countries have recorded more than 120 million
IKEA also employed technology to transform its WILLIAM ROSEN is North America
famous two-dimensional IKEA catalogue cover into president and chief creative officer at
Arc Worldwide, the marketing services
a three-dimensional replica living room people could
arm of Leo burnett Group, specialists in
enter in-store. The living room toured 24 German shopper, digital, promotion and direct
cities and people could have their pictures taken in marketing. He may be reached at
it. They then visited their IKEA store, thus driving email@example.com.
return traffic, and picked up a custom edition of the
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 27
WHI t e pAper
arly digital pioneers remember the frontier days 2. Advertisers are reluctant to move dollars
of the ’90s. Looking back, and looking around, away from the “tried and true.” This is true even
who successfully migrated, who struggled, though consumers with Twitter-sized attention spans
and what can be learned from the journey? have moved on. Most major advertisers have many
To gain these insights, we conducted a collaborative years’ worth of data regarding performance of their
study with the Association of National Advertisers traditional media campaigns and take comfort in
(ANA) and the Association of American Advertising knowing that if they run a network campaign flight of
Agencies (4As), sponsored by Google. We surveyed 294 150 TRPs, they will see a number of metrics move in
participants from a wide range of senior marketing the right direction.
executives and professionals across a broad spectrum While digital media often offer much greater
of advertisers, agencies and digital media companies. ability to analyze the results of the marketing
communications effort, the senior managers using
the data are less familiar with how to interpret the
New research uncovers keys to results. Therefore, they tend to continue investing in
successful digital-media integration. 3. Organizational silos impede progress.
Decision-making in many corporate organizations is
often a sort of group process. Decision-making processes
Our research uncovered reasons why roughly can also be complicated when organizationally siloed
one third of advertisers surveyed responded that they groups have biases based on their often long-past
are either “somewhat” or “very” dissatisfied with experiences.
their progress with integrating traditional and digital Silos have long been cited for introducing too
media. Four primary issues surfaced: many players into lengthy decision making processes,
1. Key people in the organization still don’t which ultimately compromise decision-making. The
understand digital. This appears to be a big challenge number of approvers (or simply people who think
at companies where senior management is unfamiliar they are empowered to “just say no”) can further
with digital media and lack a basic understanding of exacerbate the decision-making process.
how people consume media in the emerging digital era. 4. Advertisers lack the metrics to enable them
In the ANA portion of the research, approximately to integrate digital media into the mix. Fifty percent
one third of respondents indicated that very few of their of all ANA research respondents cited lack of access
senior executives understand the value of combining to necessary information as their biggest challenge
traditional media with newer digital media. in achieving more successful integration and better
They also generally don’t understand how digital overall results. Underlying challenges included data
media fits into their customers’ lives. This creates a real formats that were inconsistent or scattered across the
challenge for marketers seeking a better ROI by moving organization, as well as a lack of resources to work
traditional media budgets into newer digital media. with the data.
28 tHe HUb september/october 2009
The challenge is that most corporations have the entire spectrum of stakeholders. Finally, it is just
literally tons of data that could be valuable to marketers, as important to publish, to the same audiences, objective
but typically the data hasn’t been collected or organized reports detailing the precise results of each campaign.
with the intention of using it for marketing purposes. • Advertisers and agencies have to work
This spawned what might be described as the together to close the knowledge gap. Most marketing-
90/10 rule (attributed to Avinash Kaushik, Google’s focused organizations have a keen thirst for digital
analytics evangelist) which suggests that for every $10 media awareness and education. Advertisers often
you invest in tools, you need to invest $90 in human have extremely valuable resources available to them
resources to do the gathering and analytical work. that they can tap into. Digital media companies and
agencies have considerable intellectual property that
lessons fRoM suCCess they are usually happy to share with clients.
Some marketers are doing a very good job of Marketers should develop a robust program of
integrating their way into the future — what ideas can digital marketing education aimed at multiple levels
be learned from their successful approaches? in the organization and leverage expertise from media
• Have everyone sitting at the same table at and agencies involving them as “faculty” for these
the very beginning stages of a new project. Many programs.
agencies-of-record still develop campaigns the Something as simple as a lunch-and-learn session
old fashioned way — with the main creative idea once a month with one specific topic covered each
(typically a TV concept) developed first, in isolation. session (e.g., social media, mobile marketing or
Only afterward are other agencies invited to help gaming), can go a long way towards filling knowledge
develop a more integrated campaign. This is one of gaps that can lead to better integration.
the greatest obstacles to effective integration. • Teams need to include members across a
By having all appropriate parties at the initial spectrum of traditional and digital media. Not only
briefing session, sitting around the proverbial table, do traditional marketing people need to understand
everyone hears the business strategy, campaign digital — digital people need to understand traditional
objectives, consumer insights and target audiences media, too. As a former agency president said during
at the same time, in the same way. All parties are an interview:
encouraged to think about creative approaches that “The old guard and the new guard are worlds
involve big ideas that can play across the broadest apart, emotionally … It’s important to have each group
spectrum of media. really understand what the other does and value that.”
In this environment, it is critical for advertisers In summary, better integration and better
to communicate specific roles and responsibilities working relationships almost always lead to better
for each group clearly and to foster teamwork. They results, and increase the likelihood of an advertiser
should also punish parochialism — e.g., when one remaining competitively relevant in the eyes of the
agency brings an idea forward because they know best business prospects. n
they could get paid for executing it, rather than every
agency being tactic-neutral.
• Develop and broadly communicate success JIM GARRITY is founder and ceo of
criteria before the campaign effort is initiated. Bellwether Digital Bridge. He was
A recurring theme from our respondents is that previously cmo of Wachovia, where he
campaigns (especially those with significant digital led development of roI methodologies.
components) are often judged, after the fact, as Jim can be reached at 704-904-8271 or
failures. Frequently, those doing the judging are not
aware of the original success criteria (if any) that
existed for the campaign. Therefore, each evaluator is KERRY O’CONNOR is founder and partner
applying his or her own subjective criteria. of Bellwether Leadership Research &
To address this malady, marketers should establish Development. Kerry has consulted to
Google, toyota, procter & Gamble and
detailed, rigorous success criteria, across all forms of
At&t, among others, and can be reached
media, at the outset of campaign development. It is at firstname.lastname@example.org or
equally important to communicate those criteria, at 248-790-8000.
the earliest stages of campaign development, across
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 29
WHI t e pAper
ome time ago, I was invited to a conference Couple that information with the recent Gallup &
to speak on trends in marketing. It was in Robinson findings that ad recall is 11 percent lower
preparing for that engagement that I came than average when consumer confidence is low, and
across a quote from an advertising icon which you’ve got a pretty daunting picture.
read, “The future of advertising is that advertising So what does this mean for brand marketers?
doesn’t exist.” Powerful words, but to paraphrase the Does television lack the staying power to help build
great Mark Twain, the reports of advertising’s demise brand preference and recall over the long term? Do
are greatly exaggerated. we siphon more of our budgets from traditional media
Instead, the art has morphed and changed, to feed the great online monster? I’d argue that our
evolving with technology and the way we live, work, call to action is less about a medium switch and more
play and consume media. And although the vast about a change of method and mindset.
majority of discussion in our field is focused on the Building marketing partnerships is a time-tested
digital revolution, there is more to life than today’s strategy to achieve a broad array of objectives — from
small screen. opening new channels of distribution (like Benjamin
Moore selling paint through Pottery Barn) to engaging
new audiences (bringing the kinder, gentler Martha
Television is alive and Stewart’s craft supplies to Walmart shoppers) to
increasing brand favorability or credibility (offering
well for advertisers Newman’s Own products at McDonald’s).
Regardless of the goal, when multiple brands
who innovate and bring their assets to the table and approach an
issue or opportunity as partners, everyone wins. So
collaborate. why not approach media the same way? Building
collaborative relationships based on mutual audience
relevance and complementary business goals can
deliver success to all parties.
DVRs may have made appointment television a
thing of the past, but strategic use of the medium is R e l e va n C e and pa R t n e R s h i p
alive and well. No matter that the web is our number- The key components — relevance and partnership
one entertainment choice, or that we spend more time — are the secret ingredients. The objective is to
tweeting, texting and facebooking than watching capture and interest the audience through compelling
television. No other medium has equal power to content — not just for 30 seconds, but also over a
engage and inspire than television; we just have to be period of time — resulting in greater brand loyalty.
smarter about how we use it. Consider the Food Network’s recent hit, The Chef
Survey results from numerous sources Jeff Project. Chef Jeff Henderson is an accomplished
acknowledge that the effectiveness of traditional chef with a notable résumé including Caesar’s Palace
television advertising has declined over the last and Bellagio, in addition to his Posh Urban Cuisine.
few years. And while some stalwarts may choose to He’s also a former felon who turned his life
disagree, declining ad revenues tell a bigger story. around in prison when he discovered his passion
30 tHe HUb september/october 2009
for food, learned to cook, and dedicated himself to a Another great example is the partnership built
better future for himself and his family, and later, for between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s
other young people at risk. Energy Star program and the Documentary Channel.
The savvy programming folks at the Food Network With Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” as a catalyst,
saw the inherent value in his story and created The Americans were looking for answers about fighting
Chef Jeff Project as a six-part “culinary and life skills global warming, and for solutions to rising energy
boot camp,” designed to help six at-risk young adults costs. While Energy Star had those answers, as a
turn their lives around and build a better future. voluntary government program it lacked the budget to
In each episode, Chef Jeff mentors the crew by create a full-scale advertising campaign.
training them in culinary fundamentals while holding Meanwhile, its media partner, the Documentary
them to standards that reinforce important life skills Channel, was interested in offering a cohesive,
such as overcoming adversity and maintaining a solutions-oriented piece on the issue. The results:
strong work ethic. a meaningful partnership which created a feature-
Those who successfully completed Jeff’s rigorous length documentary highlighting individuals,
program were awarded full scholarships to The businesses and institutions fighting global warming
International Culinary Schools at The Art Institutes. with Energy Star which received play on the
As the weeks progressed, the candidates visited Documentary Channel, online, and at film festivals
the school, prepared signature dishes for a panel of across the United States.
judges, met with admissions representatives and all The alliance was structured to leverage credible
were ultimately awarded scholarships to The Art content from Energy Star, and the brand was entitled
Institutes location of their choice. to the creative assets, which were cut into 30-second
But the integration did not end there. In an effort PSA and two-minute brand spots. In its first seven
to engage viewers who may have been inspired by the months, this innovative partnership out-delivered the
show, The International Culinary Schools at The Art impressions generated by the Gore-sponsored “We”
Institutes and the Food Network teamed up to offer PSA campaign, and has been requested by more than
the Chef Jeff Project Scholarship Contest. 50 film festivals to date.
The competition was a co-branded, online essay Any good partnership requires a deep and
contest, hosted on Foodnetwork.com, offering the thorough understanding of each party’s strengths and
winner a $20,000 scholarship awarded by the Food weaknesses, and a vision for how they complement
Network to The International Culinary Schools at The each other to create a stronger whole. Ultimately,
Art Institutes. The Food Network heavily promoted true partnership success is defined by longer term,
the competition both on-air and online. The contest sustainable relationships that deliver mutual benefits.
further engaged viewers by allowing a consumer to So, in a sense, a traditional concept of advertising
win the exact same prize as the on-air contestants. may not exist for much longer. But that shouldn’t
This partnership was a win for the Food Network, come as any surprise. This has been coming since the
since it not only provided a life-changing competition early 2000’s discussion of bringing customer-centric
“prize” via the scholarship, but also heightened the planning to the digital revolution.
emotional investment of the show’s participants and As with other challenges facing our world, the
engagement of the viewers by raising the stakes, brand marketers who emerge victorious from this
resulting in critically acclaimed, top-rated programming. metamorphosis will be those who are flexible and
For The International Culinary Schools at The Art innovative enough to join forces to achieve their
Institutes, the partnership helped increase brand goals. n
awareness and reinforced its positioning as a leading
culinary educator, resulting in increased inquiries and
applications to its schools, but also created a positive CINDY JOLICOEUR, a vice-president at
Marketing Drive, leads the agency’s
brand halo for having provided the opportunity for
energy & environment and education
these young adults to improve their lives. The results
practice groups, providing branding,
were exceptional. In an era of reduced ad recall, nearly b2c and b2b marketing solutions
three-fourths of the audience remembered The to a range of clients. email her at:
International Culinary Schools at The Art Institutes, and email@example.com.
brand favorability ratings increased over 10 percent.
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 31
sUmmI t rep ort
By Vince Weiner
enable a community, but you cannot will it into
existence. A lot of businesses just aren’t going to have
A c t i V e i n t e r n At i o n A l
the energy and the consumer interest required to
develop a vibrant community.
rom social networks to widgets to in-
The eBay community grew up around eBay; and
store television — digital media are both
eBay did a great job facilitating the exchange among
changing the way we live and the way we
members. It grew up because people were trading ideas
shop. Whether the medium is Facebook, the
on how to use and improve eBay and were willing to
iPhone or Wal-Mart TV, the opportunity to make the
help each other to make the marketplace better.
cash register ring — anytime, anywhere — is greater
That community grew up around the product and
than ever before.
members of the community actually became product
Where should we take this opportunity? What are
experts. It was a community that helped itself grow,
the opportunities to use these media to not only sell
and eBay listened to their suggestions and facilitated
more stuff, but also build relationships? What must
that quite well.
we understand about the way shoppers use these
media to better serve their needs and reach our goals?
Last March, Active International’s Retail
Marketing division, in collaboration with the Hub The convergence of
Magazine, convened an invitation-only summit in
New York City to examine these questions. About 100 digital media at retail
marketing and media executives attended the daylong
event, held at the Omni Berkshire Hotel, to listen, is re-defining the
share and debate the ways in which digital media are
changing the face of retail.
Our agenda centered on the three major emerging
trends in digital communications — social networks,
mobile media and digital media networks. We invited
three experts in each area: Mike Linton, former Facebook is also a community, but the community
CMO of eBay and Best Buy; Jim Hood, co-founder of and the social interaction among members is the
HipCricket and former CMO of Einstein Bros. Bagels; product. When marketers see Facebook, or other sites
and Andy Austin of EWI Worldwide and former like it, they see huge numbers of consumers sharing
director of customer experience for AT&T Stores. their interests and announcing who they are. These
Following are edited excerpts of what each had consumers self-identify and can share opinions,
to say. recommendations and information in real time with
all of their friends.
Mike Linton: Social Media Every brand wants to share their product
Every brand wants to build a community, but launch news or hot deals with likely buyers. But just
communities only develop for a reason. You can because you want connections to those consumers,
32 tHe HUb september/october 2009
doesn’t make it so. Just like brands want the same It might start talking about your business or your
recognition that Nike has with the swoosh and Target motives in a way you don’t like and you can’t just turn
has with the bulls eye, we all want a strong, positive it off like you can close down a marketing campaign.
community around our business. What a great way My theory is that there’s no bad media, just bad
to create intimacy and dialog and source ideas from pricing and the incorrect media for your individual
passionate customers. brand. I recommend experimenting to understand where
However, it is clear consumers don’t have an your brand can go. Just because it’s a cool medium
unlimited amount of passion and time to support doesn’t mean you should be in it. If it’s a good medium
a community for every brand they use. The key for the brand, figure out what it’s worth to you.
question is: “Will consumers join and support a In the end, your consumers will tell you what
community for your brand?” Even if they will, they works for them, providing you can find a way to hear
might not want to be “sold” or merchandised in their them. There’s no universal answer and a big risk in
personal space. standing pat and not experimenting.
I think each brand will need to find its own way, On the flip side, there’s a risk in thinking you
but the social utility potential and the benefits of a know what you’re doing and trying to skip the
truly passionate community are tremendous for the learning steps required to understand your brand and
brands that figure it out. consumer base in the social spaces. It is definitely
I’m guessing a lot of people who want results best to experiment, test and expand as quickly as
from social networks aren’t active users. That’s like makes sense for your situation.
arguing over a circular but never having looked at
one. Active use will help you evolve the traditional Jim Hood: Mobile Phones
marketing ROI train of thought. Mobile phones are changing shopping and
Lord knows, the last thing you want, particularly shopping behavior in just about in every way you
as a CMO, is the head of Sales or the CFO telling you could think of. Mobile phone marketing is really just
what should happen on social networking without a logical extension of the awareness-interest-action
having experienced social networking personally. continuum. It gives people the next step — a place
I would encourage everyone to join Facebook, to get more information, a place to go, to try, join
Twitter and other sites. Invite some friends, play some up, get a sample. So, I often think of it as tagging on
games, and see what happens. See if you contribute strategically to a marketing effort that’s already there.
actively to the communities you join, or are just a Shoppers are using mobile phones to ask for
passive observer, and pay attention to the ads. information, get a sample, join a club or be one of the
Consider the ability to target messaging and first 100 to do something. They’re getting a coupon
experiment with interactions between friends in or incentive. While there’s a branding component,
real time. Update your status, send a tweet, state an there’s usually an action component, as well. In many
opinion and share a link. See if your community of regards it’s just basic marketing stuff, but it’s brought
friends responds. to you through the ever-present mobile phone.
Without any hands-on experience, you might end More often than not, shoppers or consumers
up looking at social networking and community as a are going to be closer to a purchase decision with a
pure transaction model, which won’t help you, your cell phone in their pockets than when they’re just
company or your community. watching TV, listening to the radio or sitting at their
If you enter social networking with the same metrics desktop computer. Almost by definition, you’re closer
you’re using for a Sunday circular, you are fooling to a purchase decision if the mobile phone is your
yourself and doomed to an early exit. Consumers primary communication device.
won’t exhibit the same behaviors in this medium. But There are some very pedestrian examples of how
that doesn’t mean it isn’t working for you. this can work, such as Jiffy Lube, which is hardly a
One of the easiest mistakes to make is to think high-tech business, but a big radio advertiser. They’ve
your community will evolve like it would if you started regularly tagging the end of their radio spots
were in control just like a basic marketing program. with a chance to text to get a free oil change. One in
It won’t. It will grow up and do whatever it wants. a thousand might get a free oil change, but everybody
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 33
gets a coupon for some type of automotive service. lunch anytime that week or the next week. We also
Every time Jiffy Lube does this, they find that the knew the purchase cycle of how often these people
redemption rates — and in particular the new customer came in. So, if we knew they came in once every ten
conversion rates — are higher than any other call-to- days, we could offer a promotion good for seven days,
action that they would use. So, if you’re already and get an incremental visit. Essentially, we got that
running radio spots, there’s no incremental media message to them for free.
cost, but you get the response in the marketplace. These screens can be very customized. You can
For text messaging, by the way, there’s a lot of allow guests to send messages to other guests. You
compatibility with radio. But a restaurant could run a can have local traffic and ski reports, and the sixth
radio commercial about texting in for today’s special, grade music teacher can put up a digital notice that
which can be changed every day because it’s really the class is staging a play that night, for example.
very quick and easy to change the offer that you get, For restaurants trying to create a community feeling,
as opposed to changing the TV or radio commercial having that neighborhood aspect of community
copy every day. events can be very effective.
I’ve seen applications designed to allow Within the last year, Einstein started celebrating
customers to announce their presence. We’ve done employees and “customers of the month” on a
this a few times at Disney where people go to a park, regional basis. All of those do-good things are
and can literally log in and send a text message that celebrated on the screens. As we get smarter, the
simply says, “I’m here.” They’ve opted in for messages system has the functionality to do almost anything we
that will tell them about things that are going on around can think of to get up on those screens, and also link
the park, which restaurants aren’t particularly busy, them to mobile phones.
or where the lines for attractions are relatively short.
The customer feedback on that has been very Andy Austin: Digital Signage
good. That’s pre-GPS, too — you don’t even need to When I joined Cingular, eight years ago, it was
know where people are except that they’re in the a challenged retail layout that was made up of the
park. We’ve also done that with malls, where you can conglomeration of 13 regional cell phone carriers. So,
opt to receive messages from stores in that mall that we had all different kinds of store layouts with slatwalls,
are relevant to you that day. Some of these examples these weird easels that we mounted brochures on.
may seem ordinary but that’s a good thing because And, of course, we had the same challenges other
not everything has to be an extraordinarily sexy idea. retailers had, with 24-year-old part-time salespeople
One of the Nestle waters did a tie in with Universal who aren’t career-oriented. You all remember where
Parks. Most of the messaging was right on the shelf, cellphones were eight years ago, when it was really a
but you could text in to win a day at Universal. Research voice-centric device, and not a lot of other services.
afterwards showed higher awareness and favorability But we wanted to sell text messaging and things like
levels, a lift in purchase and in intended re-purchase. that because we actually could bill for that back then,
This resulted just by asking people to take out the which is not the case now.
mobile phone and start the dialog. Over those eight years, there were a lot of
Virtually all mobile campaigns have to work milestones, and the biggest one was when Cingular
within the broader campaign strategy. Most are acquired AT&T Wireless and we launched the
not standalone efforts. At Einstein Bros. Bagels, RAZR. That was a big deal for us because it gave us
the medium was flat-screen TVs in our restaurants. something that people were coming to our stores
Advertisers support the TVs, so there’s no cost to the for — an iconic device.
retailer to install the signs. The screens also carry So, we changed our stores from these hodge-
advertising about our products. So, in the morning podge locations and tried to move into a vehicle for
we were telling people about lunch offers and in the brand loyalty, where customers could come and fall in
afternoon we were promoting breakfast deals. love with what Cingular stood for.
As I left the company, we were developing Fast forward to two years ago, where AT&T
programs that would let customers know that they absorbed Cingular into its umbrella and we did the
could text a code to get a buy-one-get-one deal for re-branding. I had the opportunity to lead the physical
34 tHe HUb september/october 2009
re-branding for our vast dealer network of retail B R i n g i n g i t a l l to g e t h e R
stores from Cingular to AT&T. We needed to take Mike Linton, Jim Hood and Andy Austin each
what was a wireless phone store and convert it into a made it abundantly clear that the convergence
communications store. of social media, mobile and interactive retail is
We were going back to the old phone store model. presenting marketers and retailers with some truly
We had to sell dialtone, long distance, DISH Network, innovative opportunities to connect with shoppers on
TV services and all of those kinds of things. That’s a higher emotional level at retail.
where we came up with the concept of the “Experience While there has been a great deal of effort and
Store,” which we first launched in Houston. progress to date on how we mine for retail insights,
It totally shifted us from selling cell phones to turning those insights into meaningful action has
selling a network connectivity concept. That’s when been an on-going dilemma. However, just as certainly,
we really launched a campaign around the idea that there’s an opportunity to carve out a space that
you could be part of the AT&T family. We launched all combines what shoppers love about shopping online
these new products on our 3G network, but they were and in physical stores.
very challenging to sell. One example is an exclusive Given how folks are forming communities online,
product called Videoshare, which has the capability as they continue to look for new ways to use their
to have a two-way voice conversation, but a one-way mobile phones as their everyday lifeline — and how
video conversation. they are responding to interactive technologies at
So, you could be in the mall, having a voice retail — I think we can seamlessly blend all these
conversation with your mom, while showing her the screens into a new kind of retail experience.
outfits that you’re trying on, for example. That was This would be an experience that for the retailer
very difficult to bring to life in the confines of a retail truly inspires, delivers a higher level of engagement,
environment. So we came up with a concept called can simplify while customizing based on each
“Salesperson Karaoke.” individual shopper’s needs and motivations. For the
This was a concept where salespeople were using shopper, it would be a truly energizing shopping
digital signage and other interactive kiosks in our experience that delivers real time responsiveness
stores to show people using things like Videoshare. and an enhanced level of customer satisfaction and
We totally changed the paradigm of how our sales personal interaction.
people sold, and allowed technology and video to After many conversations with brand marketers,
deliver the product attributes. retailers and media companies, it’s clear to me that
We moved our sales people from product experts — creating a new kind of retail experience that bridges
which is what we needed to be when we launched the digital and traditional retail is not only doable, it is
RAZR — into empathetic, brand ambassadors. almost here.
We really believed — and this is a long evolution — Hurdles and challenges remain, but it is now
that when someone wants to fall in love with a brand, possible to allow brands and retailers to play with
that a retail location is one of the many ways to do these media and see just how far we can take their
that. So, at the last three feet, the moment-of-truth, shoppers’ experience.
when they’re going to make that purchase, and fall in The exciting part is that the shopper will be a
love with the brand and be excited about what their critical partner in this process and will tell us what
experience will be — a brand connection rather than a success looks like. n
That’s exactly what I try to achieve when working
with brands. To merchants, it might look like a retail VINCE WEINER is svp of retail
marketing at Active International,
opportunity to sell more or improve metrics like
leading the development of the Vstore,
willingness to recommend. But when we peel back
a retail experience linking interactive
the layers of the onion and investigate that a shopper media. Vince can be reached at
is really a human being who has a basic desire to firstname.lastname@example.org or
want to fall in love with a brand, that retail opportunity 845-732-8514.
turns into so much more. The payoff is exponential.
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 35
WHI t e pAper
ost of what we call “emerging media” surpasses most other kinds of media.
is still more emerging than it is media. The enormity of the potential of media at retail is
We all understand the potential, but, nothing new. Back in 1982 I gave a keynote speech at
honestly, most still don’t know exactly a POPAI convention. At the time, the great revelation
where to take it, much less how to measure the was that 70 percent of shopping decisions were made
return-on-investment. in the store. It was an exciting moment because it
What we do know is that we can’t advertise in made us realize just how big our industry was and
the usual sense on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube or how fast it would grow.
Flickr. We have to figure out how to be a thinking and We can save the debate over whether that famous
feeling part of the social experience, the conversation, statistic is true or not for another time. What’s
and sense of community. That’s very different. important is what we have learned since then, which
The same is true for media in the retail store. It’s is that we had our priorities reversed. We fixated on
not about using every square inch of a store’s real how much we could sell at retail, which is a supply-
estate to shout out about our brands. It should be chain issue.
about making the most of the opportunity to become Yes, selling more stuff is the goal ultimately, but
an upstanding member of the community. it’s not just about priming the pipeline. It’s more about
A very basic understanding of who those shoppers creating a better shopping experience. Our job is to
are, why they’re in the store, what they want and, inform, involve and entertain our shoppers, and drive
most of all, how we can help them, is fundamental measurable growth based on that.
to success. This is no different than what the most This has never been more important than in
sophisticated marketers say about their approach to today’s economic environment, with post-crisis
social networks online. shoppers. They are more invested in a better life
However, while consumers go to social networking and seeking better products than ever before. They
sites to socialize, shoppers go to stores to shop. They are are more skeptical and suspicious of brands that
in the moment of the task, which is not necessarily the seem to charge too much and deliver too little. The
best moment to absorb our advertising or promotional advent of online social media has both accentuated
messages. It’s critically important to understand that and accelerated these changing attitudes towards
moment from as many vantage points as possible to get advertising, in-store, at-home and elsewhere.
measurable results, which of course is the whole point. The goal now is to transition our focus at retail
In fact, I believe we are on the verge of definitively from “point of sale” to “point of experience.” It’s not
proving the value of media at retail. We now have only a matter of getting our shoppers to do something;
a better understanding of how to make that media we also need to make them feel something. And if
accomplish our goals, as well as tools that enable us we want shoppers to feel something, we need to feel
to measure media at retail both in terms of its effect the way they do. That shouldn’t be too difficult, since
on brand equity as well as sales lift, in a way that we’re all shoppers too.
36 tHe HUb september/october 2009
Making shoppers feel the love means
making the media feel their pain.
Billions of MoMents different during Back to School versus Spring Cleaning,
Creating a shopping experience with feeling can for example. Create content based on these moods.
involve a broad range of activities at retail. Since Stay on Task. Your shoppers are in the store on a
this issue of the Hub is all about emerging media, mission to shop, not to push a button and watch your
let’s focus on the medium that gets perhaps the most beautiful digital art show. They’re in a hurry. So you
attention at retail these days — screens — specifically better catch them with a strong introduction, product
the screens in Walmart stores. benefit and call-to-action.
Walmart’s screens get so much attention because Solve the Problem. Don’t sell it; solve it. Show
they translate into literally billions of moments-of- the solution, not the product. Take it up a notch from
truth each and every week. However, it’s not just functional benefits to the emotional side of solving
about a bunch of screens at Walmart; that may have the shopper’s problems.
been true a few years ago, but it’s not true anymore. Match the Path. At certain points, shoppers want
Today, Walmart has at least four kinds of screens to be stopped, interrupted and inspired with a unique
at its new, next-generation stores that navigate, educate experience. At other points, they just want to make
and inspire shoppers: 1) Welcome screens at the front a decision, and you need to help them review and
of the store that help shoppers set up their shopping compare. Understand the difference.
trips; 2) Category screens (like you’ll find in grocery Sense the Change. Post-recession shoppers are
and HBA) that direct shoppers to specific destinations different in that their highest value is no longer social
and then to featured items nearby; 3) End-cap screens, recognition so much as it is a sense of responsibility
generally about 45 seconds in length, with messages for making good decisions. This requires a very
that say, “Pick up the product and put it in your cart”; different kind of communication.
and 4) TV Wall screens, featuring digital content that See the Shopper. Imagine yourself as your product,
inspires or triggers shoppers to buy. looking out at your shoppers from the shelf. Who’s
As a general rule, the farther you are from the coming at me? What are they doing? What should I
product, the more you should build awareness and look like, where should I be and what can I say to get
intent to try. The closer you are, the more “reason them to take me home?
to buy now” information you can give shoppers to Feel the Pain. Her screaming kids beat your
engage and convert them. message every time. So, don’t add to the noise. And
Think of Walmart’s media as a “package of screens,” you’ve got to make it easy. It’s all about keeping it simple.
with an opportunity to tie in with merchandising along In short, translate your brand equities to what
the path to purchase, to inform shoppers in the right shoppers are feeling in the store, and understand
stores, with the right products and messages at the how those equities can be highlighted based on
right times. those feelings. If you approach media at retail that
This is a model that other retailers should study way, your brand will become a respected — if not
and emulate (or improve upon) as a best-practices loved — part of the shopping experience, and healthy,
standard. It is equally important for brand marketers sustainable, measurable growth will result. n
to consider that all screens are not the same at
retail — or at least at Walmart — and plan their media
strategies accordingly. AL WITTEMEN is managing director of
Whether at Walmart or any other retailer, certain retail strategy for TracyLocke. He has
35 years of experience in marketing,
principles apply to success in creating content for
sales and shopper marketing of
screens in a way that not only sells more stuff, but consumer packaged goods. Al can be
also improves the shopping experience: reached at email@example.com
Set the Mood. Shoppers have many moods that or (214) 259-3531.
vary by time of year. Their frame of mind is very
september/october 2009 tHe HUb 37
cooL booK s
Ripped League Soccer.” But the idea that David Beckham
could “carry soccer to the center of the American
In Ripped, Greg Kot tells “how the big music
sporting consciousness ... ran into problems almost
companies committed capitalist suicide,” writes
Dana Jennings in a New York Times book review
(8/15/09). First, he “was injured for much of the 2007 season,
and ... Nielsen ratings for MLS matches returned to
The book “ranges from the days when the record
microscopic levels, losing out to softball games and
companies gnashed their teeth over the growth of
home taping, to music publishers’ blunt attacks
on sampling in hip-hop, to the life, death and A “culture clash” within the club compounded
canonization of Napster, to the iPod and beyond.” problems. While Beckham was pulling down $50
million a year, his teammates were “making $30,000
Greg “writes about how established artists like Prince,
Radiohead and Wilco thrived in the digital age
because they didn’t sit around and whine like emo Basically, Beckham’s version of a British invasion “has
punks while musical civilization as we know it been a cautionary tale of hubris and mismanagement,
crumbled.” cultural miscommunication, and the ineluctable
truth that, in true sports, there is no script.”
All the while, music industry “executives couldn’t
get their analog heads around the digital future. If
industry leaders had always followed their mistrust
Losing the News
of technology, we’d still be listening to music on
78-r.p.m. shellac, or maybe even wax cylinders.” Alex S. Jones “swiftly demolishes the notion that
news is defined only by the hour of the day,” in
They instead reserved their innovative energies to
Losing the News, reviewed by Sir Harold Evans in
create “payola ... shady contracts” and accounting
The New York Times (8/23/09).
practices to deny royalties ... to the vast majority of
its artists.” The irony, as Greg writes, is “the moral “The most valuable element in journalism,” he
posturing” about file sharing. continues, “is often enough not an episode that
occurred today, yesterday, or, horrors, the day before.
Even Edgar Bronfman Jr., ceo of Warner Music Group,
It’s the creation of a new awareness provided in either
kind of had to agree: “By standing still or moving
months of investigative or relentlessly regular coverage.”
at a glacial pace, we inadvertently went to war with
consumers by denying them what they wanted and When that kind of awareness is left hanging, when
could otherwise find. And, as a result, of course, “embryonic news doesn’t get enough attention,” the
consumers won.” result can be disastrous — “the insufficiently monitored
housing bubble, leading to the financial meltdown ...
the formation of Al Qaeda in Afghanistan, leading to
The Beckham Experiment 9/11,” for example.
David Beckham “longed to conquer mythic America Alex Jones also estimates that “85 percent of fact-
in the way the Beatles had in the 1960s,” but ultimately based news currently originates in a newspaper
“brought a patronizing attitude to American soccer,” attempting to record, explain and investigate.
writes Michael MacCambridge in a Wall Street Journal Television — network, local, cable — he dismisses as
review of The Beckham Experiment, by Grant Wahl. derivative media, doing less and less original reporting.”
Two years ago, when Beckham signed a five-year Alex does recognize the web as “dazzling in its
contract with the Los Angeles galaxy, he and his breadth and innovation,” but “does not believe
wife, Posh Spice, “were greeted by hundreds of websites will ever ... sustain foreign bureaus, science
paparazzi and nearly as many A-list friends upon and cultural staffs, and investigative teams.”
their arrival in Beverly Hills.”
The solution, he hopes, is that quality newspapers
Some “700 media credentials were issued for his will develop separate online and print enterprises,
introductory press conference” and “his mere and between the two earn profits while also creating
presence led to sell-out crowds throughout Major the awareness essential to a democracy.
38 tHe HUb september/october 2009
The ultimate goal of
is not to improve the rigor
of ROI measurement, but
rather to make more money
faster, through better,
more effective and efﬁcient
marketing investments —
that both ring the cash
register and build the brand.
— Michael Dunn
DRIVING SUPERIOR RETURNS He shows how to sort through
ON MARKETING INVESTMENTS the clutter of metrics,
measurement, and analytic
In this practical guide, Prophet options, and provides the
Chairman and CEO Michael practical information needed to
Dunn helps marketing managers help establish the marketing
and CMOs make better accountability imperative—
marketing spending decisions highlighting the critical need for
and better evaluate the success more effective stewardship of
or failure of these decisions. marketing spending.
AVAILABLE WHEREVER BOOKS ARE SOLD
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