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The brand is dead, Long live the brand - Creating winning brands in the "Word of Mouth" era


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We are living in a new era for brand-building. Digital technologies are making "Word of Mouth" more important than ever. In this presentation, find out about the implications of all of this change for your brand as well as some examples of how leading-edge brands are thriving under the new rules of branding.

Published in: Business

The brand is dead, Long live the brand - Creating winning brands in the "Word of Mouth" era

  1. 1. The brand is deadLong live the brandCreating winning brands in the word-of-mouth eraby @simonpearcelive of @fabricbranding
  2. 2. Are we undergoing aparadigm shift in howcompanies build brands?
  3. 3. Paradigm shifts are not linear: like platetectonics, tension builds over time and thenenergy is released, sometimes quickly
  4. 4. Paradigm shifts occur to resolve accumulated anomalies in data that build up over timeSource:  Thomas  Kuhn,  “The  Structure  of  Scien5fic  Revolu5ons”
  5. 5. TV advertising still has great data:ROI on TV spend remains within 15 yearhistoric norms, returning 10% on average (Hu,  Lodish,  Krieger  &  Haya5  Journal  of  Adver.sing  Research)
  6. 6. However, anomalies in the data need to be resolved Headline “trust in advertising” has fallen to just 47% The decline from 24% for TV 2009 to 2011 was a whopping… 20% for Magazine 25% for NewsprintSource:  Nielsen  “Global  trust  in  adver5sing”  study,  2011.  n=58,000,  56  countries    
  7. 7. The current situationis not a stable stateSocial technology isdisrupting everything: ifyou wait until the market is“built” to start to learn newways of doing things, it willalready be too late.
  8. 8. “Marketers may spend millions of dollars on elaborately conceived advertising campaigns, yet often what really makes up a consumer’s mind is not only simple but also free: a word-of-mouth recommendation from a trusted source.” McKinsey Quarterly, April 2010McKinsey Quarterly: APRIL 2010 • Jacques Bughin, Jonathan Doogan, and Ole Jørgen Vetvik
  9. 9. Word of mouth is… …more disruptive than other factors that influence purchase choice: it is more likely to change behavior …the only factor that is in the “top three” factors across the entire customer journey …not a one-hit wonder: builds its own momentum over time McKinsey Quarterly: APRIL 2010 • Jacques Bughin, Jonathan Doogan, and Ole Jørgen Vetvik
  10. 10. Social media is probably makingword-of-mouth more important
  11. 11. Getting started now:7 rules for the word-of-mouth era
  12. 12. #1 Start with the experience, not the talk 50-80% of all word-of-mouth is driven by direct experience with the brand*. Creating positive, talk-worthy experiences enabled Starbucks to outperform it’s industry for years while typically spending just 1/3 of what the competition spends on their media buys. *Variations driven by industry and other variables including levels of supporting media Starbucks annual reports and filings; Media Metrics; Keller Fay
  13. 13. #2 Empathy can make you exceptionalNest came from a processthat went beyond clinical“insight”; the design reflects ahigh level of human empathyand caring. This level of careand attention stands outenough to generate talk value. Nest is a new kind of thermostat that learns your preferences over time and adapts to you.
  14. 14. #3 Continuously refresh the experience According to McKinsey research, customers talk more about products early in the lifecycle, so continuous innovation is required to keep products and services feeling fresh McKinsey Quarterly: APRIL 2010
  15. 15. #4 Surprise matters more than satisfaction Your experience needs to positively deviate from expectations in order to create talk value. E.g. In mobile phones, battery life drives satisfaction while design and usability drives word-of-mouth. McKinsey Quarterly: APRIL 2010
  16. 16. #5 Create yourown contentContent travels freely across the “shareableweb” – your brand needs to generate it’s owncontent and make it easy for people to share
  17. 17. #6 Activelyparticipate incultureThis was timedperfectly in themidst of Kim’ssaber-rattling
  18. 18. #6(b) Really participate, don’t just copyFAIL: Late. Derivative. Wrong venue. Added nothing.
  19. 19. #7 Buildrelationshipswith influencersEvent-based approaches,like the “World’s TallestLego Tower” are anopportunity to activateinfluencers and brandadvocates. Events can betargeted to reach themost influential peopleand give them somethingto talk about.
  20. 20. Thingsyou can do nowto get started
  21. 21. #1 Look at your brand strategyDoes your brand stand for an idea worth caringabout (and talking about) or is it built solely as aplatform for “pushing” features and benefits?
  22. 22. #2 Look at your peopleAre your employees your advocates? Have youexcited and empowered them enough to createbrand “moments of truth” when it really matters?
  23. 23. #3 Look at your customer experienceIs your customer experience predictable or talk-worthy? Is it consciously designed against specificunmet needs & experience goals? Does it stand out?
  24. 24. #4 Look at your level of experience integrationDoes your entire organization deliver on brandexperience goals or are there disconnects betweenmarketing, IT, customer service, sales, design & ops?
  25. 25. #5 Look at how you use mediaDo you “fill” your media buys with messages you wantto dictate or do you start with culturally relevant ideasand deploy media in support of those ideas?
  26. 26. Some parting thoughts
  27. 27. We often focus too much on the physical impact oftechnology and underestimate it’s cultural impact 2001: A Spacy Odyssey overestimated our future engineering prowess and underestimated women
  28. 28. Tech is a powerful enabler; it’s impact on culture farexceeds what you see through a purely functional lensPhoto:Fast Company
  29. 29. Fabric Branding is a Brand Strategyand Experience Design Company We help our clients define brand strategy and design compelling experiences to bring it to life. We work across creative disciplines based on our clients’ needs. We often start by helping our clients diagnose their brand opportunities and develop plans to address them. Feel free to contact us for a consultation: Twitter: @simonpearcelive