Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Richard Branson interviewed by Seth Godin

For the small business person aspiring to grow, it is inspirational to see Richard Branson on Open Forum speak about checking the bills monthly when his business was still small. Note that the interviewer here is none other than marketing guru Seth Godin. Any business seeking to validate return on marketing investment needs to understand how the money is being spent. In larger marketing organizations brand managers don't always see the actual invoices. It's a good practice to be sure marketers see the invoices if they are to held accountable.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

2008 Marketing predictions and 2009 trends

Last year, I suggested watching these trends in 2008. No, I did not predict the recession, nor did I predict that the primaries and election politics would be so engaging.

10. Mobile Marketing. i said we are still in the experimentation mode. I think this is still true, although the footprint is expanding. The U.S. still lags Asia. Look for more advanced promotional marketing, and movement beyond the test and learn stage in '09

9. Green. Still a hot topic as the year ends, but the discussion seems to have wanted as economic anxiety has risen. It will stay on the radar in '09.

8. Creativity. It's time to get creativity back in our marketing programs. Not just great creative (the art) but creativity as marketers, bringing new approaches and ideas to the market. There's so much untapped potential with the capabilities marketers have today versus just a few short years ago. I said that a year ago and not much has changed. Lots of potential here for marketers!

7. Investment Thinking. I said, "Marketing measurement is ready to hit the mainstream and move beyond lip service...it's not that creativity doesn't matter - it matters a lot. But as a means to an end, and the end must be measurable." Result for 2008 - it's still true and some progress was made in '08. Look for increased accountability in 2009 as budets tighten and accountability increases.

6. Mass Is Dead. I said, "We've all heard it. It's true. The writer's strike, if it lasts, will be the proof. No one will miss network or even major cable shows after a while." Result" On target. Does anyone really miss Lost or American Idol?? Targeted media is the trend. SBTV.com for examle, :)

5. Direct is Alive. Online. The ability to converse with your customer in a 1:1 opt-in world is like finding a haystack full of needles. Still true.

4. Integrate. I said, "Integration of marketing processes into the selling process. Integration of all marketing element from strategy through execution, across media, web, promotion, packaging, etc.. It's all about marketing systems. Connect the dots so it all makes sense, then measure every step." Marketers are trying, although not many have solved it.

3. Narrowcast. Such a cool trend. "Micro-media networks are like micro-breweries. You may not always like the taste, but you have to experience them. Look for targeted messaging to grow rapidly as networks expand and begin to appear in places you've never thought of -- how about your local bank or dry cleaner?" Love this. Still true for '09. More to come!

What, no #2 or #1? I told you I'd try to keep it short. And leaving out #1 and #2 might spark your own creativity. What else will happen in 2009?

Monday, December 15, 2008

Long tail search marketing has history in old forms

Long tail search on the web has existed in traditional print for years. Well, sort of. Small niche vertical publications have existed
For years. These niche publications were created to reach specific consumer or B2B audiences and to allow marketers targeted, efficient advertising opportunities. It's a crude version of the long tail search concept online today. The difference is that the current online approach offers much more data andeasuremt of return on marketing investment.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

ROMI visibility heightened

Marketers will be pressed to demonstrate results as budgets are challenged, and it will be hard for those with pet progams to defend retaining them unless they can demonstrate return on marketing investment. My favorite marketing statement, "Facts Find Funding" is truer than ever in these times.