I’m Busted!; Tips & Trends; and an Offer You Can Refuse

Friends and colleagues,

Like many of you, I’ve commissioned a marble statue of myself.  It’s important that fellow marketers remember the impact I’ve had on the world of ideas.  Of course, I’m kidding; marketers are already aware of what I’ve done… The moral today:  hubris generally and pride of ownership specifically cloud judgement and limit possibilities.  The best idea is the best idea, not mine.

Alright then, from morals to morsels.  Feast your eyes on these tasty bites curated by our swarthy archers:

Tips and Topics

  1. Mark your territory. Every page, image, video and animation on your website should be properly named and described if you want the Googlers (yes, that’s what they call themselves) and Bing’ers to acknowledge and index them for search. It’s an arduous, time-consuming task but the alternative is invisibility; no one can find your rich content online. And that ain’t good, right?
  2. Get stupid to get smart. Our creative teams sometimes get in a rut when concepting campaigns, naming new products or writing copy. It happens with even the biggest, brightest right brains. So how do we dig out? We bring out the dumb ideas, the concepts we’d never share with a client, the names that elicit belly laughs and spit takes.  For example, we’ll develop campaign concept for other products, some that don’t even exist, like edible tree bark or voice-activated Jello.  Why?  It’s a way to defuse creative tension and widen the aperture so more light comes in. Don’t believe this works? I’ll bet you a delicious piece of bark that you’ll come up an idea you didn’t have before.
  3. Beware the Template of Doom. If you’ve been automating your marketing communications (through Pardot, HubSpot, Marketo, Eloqua, etc.), you know where I’m going and why even Indiana Jones can’t help you. There are always pre-set templates buried in your nurture tracks or conversion series that may have worked in the past before mobile responsiveness was job #1 and/or your brand identity was updated. We recently worked with a well- established marketer to audit and update their incredibly complicated web of triggered comms streams. We found eight active, automated series that were outdated, misdirected or unresponsive for mobile viewers. You sure this kind of digital disaster isn’t happening on your watch? If not, get a quick response team – internal or external – on the case toot sweet. You’re welcome.
  4. Who’s your data? Are you appending third-party data to your customer or prospects lists? Many of our clients are. And many of these good people are getting taken to the proverbial cleaners. The reason why? There are hundreds, maybe even thousands, of unscrupulous media and data science posers who are using questionable, sometimes criminal compilation methods and selling old, unclean data to overworked marketers who desperately want to believe they are facilitating segmentation and marketing efficiency. “Bower, you’re buggin’” you say. Maybe so, but I’d encourage you to not trust and always verify sources and methodologies.  
  5. A simple solution for analytical anarchy.  Marketers are spending a lot of time justifying their existence and activities. Everything we do has to be measured and ROI is now mandatory, not an aspiration. As an unintended consequence, there are more geeks using more software to generate more dashboards with more three dimensional charts for more managers who often have no friggin’ idea what they are looking at or why. Bet many of you are nodding knowingly.  So what’s the solution? Let me humbly suggest you pick no more than five, and preferably three, metrics to drive your evaluation of your marketing investments and activities. Which three to five? May I suggest those that could generate a 5%+ change in your top and/or bottom line. If not, ask your nerds. Or call ours.
  6. CRASH-Test your content. Ok, y’all, this is a stupid-simple way to ensure your content is ready for the open road. Using a 5-point scoring system where 5 is “Yep, absolutely” and 1 is “Nope, not at all,” rate content ideas, both short and long form, print, video or animation against the following criteria: Is it compelling? (C)  Is it relevant to your target audience? (R)  Is the content accessible to the target audience? (A) Are the points significant enough to justify consuming the content? (S) And lastly, is this a hot topic, something that you target audience needs to know right now? (H). Let the highest-scoring ideas advance to the manufacturing line.
  7. Here’s your 60-second MBA for Dummies course. To simplify for brevity and dramatic effect, potential buyers of your solution, service or product are looking to achieve one of three things: 1) substitute it for something they already have 2) augment and improve what they already have 3) adopt an entirely new approach to solving a problem or addressing a need because the old way of doing things ain’t working anymore. We’ve found that by characterizing the buyer’s journey as a walk down one of these three paths, we’ve generated marketing strategies and tactics that are simpler, smarter and more effective. Class dismissed.

An Offer You Can Refuse (but really shouldn’t because you may hurt my feelings)

Tell me kind and wise friends, and ok, you too, grizzled colleagues, what your five biggest challenges are as marketers.  If you do, we will send a select group of you some Crossbow Group swag that even our most mercurial millennials use on the daily.  Deal?…

As always, if I can do anything for you – make a connection, share some experience, provide a brutally honest assessment of your latest haircut – please let me know.

Thanks again for your patient indulgence.   Have a great day!

Post a Comment