Branding. Is only as meaningful as it is consistent. That means colors and type fonts. But it also means experience vs. marketing. So the questions: How consistent is yours? What will you do to make it consistent? What has to change to increase its value in the marketplace?
Tag Archives | Marketing
Marketing is the way we tell our story so it’s relevant to real people in their real lives. Telling our story is more than branding and logos but how the price, the value proposition, the routes to market and all that tie together as part of a whole.
The jury is still out. There are those who believe Yahoo has lost the clarity of vision needed to complete with a juggernaut like Google, and an increasingly hungry Microsoft. They’re convinced Yahoo has lost the pulse of its community. Other observers believe Yahoo can recover from its recent stumbles, if it recaptures the cachet it once had.
Let’s quickly review some of the facts. Yahoo is battling slowing sales growth, a slumping stock price and a steady stream of executive departures. In spite of these troubles, it is still the dominant player on most of the web. Yahoo is the most visited website on the Internet today with more than 412 million unique users. Since November, 2006, it’s been battling MySpace for the title “Top US Visited Website.”
At the most recent meeting of the American Marketing Association, Ad Age reports, “The speakers at the podium kept changing, but their words remained the same. One after the other, the marketing world leaders took to the stage and declared that it’s time to give up control and accept that consumers now control their brands.”
Of course, in some ways, they always have. A brand has always only been as good as a consumers’ experience of it. The difference today is that consumers have lots of ways of communicating those experiences and trust each other’s views instead of marketers’ overt sales pitches. A more interactive environment gave them the tools to be better informed and less susceptible to the traditional one-way communication model. Consequently, they are influencing marketing strategies as never before.
Promise Phelon, CEO of the Phelon Group recently spoke at the fall WITI Conference in Santa Clara during a session called “the Changing Customer Conversation”, and introduced these 4 levels of belief. People are most likely to believe, in this order, from these sources: #1. Their own experience #2. Peers / someone they can validate More
I’m amazed at how much people love to listen to real customers. At Web 2.0, the longest line for the microphone wasn’t to ask a question to Ray Ozzie, Jeff Bezos, Bruce Chizen (who, notably, had no questions asked of him), or other industry leaders or innovators. Nope. The longest line at the microphone was More
Seven years ago, Rick Levine, Christopher Locke, Doc Searls, and David Weinberger posted an online document called the Cluetrain Manifesto. It laid out 95 principles for communicating with customers online. The Manifesto created big stir, was signed by a lot of people working in the tech industry, and turned into a book that sold well at the height of the Internet bubble. But since then it has been largely forgotten.
Seven years later, the Manifesto is a mixed bag. Some of its maxims are seriously out of date, and a few are just plain wrong. There are also some things missing. Because the document is long, and parts of it are badly off target, we’re reluctant to refer any of our clients to it today.
However, parts of the Manifesto are just plain brilliant, and deserve to be spray-painted on the walls of corporations around the world.