Marketers: What Would Jake and Rocket Do? 13 Imperatives for 2010 (part 3 of 4)

What Would Jake and Rocket Do?
This is the third of a four part series for Consumer and Pharma/Healthcare marketers looking to tame the rigors of 2010… In case you’re just coming in now, here is the first of the series: What Would Steve Jobs Do? And the second: What Would Google Do?

Who are Jake and Rocket you ask? Jake and his trusty dog Rocket have become icons of optimism, and Life is good ® America’s little clothing brand that could-that is trying to spread good vibes all over the world. Having recently returned from a few days of holiday skiing in Vermont, and the proverbial t-shirt buying with ‘my three sons’… Life is good was all around us spreading their optimism and good cheer.

Here are some of Jake and Rocket’s insights that all marketers-Consumer, B2B and Pharmaceutical/Healthcare – may want to pay attention to in 2010.

What Would Jake and Rocket Do?

1. Run like a dog. Dream on. High end destination.
Optimism, hope and dreams are crucial for human beings, healthy and/or sick…If you forget what it feels like to ‘run like a dog’, take a look at: 19 Seconds of Pure Joy and Steve Woodruff’s young dog experiencing snow for the first time! Or listen to Dr. Groopman speak about Hope and Medicine on NPR.

2. Consider yourself a lucky dog.
Go deep. Think out of the box. Don’t knock something, build something. Create your own happy hour. This is not a year to wish you had more. Use any financial or human constraints to innovate…to build something big, to go deep. Constraints are not something to fear, but often spur innovation. Read 37 signals Getting Real: Embrace Constraints; a concept duly noted by Tim Brown and Matthew May’s Change This Manifesto on Elegant Solutions (no.6 p 22)

3. Whatever you are, be a good one.
  Style points count. Get dirty.
Successful people and companies raise the bar, and continually strive for excellence with every move they make…If you take nothing else away from What Would Steve Jobs Do?, think about the bar of excellence he sets and expects for himself and others at every step of the way.

4. Get outta town. If you don’t go, you don’t see. If you don’t live it, it won’t come out your horn. Who feels it knows it.
Reading Tim Brown’s book Change By Design, I was stuck by this quote: “Good design thinkers observe. Great design thinkers observe the ordinary.” How true it is that you have to get out to see and experience what your customers are doing and thinking, and how they’re interacting with the world. Yet how many busy executives actually do? And then actually take the learning and insights and share them across the organization and find rightful ‘owners’ to turn them into action? (Brian Solis often speaks to this very need of leveraging what you hear in social media throughout the organization by insuring rightful owners.)

5. Mix it up.
We seem to be stuck in a world of X OR Y, TV advertising or web, traditional advertising or social media, facebook or twitter, branded advertising or value-add conversations…when we could be mixing it up and thinking AND…The consumer mixes it up, why don’t marketers?


6. The little things in life are the big things.
How true it is that what we most often remember is not the big things or the big/expensive presents, but those little special gestures that let us know that people really appreciate us, trust us, care about us, and know us. (You can also read Linda Kaplan and Robin Koval’s Power of Small)


7. Takers may eat well, but givers sleep well. Sometimes the best conversation is a game of catch.
We all know that building relationships is a give and take. What better analogy for two-way conversation than a game of catch? When your catching the ball, you can’t be throwing at the same time…it’s a rhythm of give and take… While it’s never this simple, much has been written about how the new world of marketing is no longer about ‘sell and tell’ or ‘push’, but give and take (with more emphasis on giving than taking), remembering to listen first – sell later, adding value via marketing with meaning), earning trust a la Brogan’s trust agents, and ‘earning’ customer love and word of mouth.

8. Hold a true friend with both hands.
This is the year for quality over quantity and this goes for relationships as well. Only those that add value to your life will get your time and attention. Who are your true friends? Who are your most loyal customers? What do they need and want? How can you help? How can you bring them value?

9. The best things in life are free.
If you are around kids, how many birthdays and holidays need to go by before we realize that it’s not the most expensive present that people/kids like, but the box that it comes in…The concept of Free is everywhere and shouldn’t be overlooked or taken lightly. The web is full of content… so it’s critical to create content with value or to organize content to bring value: ‘elegant organization’…Think free or the minimum you must charge or take out of the system if you want to maximize growth and usage. Read Jeff Jarvis’ What Would Google Do? or Chris Anderson’s Free: the future of radical price if you’re still are unsure….

10. Change your perspective.
Experts in education suggest that adult learners should “jiggle their synapses a bit” by confronting thoughts that are contrary to their own…”bump up against people and ideas” that are different. (NYTimes: Neuroscience-How to train the aging brain) If you are a ‘social media’ guy, look at the world through other lens…most of the world still doesn’t know what RSS feeds are, let alone use them…email is still the most widely used way to send others information…Marketers, look outside your industry for ideas, seek different perspectives that may bring new value to your customers’ and patients’ lives. Look to other disciplines, from science to design, for new thinking.

11. Write on. Read ‘em and reap. Keep Growing.
They say 2010 is the year that Content is King. We know that Links create value. Creating valuable content and acting as a ‘content curator’ are critical new marketing and leadership skills…think “elegant organization”.

12. Simplify.
With the number of emails, blogs, tweets, friends contacting us, more and more it will be critical to simplify and focus on what’s most important. Only a few can stand out. Focus on less and make each ‘friend’, ‘contact’, ‘tweet’, ‘program’  more impactful and valuable…both simplify and ‘elegance’ are at the very core of both Steve Jobs/Apple and Google’s success. Do You Have a Stop Doing List? (Also read Power of Less orMathew May’s The Elegant Solution)

13. Laughter has no foreign accent. We will never know all the good a simple smile can do. Celebrate.
Let’s promise each other that we won’t overlook a little laughter and smiles in our busy lives this year…(You can also read Dave Murray’s 11th Lesson of Life)


Marketers: Which ones are most meaningful for you this New Year?
Which ones would most help spur growth and innovation for your brand and business?

Pharma and Healthcare Marketers: Which ones would most bring growth and innovation to our industry? Which ones would help bring back hope and trust? Value to our patients?

Stay tuned for part four of 4…What Will Pharma and Healthcare Marketers Do? What Will Champs in New Marketing Do in 2010?

7 thoughts on “Marketers: What Would Jake and Rocket Do? 13 Imperatives for 2010 (part 3 of 4)

  1. I like #4 the best of this: Get outta town. If you don’t go, you don’t see. If you don’t live it, it won’t come out your horn. Who feels it knows it.

    • Jay: thanks for your comment– I love #4 too…from my own learning, i need to always experience things first hand…

    • Mike: thanks for your feedback! btw, I bought the simplify t-shirt for myself after I bought my boys their t-shirts! :-)

  2. Elegant;-), insightful, relevant for most and frankly inspiring.
    Thank you for a great shot in the head!
    Write on.

    • Keir:Thank You! You made my day! ;-)
      Appreciate you taking the time to provide feedback. Ellen

  3. Julie
    Thanks much for your comments and happy new year!You need a new t-shirt…:-)


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