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. Continue reading

Marketers: What Would Google Do? 10 Imperatives for 2010 (part 2 of 4)

What Would Google Do? What would the fastest-growing company in history and a model for thinking in new ways do? Even this week, Google makes waves with their launch of their new android-based Nexus One (MIT Says Yes).

Welcome to the second of a four part serious for Consumer and Pharma/Healthcare Marketers looking to tame the rigors of 2010… If you missed post 1, read: What Would Steve Jobs Do?  And by all means, I hope you’ll stay tuned for What Would Jake and Rocket Do? And What Would Savvy Marketers Do?

“Once upon a time, all roads led to Rome. Today, all roads lead from Google.” – Jeff Jarvis

What Would Google Do?

1.    Focus on the user and all else will follow. Design with simplicity. Google strives to provide the best user experience possible—from the user/customer’s point of view.  Google often forgoes paying for marketing and instead focuses on creating something so great that customers distribute it—it goes viral. Continue reading

Marketers: What Would Steve Jobs Do? 6 Marketing Imperatives for 2010 (part 1 of 4)

What Would Steve Jobs Do? This is the first of a four part series for Consumer and Pharma/Healthcare Marketers looking to tame the rigors of 2010…by taking a closer look and asking ourselves what three incredibly successful people and companies in business today would do…

The genesis for this series first came while reading Fortune’s CEO of the Decade and The Decade of Steve, and thinking about the question that Apple executives asked themselves over and over during Steve Job’s six month leave of absence in early 2009: What would Steve Jobs do? Recently, I picked up What Would Google Do? by Jeff Jarvis (great book)… I hope you’ll stay tuned for What Would Google Do? And What Would Jake and Rocket Do? And What Might Marketers Do in 2010?

As you’re developing new products, services and/or marketing plans this year, here’s a question to ask yourself at each major milestone and decision point…

What Would Steve Jobs Do? The threshold for moving forward: Would it pass Steve’s test? In the past 10 years alone Steve Jobs has radically and lucratively reordered three markets –music, movies, and mobile telephones–and his impact on his original industry, computing has only grown. Continue reading

Traditional DTC Media Is Alive and Well–But Not In A Vacuum!

“Even as digital marketing channels and platforms become increasingly important and pervasive in Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) advertising, traditional ‘mass’ media channels can still be effective and efficient (especially for larger brands)… The key to success is a well-integrated marketing strategy that takes advantage of old and new media alike,” writes  Steven Niles in the May issue of MedAd News.

While the industry largely continues to label DTC merely as ‘broad-based advertising’,  there are many who subscribe to DTC in the 21st Century (DTC 21) as a key strategy to educate and engage consumers through push and pull touches, including old and new -media and relationship building – tactics alike.  Continue reading

DTC 21: DTC Marketing in the 21st Century

With mounting economic pressures and growth of generics, increasing political tension surrounding healthcare and DTC marketing practices, Pharmaceutical and Consumer budgets are under intense scrutiny like never before–forcing new and innovate thinking –starting with how to engage and mobilize high potential consumers to optimize ROI, and ending with focus behind the few efforts that return the most for brands and their customer segments.

Engaging the ever demanding healthcare consumer of the 21st century takes the same insight and hard work as we’ve always aspired to with traditional DTC efforts and MORE…Consumers today have 21st Century expectations, but little time and patience…

[If you’re interested in pharma social media, see previous blogs: “Building on Janet Johnson’s 5 Phases of Social Media“, “Twitter reaches 9.3 Million Visitors–Pharma Marketers Beware!” and “The Ten Social Media Watch-outs for Pharma and Healthcare Marketers“]

To continue moving from traditional DTC Advertising to DTC in the 21st Century (DTC 21):  consider these six C’s where ever possible to more fully engage and learn from your core constituents and consumer segments:

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When in doubt, include a dog…in your advertising!

Now that it’s business as usual following Sunday night’s amazing Super Bowl game, its hard to resist engaging in the talk about the TV ads. If you’re like me, I couldn’t resist checking out what Advertising Age had to say Monday morning and through out the week. (Click here to see any of the ads again.)

What’s interesting is that the ‘experts’ favored such ads as the Audi ‘Chase’,   Hyundai’s ‘Assurance’, Coke Zero ‘Mean Troy’, CareerBuider’s ‘Tips’, Coke’s ‘Avatar’ (by the editors of Creativity).

Bob Garfield’s favorites were Monster.com, Coke Zero: ‘Mean Troy’, Denny’s mobsters and hulu’s ad claiming to be able to ‘rot your brain more efficiently than TV’.  And perhaps that Cash4Gold would most likely have the best ROI despite being one of the worst pieces of ‘creative’…

Hopefully, its unanimous that teleflora.com was just down right mean.

While the prediction was that Super Bowl advertising would be overshadowed by the economic downturn and not be edgy–of the 33 brands, by Bob Garfield’s count, only 4 made reference to it:  Bud light, e-trade, Hyundai’s ‘Contract’, and Cash4Gold.  Interestingly, media-research firm Innerscope concluded that the most “emotionally engaging” ads–surprisingly or not–were those that in one way or another channeled concerns about the economy.  That CareerBuilder and Cash4Gold ranked highest in the firms subconscious scale (they gage a person’s emotional response through biometric vests) only speaks to what many already know; people are worried about their finances! (The Top Five Most ‘Emotionally Engaging’ Super Bowl Ads)

But none of the experts chose the TV ad that consumers rated the most-liked or most-recalled…According to Nielsen TV ad ratings, the number one ad liked and recalled most by consumers was the Budweiser ‘Clydesdale Stick’ ad where the Dalmatian and the Clydesdale play a game of fetch.  The second ad most liked was for humor-filled Doritos. So what does that tell us?  Continue reading

Stepping up in 2009: Knowing What Consumers Want- Today

No one doubts that Consumers’ deep feelings and emotions-what they really want -will impact the way they think about your company, brand and category.  Nor that those wants keep changing in response to a tumultuous world.

How can marketers keep nose to the grindstone, shoulder to the wheel, and mind both open to change and focused on the deep insights we need to stay relevant?

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A rigorous use of research techniques can help go beyond what Consumers typically say–to what they deeply feel and think in their hearts and minds. It’s there – in their often unspoken emotions – that new “aha’s” or insights are hidden that might drive action and reveal how your brand can uniquely respond.

Let the competition give in to impatience and costly temptations of believing that they already know, that their brand today is that same as last year, or that segments are just like them.  Mining for treasure takes a bit of time upfront, paying off by enabling an elegant solution.  Continue reading

The Rigors of 2009: What Consumers Want Today

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10 Essentials for Marketing to Healthcare Consumers

What happens now?  Change and consumer power are facts of life. How to become leaders of change rather than at the effect of it? How to optimize our brands in the current environment?

Ten thoughts to consider: 

  1. While consumers have generally put medicines over less essential purchases, especially for life threatening conditions, there will continue to be increasing pressure from generics, and consumers will place more consideration at each prescription refill.   Doctors are likely to consider the impact of a prescription on their patients’ pocketbooks.  Continued spread of ‘gap’ impacting patient adherence – not filling on time or not at all – trying to spread the length of time between scripts…i.e. skipping weekends, skipping days,  or taking less when feeling ok….or stopping if not seeing and feeling the value.  Perhaps an opportunity to expand how consumers observe Rx benefits?
  2. People want to learn and hear from others like them, not from the pharma industry.  Marketers can create more opportunities to build community and dialogue. But using social media often involves accepting less control over marketing communications.  It’s a huge challenge for brands to design how to play in this world, and find the right balance to engage the consumer within ever- stricter DDMAC requirements and the threat of a less-friendly political environment.  Continue reading

Marketing Lessons From Our Family Dog

…simple reminders that can go a long way in building trust in any economic climate.

Sometimes it seems that Toby, our border collie, may just be the smartest one in our family….
There’s always something to learn from her ever-alert disposition.

1.  Anyone arriving in a big truck is automatically suspicious – Toby responds with deep distrust.   A big truck does not suggest value or safety for her people (even if they are delivering a package for us).

    Big and flashy may not be attractive – often not the best way to open minds…

2.  Many a truck driver tries offering Toby a treat.  But it’s the wrong move – no one who knows her would do that – she doesn’t care about food –  she’ll bark and even growl.

    People may not care about what you think they should prioritize. Value is determined though the eyes of the beholder-not yours….

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