7 Marketing [And Life] Lessons From My Summer Vacation

It’s hard to believe that it’s been two years since I wrote Marketing Lessons From Our Family Camping Weekend. This summer we spent a week on Saranac Lake in the Adirondack Mountains near Lake Placid NY, with three generations, ages ranging from 9 to 87.

Before the blush of summer vacation wears off, here are my key takeaways:

1. Listen like your life depends on it.  During our first family rafting trip down the rapids after heavy rains, my listening, and that of my husband and three boys, greatly improved when we knew our safety depended on it!  When there was a sense of conviction attached to our leader’s words and we were bumping around not sure if we were going to stay in or get tumbled overboard, our listening improved!

We all know that listening is a critical success factor today, and that there are many services and tools out there to help us do it better. .. But unless you are listening ‘like your life or business depends on it’, the words going in may not be really registering or garnering the necessary action.  The river also taught us that if our leader said stop, you had to stop immediately, not one stroke earlier or one stroke later, as that would cause us to over shoot or under shoot our path…It wasn’t enough to just listen, we had to listen and act immediately! Continue reading

Data Visualization And Why All Healthcare Marketers Should Care

In a world where we are bombarded by information, targeted by mass media and social networks, what can we do to make our message heard? How can healthcare, DTC and consumer marketers dimensionalize communications in a way that draws attention and focuses learning to important information and messaging?

Data visualization provides an increasingly powerful means to not only communicate information clearly and effectively, but the wise will consider it critical to help position their companies and brands in digital marketing today.

As outlined by FFunction in it’s report ‘Data Visualization: How To Position Your Company in Digital Marketing’, “The power of visualizations comes from the fact that they stimulate the brain in a different way, by focusing attention on the sensorial and rational sides simultaneously. They act as a discovery game that incites one to focus on the displayed information that might otherwise be left unnoticed.” Continue reading

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

My 13 Favorite Business Books of 2009

As 2009 comes to a close, I want to share my thirteen favorite biz books from this year that I found myself writing the most “Notes in the Back of the Book“, and stimulating the greatest new thinking and ideas. The list of books covers social media, marketing and new marketing models, and innovation and leadership. For reference, here are also business book favorites by Fast Company, Mashable, Amazon and The Brand Bubble (John Gerzema).

If you’re looking to better understand and excel in today’s social media and web 2.0 worlds, here are four: Inbound Marketing is a must for anyone who wants to be found online, and is especially helpful for anyone who is actively considering how to get started with inbound marketing. Written by the leaders of Hubspot, they know what they’re talking about. Trust Agents by Chris Brogan and Julian Smith shows how people use online social tools to build networks of influence and how you can tap into the power of these networks to positively impact your business. Because trust is essential to building online reputations, those who traffic trust are “trust agents” and key people for any business.  Putting the Public Back into Public Relations shows how to reinvent PR around two-way conversations with traditional and new influencers, bringing the “public” back into public relations. Both are consistent thought leaders in the area of PR. Web Analytics 2.0 by Avinash Kaushik begins to bring accountability to web 2.0 online programs with focus on customer- centered thinking and measurement, and builds upon his 2007 book.

Of course, to participate in our ever changing digital and social world, strategic marketing and a deep customer focus are still paramount.  How is marketing evolving? In Marketing with Meaning, Bob Gilbreath outlines the next evolutionary step in a progression following direct marketing and permission marketing. The book calls for the end of “push and sell” marketing in favor of adding value to customers’ lives. Excelling in marketing also starts with listening…In Listen First. Sell Later, Bob Poole outlines the benefits of listening FIRST. And to remind us about customer- centered marketing, I Love You More Than My Dog by Jeanne Bliss is a great read. Who can argue that companies like Lands End didn’t get it right early on? Continue reading

Pharma: Seven Tips To Improve Your Next FDA Advisory Presentation

Yesterday, I posted my key takeaways from last week’s FDA advisory meeting for Social Media and Internet Marketing #fdasm (“Ask Not What Social Media Can Do For You“). Today, I’m providing food for thought for how presenters can improve their impact with an FDA advisory board. This is based on watching the 77 presentations last week, and having recently participated in the FDA Risk Communications Advisory Meeting this past February.

Building on a previous post: “Pharma: No More Bullets Please“, here are seven points that can help improve your next presentation to an FDA advisory committee. (These tips will also apply to other important upcoming presentations) Continue reading

Pharma: Are Current DTC Ads Meaningful?

I just finished reading Bob Gilbreath’s new book “The Next Evolution of Marketing. Connect With Your Customers By MARKETING WITH MEANING.” Given my roots in package goods consumer marketing, I found the book and the examples ‘meaningful’…

I whole heartedly agree that the next evolution in marketing is to move from ‘telling and selling’ to providing value and ultimately, to improving people’s lives.  I think too, this is one reason that so many consumer package goods marketers made the move to pharmaceutical and healthcare marketing-to help save and improve people’s lives and well being…

What are marketers to do when consumers are not just immune to our messages, but they’re ignoring us completely?

Create marketing that’s meaningful.

What is meaningful marketing?

Continue reading

Pharma: Say NO To More Bullets! And Presentation Tips.

This week, I came across two presentations that made me stop and refocus my thoughts on writing and delivering effective and engaging presentations. The first was a terrific five minute video interview of author Carmine Gallo (The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience) outlining the 5 points he attributes to Steve Job’s incredible success as one of today’s most engaging speakers. The second was the announcement that “Health Care Napkins”, created by Dan Roam with Tony Jones, was the winner of the “World’s Best Presentation 2009″ by Slideshare.net and Business Week.

Click on image to watch video on ABC.

 

The 5 Techniques that help make Steve Jobs a truly great presenter:
1. Introduce an antagonist. Every presentation is a theatrical experience: “Every great drama has a hero and a villain.” Steve Jobs explains the problem and leads the way for the hero…  Continue reading