The Jaffe Juice TV episode where I discuss my MediaPost Online SpIn of the same name. Enjoy!
P.S. If you like my videos, please subscribe to my Jaffe Juice TV YouTube Channel. This tells me to do more of these episodes for you :)
The Jaffe Juice TV episode where I discuss my MediaPost Online SpIn of the same name. Enjoy!
P.S. If you like my videos, please subscribe to my Jaffe Juice TV YouTube Channel. This tells me to do more of these episodes for you :)
That's the title of my workshop, which - hopefully with your help - I will be giving at next year's SxSW Interactive Festival in Austin, TX in March of 2015.
Also, my co-founder, Gina Waldhorn has a proposed panel called, "Founding a Company in Tech...in Heels". (fwiw, I was wearing heels as well when I founded Evol8tion with Gina)
A focus on the journey of starting a tech company as a woman, this session will provide real life stories from highly successful women entrepreneurs across service, product, and investment businesses. We've had our eyes on the prize since we were playing dress up (or basketball), and busted our asses to get where we are today. We're creating an amazing community of like-minded women, and are going to share our perspective and predictions for the future of women in tech.
So if you're heading to SxSW or even if you aren't, we'd both love your vote of confidence:
Vote for my panel here - http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/vote/39779
Vote for Gina's panel here - http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/vote/39876
My latest MediaPost Online Spin column below, which introduces a concept about "earning" versus "commanding" a bundle of products or brands. Whether you're Panasonic, Nike, Apple or Procter & Gamble...this notion applies.
A month ago, Procter & Gamble announced it would be culling about 90 to 100 of its brands globally, in a restructure that would instead focus on the company’s top 70-80 brands.
On the surface, the move makes complete sense. After all, the remaining brands have accounted for 90% of sales and 95% of profit over the past three years.
So if I read that correctly (and the math is rather simple), we’re talking about 90-100 brands responsible for 10% of sales and only 5% of profit.
If that’s the case, one might ask what on earth the company was doing in the first place carrying so much dead weight relative to the remaining rock stars.
Or perhaps you were astounded by the tremendous lopsided contribution of sales and margin within the family of brands. You shouldn’t be, as your own customer base is probably not that radically different from this kind of 80/20 split. Certainly this is true within the B2B world -- and although less so in the B2C space, I wonder what Zappos, Starbucks, Amazon.com or Coca-Cola would say when it comes to their power products.
But I digress.
So back to P&G and the announcement, which came from Chairman and CEO A.G. Lafley, who himself had returned to the company 14 months prior to steady a rather behemothic ship. Lafley had indicated disappointment with the company’s financial situation, and this move was a decisive step to get things back on track.
And yet, I didn’t interpret any strength in this move at all. To me, it was all about consolidating the status quo; the known versus unknown; the “safe bets” or sure things versus the wildcards or anomalies.
I would contend that there are no sure things or safe bets nowadays. Just look at the threat Dollar Shave Club presents to the incumbent, P&G’s Gillette brand.
My gut feeling is that P&G’s brand-cutting move will be followed by a tried and tested approach, including mass/paid media and reach-heavy digital or social plays like Facebook, and doubling down on massive global sponsorships like the Olympics, as opposed to riskier and less proven approaches on the innovation front.
In my previous startup boutique, I did some work with Panasonic. I recall how excited execs were about an SD card that could be interchanged and used in all their devices, from camcorders to cameras to HD TV’s to their Toughbook P.C. They believed that this interoperability (or compatibility) would be key to developing an unequivocal reason for consumers to choose every product within Panasonic’s portfolio.
I remember telling them to “earn the bundle,” not “command the bundle.” Instead of creating a walled garden or closed system, let people decide for themselves what to use, and based on your great functionality, service and experience, they would give you more of their hard-earned money and loyalty.
If you think about it, the walled garden didn’t even work for Apple. And thankfully so, when you look at how many iPods the company subsequently sold to PC users.
Nike “earned the bundle” with me. I started with the obvious pair of shoes and hodge-podged the rest of my outfit from every other brand. Today, my shoes, socks, , GPS watch, shirt, shorts, windbreaker, gloves and hat are all part of the earned “Just Do It” bundle.
Instead of cutting brands, why wouldn’t P&G have looked to invest in its existing suite, creating creative, lateral and bold pairings or partnerships, bundled around “reasons to behave” versus “reasons to believe.” Like P&G did with Potty Palooza during frigid Times Square days, with Duracell (charge your phones and cameras) and Charmin (go to the loo). Or what Charmin did with its Sit or Squat acquisition. Although truth be told, we still haven’t seen this live up to its potential -- for example, a tour de force combination of Always, Pampers and Charmin owning the public restroom for entire families!
As the old saying goes: "If you're digging yourself into a hole, the smart thing is to stop digging.” Personally, I would choose to earn the bundle from a much larger portfolio of everyday products, as opposed to commanding the bundle from a smaller set – which no doubt will be under even more financial scrutiny, competitive pressure and startup disintermediation in the future.
But that’s just me.
Posted at 11:41 AM in Books, Consumer Central , Customer Experience, Customer Service, Evol8tion, Flip the Funnel, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Living in High Definition, Mediapost Column, New Branding, Startups for Brands, Z.E.R.O. | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "A.G. Lafley", "Amazon.com", "Coca-Cola", "Dollar Shave Club", "Jaffe Juice", "Joseph Jaffe", "Online Spin", "Potty Palooza", "Procter & Gamble", "Sit or Squat", "Startups for Brands", "Thought Leadership", Amazon, Apple, Charmin, Evol8tion, Gillette, Innovation, Mediapost, Nike, Panasonic, Starbucks
JJTV is back (after a 3 year hiatus!) In this episode I talk about the Ice Bucket Challenge and the power of Creativity, Conversation, First Mover Advantage, Raising the Bar...and exceeding it.
Posted at 02:36 PM in Cause New Marketing, Communal Marketing, Creativity, Current Affairs, Inside the fish bowl, JaffeJuiceTV, Making a difference, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, Z.E.R.O. | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
Lately I’ve been describing myself as the Robin Hood of marketing. If I look back at my four books -- “Life after the 30-second spot,” “Join the Conversation,” Flip the Funnel” and “Z.E.R.O.” -- they all have a common theme of stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. Or, in marketing speak: budget optimization (sounds less daring when you put it that way).
I challenge marketers to rethink the way they spend other people’s money in favor of a scenario which I believe more realistically reflects reality – or, at least a reality grounded in consumer insights and the actual behavior of the people they call consumers.
Inherent in the final optimization is the belief that we need to create innovation budgets. My co-author and fellow Online Spin writer, Maarten Albarda, dedicates an entire chapter in "Z.E.R.O." to the budget-setting component of the Z.E.R.O. action plan.
The creation of new budgets and allocation of funding is nothing new to marketing or media. I wish I could tell you this was the first time we are discussing this, but if I did it would just be déjà vu all over again. Every new medium has faced the same challenges when it comes to begging for scraps, justifying its existence and making the case for a spending level commensurate with consumer behavior and media consumption.
I only need to think back to my agency days recall the eye rolls when I pleaded for dollars that I believed were justified -- if not right then, certainly in the months to come.
I also remember being told that there are two types of people: pioneers and settlers. The pioneers get killed and the settlers take the land. “Joe, my boy: you are a pioneer!” Gee, thanks (I think…).
It takes a bold individual to put that stake in the ground (versus having it thrust through their heart). Chuck Fruit did it at Anheuser-Busch and The Coca-Cola Company with regards to cable television (ESPN is still grateful), and most recently, Mondelez’ (a client) Bonin Bough did it with respect to mobile.
In the world of digital innovation, we constantly hear about the 60/30/10 -- or 70/20/10 as a slightly more conservative -- rule being applied, led by the uber innovator, Google and in the corporate world, Coca-Cola (again) respectively. Coke refers to it as Now, New and Next.
So with all that said, what percentage of your budget are you spending on innovation -- aka “next”? Do you even have a budget to begin with? And if so, do you have a dedicated champion internally, and partner externally, to help you execute against it?
It dawned on me last week as I was immersing myself in the startup world of Silicon Valley that this 10% dream is really just a pipe dream to marketers. They talk a big game, but walk an entirely different one. I realized that 10%, while realistic and practiced by a handful of progressive brands, is unattainable to many others.
So I thought I would take the hatchet and lop off an entire digit, leaving us with a solitary and pretty binary “1.” I challenge the marketers still standing to get to 1% for innovation. Could you do it? Could you do it this year? And no, the year is NOT almost over. What about next year? How embarrassed will you be when you get to the end of NEXT year with still nothing NEW to show for it? Shouldn’t you take the first step NOW?
For your first step, why not move the decimal place one more time to the left: 0.1%. On a $50 million spend, we’re talking about $50,000. How about 0.1% of your spend on a test, experiment or pilot program. I don’t care what you call it, as long as you call it. As long as it isn’t others calling… time of death. Yours.
Posted at 02:10 PM in Creativity, Evol8tion, Flip the Funnel, Interactive, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Mediapost Column, New Branding, New Marketing, Startups for Brands, The Engagement Wars | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Anheuser-Busch", "Bonin Bough", "Coca-Cola", "Joseph Jaffe", "Maarten Albarda", "Startups for Brands", "The Coca-Cola Company", "Thought Leadership", "Z.E.R.O.", ABInBev, Evol8tion, Innovation, MediaPost, Mobile, Mondelez
Last week, I popped into my local Apple store for back-to-back-to-back appointments with the Geniuses (or Genii) at the Bar.
First port of call was my own iPhone and its radical draining battery. Turns out the problem was my 17,000 apps independently calling for “background app refresh” and “location services” all at the same time. Problem solved, one for one.
Next up was my daughter’s beyond-smashed and dysfunctional iPhone. This is when things got hairy. I was told it would cost $199 for a new phone. I explained I had AppleCare and they acknowledged this, but informed me that my two-year warranty had expired.
Enter the worst bait-and-switch in the history of not-so-smartphones. Obviously the idea is to get people to upgrade to new phones. In this case, my daughter’s iPhone 4S could easily have been upgraded to a 5 or 5S (with Two-year contract of course), but as it turns out, she -- quite understandably -- is holding out for an iPhone 6.
Only Apple is not operating on the same page as my daughter (who I suspect she is not the exception, but the overwhelming majority now) and as a result, is lagging behind pretty radically in the high-stakes game of innovation. The Apple 4S came out on Oct. 14, 2011 and my daughter’s phone was purchased in May, 2012. It’s now August 2014 and all we hear from the too-cool-for-school Blueshirts is thestandard response: “We don’t know when the anticipated mythical iPhone 6 announcement is going to echo from the heavens.”
Why not? Why wouldn’t you inform your own people when your overdue phone is ready? Why constantly trade on innuendo, hype and secrecy? That’s soooo Steve Jobs-era and 2011!
After switching Blueshirts three times and apparently talking to the store “manager,” I found out that I could purchase a phone for $199 and then trade it in when I was ready. At today’s rate, I would get $125 for the phone. But a) the rate fluctuates daily (I’m a day trader now?), b) the phone would have to be in pristine condition (did I mention, this was for my teenage daughter?) and c) I would have to use the store credit for a new iPhone from the Apple store.
The problem here is that Apple is being out-innovated (outsmarted?) by AT&T and the like. AT&T now has “Next” that allows customers to swap out old phones (defined as older than a day) for the latest and greatest with two provisions: 1. The “lease” renews and 2. It has to be done in an AT&T store. That’s AT&T 1, Apple 0 for those keeping score in-store.
To make matters worse, I explained to “the manager” that I was literally (my third appointment that day) about to purchase a new MacBook Air and spend up to $3,000 in the process in their store, making it the 11th active i-device in my household. Yes, there is a “kick me” sign on my back right now.
You would think the manager would be “empowered” to make me an offer. How about meeting me halfway at $100? Nope.
How many people were in the exact same situation as myself, do you think? I didn’t have to think for too long. There was one person sitting right next to me with the exact same problem: a horribly cracked iPhone 4S screen, waiting for the 6, and oops… expired AppleCare.
How many tens, hundreds, thousands of people are walking into Apple stores every single day experiencing the exact same poor customer experience? The mind boggles.
It would appear that innovation -- or rather, the lack thereof -- has a value: It’s $199. When multiplied by tens of thousands of dissatisfied customers, that comes at a rather steep price.
Posted at 01:58 PM in Consumer Central , Customer Experience, Customer Service, Evol8tion, Flip the Funnel, From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Mediapost Column, Ugly Stuff | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Last week I attended a fantastic event in Chicago called “The League of Leaders,” an initiative run by the Path to Purchase Institute. Heard of them? Of course you haven’t.
That’s because the subject matter focused on shopper marketing, the red-headed stepchild of the marketing ecosystem.
I delivered a keynote to this group of marketers representing pretty much the crème de la crème of the entire consumer packaged goods spectrum. In my opening remarks, I made a joke about the fact that the advertising industry was slumming it in Cannes, whereas I’d hit the proverbial jackpot at the Westin O’Hare Airport Hotel, instead of puking off the port side of a luxury yacht.
Unfair comparison, really. The reality is, the only place to be was in Chicago. That's where the REAL money is! Case in point: Total U.S. retail sales projected for 2014 is a whopping $4.7 trillion (according to eMarketer), with in-store representing $4.4 trillion of this amount.
So why then is the overwhelming majority of marketers’ budgets being spent on acquisition marketing, designed at worst to deliver reach, frequency, awareness and whiffs of consideration, or, at best, to get someone into a store or supermarket, as opposed to completing the process and closing the deal in-store?
Observation 1: There is a complete disconnect between what is spent on prospecting, persuading and reminding versus what’s spent on sampling, converting and closing.
According to Veronis Suhler, $51.53 billion will be spent in 2014 on point-of-purchase, coupons, promotional licensing, premiums, loyalty programs, product sampling, and finally sponsored games, contests and sweeps. As a rough benchmark, eMarketer projects 2014 US media ad spending to be $177.8 billion (that’s ad spending, not marketing).
If you are familiar with my Marketing Bowtie™ framework that essentially unifies the traditional and flipped funnels (picture them side by side, where outside-in meets inside-out to deliver a bowtie), then we would be talking about what I call P.O.P. (place of purchase and/or point of purchase).
Observation 2: There is an acute lack of investment, intellect and/or innovation in the last three feet (in-store).
Speaking of P.O.P., there’s also a third expression, namely “proof of purchase.” This gets into flip the funnel territory, or retention as the new acquisition wheelhouse. In an era of mobile wallets and Passbooks, there is an extremely limited showcase of viable technologies, platforms and/or apps designed to deliver “from the cart into the heart” (stick a ™ on that for me, please).
Observation 3: The marketing machine abandons ship at the sale, and does not continue the momentum and relationship building post-sale.
The fact is that shopper marketing (increasingly being referred to as customer marketing) is still thought of superficially and tactically instead of from a more holistic and integrated perspective. If only there was a way to connect the dots…
Which brings us to the final piece of the puzzle, the one device to rule them all, the true common thread throughout the entire contact management continuum.
Of course I’m talking about mobile.
Observation 4: Mobile suffers from the same neglect in-store as it does everywhere else in the marketing world.
Arguably, mobile is even more important in-store.
As is innovation.
Fortunately, I did see a handful of incredible technologies and startups at this meeting that are looking to revolutionize the blue ocean of shopper marketing. These companies are also coupled with startups experimenting in areas like multiscreen integration, heat mapping, conductive ink, augmented reality, in-store mapping and big data.
And so, to those executives frequenting the aisles of their favorite supermarket for Pepto-Bismol to nurse those post-Cannes blues, I humbly suggest “canning” next year’s festival for a much shorter, less costly trip.
You don’t even need to leave the premises to have arrived.
Posted at 09:30 AM in Consumer Central , Flip the Funnel, Madison & Mountain View, Mediapost Column, Medium - neither rare nor well done, New Marketing, Social Commerce, Startups for Brands, Television, The Engagement Wars | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Joseph Jaffe", "League of Leaders", "Online Spin", "Path to Purchase Institute", "Path to Purchase", "Shopper Marketing", "Startups for Brands", "Thought Leadership", Evol8tion, Innovation, MediaPost, Mobile
Posted at 02:52 PM in Books, Consumer Central , Content is King, Creativity, Evol8tion, From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Medium - neither rare nor well done, New Branding, New Marketing, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, Television, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
My last 3 Online Spin columns:
I’m not sure when Nike ceased to be a shoe company for serious athletes and instead become a technology company for average Joes (like me) looking to enjoy a health and active lifestyle.
Perhaps it was Nike ID that first hinted at things to come. Or Nike +, Nike Running, or Nike Fuelband that finally drove home the transformation from Just Do it to Just Digit (sorry).
Thanks to technology, Nike has elevated its relevance and resonance from just a brand to something much more: a community-driven experience. Dare I say, a customer-centric ecosystem powered by technology.
Case in point: #runstronger -- a call to action on the first anniversary of the Boston bombing, offering to donate $1 for every mile completed by volunteer runners.
I’ve become somewhat of a Fuelband fanboy. I wrote about it extensively in my latest book, “Z.E.R.O,” and have dedicated several columns in Mediapost to the same subject.
Last week I was in Australia, where, during a presentation, several members of the audience pointed out that Nike will be discontinuing its Fuelband.
What an embarrassment for Nike. They failed. They lost the battle to Fitbit. They couldn’t cut it with a piece of hardware that just did not iterate or evolve quickly enough.
And if you think the above paragraph is accurate, you couldn’t be further from the truth.
The actual announcement was that Nike is discontinuing its Fuelband production in order to shift its focus from hardware to software. The company is going to focus on the data, analytics, dashboard, gamification and overall experience, versus just producing rubber bands.
Let me repeat the key phrase again in case you missed it: Nike is shifting its focus from hardware to software. This is -- or was -- a shoe company, remember?
Nike is doing a classic pivot, just as an enviable class of past successful startups -- including, but not limited to, GroupOn, Twitter, YouTube and Fab -- did before it.
Playing to its strengths (or weaknesses), and ultimately reconciling this with its business, Nike is choosing to focus and prioritize versus spreading itself too thin.
Company strategists are also choosing to align themselves with an incredibly like-minded brand: namely, Apple, which will most likely be producing the one band to rule them all soon enough. This has not actually been announced yet, but Nike has subtly (about as subtly as a bull in a china shop) hinted at the continuation of this relationship in the wearables market.
As a betting man, I’m going to fairly confidently place my chips in the Nike + Apple camp. It’s a fairly inevitable no-brainer that Apple and Nike will join forces -- and when they do, it’s game over.
Enjoy it while you can, Fitbit.
In making this announcement, Nike has shown -- proven, in fact -- that it is a technology company -- a lean brand of sorts.
It’s demonstrated how an 800-pound gorilla can think and act like an agile gazelle.
At a time when most companies are still debating if they should sell directly to their customers via their website, what their Facebook strategy should be, which mobile platform they should develop in (because for some reason the budget allows only one) or how to approach a one-off pilot program with a startup, Nike has entered the next phase of its evolution.
By my count, v2.0 beats v0.1 any day of the week.
Not bad for a loser.
Posted at 02:41 PM in Books, Creativity, Evol8tion, Experiential Marketing, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Join the Conversation, Madison & Mountain View, Mediapost Column, Television, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Mitch and I resume our monthly "debates" to discuss the agency world, including a very frank discussion about the recent acquisition of Twist Image by WPP. Congrats my friend! @jaffejuice and @mitchjoel
Listen live or download here.
Subscribe to the show via iTunes here
Photo credit: Ad Age
Company credit: Sprinklr (for giving me back my baby)
Posted at 02:34 PM in Between the lines..., Books, Current Affairs, Evol8tion, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Make advertising relevant again | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
My last 4 Online Spin articles are pasted below for your convenience and reading pleasure:
Using a Texting and Driving case study, I draw an analogy with marketing innovation in general and ask why we hold back investing in innovation efforts (in particular when it comes to incusive coverage across all mobile platforms), especially when we're talking about rounding errors.
Serendipity reinvented in a social age and social world. A report back on SxSW and how relationships are being rediscovered and shaped in a world of digital connections.
This one got a lot of traction and deals with the idea that startups are much more active "testers" or experimenters of consumer action, reaction, behavior and ultimately insights....than brands. The best way to understand consumers is not through one-way mirrors and focus groups, but rather through actual interactions. Startups remind us to "learn" by "doing".
I draw an analogy between weight loss and innovation as it relates to change. Best laid plans or fear of making the first move lead to the same outcome: lethargy, inactivity and essentially stagnation or decay.
Enjoy the articles and feel free to "join the conversation" with your thoughts, feedback and/or pushback.
Posted at 06:05 PM in Evol8tion, Join the Conversation, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Mediapost Column, New Branding, New Marketing, Startups for Brands | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
My latest MediaPost Online Spin column:
In a previous Online Spin, "The Opportunity Cost of Inertia,” I wrote about a keynote I delivered to a room filled with senior brand marketers at the ANA’s (Association of National Advertisers) digital and social media conference last July.
At the end of my presentation, I challenged the audience to do one thing in the remaining six months of the year: test or pilot an innovation program that took them out of their comfort zones and allowed them to experience an emerging technology or perhaps just one platform they were deficient in.
I invited the brands to call me on New Year’s Eve, saying I would be close to my phone and looked forward to hearing a first-person account of their program, what they’d learned in the process, what they would do differently -- and most importantly, what they would do next.
Dec. 31 came. Dec. 31 went. The phone didn’t ring.
Even sadder was that I always knew it wouldn’t.
Scenario A: The overflowing glass
In this exceptional scenario, the brands were already piloting, accelerating, even investing in technology, platforms, startups and/or projects designed to obliterate their competition. They didn’t call because they didn’t need to call. They had successfully moved beyond dipping their toes in the water and didn’t need me to give them a gentle nudge (shove) into the blue ocean.
To them, I say: You’re awesome, but you still should have called. At the very minimum, I’ll profile you and your company in my next book. While I recognize your need not to share your successes with the outside world, you are in fact so far ahead that the others may never catch up. Plus, this is the sharing economy -- and if you want to learn from others, you should contribute to the growing pool of best practices and case studies.
Scenario B: The glass half-full
Let’s say every marketer left the event energized and emboldened to innovate. They ignored the hundreds of political and yet banal emails. They even delegated the “fires” back at the office to underlings. Instead, they piloted to their heart’s content. So why didn’t they call? Perhaps they thought I was joking. Perhaps they figured their job was done when they checked 1 x pilot program from their 2013 to-do list.
To them, I say: The only way to keep on innovating… is to keep on innovating. Now that you’ve completed one successful program, what will you do next? Innovation is a journey, not a destination and you will NEVER reach the finish line. Whether covering the digital, social, mobile or emerging categories, there will ALWAYS be an area where you’re lagging.
Scenario C: The glass half-empty
Same as earlier, except the programs didn’t work as well as perhaps was anticipated. Why didn’t they call? These brands didn’t want to admit failure, and so they refrained from calling out of empathy and consideration: they just didn’t want to let me down.
To them I say: Keep your head up. You are all winners. There is no such thing as failure in the Age of Improv. It’s all about the pivot. Don’t give up. You’ll be so much better next time.
Scenario D: The empty glass
Flatline. You did nothing. You forgot. You didn’t care. You were distracted. You didn’t have enough bandwidth. Your agency talked you out of it. Your boss talked you out of it. You couldn’t sell it. You gave up. You didn’t believe. You didn’t care. You weren’t motivated enough. Something came up.
Pick your poison. This is not mutually exclusive multiple choice. Check all that apply.
To them I say: you just lost ANOTHER six months. You bet the farm on the status quo, with hope springing eternal that the IPSOS data would be your salvation. You put your stock in the new tagline or campaign or promotion and the result was crickets. And in July of 2014, when the next speaker challenges you, you will have lost yet another six months.
Stop the rot. Make that change. Commit to action. Time flies when you’re stuck in purgatory, waiting in vain and resigned to die.
Those are my four scenarios. If you were in the audience, which one did you fit into? And if you weren’t there, which one do you think was the more likely scenario?
I think you know which one I believe is the more realistic outcome.
Why is this the case?
What needs to change to avoid this mindless reenactment of Groundhog Day?
The clock is ticking. Or maybe it’s just stuck.
Posted at 04:52 PM in Creativity, Evol8tion, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Mediapost Column, New Branding, New Marketing, Startups for Brands, Ugly Stuff | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Actually what I really hope is that less brands will be doing the WRONG things with startups and more brands will be doing the RIGHT kind of partnership and collaboration.
Read on and weigh in...
My friend David Berkowitz, CMO of MRY, just wrote an opinion piece titled “Why Brands will Focus Less on Startups in 2014.” In the piece, he cites (1) clutter, (2) too much P.R, and (3) lack of results as the three reasons why “brand and agency love for startups is going to fizzle.”
What David is referring to is a sickness that seems to strike many marketers and is passed on to their agencies (or perhaps it is the other way round): namely TNBTS, or The Next Big Thing Syndrome. The good news is that there is a cure. It’s called strategy. When there is none present, I strongly recommend abstinence (hence, the title of David’s article, and why I chose to take the same title although I have a divergent opinion.).
“Clutter” represents all the noise out there; the tonnage; the quantity of startup candidates. In fact, when TechCrunch pretty much opened its entire startup database to the public, I rejoiced. 30,000+ one-liner descriptions in an Excel spreadsheet! That’s like referring to the phone book as your list of potential dates. Good luck with that! The antidote to noise is the filter, curation or vetting that helps weed “too many” and weave “too few” into “just right.”
The problem with P.R. is P.R. itself. Ever since I stumbled into the world of P.R. during my social media days, I keep coming back to “those who can, do; those who can’t, P.R.” as I wrote in an Online Spin six+ months ago. I do recognize, however, that there is value to both internal and external merchandising. I think where David and I diverge is that he is referring to P.R. as being first to market with Vine, Snapchat or Google Glass – ALL OF WHICH are hyped up by the very P.R. and trade engine that accepts or rejects what is newsworthy on their terms. In addition, none of these platforms are early stage; none of the collaborations are strategic; all of them benefit the trade publications and the platforms themselves (can you say acquisition or IPO?) as opposed to the brands that helped them get there in the first place!
Then there’s “results.” Certainly if a startup collaboration is being attached to quarterly earnings, then we would do well to cut off funding to them altogether and instead invest this money to determine the same “results” from “working” media – specifically, how many millions of dollars are being completely wasted and negligently justified through outdated marketing mix modeling.
I hope 2014 is not the year of the startup. It’s very simple: 2013 was the year of the startup. 2012 was the year of the startup. Every single year in which the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and kicking is the year of the startup. Startups are nothing new. They were, are and always will exist.
To cover startups so prolifically (Berkowitz notes that the word startup was mentioned in Ad Age more times in 2012 than 2005-2009 combined) and then summarily declare, “it’s over” is proof positive of TNBTS.
I hope 2014 puts an end to endless “speed dating” without any intention of a second date; hack-a-thons with an emphasis on the word “hack”; brand accelerators that are led by agencies who implode when their one-man-band startup-guy leaves to join another agency or, more likely, a startup; and, last but least, the $5,000 pilot program, which is nothing more than a checkmark on the Next Big Thing checklist.
When the dust settles, fewer brands will be standing, and these brands will continue to enjoy unprecedented competitive advantages from profoundly partnering with startups. Brands like Under Armor, which just acquired MapMyFitness. Brands like Intuit, which acquired Mint. Brands like Avis, which acquired ZipCar. Or Brands like Mondelēz International (an Evol8tion client) that just won Mobile Marketer of the Year based in part on their Mobile Futures Program.
They all thank you for reading David’s article and taking it at face value.
As do I.
Posted at 01:40 PM in Consumer Central , Content is King, Evol8tion, From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Mediapost Column, New Marketing, Startups for Brands, The Engagement Wars, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
I haven't posted my Online Spin articles for a while, but I'd like to do so now with 3 related ones that all triangulate on a brand marketer's need to change, move quicker, embrace the "fear" of failure (the only thing to fear is fear itself) and ultimately, adopt a much more progressive lean-forward approach to new media, emerging technology and partnership with startups/entrepreneurs.
Here's the final article in its entirety:
Companies are their own worst enemies. The amount of wheel-spinning that takes place to get an initiative in place or even started, only for the rug to be ripped out underneath due to “a new CMO coming in” (or an existing one going out), “a budget cut” or “a reorg,” translates into significant hours expended, and therefore has a very real price tag.
I think it’s important we recognize the tangible cost of dragging our feet, being stuck in holding patterns and/or ultimately having cold feet as a substantial cost of doing business.
The waste of time -- and therefore money -- is mission critical, especially when dealing in a complex, dynamic and turbulent marketplace, with -- let’s face it -- extremely scarce resource (and by scarce resources, I’m talking about talent and time). While we all complain about budget cuts, in reality we are swimming in obscene excessive amounts of money that go into the temporal renting of multitasking eyeballs (yes, I’m talking about YOU, 30-second spot).
As a writer and speaker, I get to clench my fist and shake it disapprovingly at you a lot. You agree with me and yet you do nothing about it.
As a consultant and “agency” guy, I get to feel the short stick by being on the receiving end of your constant “reorgs” and additional approvals and reviews.
But honestly, don’t worry about me -- this is about you. I’m really worried about you.
Did you ever stop and think that all this time lost is actually hurting the current and future state of your business? In other words, hastening the next reorg and restructure? Your inability to get anything done that is different, original, unique and/or innovative is without question putting your own continuity and value INTO question.
Seriously, consider the ROI of not doing anything. It’s a Return on Inertia that is ironically very measurable both as an opportunity cost (past/hours) and opportunity lost (future/execution).
Instead, consider the analogy of waiting in a very long line. You’ve stood for an hour and you’re strongly considering calling it quits and walking away. Only, you’ve already spent an hour and who knows, the wait might only be another 30 minutes or so. And then before you know it, it’s 90 minutes or 2 hours. Now you DEFINITELY can’t walk away, because you’ve invested 2 hours, which is much more than the hour. And then it’s three hours -- and so on.
Why not apply the same logic to your projects? Stay the course!. Consider all the hours and legwork that got you this far and use that as the incentive to keep going.
And if all else fails, consider this: “If you’re not adding to your legacy, you’re adding to your eulogy.”
You can quote me on that if you like.
Posted at 09:31 AM in Creativity, Evol8tion, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Flip the Funnel, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Make advertising relevant again, Mediapost Column, New Branding, New Marketing, Startups for Brands, The Engagement Wars | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Those of you who don't subscribe to Shel Holtz and Neville Hobson's For Immediate Release are probably still blissfully living underneat the rock of ages where 4-color bleeds, mechanicals and 30-second spots reign supreme.
For the rest of you, you would know FIR is one of the longest standing P.R. and Communications podcasts out there. Period. And the best.
I also had the pleasure of working with both Shel and Neville during the crayon days.
You can listen to the post directly here (or if you're subscribed to Across the Sound or Jaffe Juice podcasts, it will download automatically via iTunes). The very thoughtful post on the podcast can be found here.
If you're still interested in reviewing the book, I'll send you a copy. Let me know.
If you'd like to purchase the book, you can do so here. It comes with a full 100% money back guarantee...however you do need to pay us a 10% fee on any incremental revenue or cost savings generated beyond $1,000,000 that comes from the book. Hint: The latter scenario is much more likely (you have been warned)
Posted at 09:13 AM in Books, Content is King, Creativity, Current Affairs, Customer Experience, Customer Service, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Flip the Funnel, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Join the Conversation, Make advertising relevant again, Medium - neither rare nor well done, New Branding, New Marketing, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, Television, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "30-second spot", "For Immediate Release", "Joseph Jaffe", "Maarten Albarda", "Marketing Podcast", "Neville Hobson", "Shel Holtz", "Thought Leadership", "Z.E.R.O.", "Zero Paid Media", "ZERO"
A month after the book launches, I'm finally getting to the blog post about my 4th book, which I've co-authored with my former client and current friend, Maarten Albarda.
Why has it taken me so long to write about it? I suppose a number of reasons:
So with that said, I am pleased and proud to present Z.E.R.O.: Zero Paid Media as the New Marketing Model
In Z.E.R.O., our position is that a perfect storm is coming…in fact it may already be here. To make this case, we introduce several key arguments: business, economic, consumer, media and creative cases – any of which could – by itself - be enough to be the straw that breaks the camel's back, but when combined presents a perfect storm scenario.
Our central premise is that if media inflation continues to outpace and run away from economic inflation, the bottom may fall out the media model. Put simply, it will become practically impossible to maintain minimum acceptable levels of reach, frequency, share of voice and presence in the marketplace.
Our solution for this eventuality is the Z.E.R.O. Manifesto, which holds that in a perfect world, the optimal paid media budget would be zero. In other words, brands would not need to spend a dime on paid media, because they would have enough customers; enough word-of-mouth; enough rabid fans and advocates; enough referrals; enough partnerships with entrepreneurs, startups and technology investments; and last but not least, enough assets to activate, amplify and monetize. What is an asset? Your people. Your products. Your packaging. Your clothing. Your billboards. Your trucks. Your stores. Your website. Your content.
Talk is cheap. So many books outline a problem, without putting forward a solution. Section 3 introduces a 10-point action plan, which presents 5 ways companies can implement Z.E.R.O. Internally (Cultural, Organizational), as well as 5 ways they can truly bring Z.E.R.O. to life externally (Strategic, Tactical). From compensation to budget setting; from flipping the funnel to innovation. It's all inside.
Whilst the Z.E.R.O. Vision is for brands to shift from being tenants (renting media) to landlords (owning assets), the "hidden message" here is the paid media will continue to exist (after all the world is not perfect), BUT it shifts from being the "go to" first port of call or star of the show to the final piece of the puzzle; a topper up or co-star / supporting member of the cast/ensemble. That's a significant shift as is the call-to-action for brands to audit their connections and ultimately strive for a 50:50 mix between direct:indirect (assets:media) by 2020.
Z.E.R.O. is not for everyone and I think it's important to manage expectations. This book is specifically written for C-suite executives that work for leading brands. Which doesn't mean to say that if you are a small business owner, this book isn't for you. In fact, you should look at the struggles and challenges presenting themselves to larger companies as your "foot in the door" or gain. In the 10-point action plan for example, the first 5 items that Maarten writes about from first-hand invaluable experience should all be second nature to you and non-issues. So skip past these if you like...or plan for the time when you get so big that you too will suck (as Jay Chiat once said)
And now comes the part where I ask for your help.
Maarten and I know that this book will leave a lot of people very uncomfortable, but it's tough love at worst and a game changer at best. Maarten and I put it this way: if we're wrong about this, you're a winner because you diversified your portfolio, you retook control as a marketer and you invested in your customer...but if we're right about this, well then you just obliterated your competition, potentially changed the game and who knows...perhaps transformed marketing from a cost center to a revenue generator. Maybe you even discovered the next Snapchat, GroupOn or Instagram in the process.
Be a hero. Commit to Z.E.R.O.
Posted at 10:19 AM in Books, Content is King, Current Affairs, Customer Experience, Customer Service, Evol8tion, Experiential Marketing, Flip the Funnel, From the "I told you so" files, From the desk of The Ambassador, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Long Form Content, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Making a difference, Mediapost Column, Medium - neither rare nor well done, Music, Mobile and things that make you go mmm..., New Branding, New Marketing, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, Sightings of the 30-second spot, Social Commerce, Social Media Matters, Startups for Brands, Television, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Flip the Funnel", "Joseph Jaffe", "Maarten Albarda", "Marketing Book", "Paid Media", "Startups for Brands", "Thought Leadership", "Z.E.R.O.", "Zero Paid Media", "ZeroPaidMedia", Advertising, Evol8tion, Marketing, Media, ZERO
Yes, it's that time of the year again. Time to rock the vote as the SxSW panel picker moves into overdrive and the audience participation phase of the rigorous selection process begins.
For those of you who don't know what SxSW (South By Southwest) is, check out the Wikipedia Entry. Or if not, in short it's essentially the banner event in the entire interactive/new media/social media/emerging media (you get the picture) calendar. Think CES for consumer electronics. Cannes for Advertising. SxSW for Interactive. The festival is not only for the geeks. There's also a Film and Music festival and for those of you that can make all 3 (Interactive and Music run back to back, but Film bleeds into both), you'll benefit tremendously from the blurring and synergy that comes from naturally overlapping trades.
One of the great things about SxSW is that anyone (and I mean ANYONE) can share the stage via the Panel Picker process. Literally thousands of proposal are submitted and via a 3-pronged vetting system (staff picks, advisory board, public), the eventual shortlist is chosen.
My 4th and new book, Z.E.R.O.: Zero paid media as the new marketing model, will be on bookshelves in October and hot on the heels of this release will be a book reading proposal at SxSW, where myself and my co-author, Maarten Albarda, will highlight key excerpts, takeways and central themes of the book.
If you'd like to vote for Z.E.R.O., please do so here.
In 2013, myself and the Evol8tion team are actually under consideration for 3 separate panels. If all my panels make it, I would have to choose one (the rules), so let's cross this "good problem to have" bridge when we come to it :)
To make things easier, Evol8tion created a simple splash page, which highlights the 3 panels and links to their voting page. For your information, the 3 panels are:
So now it's up to you to rock the vote. Here are the simple rules:
Of course, you can also share the panels on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. This would be awesome, but your vote would be awesom-er!
Thanks so much for your consideration!
PS In the spirit of paying it forward, if you vote for mine, I'll vote for yours. Just ping me with your panel information. Rising tide floats all boats...
Posted at 10:15 AM in Books, Current Affairs, Evol8tion, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Madison & Mountain View, Startups for Brands, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Blue Chip Brands", "Joseph Jaffe", "Madison and Mountain View", "Madison Avenue", "Mountain View", "Rock the Vote", "Startups for Brands", Book, Brands, Evol8tion, Marketing, PanelPicker, Startups, SxSW, ZERO, “Maarten Albarda”, “Zero Paid Media”
It's been a while since I've shared my MediaPost Online Spin articles, so here are the previous 8 in reverse chronological order.
Posted at 09:24 AM in Current Affairs, Evol8tion, Inside the fish bowl, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Mediapost Column, New Branding, Startups for Brands, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Domino's recently announced they were giving $500 "Pizzavestments" to 30 startups. I'd like to match the offer with $15,000 of my own money. There's just no way an individual should be able to match a giant corporation when it comes to making a commitment to startups, but there you go...
To Domino's CEO, Patrick Doyle: "Patrick, I think you're awesome. You've done a phenomenal job all round and led the brand through the YouTube fiasco to the well documented, Pizza Turnaround. I totally get the connection between pizza and burning the midnight oil, but I think you can do better. This isn't a fad, gimmick or ad campaign. Innovation is the lifeblood of corporate evolution and survival. Contact me and let's figure out a better way to spend our $30,000 and then some with bright and talented startups."
This offer is conditional on Patrick making contact with me and the two of us sitting down to brainstorm as per the challenge above. I will not be providing Pizza, but I'm happy to invest in these companies commensurately.
Microsoft just announced they are to write off close to $900m of excess inventory on their Surface tablets. OMG! How is this kind of colossal failure possible? Add the ridiculous amount of money spent wasted on marketing and advertising and you have a billion dollar white elephant and migraine.
I'm sure the surface is not a lemon, but I wouldn't know because all I see on TV is a bunch of out of work actors who can't a job on Apple commercials (because Apple just uses blue shirt geeks now in their commercials) dancing around like cool kids, snapping their surfaces.
Hint: It's a tablet, not a musical instrument.
This is a classic example of old school marketing that simply does not integrate digital and social best practices from 5-10 years ago.
To the execs at Microsoft, I'd like to volunteer my services free of charge to help you turn your frown upside down and Flip your Funnel.
Posted at 11:30 AM in Books, Consumer Central , Creativity, Current Affairs, Evol8tion, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Flip the Funnel, From the "I told you so" files, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, New Branding, New Marketing, Social Media Matters, Social Networking, Startups for Brands, Television, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
In Life after the 30-second spot, I wrote about R.U.E. - Relevance, Utility and Entertainment (which I would now rename as - Customer - Experience). Now Jay Baer has written the definitive book on Utility. What a novel idea…brands actually being useful! Bravo!
Here is our conversation, which you can download or listen live by clicking this link.
Posted at 09:21 AM in Books, Consumer Central , Customer Experience, Customer Service, Experiential Marketing, From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Make advertising relevant again, New Branding, New Marketing, Social Media Matters | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Amber Naslund", "Customer Experience", "Customer Service", "Jay Baer", "Joseph Jaffe", "Life after the 30-second spot", "Social Media", "The Now Revolution", "Thought Leadership", Brands, Utility, Wiley, Youtility
The BeanCast is "The Best Marketing Podcast Anywhere" (I know this because it says so on the website) and Bob is "The Best Host Anywhere" (I know this because I've been on the show since pretty much the beginning)
I've been a regular since the early days of the show. The earliest I could find was this episode from 2009. For those of you who don't know The BeanCast, it's a weekly panel discussion on marketing, with a particular emphasis on the digital, social, mobile and emerging categories. At Evol8tion, we call that the "Innovation Continuum" (can you see a connection here?)
As one of the earliest podcasters, I remain extremely bullish on the potential and future for "the spoken work" in an increasingly digital, social and connected world. I suppose it's proof positive of the power of podcasting (alliteration) that both Bob and the Beancast have found a home under the bridge between Madison Avenue and Mountain View.
Bob joins Evol8tion as SVP, Chief Analyst of our BrandWatch product. BrandWatch is a subscription-based insight product designed to help brands understand, prioritize and evaluate their innovation needs. Bob will also use his editorial juices to invest in our Madison & Mountain View (MplusMV) publishing asset.
From an structural standpoint, nothing will change with the show itself. Bob will continue to host and maintain full editorial control. He will also continue to manage the business side of the show. What will change is that the content will become much richer and deeper as a result of Evol8tion’s BrandWatch product.
If you want to listen to a brief fireside chat between Bob and myself, here it is. OK, so we didn't sit around a fire, but it was hot enough outside today so justify the heat reference!
The full press release is below, which also documents a series of new hires, new clients and new solutions at our innovation agency:
For Immediate Release:
Evol8tion Continues Expansion With BeanCast Acquisition
BeanCast Founder Bob Knorpp Joins Evol8tion Team To Lead BrandWatch™ Offering
July 22nd, 2013
Evol8tion (pronounced Evolution), the innovation agency co-founded by Joseph Jaffe and Gina Waldhorn, today announced they have acquired Bob Knorpp’s BeanCast Marketing Podcast for an undisclosed amount. The audio podcast features a weekly discussion with a rotating panel of global advertising and marketing experts, serving up to 75,000 shows a month.
“We’re excited to include The BeanCast as part of the Evol8tion content offering,” said Mr. Jaffe. “Our goal is to help our brand clients connect to the latest trends and innovations, and match them to startups that fit their needs. The BeanCast is clearly the best show covering the advertising technology space, and having its research and insight resources onboard will add even more value to our clients.”
As part of the deal, show host Bob Knorpp will join the Evol8tion team as SVP, Chief Analyst for BrandWatch, a subscription-based insight product designed to help brands understand, prioritize and evaluate their innovation needs.
“My vision for The BeanCast was always to provide the best possible insights and education to the marketing community,” said Knorpp. “Heading up Evol8tion’s BrandWatch product allows me to greatly enhance the quality of The BeanCast content, while more fully exploring my passion for informing and training the brand world.”
Knorpp is one of several new hires at the rapidly expanding company, joining Lauren Brown and Jessica Peltz; senior talent recruits from Carat and Zenith Media respectively.
These hires are hot on the heels of multiple key milestones for a company growing exponentially in its second year of operation. Evol8tion recently added Mondelez International to a roster of clients that already includes ABInBev and Unilever. Evol8tion is also currently running the popular Mobile Futures program with Mondelez International, currently wrapping up its North America phase and rolling out in Brazil.
Said Gina Waldhorn, Evol8tion's co-founder and COO, "We are seeing more and more blue chip brands committing themselves to consumer-facing technology innovation in digital, social, mobile and emerging platforms. Evol8tion is playing a key role in facilitating these important connections, having just finished our 15th in-market pilot program in just over a year."
Started in January 2012, Evol8tion (www.startupsforbrands.com) provides brands with a strategic and systematic process to connect with “matched” early-stage startups. Evol8tion’s core offering includes BrandWatch™, an education and evaluation framework, and BrandMatch™, an execution framework, which combine to both qualify and quantify technology solutions to solve business problems.
The BeanCast (www.thebeancast.com), now in it’s sixth year of production, will continue to produce weekly shows with Knorpp as host and producer.
Posted at 09:00 AM in Between the lines..., Content is King, Creativity, Current Affairs, Evol8tion, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Gaming, Inside the fish bowl, Madison & Mountain View, New Branding, New Marketing, Social Media Matters, Startups for Brands, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Bob Knorpp", "Innovation Agency", "Joseph Jaffe", "Madison and Mountain View", "Madison Avenue", "Marketing Podcast", "Mountain View", "Startups for Brands", "The Beancast", "Thought Leadership", Beancast, Evol8tion, Innovation, Startups
Mitch and I sit down for our monthly debate and this one is a great discussion on the evolution of online video - Vine, Instagram Video and more. Some really great concepts introduced like "Authentic Place" vs "Authentic Voice" and more. Keeper quote: "The 30-second spot was the original SnapChat!" @jaffejuice and @mitchjoel
Listen live or download here.
Subscribe to the show via iTunes here
Posted at 11:16 AM in Creativity, Current Affairs, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Make advertising relevant again, Medium - neither rare nor well done, New Marketing, On-demand Viewing, Sightings of the 30-second spot, Television, The Engagement Wars | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "30-second spot", "Joseph Jaffe", "Marketing Podcast", "Mitch Joel", "Online Video", "Social Media", "Television Advertising", "Thought Leadership", "Twist Image", Evol8tion, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Vine
I recently sat down with old friend and social media veteran, Dave Delaney, and now author of New Business Networking: How to Effectively Grow Your Business Network Using Online and Offline Methods.
Here is our conversation on how to ahead in today's increasingly cluttered digital, social and connected world. Download or listen live by clicking this link.
And as a reminder, you can purchase his book here.
Posted at 09:06 AM in Books, Content is King, Inside the fish bowl, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Join the Conversation, Social Media Matters, Social Networking | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
My 4th book, Z.E.R.O., which is being co-authored by my former client and current friend, Maarten Albarda, is in its final Kickstarter stages.
The campaign ends officially on Wednesday, June 26th at 7.44pm EST and I'm thrilled to announce that we've not only hit our initial funding goal of $10,000, but we've also broken through 100 backers and - thanks to Clive Burcham, CEO and founder of The Conscience Organization, we now have $25,000 in sight.
Hint Hint: There is only 1 Keynote slot left for myself and 2 for Maarten
You can still be a part of the Kickstarter campaign and this live, real-time case study in the making. The final chapter of the book is called Chapter 0 and it will document the Kickstarter campaign, together with your 140-character plug, should you take advantage of the Charles Montgomery Burns level ($67) or higher.
Here are several reasons why you should take the plunge and make the commitment to Z.E.R.O.:
So what are you waiting for? Inertia is the enemy and action is your friend. Pledge here
Seriously, this is a real opportunity to show your support and it is so much appreciated.
P.S. We have a few surprises in store for you, which will be announced in the weeks and months to come, but for now, you can get a digital copy of the preface, foreword and Chapter 1 Sample of the book ahead of it's release date, which will be in October, 2013 (planned)
Quick update on our Z.E.R.O. Kickstarter Campaign: with 28 days to go (so less than half remaining), we are at $12,632 from 81 backers
I was just interviewed for About.com in their Entrepreneur column. Also, Saymedia wrote a very cool column on 10 Interesting Media Winners on Kickstarter. To be listed alongside heavyweights like Veronica Mars Movie Project (Warner Bros) and Zach Braff is pretty cool...but then again, so is Z.E.R.O.
Even though we reached our funding goal, this doesn't mean the project is over. In fact, I hope that you will get behind this project for a bunch of reasons:
Seriously. It's a no brainer and by not taking action, you're sending out all the wrong signals and making me sad.
...but seriously, as I've often said, "the only way to understand change is to experience it" and so I challenge you to experience Kickstarter and help kickstart this project.
I want to secure a minimum of 100 backers and to sweeten the pot, I will upgrade the 100th backer to the next highest reward!
Maarten and I really appreciate your support. Really.
PS If you have pledged, you'll get a private backer update shortly, but please continue to share this and spread the word with your networks!
Posted at 08:06 PM in Books, Consumer Central , Consumer Generated Content, Customer Service, From the "I told you so" files, Make advertising relevant again, Medium - neither rare nor well done, New Branding, New Marketing, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, The Engagement Wars | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
It's like Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, but much scarier, especially if you don't know what you're doing with respect to dealing with "backlashing" customer. Fortunately for you, author Paul Gillin, who - along with Greg Gianforte - wrote "Attack of the Customers' does know a thing or two about the emerging space.
Purchase the book on Amazon.com here.
We have a lively discussion about whether this is attacks or just overdue customer activism, how to deal with customers in a public space. Whether customer attacks are premeditated and much more.
PS Our friends at JCPenney could probably take a leaf out of this book!
Posted at 10:54 AM in Consumer Central , Customer Experience, Customer Service, Flip the Funnel, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Join the Conversation, Social Media Matters | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Attack of the Customers", "Attack of the Killer Tomatoes", "Customer Experience", "Customer Service", "Flip the Funnel", "Greg Gianforte", "Jaffe Juice", "Joseph Jaffe", "Marketing Podcast", "Paul Gillin", "Thought Leadership", "Z.E.R.O.", JCPenney, Kickstarter
Week 3 kicks off today, with 5 to go. Currently, we are at 62 backers and a total amount pledged of $11,857, with the latest being a $1,250 pledge from the folks at Sprinklr.
In keeping with Flip the Funnel, A.D.I.A. and the R of Z.E.R.O. (retention), THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!
I'd love to get to 100 backers as our next milestone and with your help, we can make this possible.
Please consider participating, especially if you are interested in marketing, media and the future of brands. In addition to the content and experiential rewards on Kickstarter, you also get to be a part of the book (Mr Burns rewards and up...) as well as part of the Z.E.R.O. Kickstarter case study (very meta).
Of course you can participate by pledging and/or spreading the word to others.
Here's the link to the Kickstarter campaign: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1166290269/zero-zero-paid-media-as-the-new-marketing-model
In this episode of our monthly debates, Mitch and I tackled the "Rise of Machines" i.e. automation of marketing & advertising versus "How do you Scale Humanity?" with respect to investing in talent and "humans" to serve "other humans." It's The Matrix meets Sixth Sense. Creepy! @mitchjoel and @jaffejuice
Listen live or download here.
Subscribe to the show via iTunes here
Photo credit: Bigstock Photo
Posted at 10:28 AM in Communal Marketing, Consumer Central , Current Affairs, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Make advertising relevant again, New Marketing, Ugly Stuff, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
My good friend and ex-client, Maarten Albarda and I are co-authoring a book together. It's my 4th book (after Life after the 30-second spot, Join the Conversation and Flip the Funnel) and Maarten's first. Besides sharing the same vision and passion for the subject, we're bringing a 1-2 punch to the table in the form of advertising-agency perspective on the giant elephant in the room: media or rather paid media.
The book is called z.e.r.o. and the sub-title, "zero paid media as the new marketing model" kind of says it all (and in less than 140 characters).
The book posits that in a perfect world, your paid media budget would be z.e.r.o. - literally, but also figuratively in the form of an acronym which stands for Zealots (advocacy), Entrepreneurship (innovation), Retention (customer centricity) and Owned Assets (moving from tenant to landlord)
On one hand, it's me returning to my "Life after" roots, but on the other other (and more poignantly), it's our set up of our premonition of a perfect storm approaching in marketing; one in which the bottom could conceivably fall out of the media model. Fortunately, the world is not perfect and change takes longer than we expect, but then again...just look at how your world has changed in the past few years to validate the fact that sitting and doing nothing is not a viable solution.
For me, it's a bold move for two reasons:
We just pre-launched the book and Kickstarter campaign at the Festival of Media in Montreux, but here's the crazy part...in just over 24 hours after I hit the publish button (in stealth mode), we've almost hit our initial funding goal of $10,000. With your help, we'll push this over the edge and see how far we can take it.
The wild thing is that the book will become it's own case study insofar that it will demonstrate how we were able to self-publish our book for "z.e.r.o." by tapping into our advocates and leveraging our owned assets. It's U.N.M.2.P.N.M. circa 2005 retooled for 2013.
So...if you're part of my community and/or appreciate my content, show your support on Kickstarter with the pledge amount (or more if your heart desires). I will post regular updates over the 6 week period to acknowledge my backers (which would be you)
And all things being equal, Z.E.R.O. will launch in September of 2013 and will contain the 10-point action plan towards implementing this bold vision towards helping marketing evolve, normalize and allocate scarce resources to a re-prioritized hierarchy of connection points.
Posted at 10:47 AM in Between the lines..., Books, Communal Marketing, Consumer Generated Content, Content is King, Creativity, Current Affairs, Customer Experience, Customer Service, Evol8tion, Experiential Marketing, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Flip the Funnel, From the "I told you so" files, From the desk of The Ambassador, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Join the Conversation, Long Form Content, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Making a difference, Mediapost Column, Medium - neither rare nor well done, Music, Mobile and things that make you go mmm..., New Branding, New Marketing, Pithy Conversation Catalysts, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, Sightings of the 30-second spot, Social Media Matters, Startups for Brands, Television, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
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Still playing catch up on the Mediapost column front. So here's a previous Online Spin article about customer experience (or the lack thereof) when it comes to Tea. And obviously the implications in terms of how you are packaging and ultimately putting a premium on your otherwise commoditized product or service.
I’m not sure what your personal experience is like where you live on this small planet, but here in America, when you buy tea in a restaurant or café, the most incredibly (bad) customer service occurs.
When you order tea, you typically receive a cup (and saucer) of boiling water and (separately) a standard tea bag from a popular commercial brand such as Lipton. Your mission (should you choose to accept it) is to open the tea bag packaging and proceed to dip your teabag to your heart’s content. For this manual labor, you are charged some kind of ridiculous premium: typically $2.75 or more.
Even Homer J. Simpson himself would be able to do the math to calculate cost of good sold (COGS) of a cup of boiling water (it’s pretty much zero) and a teabag (again, pretty much zero).
Contrast this with a similar scenario at your local Starbucks, where an Americano (boiling water and a few shots of espresso) sells to willing buyers at around $4 +.
In the former example, I would contend that restaurants should give away generic tea for free. Or if not, you should get as many teabags (and hot water) as you like. Yes, I get the fact some people like strong tea versus weak tea, but by the same token, restaurants don’t slap a raw piece of meat on your plate and say, “grill it yourself, ” do they? Perhaps I’m a romantic, but I hold hope that my waiter or restaurant barista is trained in the dark arts of “weak” or “strong” tea brewing.
Or of course, a restaurant can get fancy and create a tea library that rivals its single-malt scotch collection. Green, peppermint, Rooibos, lemon -- and the flavors continue. They could even invest in real tea leaves, strainers and exotic flavors such as Mango Diablo (I recently purchased these from a new specialty tea store in Westport called Davids Tea).
In this day and age of transparency, there’s such a thing as too much transparence. In a time when customer experience is the new marketing, everything that touches a customer -- from website design and UI to preparation of tea -- is part of customer service. When done right, our customers will pay a premium for great service, storytelling, subject matter expertise and concierge solutions. When done wrong, Twitter is just 140 characters away.
If it’s true that necessity is the mother of invention, I would contend that survival is the father of innovation. There’s absolutely nothing stopping a restaurant from turning the uninspiring delivery of a commodity into a unique, memorable and sharable experience.
And in doing so, what a unique opportunity to turn the last underwhelming contact with a customer into a lasting impression that surprises, delights and delivers the triple threat of repeat business, referrals and “earned media.”
Innovation these days is largely associated with technology, but sometimes it is worth getting back to basics, with a common sense, “analog” approach to better business.
Posted at 06:18 PM in Customer Experience, Customer Service, Experiential Marketing, Flip the Funnel, Food and Drink, From the "I told you so" files, Mediapost Column, The Engagement Wars | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)
The first is one of the semi-regular podcast debates with Mitch Joel. This one is on "The New Creativity".
Click here to download/listen.
Click here to download/listen.
Follow John Wall on Twitter.
And be sure to forward this to any brand marketers you think would benefit from the discussion and ultimately give their perspective on the theme at hand.
Subscribe to the show via iTunes here
Posted at 03:58 PM in Books, Creativity, Current Affairs, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Join the Conversation, Make advertising relevant again, New Marketing | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)
My first Online Spin article, where I revisit good old Second Life as an analogy to present day commitment to startups by brands. It's all about patience, commitment, perseverance and staying the course, but more importantly, it's about recognizing that brands (and not the media) have the power to make the difference in terms of an emerging platform.
I guess I was called a “Second Life booster” back in the day -- and guess what, I was OK with that. I still am. As an early adopter (professionally) in the virtual world of Second Life, I witnessed firsthand the highs and lows; how the press initially went gaga over it, and then turned their back, to the point of making it their personal vindictive mission to destroy evidence of any self-created hype.
Perhaps my former company’s island of crayonville was a utopian oasis that existed in the eye of the storm. Perhaps our “Virtual Thirst” foray for our client, Coca-Cola, was the exception to the norm, since the brand did not (like many others in the early days of Second Life) get pelted with flying penises for its troubles.
In many respects, we were witnessing a mini-bubble being artificially pumped up and then burst in spectacular fashion. And all the while, real people were making real money -- admittedly, doing unreal things.
Virtual worlds, gaming environments, augmented reality, avatars and 3D simulation should not be alien terms to you. It should not come as a surprise that these items once coexisted in perfect harmony with each other, along with red dragons and drag queens. What might surprise you is my assertion that brands were to blame for the demise of Second Life.
Can you imagine if Christopher Columbus had looked out his telescope at the “New World” only to see angry, strange-looking people with painted faces and ornate head dressings waving native weapons -- and subsequently turned around to head back to Europe?
Sound familiar? It should be, because it’s the same scenario that happened in Second Life. And I hope it doesn’t happen again with respect to collaborating with startups.
These days, brands have become enamored with the next bright and shiny object, namely conducting tests or experiments with startups. Only startups aren’t some passing fad, gimmick, flavor of the month or test tube guinea pig. Collectively, they represent value propositions or utilities that disrupt norms, challenge conventions and move markets. Only they won’t get to realize their vision -- their proof of concept -- if brands continue to hold them at arm’s length, dispatching their agency minions to negotiate the impossible “big ideas at scale.”
Innovative and unprecedented executions are absolutely doable. It falls apart when brands turn away because the reach isn’t there -- or, put differently, they can’t measure or compare these “startlings” to incumbent blunt instruments like TV, radio, print or even online.
My message to brands is very simple: don’t be turned off startups’ lack of reach. In fact, this should turn you on! You’re dealing with the most fertile real estate, untouched and unspoiled by the “masses” (even your competitors). You have the incredible opportunity to help them achieve their path to reach with your brand dollars, talent, resources and media.
You have the unique chance to join forces with them at the earliest possible stage to co-create and own that big idea.
And, irony of ironies, you have Second Life to thank.
“You’re welcome!” – Divo Dapto
Posted at 09:09 AM in Consumer Central , Creativity, Evol8tion, From the "I told you so" files, Gaming, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Madison & Mountain View, Mediapost Column, Medium - neither rare nor well done, New Branding, New Marketing, Startups for Brands, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff, Virtual Reality, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)
I am so behind in terms of posting my Mediapost columns to Jaffe Juice and so here begins a systematic catch-up of two articles per week until I'm up to speed again. I've also since moved to a bi-monthly schedule where I'm writing for "The Online Spin" on MediaPost.
Here's my article titled, "Key Leg in Start-Up Equation: Marketing"
The start-up world is build on a two-legged platform of technology and finance. If you don’t believe me, just watch Bravo’s "Start-ups: Silicon Valley," which does its best to tell a story about VCs raising capital and bootstrapping a new venture, together with the freaky and geeky world of engineers, programmers and developers.
Only that story is incomplete. There’s actually a third leg, which you don’t get to hear about. Perhaps you’ll catch a fleeting glimpse of a throwaway “marketing” or “sales” reference, but for the most part, it’s conspicuously absent in this show, industry and market in general.
I would argue — and I am a Madison Avenue guy who eats, sleeps and breathes brands — that the marketing leg is the most important part of the entire equation. Yet, it’s the one that is the most undervalued, underinvested, underutilized and misunderstood.
Most start-ups have the same visions (or sometimes delusions) of grandeur: We’ll get big fast because everyone will just go crazy sharing us with their friends, fans and followers on Facebook, Twitter and whatever else is popular at the time. Then we’ll monetize by selling ads — or just sell to Facebook, Twitter or whatever else is popular at the time.
That statement is fraught with holes and gaping voids, and it begins with the disconnect between today’s empowered consumer and their absolute disgust for interruptive advertising, banal messaging and irrelevant spam.
Contrary to popular belief, brands aren’t lining up waiting to advertise on the 1000th photo app to call themselves the “Instagram of….” Or “Instagram meets….” Hell, they’re barely doing anything on Instagr.am itself.
Brands are trapped within their own identity crisis, trying to figure out whether their start-up infatuation is a one-night stand or something more profound; whether it’s a quantity (scale) or quality (engagement) play; whether their metrics of success are ROI-based (return on investment) or ROI-based (return on innovation).
Then there’s the scope and scale of a “test”, “experiment” or pilot program. Brands are typically noncommittal when it comes to investing anything beyond chump change into a start-up desperate to get some proof of concept and validation. On the flipside, there are way too many start-ups that see an abundance of $-signs when a brand and/or their agency pays them a visit.
The Wild West is back, and the biggest problem is a lack of rules (of engagement), process and set of best practices, upon which to build a solid and enduring bridge of collaboration and mutual benefit.
I believe the meeting of the minds happens in the win-win wheelhouse of marketing. Ultimately, this is where both sides see eye-to-eye. Digital or technology based start-ups are founded on the basis and belief of being able to solve a problem (sit or squat), correct a market inefficiency (uber) and/or change the game (square). Brands couldn’t agree more, especially when it comes to delivering against a consumer insight, human truth and customer benefit.
No one wants a three-legged stool with a wobbly, weakened and/or uneven leg. Isn’t it time we shored up the marketing component of this succinct and compelling equation in order to ensure that start-up monetization, acceleration and evolution is balanced and counterbalanced with brand innovation, differentiation and transformation?
That’s rhetorical. The answer is yes.
Posted at 09:48 AM in Evol8tion, From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Mediapost Column, New Branding, New Marketing, Startups for Brands, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)
Catching up on Mediapost articles post-Thanksgiving. This one is all about the future of bricks 'n mortar stores. Hint: It's all digital. Sort of.
I just returned from London, where I gave a keynote presentation on Flip the Funnel and how customer service and customer experience will become the key strategic differentiator in an increasingly commoditized world.
The next day, I witnessed complete validation of this hypothesis.
As I was walking down Piccadilly, I passed an Audi showroom unlike any I had seen before. In fact, it’s the first concept store of its kind for the brand in the world. The showroom was exceptionally clean, with one or two models on the white floor. No desks. No papers. No chairs. Several color coordinated, well-dressed salespeople. Several interactive kiosks. And wall-to-wall giant synchronized TV screens.
I proceeded to customize my swanky new S5 convertible using the interactive kiosks and with an effortless swipe, I was able to project my configured car onto the big screen. I was also able to swivel the car using gestures on the kiosk, but I was just get started.
Using Microsoft’s Kinect technology, I was able to use my body as a joystick or mouse. I could take down the roof and watch it roll back in real time. I watched the car drive off and come back to rest with surround sound emulating the actual sounds of the car. I was truly surrounded by a realistic experience of what it might feel like to drive an Audi S5 Convertible.
There were other gadgets, bells and whistles, like the ability to save my session to a USB and whenever I returned, pick up where I left off.
The experience was terrific, but what really blew me away was the epiphany that bricks-and-mortar stores were not dead, but alive and kicking. They were about to go through an incredible revival or even renaissance.
There were those who once said (and I’m probably one of them) that bricks-and-mortar stores were endangered species, and that everyone would shift to online shopping, customization and commerce. There were also those who said (I was not one of them) that no one would ever move to digital channels to purchase things like clothing, homes or cars.
As it turns out, they were both wrong.
What I witnessed in this London showroom was the future of retail: a holistic, immersive physical digital experience. One in which human beings still played a key role. The best of all worlds.
In that moment, I realized that purchasing cars online is not the optimal experience. It just isn’t possible to get an accurate or lifelike feeling of what it must be like to drive an Audi S5. The most accurate experience would come from actually driving one — a test drive — but what I witnessed was pretty damn close.
I believe the future of bricks-and-mortar stores is a bright one if – and only if – it is anchored around a core digital experience and supported by humans.
Not only for traditional brands, but pure plays as well. For example, I expect to see an Amazon.com store in the near future; one without a single piece of merchandise in it. Why would you need a book, when everything can be swiped, synced and swooshed into your Kindle? I expect Barnes & Noble to be out of business if they cannot figure out a way — quickly — to emulate the Audi showroom and in the process, get rid of as many dust-gathering books (and space) as possible.
People might continue to window show online using their screens as nose warmers, but when they want to actually buy, there’s a lot to be said for getting off their rear ends and making the physical commitment to get into a store.
It’s back to the future, baby. With one hell of an ironic twist.
Posted at 03:26 PM in Branded Entertainment, Customer Experience, Evol8tion, Experiential Marketing, Flip the Funnel, Interactive, Mediapost Column, New Branding, New Marketing, Social Commerce, Virtual Reality, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)
Still playing catch up and so here's my Mediapost article from 11/6, which covers Red Bull's incredible Stratos content integration or is it NASA sponsorship? Either way, it was unprecedented, ballsy, mega risky shows why Red Bull marketing deserves to be up on the honors podium, along with all-stars, Nike and Apple.
When I mention the name Baumgartner, you might immediately think of a certain baseball pitcher for the San Francisco Giants. That’s Madison Bumgarner, and I’m referring to Felix Baumgartner, an Austrian skydiver, daredevil and BASE jumper, who – in October of 2012 – set almost broke a world record for free fall/skydiving, but pretty much broke every other brand record in the process:
That previous statement is a gross understatement. This is what he did: He jumped at a distance of 24 miles or 39 kilometers above the Earth. (A plane flyingat 35,000 feet is only 6.6 miles above the Earth. Baumgartner was in a space capsule; in a space suit and could see the curvature of the Earth!)
He become the first person in history to break the sound barrier — putting him in the same category as the Concorde. He reached an estimated speed of 834 miles per hour or 1,342 kilometers per hour, faster than a Boeing 777.
During the fall, Baumgartner went into a spin, where he was seen hurtling through space like a tumbleweed on steroids. Remarkably, he stabilized — and said this was anticipated and under control — and landed on his feet.
The “mission” itself was five years in the making and has delivered several key insights that will help scientists and aviation experts on the development of equipment, clothing, safety, tourism (!) and evacuation procedures.
Most remarkably, however, this was essentially a giant ad for Red Bull. Ordinarily, I would be on my “Life after the 30-second spot” or “Join the Conversation” soapboxes lambasting brands for elongated, protracted and procrastinated planning cycles in favor of a “real time” and dynamic shortened time to market. But not this time.
Red Bull — yet again — hasn’t just raised the bar; it pretty much obliterated the bar by demonstrating the relevance, role, purpose and utility associated with a brand that has truly invested and vested itself in “extreme” sports and lifestyle. Calling Red Bull a “content marketer” is an insult to Red Bull. Red Bull is so much more.
Not only did it almost literally bring its core positioning to life, “Red Bull gives you wings,” but ishowed an acute understanding and mastery of pure and unadulterated innovation in the form of a unique and original idea that had zero precedent and quite frankly (and again quite literally) no safety net.
I cannot even begin to fathom the thousand ways this could have gone wrong and the huge risk at stake. The “experiment” itself was already aborted once because of weather conditions, but the blunt risk here was the very real possibility and scenario of witnessing a “live death.” (All brought to you by Red Bull.)
Ironically (and it is a monstrous – pun intended – irony), a competitor in the form of Monster Energy drink is currently being sued and subsequently investigated by the FDA for a number of alleged consumption-related deaths.
Conversely, Red Bull brought a symphony to life, with more than 8 million people worldwide watching YouTube’s live stream of the free fall. Within four days, and across 1,700 related clips, it was the second-fastest video: to 50 million views in history. (The first was Kony 2012.)
I look at the average Nascar driver, tattooed or should I say littered with a cacophony of conflicting brand logos and juxtapose this with the clean and clinical branding 24 miles up in the air. I raise a can of congratulations to this marketer.
I speak to marketers worldwide, representing every major corporation. They all envy and want to be like two brands: Nike and Apple. Well, make that three brands: Red Bull joins the hall of fame trinity.
The combined jealousy and respect are palpable, and so is my advice to every Red Bull wannabee: “Just do It” or to quote Baumgartner’s mentor, retired USAF Colonel Joseph Kittinger: “Start the cameras, and our guardian angel will take care of you.”
Posted at 10:04 AM in Branded Entertainment, Content is King, Creativity, Current Affairs, Experiential Marketing, Living in High Definition, Long Form Content, Mediapost Column, New Branding, Science, The Engagement Wars, Virtual Reality, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Brand Integration", "Content Strategy", "Felix Baumgartner", "Joseph Jaffe", "Joseph Kittinger", "Monster Energy drink", "Red Bull", "Thought Leadership", Apple, Innovation, Mediapost, Nike
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