Ernan’s Insights on Marketing Best Practices

Monday, October 5, 2015

Marketers Must Understand The New Mobile Mind-Set Of Immediacy

Article by Ernan Roman
Featured on CMO.com
In the spring, Google rolled out algorithm changes to devalue “non-mobile-friendly” websites in its search rankings. This has added additional fuel to the ongoing mobile marketing conversation.
However, your website is only one component in your total ability to connect with consumers, who have an entirely different mind-set in their personal mobile world. Another phenomenon rules mobile marketing: the concept of immediacy. [Tweet this]
Understanding mobile mind-setAccording to Forrester:
Two brands that have applied immediacy to their mobile marketing are Budweiser and Krispy Kreme. Read on for what they’ve been doing right.
How Budweiser Gave Buds Instant Access
Budweiser wanted a way to create a user experience that transcended the journey from social ads and posts to mobile video, sharing, location-based guidance, and point-of-sale experience. And it wanted to do all of that in in a way that gave consumers immediate excitement.
The brand came up with its Buds for Buds campaign, which enabled consumers to gift a beer directly from budweiser.com and send it to a friend via Facebook, to be redeemed for immediate or future redemption at a list of local bars identified right on their phones.
Consumers were activated via targeted Facebook ads and guided to a mobile site that authenticated both the purchaser’s and recipient’s ages. They could then share their “Bud moments” on their timelines.
As for results, the program achieved a 3x in-bar sales lift—meaning people spent three times the value of the beer when redeeming at the bar/POS. Redemptions were 100% of participating bars (thereby increasing on-premise spend and traffic during the program), and purchase conversion rate was 7x industry average. Additionally the program received global media coverage. A larger campaign is planned for the future.
Krispy Kreme Lets Consumers Know When To Come ‘N Get ‘Em Hot
Most people would agree that donuts are better when they are hot out of the oven. This is especially true for Kripy Kreme, which has trained its legion of devoted fans to look for the red light indicating a fresh batch is waiting.
Understanding mobile mind-setTo take advantage of the reach and immediacy of mobile, the company launched its “Red Light App,” which lets users map the nearest Krispy Kreme location from their phones and receive an alert when a “Hot Now” light is activated in their area. The signs have a sensor that transmits a signal directly to a software server when illuminated. Once happy donut eaters have satisfied their cravings, they are encouraged to use the hashtag #KrispyKremeMoment to post the hot word to others.
According to Forrester, which used the app as a case study, without spending a penny on marketing, Krispy Kreme saw a 6.8% increase in same-store sales since the app hit the market. In its most recent financial call, the company disclosed systemwide domestic same-store sales rose 5.2% and revenues increased 9%.
What can marketers learn from these examples?
1. All marketers know they need a mobile component to their overall plan. However, mobile and its nuances need to be considered a lifestyle connection rather than merely as another form of media.
2. How consumers incorporate their phones and tablets into their lives requires marketers to develop a new mind-set of delivering a satisfying experience with an aspect of immediacy.
3. Mobile marketing is more than a one-dimensional SMS text message. It needs to be incorporated into every aspect of touch points and interaction, from Web to bricks and mortar.
Your consumers’ personal mobile worlds are a direct extension of their lives. Therefore, a successful mobile strategy needs to find the missing links to fulfill needs, offer solutions, and deliver value. With mobile being a prime access point to sales, it is innovation and, most of all, relevancy that ultimately determine your success on this ever-growing platform.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Founder Of Stitch Fix Answers 4 Questions For Marketing Innovators

Article by Ernan Roman
Featured on CMO.com
Inspired by the opportunity to create a truly personalized online shopping experience by blending the best of brick-and-mortar retail with an innovative approach to data and technology, Katrina Lake founded Stitch Fix in 2011 while she was a student at Harvard Business School. She has since grown the company to more than 2,000 employees across the country.
Alice MilliganPrior to founding Stitch Fix, Lake honed her skill set at the intersection of fashion, retail, and technology at social commerce company Polyvore; she also consulted with a variety of e-commerce and traditional retailers during her time at The Parthenon Group. Lake holds a B.S. in Economics from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
Lake recently participated in our “4 Questions for Marketing Innovators” series.
1. What is one marketing topic that is most important to you as an innovator?
I'm most passionate about personalization. I firmly believe that personalized experiences with brands will most drive loyalty and relevance for customers in the future.
2. Why is this so important?
Personalization is a popular word in retail, and people often misuse it to describe simple marketing tactics, like segmenting emails or using big data to identify the likely gender of a visitor to their websites. But the true art of personalization at a one-to-one human level is what I consider true personalization--and I see very little of that happening today in the online world. Figuring out how to scale the very human art of personalization is difficult, but I believe that it is also the key to building a lasting connection with customers for the long term.
3. How will the customer experience be improved by this?
Fundamentally, personalization is bringing focus back to customer centricity--really being able to understand what it is that your customer loves about your brand and how you can better serve her. Today’s customer is less about the “it trend” or the “must-have jeans.” What is more important to her is feeling like an individual and how what she is wearing or doing reflects her as an individual. Brands that are successful will help each customer feel like she is the best version of herself.
4. How will this improve the effectiveness of marketing?
Delivering a service that consumers feel truly connected to and providing an experience that people love and love to organically share and talk about is the most effective form of marketing I know. Just as people who have an amazing meal naturally tell friends about the dining experience, we find that personalization can create amazing experiences that people love to talk about.
Bonus: Favorite activity outside of work?
Outside of work, I love running, cooking, and eating with family and friends.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Tips for Innovating with Integrated Messaging and Experiences to Engage Customers

Article by Ernan Roman
Featured on CustomerThink.com
Michaels and Sally’s are taking omnichannel to new levels through interconnected campaigns that blend and blur the lines between media boundaries to achieve a united 360-degree presentation of messages and experiences to consumers.
The key to mastering an interconnected media, messaging and experience strategy is to:
1. Be in your consumers’ preferred media spaces and offer avenues for cross media interaction.
2. Use various forms of media united together in a cohesive communication strategy to reinforce your messages and experiences consistently, supportively and seamlessly
3. In developing campaigns, have a clear path that guides and entices consumers to take your brand journey across channels.
Here are two examples of integrated messaging and experience innovation:
Michaels Arts & Crafts Wants “Makers”
Specialty retailer, Michaels Arts & Crafts, is creating a sense of community that guides consumers effortlessly between its bricks and mortar and digital spaces within one comprehensive marketing umbrella.
Their all-encompassing marketing program, “Michaels Makers”seamlessly integrates Online and In-Store classessummit events, and blogger outreach programs. Additionally, they use a combination of web and social to actively involve their audience inmonthly online craft challenges. Crafters can also post their own projects on social media using #MadeWithMichaels for a chance to be featured on Michaels’ social channels.
Discussing their most recent “Makers” summit, Steve Carlotti, Michaels Executive Vice President Marketing states that “Our Michaels Makers Summit was the largest-ever craft retailer event of its kind…In our increasingly digital world, bringing these makers together face to face was powerful – we came here as individuals, but we left as a creative community.”
In their most recent earnings report, Chuck Rubin, Chairman and CEO reported:
"In marketing we continued our efforts to balance our mass and personalized marketing messaging… In the last 12 months alone we have expanded our email database by more than 10%…. In March, we had our first Springtime in Paris event. We used all of our different marketing channels … we had a dedicated website for the event that received almost 400,000 visits. Customers also shared [via] Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and email. And in store we had classes…. our customers [had the] ability to [create their own art and] send us a picture to enter a drawing for a free trip to Paris. Over 11,000 entries were submitted for the contest."
Sally’s Is Getting Viewers Involved in its New “Project”
Sally Beauty Supply is so excited by its new association with TV show, Project Runway,that it decided to take its customers along for all the backstage fashion glitz and glamour. The company is cultivating a community with an interconnected marketing campaign that directly ties in both the looks created on the show as well as some behind the scenes “dish”.
Via the newly launched interconnected marketing campaign, consumers are sent email messages that reference the most recent hair and makeup looks along with the actual products used and the step by step guidance to achieve looks at home.
The campaign includes email messaging, a large mix of social media, YouTube videos, plus a dedicated section of their website. Consumers can additionally enter online or in store to win the“Runway Your Way” sweepstakes for a trip to New York City to see the show’s finale.
Currently Sally’s has 416,000 Facebook likes, 53,000 Twitter followers.
1. An interconnected media strategy must include a fully rounded media mix that reflects the avenues your customers prefer. Understand where and how your customers are spending their time and then develop strategies for cross-linking action points to move them on a predicted path.
2. If your interconnected campaign does not offer points of value, consumers will not participate. Develop meaningful ways to connect with your consumers through education; tips; “in-the-know” background info they can’t get elsewhere; videos; social interaction; web involvement, etc.
3. Encourage the feeling of community and value in your interconnected media campaign. When consumers feel that they are a part of a “movement” they are more inclined to want to participate and be a part of a true “event.”
Omnichannel is a proven strategy, but now is the time to take it to the next level with anintegrated mix of media, messaging and experiences.