The following post is an excerpt from Digital@Speed, authored by digital marketing guru Mark DiMassimo. Visit the official website here to download your free copy today.
Great brands are like great individuals. Authentic. Idiosyncratic. Unique.
But most brands, like most people, fall into bad habits. And the bad habits cost them dearly. To help you avoid them, here are the Seven Habits of Highly Affected people.
1) Trying to be cool. The coolest clients never brief in “cool”. They focus on relevance.
2) Falling into The Aspiration Trap. Usually, you’re not the target audience. Neither is your Hamptons-dwelling agency head. Remember: it’s about the target’s aspirations, not yours.
3) Briefing from the Trend Report. Great brands create trends.
4) Management Fads. Quality is not job one! Professional management has buckets of specialized concepts. They don’t belong in great advertising, even to professional managers.
5) Believing: “You don’t get it because you’re not the target.” Your job is to get it or you shouldn’t be signing off. Period.
6) Wishful Thinking. Advertising can be a tool for leadership. More often it is a reflection of corporate denial. Advertise the target’s wish, not the company’s.
7) Mistake execution for ideas. It’s easy to fall in love with something beautiful, novel, funny, poetic, witty, or profound. Do fall in love. But first make sure there’s a powerful, convincing idea in the middle of all the artistry. If you’re in the right sort of place, your job depends on it.
Most brands have fallen into one or more of these habits. That’s why great brand change agents will always be busy.
Today’s Google Doodle says it all. Alice Paul, a leader in the Suffragette movement of the 1910’s, was born today in 1885. The Suffragette movement can teach us a lot about Inspiring Action. People had been talking about a woman’s right to vote for decades. But these brave women knew that talking was not getting them anywhere. So they took action.
They did all the conventional actions that protests are known for. They marched. They organized. It got them some press. But it also got them ridiculed. Indeed, the name “Suffragettes” was first used in a derogatory way by a journalist, adding “ette” to the word suffrage to feminize the idea of freedom and thereby make it oh so cute. “Look at these adorable little women pretending to want to choose their leaders! Bless their pretty little heads!” But instead of fighting against that ridicule, they embraced it. They even hardened the G and began pronouncing it “suffraGETs” implying that they intended to GET everything they were asking for.
In 1909, Alice Paul and Amelia Brown took a brave action that they knew would land them in jail. They disguised themselves as cleaners at a banquet for English Prime Minister Asquith and other cabinet ministers. When Asquith stood up to speak, Paul and Brown threw their shoes and broke stained glass windows, screaming “Votes for women!” They were arrested and put in jail, where they began a hunger strike. Their jailers force-fed them with tubes.
The movement began selling a board game based on this story. It was called “Pank-A-Squith” (based on the names of Suffragette leader Emmeline Pankhurst and Prime Minister Herbert Asquith). The goal of the race-style game was to reach the Houses of Parliament, the pinnacle of achievement for the campaign for Woman’s Suffrage. But first you had to get through the dark stuff. Like going to jail. And being force-fed. And laughed at. The game was sold in shops and could be ordered by mail. The proceeds went to the movement.
Board games were the social media of the time. Imagine daddy being forced to sit and play a game of “Pank-A-Squith” with his wife and two daughters. “Oh, poor Daddy! You’ve been thrown in jail for asking for your rights again!”
Next time you think your brand is too serious to make something fun or to engage in social media, remember Alice Paul and the Women’s Suffrage Movement. What would they do? Roll the dice. You might just win.
This is Brian Kelly, but you can call him ThePointsGuy.
Who is he?
Well, as he states in his twitter bio, he’s “living proof that frequent flyer miles and credit card points are not worthless”.
I was first introduced to ThePointsGuy, by our Chief Mark DiMassimo a few short weeks ago. I had just taken a red-eye flight from San Francisco to Newark. Situated uncomfortably in my middle seat, in between a snoring businessman and a mother holding her crying baby, I accumulated a total of one hour’s rest on the five-hour coast-to-coast adventure.
I try not to let snobbish and pompous thoughts infiltrate my conscious, but with a long day of work on the horizon, I couldn’t help but peak my eyes over the seat in front of me and glare into the first class cabin.
Like a child jealous of his best friend’s toy, I thought to myself “I want that. No, no, I NEED that.”
The idea of kicking my feet up in luxury quickly escaped my mind. As a recent postgraduate, the hypothetical of taking first class excursions is likely more than a decade away, if not more. In my current situation, it’s just outside the realm of possibility.
ThePointsGuy would say otherwise.
ThePointsGuy would probably tell me about the different champagnes that they offer. He might even tell me about the time a personal Italian Chef named Enrico brought him a Thanksgiving meal while he was 35,000 feet above the Atlantic. But he would almost certainly tell me that he did it all by using earned miles and credit card points, before explaining that if I took his advice, I could too.
And perhaps I could. He makes it all sound so easy with his 10-step process for beginners like myself.
Brian Kelly has been taking advantage of flier miles and credit card points since he was a 13-year old booking his father’s business trips.
This hobby of maximizing points and earning great deals only grew to an obsession when he was flying 180 days out of the year as a Wall Street road warrior. It wasn’t until people started taking notice and asking for tips and advice that he realized he could turn it into a profession, and so he did. In 2011, he kicked the Wall Street gig to the curb and started growing his site, www.ThePointsGuy.com, where he shares his unique skill to 1.5 million visitors a month.
He knew there was an entire world of luxury travels that people were missing out on, not because they didn’t have the money, but because they didn’t know to properly take advantage of the deals offered to them. And so he sought out to change their behavior. Through his website and social media channels, he began building a following. Now, with over a million devotees, ThePointsGuy is educating the masses on how they too can trade in the hostel bed for a 5-star suite.
Bon Voyage indeed.
To see the full case study on ThePointsGuy, click HERE.