So it’s not exactly breaking news that we live in a direct-led and socially connected world. We’ve been living in it for over a decade now. It’s not going to change our lives; it already has. The way we talk. The way we think. The way we act. As people. As consumers. And, for those paying attention, as brands.
Even the line between brand and consumer is becoming blurred. With brands like Lyft and Airbnb, the platforms themselves have become communities where brand values and benefits are communicated through daily interactions, rather than through headlines. Actions, not ads, have become the coin of the realm.
46-inch TVs sitting in living rooms have become 7-inch smartphones constantly moving. From couch to desk to coffee shop to grocery store. From Facebook to Twitter to YouTube to Instagram to Snapchat. Seamlessly. “Word of mouth” has become “likes,” “shares,” “comments,” and “snapchat follows.”
People are literally carrying your brand around in their pockets. So it makes sense that marketing has become more personal. Now, more than ever, people want to be a part of the brand. They expect to have a voice.
And this is why we invented The Selfifesto® – a new and innovative co-creation process that puts your brand’s most devoted fans at the center of the process to bring the brand truths to life.
Tapping into today’s selfie-culture, we ask brand loyalists to record videos of themselves on their smartphones. Then we package the video into an ad where they become the stars. We provide the brief, strategy, concept, scripts, and editing, but each consumer is their own director, actor, and camera operator. An ad co-created between the brand and consumer. It’s not just our campaign; it’s theirs as well.
In return, the brand develops a greater understanding of their target audience, increasing customer satisfaction through the back-and-forth interaction. A community is built, and engagement is only further intensified when the superstars themselves spread the spots online.
It’s an experiment we first tried with WeightWatchers a few months back, and then again with Affinity Federal Credit Union. Real customers with real stories… a celebration of their success with the brands, all for a fraction of typical production costs.
No one knows your consumers better than they know themselves, and when you give them the voice they want and invite them to join the conversation, some amazing things can happen. Remember, a brand is not what you tell people it is. A brand is what people tell people it is.
If you want to learn more about how we can do this for you and your brand, we’d love to talk. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more on The Selfifesto®.
“You get more when you are generous… when you give credit…when you share opportunities and don’t hog the limelight for yourself.”
This week on “The A-list” podcast, host and DiMassimo Goldstein chief creative officer Tom Christmann is joined by Jill Applebaum, creative strategist at Facebook Creative Shop. Before joining Facebook, Applebaum made a name for herself at several different agencies including DMB&B, Ogilvy & Mather, Young & Rubicam, J. Walter Thompson and DraftFCB, where she was one of the masterminds behind Oreo’s revolutionary “Daily Twist” campaign. That year, she and her creative partner were listed No.7 on Fast Company’s “Most Creative People of 2013”.
In this episode, Jill and Tom talk about the trials and tribulations of becoming a copywriter, surrounding yourself with good people, the current state of women in the industry, and so much more. If you’re interested in learning from one of the best in the business, this episode is for you. Full episode and show notes below!
[0:00 – 1:30] Intro
[1:31 – 12:09] Growing up in New Jersey and starting off in the industry
[12:10 – 14:54] Mentorship and collaboration
[14:55 – 17:01] Why Jill made the move from DMB&B to Ogilvy & Mather
[17:02 – 19:07] Y&R and BrandBuzz
[19:08 – 21:33] The current state of women in the industry
[21:34 – 23:56] Jill’s favorite brands to work on
[23:57 – 26:42] The importance of having a strong work ethic
[26:43 – 31:40] What it means to be a good creative partner
[31:41 – 34:14] Transitioning from being a creative to being a creative director
[34:15 – 40:48] The famous “Daily Twist” Oreo campaign
[40:49 – 43:17] Why Freelancing is against her DNA
[43:18 – 44:44] The similarities and differences between Facebook and Agencies
[44:45 – 49:55] Jill’s advice to young creatives
[49:56 – 51:12] Outro
“The A-List” is a podcast produced by DiMassimo Goldstein, recorded at the Gramercy Post, and sponsored by the Adhouse Advertising School, New York’s newest, smallest, and hippest ad school. You can subscribe and rate the show on iTunes or listen along on SoundCloud. For updates on upcoming episodes and guests, be sure to like the A-List Podcast on Facebook and follow host Tom Christmann on Twitter. If you want to be interviewed for an upcoming episode, contact us at AdhouseNYC.com.
My largest obstacle was finding a career that inspired me.
From the very first time I can remember thinking about what my career would be, I always knew I would be an attorney. As a child and teen, I prided myself on being able to argue with the best of them – and win. I entered college knowing that I was four years away from entering law school and finally being close to fulfilling my destiny. The first dent in this dream was being waitlisted by my law school of choice. I was devastated to learn that the rest of the world didn’t see my destiny as clearly as I did. The second dent occurred when I “settled” on a different law school and spent the first semester painfully bored in every single one of my classes and finding nothing in common with any of my fellow students. I wasn’t nearly as in love with being a year 1 law student as they were. I was stunned to realize that my own heart and mind weren’t in line with this dream I’d had since childhood. The third, and final, dent occurred when I took the second semester of law school off and spent a few months temping at a law firm. I thought that maybe living and breathing inside my ultimate goal would reignite my passion, help me find my way. It didn’t. It only solidified what I had slowly come to realize. I didn’t want to be a lawyer. But what does a twenty-something do when the one and only dream she’s ever had is no longer the reality she wants? I love to read and was an English major in college, so I explored going to graduate school for literature. But I was tired of listening and talking. I wanted to do. I’ve always loved tutoring and studying with other people. So I eventually ended up in the Golden Apple program, a competitive program that offered an accelerated path to my master’s in education and my teaching certification. I started my teaching career in Chicago and spent three years in education, contributing what I could to the community and my school. But I started to realize that while I absolutely loved my students, I still wasn’t in love with what I was doing. I was happy and comfortable. But that comfort didn’t feel right to me. I started to wonder if maybe my path needed to lead me outside of the comfort zone of Chicago, where I grew up and where my entire family lived.
So my husband and I packed up our car and moved to New York. From that first scary night in a new city, I knew that we had made the right move. The day I was offered an internship at DiMassimo Goldstein, I just knew that, again, I was on the right path. My entire family and all of my friends thought that I was crazy taking such a big risk. That, at my age, an internship, followed by a full-time position as the agency’s first-impression manager, was a huge step back from my years as an award-winning teacher. But I told them to have faith, because it felt right to me. Even with how strongly I believed that I had finally found my path, I never could have imagined the amazing 11 years that I’ve had with this agency. Eleven years of inspiration, challenges and amazing growth. From intern to CFO and partner. What an amazing dream.
What are the lessons that I’ve learned from this incredibly long story? Don’t settle. Use whatever opportunities you’re presented with to seek out what inspires you. What makes you feel challenged. What helps you grow. What allows you to feel alive and engaged. Look for chances to make yourself uncomfortable. Allow yourself to feel the butterflies and the nervous energy.
A social world favors brands and businesses that are social to the core.
Too many marketers think of social as a channel, and others think of social as merely an opportunity or a challenge.
Social is more than that, as we’ve seen with the dramatically outperforming campaigns of a series of near-instant billion-dollar brands, from Dollar Shave Club to Warby Parker to The Honest Company. But social brand thinking can also relaunch, refresh and revive brands with their roots in the pre-social age.
We proved it for Memorial Sloan-Kettering when we shifted the center of its brand marketing from reiterating its superior care and outcomes to empowering and giving voice to heroic cancer patients through our “Talk Back to Cancer” campaign. The growth of Memorial Sloan-Kettering since the launch of that campaign has been phenomenal.
We proved it again when we helped Weight Watchers put its members in the center, using our patented Selfifesto® process, and helping to turn around recruitment.
Refreshing a brand for the social world means starting with reversed assumptions. Instead of thinking of a “target” whom we need to seduce, we think about how a prospect becomes a user and then becomes a brand-lover and loyalist.
We reimagine the brand from the user’s point of view. We realized that in a world of choice, what matters is people choosing to use our brand and our marketing as part of their own campaigns for themselves! If we become part of the user’s campaign to be more, better, happier … we win.
For us, the old way is anti-social thinking, and the new way is profoundly social thinking. Social brands just win.
We track all the KPIs on our brands, every single day. So, I can assure you that this isn’t some crunchy philosophy, but rather a key insight with geometric effect on the bottom line.
When a brand inspires action in a way that demonstrates love, courage, and understanding like Airbnb did this past week – we celebrate them.
As part of their new campaign titled “We Accept”, the company recently announced that the Airbnb community will provide free housing to refugees and those recently barred from entering the US.
Airbnb believes in the inspiring idea that no matter who you are, where you’re from, who you love, or who you worship, you deserve to belong. They then sprung that idea into action in a meaningful and iconic way. It’s a powerful stance from a brand committed to helping people live better lives.
So on behalf of all of us at DiMassimo Goldstein, we’d like to thank Airbnb for putting humanity first and reminding people everywhere that empathy wins.
If you want to inspire action as well, you can donate here to assist those in need.
The brutal 2016 election year left many relationships damaged, if not destroyed. The polarizing personalities of both candidates divided even the most close-knit groups of friends, turning our news feeds and dinner tables into debate-littered battlegrounds.
But the election is over, and in the holiday spirit of togetherness, we wanted to shift the narrative to what’s most important. To give everyone out there a shovel to bury the hatchet. A chance to reach out across the aisle and mend the relationships we’ve fought so hard to build. To prove that having opposing views does not make you the opposition, and that relationships are built on empathy, not policy.
The result was Bipartisan Holiday Cards, an inspiring action project produced by our team here at DiMassimo Goldstein that utilizes the connecting power of Social Media to unite, rather than divide.
By visiting our website, you can either download and share the cards with your friends – or purchase a hard copy and deliver it right to their doorstep. And, in the spirit of giving, all proceeds go to the Morgridge Academy, a school on the National Jewish Health campus that serves children with severe asthma, diabetes, HIV/AIDs and other chronic illnesses.
The need to provide children with a safe and healthy learning environment is one thing we can all agree on.
These Holiday Cards are the first installment of a series of Bipartisan-themed cards to be released throughout the year, so please like our Facebook page to stay updated and be the first to know when the next batch is unveiled.
The speech itself is just 10 minutes long. This is no accident. Headspace is built around the idea that “10 minutes could change your whole day.”
It’s simple, but if you’ve been reading our blog, you know that only the very best value propositions can be plain and direct. When the product is this good, there’s no need to dress it up.
And make no mistake, Headspace is good. The digital meditation app provides over 8 million users in 200 different countries with guided meditation sessions every day, and that number is only expected to rise in the next year. Google, LinkedIn, Virgin, and Goldman Sachs are just a few of the many companies worldwide that offer the subscription package to all of their employees.
And we’re not surprised. We’ve witnessed time and time again the power of a truly inspiring idea – and that’s exactly what Headspace has. Posted in big and beautiful letters, its homepage reads “our simple idea is to teach the world to meditate, so that everyone can live a happier, healthier, more enjoyable life.”
It’s a purpose. It’s a social mission. It’s an inspiring idea above commercial intent.
Like most inspiring ideas, it came from an inspiring individual. Puddicombe’s brand and his personal brand are very much intertwined. He’s just as much a part of Headspace as Headspace is a part of him, and that plays an integral role in what makes the Headspace experience feel so authentic.
A Buddhist monk, Puddicombe has trained in Nepal, India, Burma, Thailand, Australia and Russia. By the time he started the company in 2010, he had spent nearly two decades of his life devoted to the practice.
This goes a long way with users. As the voice behind the app’s meditation sessions, Puddicombe delivers his undeniable passion for meditation in a very direct manner.
Think of Headspace as a gym membership for the mind. Instead of having a personal trainer whom you don’t know or trust, you have one of the very best on the planet. This creates a level of comfort and confidence among the users. There’s nothing artificial or dishonest about Puddicombe, and brand advocates feel they belong to something real.
And Puddicombe, along with everyone else who works at Headspace, has discovered what the people they serve aspire to be and do. They’re anxious to slow things down. They live fast-paced, frantic lives and carry an immense amount of stress. They want to relax but just don’t know how.
Headspace does just that. It’s been proven to help people stress less, exercise more and sleep better. It can help with relationships and can increase work performance. While meditation is an ancient practice that dates back centuries, science is just now catching up to all of its benefits.
There’s really no limit to the extent of positive impact that meditation can have on an individual.
It didn’t start with an app. It started with an idea: to make meditation and mindfulness as accessible, relevant, and beneficial to as many as possible.
In the beginning, Headspace was strictly an event company. Then they expanded to books. Eventually it evolved into a comprehensive online resource, and now a mobile-service app.
Headspace is channeling technology to bring the benefits of meditation to the masses. The app allows Puddicombe to connect with his user base regardless of where they are in the world.
Many people have argued that technology is counterintuitive to meditation. Perhaps that makes even more of a case for Headspace. Talking about his iPhone, Puddicombe tells FastCompany:
“This can be used for good or bad. What excited me was the opportunity to use it for good, to interrupt some of the negative habits that seem to be developing quite quickly around technology.”
Through doing just that, Headspace has defined the alternative future it exists to prevent. As technology continues to advance, society will only become more and more inundated with distractions. Headspace is using the very same technology, but to encourage people to step back, live in the moment, and relax.
That’s why Headspace is our Inspiring Action Brand of the Week!