The big picture — how to make all the pieces of your marketing plan, as well as your agency or brand team, fit together into a harmonious, effective whole.

Coffee Bean Debuts New #PurpleStrawCam Instagram Filter

coffee_bean_purple_straw Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is out with a cross media campaign to tout the brand's iced beverages, notably, the Original Ice Blended drink which promises customers they will "keep cool and summer on." The campaign includes outdoor, radio, social, mobile, video and online media. The campaign's video, directed by The Real McCoys, has a bit of fun with the pronunciation of the word "cool." Or is it "kewl"? [youtube]http://youtu.be/EUDzazgbnwo[/youtube] Aimed at 18-35 year old millennials, radio ads will air in LA and on Pandora with online activity encompassing Twitter, Pinterest, Vine and [...]


As A Marketing Exec, What Keeps You Up At Night?

alarm_clock_cant_sleep_shutterstock It's been said that there are two types of people in the world: people who divide the world into two types of people and people who -- don't. As someone who likes to think she rejects all overgeneralization, I tend to think of myself as the latter. But, doing the division is sometimes a fun and worthy exercise. Allowing myself the predictable tendency to bucket people into types, I've been thinking recently about these two: Those whose lives are ruled by what keeps them up at night Those whose lives are ruled by what gets them up in the morning Think about it. You know you are in a [...]


The Talent Land Grab For Technical Marketers: How To Win

marketing_recruiting_evolution With the proliferation of technologies to support marketing, the application of growth hacking and agile methods by CMOs, the measurability of digital media, the general explosion of data, and the drive for greater ROI in marketing, a new breed of marketer has emerged: the marketing technologist. Editor’s note: Erica will be a featured speaker next month at our MarTech: The Marketing Technology Conference in Boston. This column is based upon an interview that was published originally in Scott Brinker's Chief Marketing Technologist blog.  Marketing technologists apply smarts across te [...]


Removing The Fog From The Marketing Cloud

Another foggy day in the marketing technology cloud. Consider this: just 20 years ago, a retailer having a website was a huge novelty. Back then, the main purpose was to connect customers to service reps or find a store, and it took years before you could effectively showcase and optimize products like you can today with a marketing cloud. [caption id="attachment_90111" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Another foggy day in the marketing technology cloud.[/caption] Websites and e-commerce have evolved in the past 20 years largely due to third-party technologies. These technologies have helped optimize the overall brand experience, build cus [...]


What Works Best For Measuring Marketing Impact? Top-Down, Bottom-Up Or Sideways?

shutterstock_181286708=devices-touchpoint-attribution The discipline of marketing science arose from marketers' number one need: to know what advertising efforts work. What are the forces that drive sales up or down, and by how much? To answer these questions, marketers need data. In yesterday’s world of mass media broadcast advertising, aggregated data was all that marketers had to make data-driven decisions. It was enough for marketing scientists to develop sophisticated econometrics models to fuel an entire discipline known as marketing or media mix modeling (MMM). Marketing (Or Media) Mix Modeling (MMM) These models use historical i [...]


Are You An Online Marketing Guru? Take This Quiz And Find Out!

test-quiz-shutterstock A quick search of LinkedIn reveals 1,458 people in the U.S. who describe themselves as "marketing gurus" in their profile title, 221 who list themselves as "marketing ninjas" and 5,888 who are "marketing experts." There are even 49 people who are "marketing gods," which either means that marketing is a polytheistic creed or there are 48 false prophets on LinkedIn. I hear these terms thrown around all the time, and it got me thinking: What is it that really makes someone an online marketing superstar? You could measure this by the number of years that they've been in the business, but [...]


Marketing At The Speed Of Ideas: How To Ensure Your Messaging Keeps Up

Speed_shutterstock Of the many demands on marketers, messaging is considered among the most difficult to deliver. We want our brand's message to convey the perfect balance of being fresh and creative while striking a chord of inner recognition. Not only do we need to hit this combination repeatedly, but we need to do so quickly if we want to elevate our brand in this fast-paced digital world. It's a tough standard to meet -- and many businesses turn out bland or predictable content in their efforts to keep up. Even worse, some try to ride an outdated trend or speak to a need that no longer exists. Stale, re [...]


There’s No “I Didn’t Sign Up For This” In Digital Marketing

change_shutterstock We've all found ourselves in that familiar place -- the one where we find ourselves remarking, "I didn't sign up for this." Whether in family situations, relationships and/or business/career scenario, we can often end up feeling duped by the old switcheroo. It feels like falling for the oldest trick in the book. You agreed to a chore as a kid and you were given a bigger one. You fell in love with a poet, got married, and your W.B. Yeats went to work on Wall Street. You accepted a job and, on the first day, found out your boss was on maternity leave. Being flipped outside our comfort zone [...]


Time For A Check-Up: Marketing Strategies For A Successful Second Half

holiday-retailer7-600 Do you remember "report card day" at school? There was always an element of excitement in the air, often mixed with a bit of trepidation. While you pretty much knew what to expect going into school that day, it wasn't really official until you saw those grades in black and white. Here we are, all these years later, and we're still being graded -- except that now, report cards have been replaced by quarterly reports, and there's a lot more riding on the results. As we enter the second half of 2014, there's no doubt you'll be analyzing the performance of your marketing campaigns over the l [...]


Influencer Marketing Tools That Will Power Your Content In The Future

influencer_megaphone Influencer marketing is redefining the power of voice. Leveraging the clout of authoritative, influential voices can be the difference between a ripple and a tidal wave. This relatively new form of marketing has emerged from the intersection of public relations and social media, where the focus is less on the target market as a whole and more on a subset of individuals with a natural megaphone. Influencer marketing identifies writers and contributors with a large audience and orients marketing activities around their voices. In "The Tipping Point," Malcolm Gladwell poignantly illustra [...]


The New Shopper Marketing Paradigm, Part 2: Measuring Impact For Product Brands

shutterstock_196202399-new-shopping Consumer product marketers have long had to operate under the assumption that direct sales attribution, while an ultimate goal, is largely unobtainable and that marketing success must be judged through predictive modeling and sophisticated estimation. The exception is when brands decide to operate their own stores or e-commerce sites, where they can use and measure direct response tactics to drive traffic and purchases. However, the vast majority of product brands either do not have their own stores, or they operate a small e-commerce site that serves as the brand backbone but carefully [...]


The Secret To Better Online Marketing: It’s Not What You Think

company-culture A Zappos customer service employee recently set a record with an epic  ten-hour conversation with a customer. At Netflix, employees get unlimited PTO because the company concluded "we should focus on what people get done, not on how many days worked." So, what do these random tidbits have to do with your online marketing success? Turns out, a lot! The culture you create in your company will absolutely impact your marketing success, even if you can't track it through your web analytics software. Factors That Drive Online Marketing Success Why does one marketing team outperform another? As [...]


Why Your Audience Is Your Company’s Most Valuable Asset: Develop It

target-audience-featured How do you think of your audience? Hopefully, you think of them in a generally positive way, otherwise you wouldn't own or work for a business that's targeting them. But be honest with yourself -- are they an expense or an asset? Many business owners tend to think of their website and their overall online presence as a sunk cost -- something they need to do because their competition has a website, is active on social media or participates in other online marketing practices. However, your online audience is actually one of the most important assets that you have as a brand. For the pu [...]


The Agile Marketing Revolution

speed to market Faster, cheaper, better -- this is the mantra of the impossible demand. At least, we're told it's impossible to get all three. As marketers, we want to unleash campaigns faster, see better results, and do all of it in a cost-effective way – and we’re always looking for tools and techniques that help us do just that. Lately, marketers have embraced a new marketing paradigm that promises to do all that – and surprisingly, it comes from the tech world. No, this isn’t a new app or platform but a new approach: agile marketing. Anyone in the tech industry is familiar with agile softwar [...]


Marketers, Face Reality: There Is No “Easy” Button

easy-button-600 This column is an extension of the conversation I started a couple of months ago when I wrote about the difference between grabbing attention and getting people to care. Over the years, I've realized that sensationalism is the norm for the marketing industry -- whether it's a conference session, a blog post, an e-book, or a marketing firm pitching its services to a client, there is a tendency to create expectations that simply cannot be lived up to. This sets the recipient up for inevitable disappointment and is a lose-lose situation for all parties involved. I was recently going over the s [...]


Growth Hacking Your Marketing Strategy

Visitors Ignore Your Ads GAAAHHH!!! I can't escape digital marketing! Every time I open an email, an app, my social media account, even some of my software tools, somebody is sending me an ad message that I just can't turn off. Everybody wants my attention -- and advertisers are getting sneakier all the time by being more personal, more unique and more compelling. That's great for the advertiser that has the money to spend, but it's becoming harder for the small guys to compete.  It's also teaching the consumer to ignore everything. We've known about banner blindness -- in which people naturally learn t [...]


5 Steps To Becoming A Customer-Centric Marketing Organization

Customer_Revenue The "holy grail" for retailers may well be the possibility of becoming truly customer-centric in every facet of their business -- from customer service to marketing to supply chain. For marketing teams in particular, being able to communicate the right message to the right customer at the right time is critical. Customer-centric marketing allows you to put customers (not events, channels or categories) at the center of all analysis and decision making, allowing the marketer to understand customers' different behaviors and preferences. Nowadays, thanks to advances in technology and tools, i [...]


Study: Marketers’ Roles Are Changing. What They Need To Succeed

1st-place-award-featured Do marketers practice what they preach? And are they being rewarded for it? In an industry where best practices are constantly shifting as a result of new technology and trends, marketers need to keep up. They need to keep themselves relevant in order to keep their brands relevant, too. It seems that marketers today are eager to expand their skill sets, but many don't know how. What's more, these marketers know all the "buzz" strategies, yet many don't apply them to their own work. Despite that, many marketers saw promotions and comfortable pay raises in the past year, and average salaries [...]


Does Facebook Have A Teenager Problem? Does Google Have A Mobile Problem?

google-facebook-logos Teenagers are leaving Facebook, apparently in droves. I found one study that suggested a stunning three million teens had left Facebook in just three years. In related news, the growth of Google desktop search is slowing and is being replaced by mobile activity. At least some of this mobile activity comes from mobile app usage, leading some to speculate that search volume might see serious declines as a result of app cannibalization. So is the sky falling for both Facebook and Google? Of course not. Both companies have well-developed strategies to overcome these "deficiencies" and, I wou [...]


Creativity Unbound: How Current Digital Publishing Spotlights Brands

kid_game_table_shutterstock_144561377 Think about the last truly bold and memorable campaign you saw. Did it change the way you think about the brand? Do you still remember the product or service being sold? Don't be surprised if it takes you a minute to answer this question. So many marketing messages pass before our eyes that they often merge into a blur of promotion. In an age dominated by digital engagement, today's brands pump out an endless stream of content to reach customers and leads scattered across devices and platforms. The result is a blizzard of marketing messages in which consumers frequently feel overwhelmed, [...]


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