Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Client Feedback on the Creation of the Earth Launch Project

By Mike Lacher / mikelacher.com / Originally published on McSweeney’s Internet Tendency.

Hi God,

Thanks so much for the latest round of work. Really coming together. Few points of feedback:
  1. Really liking the whole light thing but not totally sure about the naming system. “Day” and “night” are OK but we feel like there’s more we can do here. Thoughts? Definitely need to nail this down ASAP.
  2. Re: the “sky”… not really feeling the color here. Would like something that pops more. Please send additional options.
  3. Appreciate the work on the sea and ground, but right now there’s way too much sea. The ground is getting lost in it. In general, sea does not resonate well with our users. Was talking with the team and the idea of having no sea at all came up. Thoughts?
  4. Noticed you’ve covered the ground in vegetation bearing seeds according to their kind and trees bearing fruit according to their kind. Is this intentional? Please advise.
  5. Right now we’re only seeing two great lights in the sky… a greater one for day and a lesser one for night? Thinking that maybe we weren’t clear in the original briefing. Definitely need more than just two great lights. Need to make this a memorable, high-value experience for our users. Please revisit slides thirteen and fourteen in the deck. Shout with questions.
  6. Seas teeming with life is fine, but again, we need to reduce the sea. This is a showstopper for us.
  7. Are the winged birds final, or placeholder? Some kind of weird stuff going on with those. Just want to get some clarification before giving more feedback.
  8. Can we get more livestock and wild animals that move along the ground according to their kinds? Again, the passion points for our target users (slide eighteen) are ground and animals that move along the ground. Whatever we can do to increase the amount of ground will go a long way toward converting our users from passive consumers into brand evangelists.
  9. Re: “mankind.” Interesting take on the brief here. Big pain point is that mankind is coming across as largely made in your image. As you hopefully recall from the deck, our users are a diverse group (slide twenty-seven) and we definitely want to make them feel represented (slide twenty-eight). Afraid that if our users see fleshy bipedal mammals positioned as “ruling over” the ground and sea (if we’re having sea), they might feel alienated and again less willing to convert into brand evangelists. Let’s fast-track an alt version with mankind removed. Doable?
  10. Please cut all the “be fruitful and multiply” stuff. We’re a family brand and this doesn’t fit with our voice (slide thirty-four).

Realize it’s Saturday and you were planning to be OOO tomorrow to admire your creation and everything, but I’m hoping you can keep rolling on this through the weekend. Need to get this in front of my exec team by EOD Monday so hoping to sync up EOD Sunday. Will be around all weekend via email and chat if anything comes up. Looking to you and your team for a big win here.


The first question you need to ask yourself when creating any new advertising campaign is who will I be speaking to?

Micro-targeting is a marketing strategy that uses consumer data and demographics to identify the interests of specific individuals in order to influence their thoughts or actions. The goal is to know the target audience so well that messages get delivered through their preferred communication channel. Below are a few tips on what to do and what not to do when selecting a target audience.

  1. Market to everyone. Really? You’d be surprised how many businesses think this is true. While understanding that some products/services have broad appeal, not having a specific focus is NOT a plan for success. A bland brand is probably a good example of one trying to appeal to everyone and yet in reality appealing to no one.
  2. Market to Millennials. NOT! I know you’re thinking this can’t be true, but it is. This group is too broad and diverse. To be successful you’ll have to be more specific and add sub groups here. Besides, it’s much more beneficial to target a moment in life (getting married, graduating, having a baby, starting a new job, etc.) as opposed to the date on a birth certificate. See #3.
  3. Market to “Micro moments” in peoples lives. YES! “Consumer behavior has changed forever. Today’s battle for hearts, minds, and dollars is won (or lost) in micro-moments—intent-driven moments of decision-making and preference-shaping that occur throughout the entire consumer journey.”1  This is a very interesting way to reach the people you want to speak to. By finding these relevant moments, you’ll create a deeper connection to your products/services and in return find the right mix for achieving profitable and sustainable results.

Undercover marketing: Breaking the rules of “relationship?”

You’re walking down the street when a tourist asks you if you wouldn’t mind taking his picture? Being the kind person you are, you agree. He hands you his hot new cell phone-digital camera. The tourist is so excited about his new gadget; he can’t stop raving about how cool it is. It’s hard for you not to agree.

However, what if you found out that the ‘tourist’ was really an actor hired by LG to hit the streets and interact with as many people as possible? Would you feel deceived? Or would you just accept it as another marketing tactic, not all that different from traditional advertising?

According to the marketing director and the brains behind this undercover campaign, “...it was an easy way to create a very non-evasive interesting conversation with somebody without the pressure of it feeling, like, a pitch.”

The idea behind these undercover marketing campaigns is to make a pitch within a situation where consumers don’t know they are being pitched...to disguise the identity of the brand representatives. What makes this form of marketing such a strong tool is the trust consumers place in the opinion of a peer. There is an inherent, implied lack of ulterior motive in an impromptu conversation where a stranger offers an opinion.

As advertising/marketing lines become more and more blurred, those that stand to be hurt the most are not the consumers, but the advertising community itself and the actual brand being advertised. The credibility of this community, and its employer, is brought into question when the unwritten rules that define the relationship between consumers and advertisers can no longer to be trusted. If consumers can no longer clearly draw the boundaries between a casual conversation and an advertising pitch, then how can advertisers think they can build a trusted brand when the very foundation of their strategy is flawed? Something to think about.

Flex your risk muscle

Brands that take bigger risks reap bigger rewards that positively impact their sales. And they say it’s often smaller or lesser-known brands that benefit the most from taking bigger advertising risks. In order to foster innovative thought, ask yourself: Do I allow free research and development (R&D) time? Do I invest in innovation: money, people, resources? And do I celebrate failure and risk taking? Below are a few other thoughts to consider.

First say NO to complacency
You have a choice. Say yes to putting yourself into situations that lead to innovative ideas. Take classes, form a new business partnership, attend a conference or speaking engagement, or read an interesting book that takes you out of your comfort zone. Take great notes and consider the possibilities.

Use your filter
When you have an idea to consider, try looking at it from the perspective of your potential buyers. Then write a detailed target brief based on what you know about them. Then use this brief to justify to yourself whether the project in question is something worth taking a risk on or not.

Realize failure can be your friend
It’s okay to fail as long as you recognize it as a learning experience. Innovation is bred through failure, so be sure to catalog successful results and give yourself a high-five, “nice try,” for the unsuccessful ones. From these experiences harvest the key learnings and remember, never allow an unsuccessful risk to hamper your opportunities or advancement.

Everyone has a risk muscle. You keep in shape by trying new things.

How’s your web presence?

According to The Independent We Stand (IWS) campaign report, 97% of Internet users conduct online research for local products and services before committing to a purchase. A business’s website plays an important role not only in a customer’s decision to buy a product but also in whether they share that product with others online. No surprise, right?

But did you know that despite this, the Local Search Association Insider (LSA Insider) reports that nearly half of small business owners’ websites are not accessible via mobile, and Hibu reports that 45% of small businesses don’t even have a website!

So, if you are a part of this 45%, now’s the time to make a change. Hornsby Brand Design can help.