We’re learning marketing insights from all the wrong places

oreos (borrowed from Wikipedia)Trying to imitate the digital giants is an exercise in futility and frustration.

I remember sitting in front of a television with a bunch of people about ten months ago utterly confused about what was going on. It was Super Bowl XLVII and the lights in the stadium had simply turned off right after the halftime show. Little did anyone know that this disturbance would provide one of the most famous viral marketing stunts in recent history: Oreo’s “You Can Still Dunk In The Dark.”

As if talk about Super Bowl advertising isn’t already frustrating enough for those of us managing marketing budgets of less than half a dozen digits, for the next month we had to be bombarded with hundreds of ‘What we can learn from Oreo’s brilliant ad’ blog posts.

Oreo’s ploy was dubbed “the benchmark for breakthrough marketing.” After all, the ad from one of America’s most famous cookies accumulated more than 21,000 likes on Facebook and nearly 16,000 retweets on Twitter.

So there’s a lot to be learned from this ‘case study,’ right? Wrong. Learning from the top-down simply doesn’t work.

Unless your brand has thousands upon thousands of social media followers, you probably could have posted an even cleverer and more relevant ad, and without an insane amount of luck, it would’ve gone nowhere. And this is the essential problem with where we take marketing insights from.

We need to stop learning exclusively from established brands. Most of us simply do not have the resources or social capital to truly imitate any of these ‘marketing deities.’ We will simply burn the far limited resources we have only to find out that we should have just saved our time and money in the first place.

Doesn’t it make a lot more sense to learn from the bottom-up? If we look at the stories of successful marketers from companies you’ve never heard of and stunts that required few to no resources or reputation, we can derive insights that are tangible and applicable.

This isn’t all to say that Oreo’s ad wasn’t brilliant. It was. But to pretend that SMB’s can ‘tap into the moment’ in any similar fashion is ludicrous. We’re outsiders and we need to accept that. Let’s instead learn from the ‘fringe’ cases – from those who were resourceful and innovative, and we may just begin to understand marketing on a new level.

Entrepreneurial marketers have been called ‘growth hackers’ because of their ability to find innovative ways to extend their brand despite overwhelming barriers. They’re able to grow because they are of a different mindset – they follow a different set of rules.

In my webinar on October 31, I will delve into the techniques ‘growth hackers’ use to market and evangelize their brands. I will tell the story of two marketers who succeeded without emptying their bank accounts. You may just find that being resourceful is better than having resources.

 [success]Sign up for Nis’ FREE live webinar with Social Buzz U – Thurs Oct 31, 11am Pacific. CLICK HERE to register now! [/success]

3 Tips to Get More Leads Every Time You Speak

There it is – now you’re a speaker.

Becoming a speaker will help grow your businessYou just made the decision to add speaking to your marketing mix so you get in front of your ideal prospects. 

You work hard at securing your first gig and are thrilled because you have your first real shot at getting in front of a room filled with your ideal prospects.

So, you work for hours getting your speech down cold.  You spend a lot of effort working out the slides and you think you’re ready.  You deliver your speech and are quite pleased with your presentation.  You’re relieved to finish your presentation, people clap, and some people take your card.

Then you wait.  And wait.  And wait.  You even check your phone to make sure it’s working.  Confusion turns into frustration.  You simply don’t understand why you’re not getting calls because so many people came up to you and loved your message.  All of that time, effort, money, travel and nothing.  Continue reading

How is What You’re Doing Getting You Closer To Your Goals?

Or is it? Do you actually have a marketing strategy?

Over and over again, I’ve seen how business owners try tactics that are costing them not only the ability to get new clients (and the money that goes along with it) but their reputation. 

Often times, they don’t realize that they are even making mistakes.  They believe that they are just working hard.  What they do know is that they don’t have the sales or the number of clients they were expecting.   Continue reading

3 Key Points Your Social Marketing Must Have

If you haven’t taken the time to master the art of social marketing you will be heading nowhere and fast!

Most of the time when we hear the phrase “social marketing” we think of all the new social media sites like twitter and facebook that have changed our economy in recent years. Yes, that’s correct, completely changed our economy

But that’s not what I mean when I refer to “social marketing”…to me “social marketing” really means Relationship Marketing.

The point of being social is to build new relationships and strengthen old ones.  I can’t think of any entrepreneur who doesn’t need new and strong relationships to sustain their business.  Continue reading

Say Yes to Success

Have you ever been really excited about where you’re taking your business?

Could you just feel and taste success. . . but at the same time be wondering, “Gee, do I have what it takes to make this happen?”

I remember those early start-up years wondering if success was possible.  When I decided to launch my book nationally, I felt the sheer overwhelm of going national with my book and my business.

In looking back on those years, what I realized was how many times I said no before I said yes.  In reality it just delayed my success.  What I discovered is that I missed out on helping so many people because of my own fear.

I often joke about two characters that always visited me.  Perhaps you’ve met these characters:  Inner Critic and Ego.  Continue reading