Charlene is gracious, giving, smart, insightful and really understands the depth behind the superficiality of social media.
Hope you like the conversation and don't forget to buy her book.
Charlene is gracious, giving, smart, insightful and really understands the depth behind the superficiality of social media.
Hope you like the conversation and don't forget to buy her book.
Andrew Keen is mad as hell...and he's not going to take it anymore. Actually he's just a big softy with a big brain and a big heart. Either way, he's not afraid to stick out his neck and have an intelligent conversation or debate about things he cares about...deeply. And in his new book, The Internet is NOT the Answer, he doesn't pull punches when he calls out certain greedy entrepreneurs, monopolies, plutocracies (I think that's the ruling power on Pluto) and Uberocracies.
And if you'd like to subscribe to this podcast, you can do so here.
Posted at 01:57 PM in Books, Consumer Central , Current Affairs, From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Social Networking, Ugly Stuff | Permalink | 0 Comments
I was keynoting at a Satmetrix (the Net Promoter People) customer experience conference earlier this month in London -- and over fish ‘n chips during lunch, I ended up chatting with one of my fellow keynoters, Ian Williams (@CustExpMan), about making mistakes.
Ian had a rather controversial point of view that organizations should go out of their way to make mistakes ON PURPOSE. I immediately thought of Apple versus Microsoft. While the former seemingly makes mistake after mistake (remember AntennaGate?) and seemingly gets away with it every time, the latter -- in an effort to be perfect to market -- gets vilified for even the tiniest deviations from the norm.
In the startup world, there is a popular saying: “Done is better than perfect.” This statement speaks to the ability get a release in the market warts and all, as opposed to obsessing on ironing out all glitches and gremlins before allowing consumers in.
Failing fast, embracing failure, pivoting and “iterating, iterating, iterating” are all healthy signs of life in the entrepreneurial world, but how does this translate into the corporate world of innovation? Or in this particular case, the world of customer service and customer experience?
Furthermore, what about the ability to purposely make mistakes? It’s one thing to make a mistake (that’s why they call it a mistake), but when this is deliberate, surely it falls somewhere on the continuum of corporate sabotage to corporate insanity?
When I’m asked what makes a brand social, or how a company can become more social, I talk about R.E.A.C.H., an acronym (hey, I’m a consultant) for responsive, empathetic, accessible, connected and HUMAN. What is it to be human? Corporations aren’t human, but their employees are. Brands are not human, but they are symbols that reflect the beliefs, ideals and philosophy of the founders, leaders, employees, partners -- and customers of the company it keeps.
The Starbucks promise is that if you aren’t absolutely happy with your drink, they’ll make another for you. That’s their assurance to you if the barista at the register, the one with the Sharpie or the one that presses the buttons at the machine, isn’t always on top of his game.
If it is true that “to err is human, but to forgive, divine,” surely this is a sign to empower our front line to make more honest mistakes. Humans aren’t perfect, and it is precisely this imperfection that endears us to one another. Surely our customers would be the first to recognize this. Surely empathy works both ways.
I saw a stat that shows that companies who aren’t able to sufficiently solve a problem, but went about it in a genuine, compassionate way, scored higher net promoter scores than companies who did solve a particular problem, but did so in a rude, uncaring or abrasive way. That’s an incredible insight into aptitude versus attitude.
In a world where we punish our customer service agents if they spend too much time on the phone, what if we rewarded them based on how many times they messed up? What if we incentivized our people based on their ability to volunteer times they were prepared to take a chance to tackle a challenge, versus handing it off to the next in line? And if they were to fail, celebrate and encourage them to share the learnings and insights that have the potential to iterate, evolve and grow with the entire company?
Of course, I recognize the irony that if one sets out to make a mistake on purpose, it isn’t a mistake at all, is it? Which is in of itself… perfect!
Posted at 02:20 PM in Books, Customer Experience, Customer Service, Evol8tion, Flip the Funnel, Inside the fish bowl, Mediapost Column, New Branding, Startups for Brands, Web/Tech, Z.E.R.O. | Permalink | 0 Comments | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Customer Experience", "Customer Service", "Flip the Funnel", "Ian Williams", "Jaffe Juice", "Joseph Jaffe", "Net Promoter Score", "Net Promoter", "Startups for Brands", "Thought Leadership", Amazon, Apple, Evol8tion, Microsoft, Satmetrix, Starbucks, Startups
My latest MediaPost Online Spin column below, which introduces a concept about "earning" versus "commanding" a bundle of products or brands. Whether you're Panasonic, Nike, Apple or Procter & Gamble...this notion applies.
A month ago, Procter & Gamble announced it would be culling about 90 to 100 of its brands globally, in a restructure that would instead focus on the company’s top 70-80 brands.
On the surface, the move makes complete sense. After all, the remaining brands have accounted for 90% of sales and 95% of profit over the past three years.
So if I read that correctly (and the math is rather simple), we’re talking about 90-100 brands responsible for 10% of sales and only 5% of profit.
If that’s the case, one might ask what on earth the company was doing in the first place carrying so much dead weight relative to the remaining rock stars.
Or perhaps you were astounded by the tremendous lopsided contribution of sales and margin within the family of brands. You shouldn’t be, as your own customer base is probably not that radically different from this kind of 80/20 split. Certainly this is true within the B2B world -- and although less so in the B2C space, I wonder what Zappos, Starbucks, Amazon.com or Coca-Cola would say when it comes to their power products.
But I digress.
So back to P&G and the announcement, which came from Chairman and CEO A.G. Lafley, who himself had returned to the company 14 months prior to steady a rather behemothic ship. Lafley had indicated disappointment with the company’s financial situation, and this move was a decisive step to get things back on track.
And yet, I didn’t interpret any strength in this move at all. To me, it was all about consolidating the status quo; the known versus unknown; the “safe bets” or sure things versus the wildcards or anomalies.
I would contend that there are no sure things or safe bets nowadays. Just look at the threat Dollar Shave Club presents to the incumbent, P&G’s Gillette brand.
My gut feeling is that P&G’s brand-cutting move will be followed by a tried and tested approach, including mass/paid media and reach-heavy digital or social plays like Facebook, and doubling down on massive global sponsorships like the Olympics, as opposed to riskier and less proven approaches on the innovation front.
In my previous startup boutique, I did some work with Panasonic. I recall how excited execs were about an SD card that could be interchanged and used in all their devices, from camcorders to cameras to HD TV’s to their Toughbook P.C. They believed that this interoperability (or compatibility) would be key to developing an unequivocal reason for consumers to choose every product within Panasonic’s portfolio.
I remember telling them to “earn the bundle,” not “command the bundle.” Instead of creating a walled garden or closed system, let people decide for themselves what to use, and based on your great functionality, service and experience, they would give you more of their hard-earned money and loyalty.
If you think about it, the walled garden didn’t even work for Apple. And thankfully so, when you look at how many iPods the company subsequently sold to PC users.
Nike “earned the bundle” with me. I started with the obvious pair of shoes and hodge-podged the rest of my outfit from every other brand. Today, my shoes, socks, , GPS watch, shirt, shorts, windbreaker, gloves and hat are all part of the earned “Just Do It” bundle.
Instead of cutting brands, why wouldn’t P&G have looked to invest in its existing suite, creating creative, lateral and bold pairings or partnerships, bundled around “reasons to behave” versus “reasons to believe.” Like P&G did with Potty Palooza during frigid Times Square days, with Duracell (charge your phones and cameras) and Charmin (go to the loo). Or what Charmin did with its Sit or Squat acquisition. Although truth be told, we still haven’t seen this live up to its potential -- for example, a tour de force combination of Always, Pampers and Charmin owning the public restroom for entire families!
As the old saying goes: "If you're digging yourself into a hole, the smart thing is to stop digging.” Personally, I would choose to earn the bundle from a much larger portfolio of everyday products, as opposed to commanding the bundle from a smaller set – which no doubt will be under even more financial scrutiny, competitive pressure and startup disintermediation in the future.
But that’s just me.
Posted at 11:41 AM in Books, Consumer Central , Customer Experience, Customer Service, Evol8tion, Flip the Funnel, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Living in High Definition, Mediapost Column, New Branding, Startups for Brands, Z.E.R.O. | Permalink | 0 Comments | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "A.G. Lafley", "Amazon.com", "Coca-Cola", "Dollar Shave Club", "Jaffe Juice", "Joseph Jaffe", "Online Spin", "Potty Palooza", "Procter & Gamble", "Sit or Squat", "Startups for Brands", "Thought Leadership", Amazon, Apple, Charmin, Evol8tion, Gillette, Innovation, Mediapost, Nike, Panasonic, Starbucks
Posted at 02:52 PM in Books, Consumer Central , Content is King, Creativity, Evol8tion, From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Medium - neither rare nor well done, New Branding, New Marketing, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, Television, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff | Permalink | 0 Comments | TrackBack (0)
My last 3 Online Spin columns:
I’m not sure when Nike ceased to be a shoe company for serious athletes and instead become a technology company for average Joes (like me) looking to enjoy a health and active lifestyle.
Perhaps it was Nike ID that first hinted at things to come. Or Nike +, Nike Running, or Nike Fuelband that finally drove home the transformation from Just Do it to Just Digit (sorry).
Thanks to technology, Nike has elevated its relevance and resonance from just a brand to something much more: a community-driven experience. Dare I say, a customer-centric ecosystem powered by technology.
Case in point: #runstronger -- a call to action on the first anniversary of the Boston bombing, offering to donate $1 for every mile completed by volunteer runners.
I’ve become somewhat of a Fuelband fanboy. I wrote about it extensively in my latest book, “Z.E.R.O,” and have dedicated several columns in Mediapost to the same subject.
Last week I was in Australia, where, during a presentation, several members of the audience pointed out that Nike will be discontinuing its Fuelband.
What an embarrassment for Nike. They failed. They lost the battle to Fitbit. They couldn’t cut it with a piece of hardware that just did not iterate or evolve quickly enough.
And if you think the above paragraph is accurate, you couldn’t be further from the truth.
The actual announcement was that Nike is discontinuing its Fuelband production in order to shift its focus from hardware to software. The company is going to focus on the data, analytics, dashboard, gamification and overall experience, versus just producing rubber bands.
Let me repeat the key phrase again in case you missed it: Nike is shifting its focus from hardware to software. This is -- or was -- a shoe company, remember?
Nike is doing a classic pivot, just as an enviable class of past successful startups -- including, but not limited to, GroupOn, Twitter, YouTube and Fab -- did before it.
Playing to its strengths (or weaknesses), and ultimately reconciling this with its business, Nike is choosing to focus and prioritize versus spreading itself too thin.
Company strategists are also choosing to align themselves with an incredibly like-minded brand: namely, Apple, which will most likely be producing the one band to rule them all soon enough. This has not actually been announced yet, but Nike has subtly (about as subtly as a bull in a china shop) hinted at the continuation of this relationship in the wearables market.
As a betting man, I’m going to fairly confidently place my chips in the Nike + Apple camp. It’s a fairly inevitable no-brainer that Apple and Nike will join forces -- and when they do, it’s game over.
Enjoy it while you can, Fitbit.
In making this announcement, Nike has shown -- proven, in fact -- that it is a technology company -- a lean brand of sorts.
It’s demonstrated how an 800-pound gorilla can think and act like an agile gazelle.
At a time when most companies are still debating if they should sell directly to their customers via their website, what their Facebook strategy should be, which mobile platform they should develop in (because for some reason the budget allows only one) or how to approach a one-off pilot program with a startup, Nike has entered the next phase of its evolution.
By my count, v2.0 beats v0.1 any day of the week.
Not bad for a loser.
Posted at 02:41 PM in Books, Creativity, Evol8tion, Experiential Marketing, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Join the Conversation, Madison & Mountain View, Mediapost Column, Television, Web/Tech | Permalink | 0 Comments | TrackBack (0)
Mitch and I resume our monthly "debates" to discuss the agency world, including a very frank discussion about the recent acquisition of Twist Image by WPP. Congrats my friend! @jaffejuice and @mitchjoel
Listen live or download here.
Subscribe to the show via iTunes here
Photo credit: Ad Age
Company credit: Sprinklr (for giving me back my baby)
Posted at 02:34 PM in Between the lines..., Books, Current Affairs, Evol8tion, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , From the "I told you so" files, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Make advertising relevant again | Permalink | 0 Comments | TrackBack (0)
Those of you who don't subscribe to Shel Holtz and Neville Hobson's For Immediate Release are probably still blissfully living underneat the rock of ages where 4-color bleeds, mechanicals and 30-second spots reign supreme.
For the rest of you, you would know FIR is one of the longest standing P.R. and Communications podcasts out there. Period. And the best.
I also had the pleasure of working with both Shel and Neville during the crayon days.
You can listen to the post directly here (or if you're subscribed to Across the Sound or Jaffe Juice podcasts, it will download automatically via iTunes). The very thoughtful post on the podcast can be found here.
If you're still interested in reviewing the book, I'll send you a copy. Let me know.
If you'd like to purchase the book, you can do so here. It comes with a full 100% money back guarantee...however you do need to pay us a 10% fee on any incremental revenue or cost savings generated beyond $1,000,000 that comes from the book. Hint: The latter scenario is much more likely (you have been warned)
Posted at 09:13 AM in Books, Content is King, Creativity, Current Affairs, Customer Experience, Customer Service, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Flip the Funnel, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Jaffe Juice - The New Marketing Podcast, Join the Conversation, Make advertising relevant again, Medium - neither rare nor well done, New Branding, New Marketing, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, Television, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff, Web/Tech | Permalink | 0 Comments | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "30-second spot", "For Immediate Release", "Joseph Jaffe", "Maarten Albarda", "Marketing Podcast", "Neville Hobson", "Shel Holtz", "Thought Leadership", "Z.E.R.O.", "Zero Paid Media", "ZERO"
A month after the book launches, I'm finally getting to the blog post about my 4th book, which I've co-authored with my former client and current friend, Maarten Albarda.
Why has it taken me so long to write about it? I suppose a number of reasons:
So with that said, I am pleased and proud to present Z.E.R.O.: Zero Paid Media as the New Marketing Model
In Z.E.R.O., our position is that a perfect storm is coming…in fact it may already be here. To make this case, we introduce several key arguments: business, economic, consumer, media and creative cases – any of which could – by itself - be enough to be the straw that breaks the camel's back, but when combined presents a perfect storm scenario.
Our central premise is that if media inflation continues to outpace and run away from economic inflation, the bottom may fall out the media model. Put simply, it will become practically impossible to maintain minimum acceptable levels of reach, frequency, share of voice and presence in the marketplace.
Our solution for this eventuality is the Z.E.R.O. Manifesto, which holds that in a perfect world, the optimal paid media budget would be zero. In other words, brands would not need to spend a dime on paid media, because they would have enough customers; enough word-of-mouth; enough rabid fans and advocates; enough referrals; enough partnerships with entrepreneurs, startups and technology investments; and last but not least, enough assets to activate, amplify and monetize. What is an asset? Your people. Your products. Your packaging. Your clothing. Your billboards. Your trucks. Your stores. Your website. Your content.
Talk is cheap. So many books outline a problem, without putting forward a solution. Section 3 introduces a 10-point action plan, which presents 5 ways companies can implement Z.E.R.O. Internally (Cultural, Organizational), as well as 5 ways they can truly bring Z.E.R.O. to life externally (Strategic, Tactical). From compensation to budget setting; from flipping the funnel to innovation. It's all inside.
Whilst the Z.E.R.O. Vision is for brands to shift from being tenants (renting media) to landlords (owning assets), the "hidden message" here is the paid media will continue to exist (after all the world is not perfect), BUT it shifts from being the "go to" first port of call or star of the show to the final piece of the puzzle; a topper up or co-star / supporting member of the cast/ensemble. That's a significant shift as is the call-to-action for brands to audit their connections and ultimately strive for a 50:50 mix between direct:indirect (assets:media) by 2020.
Z.E.R.O. is not for everyone and I think it's important to manage expectations. This book is specifically written for C-suite executives that work for leading brands. Which doesn't mean to say that if you are a small business owner, this book isn't for you. In fact, you should look at the struggles and challenges presenting themselves to larger companies as your "foot in the door" or gain. In the 10-point action plan for example, the first 5 items that Maarten writes about from first-hand invaluable experience should all be second nature to you and non-issues. So skip past these if you like...or plan for the time when you get so big that you too will suck (as Jay Chiat once said)
And now comes the part where I ask for your help.
Maarten and I know that this book will leave a lot of people very uncomfortable, but it's tough love at worst and a game changer at best. Maarten and I put it this way: if we're wrong about this, you're a winner because you diversified your portfolio, you retook control as a marketer and you invested in your customer...but if we're right about this, well then you just obliterated your competition, potentially changed the game and who knows...perhaps transformed marketing from a cost center to a revenue generator. Maybe you even discovered the next Snapchat, GroupOn or Instagram in the process.
Be a hero. Commit to Z.E.R.O.
Posted at 10:19 AM in Books, Content is King, Current Affairs, Customer Experience, Customer Service, Evol8tion, Experiential Marketing, Flip the Funnel, From the "I told you so" files, From the desk of The Ambassador, Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Long Form Content, Madison & Mountain View, Make advertising relevant again, Making a difference, Mediapost Column, Medium - neither rare nor well done, Music, Mobile and things that make you go mmm..., New Branding, New Marketing, Proof of Life after the 30-second spot, Sightings of the 30-second spot, Social Commerce, Social Media Matters, Startups for Brands, Television, The Engagement Wars, Ugly Stuff, Web/Tech | Permalink | 0 Comments | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Flip the Funnel", "Joseph Jaffe", "Maarten Albarda", "Marketing Book", "Paid Media", "Startups for Brands", "Thought Leadership", "Z.E.R.O.", "Zero Paid Media", "ZeroPaidMedia", Advertising, Evol8tion, Marketing, Media, ZERO
Yes, it's that time of the year again. Time to rock the vote as the SxSW panel picker moves into overdrive and the audience participation phase of the rigorous selection process begins.
For those of you who don't know what SxSW (South By Southwest) is, check out the Wikipedia Entry. Or if not, in short it's essentially the banner event in the entire interactive/new media/social media/emerging media (you get the picture) calendar. Think CES for consumer electronics. Cannes for Advertising. SxSW for Interactive. The festival is not only for the geeks. There's also a Film and Music festival and for those of you that can make all 3 (Interactive and Music run back to back, but Film bleeds into both), you'll benefit tremendously from the blurring and synergy that comes from naturally overlapping trades.
One of the great things about SxSW is that anyone (and I mean ANYONE) can share the stage via the Panel Picker process. Literally thousands of proposal are submitted and via a 3-pronged vetting system (staff picks, advisory board, public), the eventual shortlist is chosen.
My 4th and new book, Z.E.R.O.: Zero paid media as the new marketing model, will be on bookshelves in October and hot on the heels of this release will be a book reading proposal at SxSW, where myself and my co-author, Maarten Albarda, will highlight key excerpts, takeways and central themes of the book.
If you'd like to vote for Z.E.R.O., please do so here.
In 2013, myself and the Evol8tion team are actually under consideration for 3 separate panels. If all my panels make it, I would have to choose one (the rules), so let's cross this "good problem to have" bridge when we come to it :)
To make things easier, Evol8tion created a simple splash page, which highlights the 3 panels and links to their voting page. For your information, the 3 panels are:
So now it's up to you to rock the vote. Here are the simple rules:
Of course, you can also share the panels on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. This would be awesome, but your vote would be awesom-er!
Thanks so much for your consideration!
PS In the spirit of paying it forward, if you vote for mine, I'll vote for yours. Just ping me with your panel information. Rising tide floats all boats...
Posted at 10:15 AM in Books, Current Affairs, Evol8tion, Fixing the Ad Agency Mess , Inside the fish bowl, Interactive, Madison & Mountain View, Startups for Brands, Web/Tech | Permalink | 0 Comments | TrackBack (0)
Technorati Tags: "Blue Chip Brands", "Joseph Jaffe", "Madison and Mountain View", "Madison Avenue", "Mountain View", "Rock the Vote", "Startups for Brands", Book, Brands, Evol8tion, Marketing, PanelPicker, Startups, SxSW, ZERO, “Maarten Albarda”, “Zero Paid Media”
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