Why Your Brand Needs Vidcon and the Rise of Creator Influence and Trust

For the last three years, I’ve made it a point to attend Vidcon, even if that meant missing the prestigious Cannes Lions. Why? Because the roots of shifting consumer behavior, trust and influence are evident to those paying attention. For those who are tracking what’s next, the future of entertainment and engagement is taking shape online and live in Anaheim every summer. Thousands upon thousands of young adults, children and supportive parents convene upon Vidcon every year in the hopes that they might meet, take a selfie with and learn from their favorite creator. Within minutes upon arriving,  even the most skeptical or uninitiated executive would have no choice but to appreciate and ponder the magnitude that is Vidcon. This year, I attended for two reasons. This is the third year, I’ve had the privilege to present on the main industry stage (thank you Jim Louderback!). Second, my TechSet
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It’s not the End of Retail, It’s the End of Retail As We Know It

Retail, like every industry, faces digital Darwinism as technology and markets evolve and disrupt. This isn’t new. But what is clear, executives are not prioritizing bold strategies and investments that save them from their “Kodak Moment,” that moment when consumer behaviors and values evolve beyond brand recognition. If you read about the state of retail today, you’ll see dramatic descriptors such as “apocalypse,” “the end…,” “dying,” you get the picture. While doom and gloom and disruption is inherent in every industry, not everything is lost or hopeless. Those who recognize the gap between today’s value proposition and the evolution of what consumers value and why, will learn exactly how to not only close it but also ways to innovate and introduce new value. I recently spent time with Hal Conick of the AMA (American Marketing Association) to explore the state and future of retail. He wrote an exceptional
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The CX Imperative and The Role You Play in Making Business Personal


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Every now and then, I am asked to write the foreword for a great book. And, every now and then, I say yes. The deal is always the same. Once the book is released, I ask that I’m able to publish the foreword in full to share with you here. My friends Lars Birkholm Petersen, Ron Person and Christopher Nash wrote a book, Connect: How to use data and experience marketing to create lifetime customers. As they describe, marketing is going through a revolution that rivals the impact of Gutenberg’s printing press. Customers are in control and marketers have become an unnecessary annoyance. It’s more important than ever to have connected marketing that is relevant to customers’ needs across myriad channels. Connect is written as a hands-on guide for succeeding in the new age of marketing as connected customers demand world-class, relevant, and personalized customer experiences.

Foreword:
The CX Imperative
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Deepening Customer Relationships with Contextual Content

Guest post by Rebecca Lieb and Jaimy Szymanski, Content: The Atomic Particle of Marketing In the “phygital” world that marries our physical and digital presences, content is ubiquitous. Only by offering content through the lens of context can marketers achieve relevancy to today’s uber-connected consumer. Beacons, sensors and the Internet of Things (IoT) are moving marketing past the screen to the objects, places, and even the conditions (weather, holidays, sales) we occupy and experience in the real world. Contextual marketing will soon be an essential tool for keeping track of customers across devices, locations, and purchase cycle. Brands must begin experimenting now. Contextual campaigns go well beyond “the right message to the right person at the right time.” Location, for example, often plays a role. Automotive dealerships are using beacons to determine which customers visit the showroom versus the service department, enabling them to connect contextually, with the right
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Why your website sucks and how to better engage with digitally-savvy consumers

I recently had an opportunity to speak with Juliet Stott of Content Magazine about the impact digital has had on marketing, how customer experiences can help marketers differentiate their brands, and why websites in general, suck. It was such a fun and revealing conversation, that I wanted to share it with you here. I hope it helps you! Content: What has been the greatest disruption to marketing, and what impact has it had on the industry? Brian: Social is one of the disruptions, but it is not the most disruptive. Social democratized information and gave power to the consumers to take control of their own customer journey, and from there everything has snowballed. I think the greatest disruption in marketing has been the industry’s inability to disrupt itself. Since the inception of the web – marketers have not changed their approach with emerging technology. And that’s the challenge. Each technological disruption has
Continue reading "Why your website sucks and how to better engage with digitally-savvy consumers"

Why your website sucks and how to better engage with digitally-savvy consumers

I recently had an opportunity to speak with Juliet Stott of Content Magazine about the impact digital has had on marketing, how customer experiences can help marketers differentiate their brands, and why websites in general, suck. It was such a fun and revealing conversation, that I wanted to share it with you here. I hope it helps you! Content: What has been the greatest disruption to marketing, and what impact has it had on the industry? Brian: Social is one of the disruptions, but it is not the most disruptive. Social democratized information and gave power to the consumers to take control of their own customer journey, and from there everything has snowballed. I think the greatest disruption in marketing has been the industry’s inability to disrupt itself. Since the inception of the web – marketers have not changed their approach with emerging technology. And that’s the challenge. Each technological disruption has
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Why the future of corporate marketing may hang on the personal brand

Guest post by Mark W. Schaefer (@markwschaefer) I hate the term “personal branding.” And yet, personal branding may be the salvation of corporate marketing. Allow me to explain today why both statements are true! For the past few years I’ve been immersed in the world of personal branding as I wrote my new book KNOWN: The Handbook for Building and Unleashing Your Personal Brand in the Digital Age. I started the process by exploring what the experts thought it meant to build a brand — and what I found was pretty disappointing. I found a lot of hype like:
  • “If you can dream it, you can be it.”
  • “Find your passion, find your life.”
  • “Nothing is more important than hustle.”
In other words, there’s a lot of fluff out there, which is why I had always detested the word “personal branding.” It’s
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