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Hi. My name is Ann. I am a Social Media Lurker…

However, I feel no need to follow some 12-step process to redeem my social media branding. Been there done that. I use social media to keep on top of my professional game and to advise my clients. I see no need to brand myself in social media. However….the proof is in the number of followers it seems. So I now play the game. I’ll comment, repost/retweet and share when I haven’t before. I’ll like/favorite/and brag about like-minded posts. I’ll even flirt.

Not convinced? Those of us who have been “socially” active since the Dark Ages (1995-2001) comprehend how this works. However, as Mr. Ted Rubin recently pointed out on his blog: http://tedrubin.com/most-people-are-lurkers-in-social-media/, digital marketers are finally (FINALLY) comprehending that most of us don’t actively participate.

No. We don’t. We glean what you gifted writers/content wranglers (Hi, Scotty Abel) have deemed shareable with us. And, quote it, benchmark it, and otherwise leverage it for our own use. It’s called the internet….a free sharing of information. 😉

And, while I am an Old Fart (A tweener to your marketing researchers/insighters), my theory is being proven out by the Millennials. That group, while Snap Chatting like crazy, no longer posts every bit of minutia on Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter, Pinterest, or any other portal designed to indulge our narcissm. Nope. Just like their pocketbooks (congrats, Millienials…finally, someone is starting to kick some ass on fiscal responsibility!!…but I digress), Milleninals have and are continuing to reign in their need to spew online.

So…do we the lurkers of social media spell the imminent doom of the likes of Twitter and Facebook? No. It means, that digital marketers and content creators will go through the pains of marketing evolution…you will either be proven relevant or not. Andy Warhol was right…everyone is entitled to their 15 minutes of fame. Untested, unreliable and bogus internet sensations with multitudes of followers quoting Einstein…your 15 minutes are just about up. How will you use them?

Cobblers’ Children…

…They say are the last to get new or decent shoes and, continuing with that theme, doctors make the worst patients. So it goes with my website and ensuing social media communication. It’s not complacency, it’s just I have been busy with client work.

Lack of posts and fleshing out my website should not be construed as laziness or “do as I say, not as I do” advice to my clients. Social media posts should be regular (this is somewhat a sliding scale). However, your posts should also be meaningful to your target audience(s).

Having said all that, yes, I’ve been a very bad girl. I still do great strategic work for my clients. And….I try to maintain a modicum of relevancy. Er…I meant…I’m totally on top of everything that is TOTALLY RELEVANT. Yeah, that’s it.

So, pardon the incompleteness. However, I think you get my drift.

Yikes….!!! I got caught without an elevator pitch.

Me….the maven of all things marcom. Yes, it’s true. I didn’t have an elevator pitch prepared. (Notice the past tense here.) Imagine my shame when, of all things, an old family friend asked me what I did for a living. I mumbled something about working for myself and doing advertising and public relations, those kinds of things…..

LAME-O!!!

So. Today. I set about crafting my elevator speech. I’m currently practicing and editing it. I think it’s pretty good. But, suggestions are always welcome:

I’m a marketing communications professional with more than 20 years experience discovering key market advantages and translating those into successful marketing communications campaigns – including advertising, public relations, lead generation, trade show and digital media. Additionally, I have a penchant for automation, which allows me to keenly understand and deploy messaging for electronic (or digital) media — including social media.

Leveraging from a master.

JCI-System-350-Main-MediumI used DaVinci’s “Creation” as the inspiration for this campaign image. The Johnson Controls System 350 modular HVAC control system was a new concept for the North American market. Initially introduced in Europe as the System 27 (in a a slightly different configuration), the System 350 was the first HVAC control system that allowed users to add functionality as needed. Building owners and managers finally had a flexible, easy-to-use electronic HVAC control solution.

To illustrate how simple System 350 was to install and use , a clear, concise photograph of  the “hand of God” adding  a module to an already functioning system was employed.

Note the DIN rail. This was one of the first uses of the construction staple in the United States and, therefore, we needed to introduce the concept of using a DIN rail to organize and mount System 350.

The campaign and subsequent product launch were wildly successful. Additional functionality was engineered and introduced, each using the same concept to alert target audiences to the product’s availability.

I think Leonardo would approve.

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Brochure

 

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Print Ad

 

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Trade Show Direct Mail

 

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Poster

 

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Point-of-Purchase

 

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Print Ad II

 

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Print Ad III

 

The ad that brought in a $10 million service contract.

JCI-WS-News-Ad-MediumPlacement: The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Fortune, and BusinessWeek

The year: 1989. The WSJ was still only running black and white content and online content was at least 10 years in the future.

The story: Introduce a new Johnson Controls service business on a limited budget. World Services was a recent acquisition formerly known as Pan Am World Services. They managed facilities like Cape Canaveral Air Force/Naval Base, Kennedy Space Center, Stennis Space Center, Johnson Space Center, Los Alamos Laboratories…you get the picture.  I was able to wrangle a one-time media placement as part of the overall Johnson Controls C-Suite media buy.

The WJS ad hit. Several days later, I received a call from the national sales manager. They were bidding on an IBM total facilities management package. Apparently the CEO of IBM was catching up on the day’s reading, including “The Wall Street Journal,” during his train commute. He happened upon our ad…and the rest was history. The service contract set the tone for all future business. While a $10 million service contract seemed like a dream come true at the time, within two years, the business unit set a minimum of $10 million for all incoming bids.

My take: This was certainly not my most visually appealing ad, but the message, the visual and, most importantly, the placement all worked together to deliver results.

Marketing Commandment One: Know thy target market.

Badger Meter | Gas Utility Sales Support Suite

GasUtilityBrochure-MediumInformation is Power.

The Badger Meter Utility sales force needed materials to adequately sell meter reading equipment and software to North American natural gas utilities. Utilizing a simple headline to convey the Badger Meter key selling benefit – easy collection and use of meter data – an entire suite of sales tools were developed.

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Brochure

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Website

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Print Ad

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Multi-Media Presentation

Watch here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=69F-oPspKg4

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PowerPoint Presentation

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Trade Show

An Answering “Lead” Shot…

Lead-free-Ad-8-11-mediumAll is fair in love and war.

Lead in drinking water. It’s a big deal; rather reducing and eliminating lead content in potable (drinking) water plumbing products is now a federally mandated big deal here in the United States.

A Badger Meter competitor had launched a full-out media campaign proclaiming that said competitor had the only lead-free water meter on the market. This is simply NOT true. Badger Meter has, in fact, several low-lead and lead-free products on the market.

The Answering Volley

Position Badger Meter as THE thought leader in lead-free initiatives.

The Campaign

Lead-Free White paper – Outlines current and pending lead-free legislation

Engineered Polymer Meter White paper – Examines superior design and durability aspects of the Badger Meter engineered polymer (plastic) meter

Utility quick reference guide – Highlights legislation, effective dates, and states effected

Press release – Announcing availability of white paper, quick reference guide and website

Trade advertising – Full page print ads and online display ads

Website section

Major industry conference technical session presentation – Conducted by the marketing manager/subject matter expert. Content was manufacturer agnostic. All session feedback praised the marketing manager for her objectivity and factual presentation.

Trade show branding – Major translights carried the campaign graphic/branding

Sales channel education and sales tools – Included white papers, quick reference guide, FAQ and a modified copy of the technical session PowerPoint

The Result

Except for a section on the competitor’s website, their guns went silent within three months of launching the Badger Meter campaign.

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