My Mantra

Helping brands and leaders be more influential
by embracing their humanity and personality.

Archive for June, 2010

The New Model That Could Reinvent Social Media Endorsements

IMB_BAT_CrisCarter There is a company called Brand Affinity Technologies (BAT) that is profiled in last month's issue of Wired magazine which is worth a look for anyone who is interested in how advertising and endorsements in particular in athletics work today, and how this could apply in the future. BAT focuses on what the article terms the "long tail of athlete endorsements." They connect brands not with the superstars who are almost household names, but the local stars. Through their database of 3500 athletes, they can connect smaller athletes to more local advertisers with a smaller budget.

Imagine for a moment if such a network existed in the world of social media. There are certainly more than a few enterprising efforts to do something similar through larger blog networks of specific niche groups, such as MomCentral, or even a model like Ad.ly that does something similar around helping people monetize their Twitter streams. The problem with most of these is that they remain insular to the online world. The power of BAT is not that they have brought all these athletes together, but that they do it under the umbrella of acting as an agent for these players to represent them in multiple types of marketing opportunities … from showing up at the opening of a car dealership to using their image as part of an online banner campaign geotargeted to a particular region.

The premise that makes the whole system work is that every athlete is famous somewhere. And if a brand can use that athlete in the markets or areas where they are famous, and change them out for another athlete who is bigger elsewhere, then they can roll out a region by region marketing strategy in a way that can scale. For the most popular bloggers, chances are their audience spans across geographic regions – still you could imagine the value of using a popular tech blogger for a campaign for a new mobile phone targeting geeks based on benefits and changing the endorsement to a popular fashion blogger if the same phone were promoted based on design and style.

What do you think – could the BAT model help open a new world of opportunities for brand to connect with popular bloggers, or is it too different from athletics to work?

How Hanes & Dyson Are Winning By Naming The Problems They Solve

How Hanes & Dyson Are Winning By Naming The Problems They Solve

One of the most basic premises of marketing is that you need to be able to articulate the consumer need that you are solving. The problem is that sometimes this need and your solution for it is a complex story to tell. Where marketing fails is when the process of describing this need and your solution gets too complicated. When…Read More >>

10 Insights From The Corporate Social Media Summit

For the past two days, I had the chance to interact with a brilliant group of professionals from some of the largest brands in the world on how they are using social media at the Corporate Social Media Summit in New York. This collection of communicators spent the last two days discussing some of the biggest questions they have and…Read More >>

Is GM Trying To Be Unintentionally Brilliant By Killing Chevy?

Is GM Trying To Be Unintentionally Brilliant By Killing Chevy?

On the front page of today's NY Times there is an article about the death of Chevy. Not Chevrolet as a brand, but a leaked memo from GM that directs employees to stop using "Chevy" as the brand shorthand for Chevrolet. Supposedly citing brand consistency as the key reason for the move, the article notes that the brand is moving…Read More >>

How Writing "Content Time Bombs" Can Double Your Blog Traffic

Over the last five years since I have been blogging, I have dispensed my fair share of blogging advice. Though I never describe myself as a "social media blogger" who solely talks about social media in terms of adoration, I do get asked often to help those who may be starting out or trying to build an audience with their…Read More >>

SBF: 7 Essential Social Media Instincts Everyone Should Learn

SBF: 7 Essential Social Media Instincts Everyone Should Learn

In life we expect outgoing people to be better at tasks like networking or sales. We use terms like "extrovert" and "Type-A personality" to describe what many of us believe to be true about many of the people we work with … that seemingly natural parts of their personality make them ideal candidates to do certain types of jobs. Chances…Read More >>

Silly Bandz: Could The Perfect Toy Save America?

Silly Bandz: Could The Perfect Toy Save America?

UPDATE 06/15/10 – Listen to my radio interview on NPR's All Things Considered about the Silly Bandz fad. They are for boys or girls, you wear them on your wrist or elsewhere and just about every kid has to have an arm full of them, prompting many schools to ban them. Welcome to the world of Silly Bandz. Like most…Read More >>