Friday, April 30, 2010

Whiskey Tango Bango?! Bucks Mascot’s Surprising Stunts Go Viral

Time for a little lighthearted Friday fun, in the form of a hometown shout-out to some successful viral video efforts.

As the Milwaukee Bucks go for a first-round series victory tonight against the Atlanta Hawks in the NBA playoffs, the Internet remains abuzz about the latest “antlerics” of Bango, the team’s boisterous mascot:

And the web hits keep on coming in this enjoyably impolite video, which aired on the big screen to fire up the crowd during Monday’s game:

Concerns about cartoon-ish violence aside, Bango and the Bucks clearly are having fun while doing some effective marketing to boost the team’s profileand presumably make some serious playoff cash.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Facebook Seeks Internet Throne; Content Still Rules

Who will become omnipotent overlord of online?

Team Zuckerberg has stepped up its quest—and its battle with Google—by introducing Open Graph, a platform that will put the social network’s already-famous “like” buttons all over the Internet. The early consensus is that it’s the most significant online development in at least a couple of years, heralding at long last the arrival of the semantic web.

There’s already plenty of Open Graph education out there for you, whether you’re a media/marketing professional, techie or just a casual Facebook user. So we won’t rehash all that here. There’s also no shortage of commentary on the merits/monstrosity of Facebook’s latest move.

Around here we’re taking a wait-and-watch-and-see approach. But one thing’s for sure: Content is still king.

The rise of a more socially interconnected web, enabled by platforms such as Open Graph, actually means more content will be shared by more people more easily than ever. Audiences’ ability to “like” content all over the web will accelerate the success of the best blogs, videos, podcasts, etc.

Great content will beget an even greater audience. So make your message relevant, engaging and compelling, and you have an unprecedented chance to be heard, seen and “liked.” Heck, maybe you can even charge admission.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Seize the Day, Manufacturers

Is it just us, or is American manufacturing poised to make a solid comeback?

It’s not just us. It’s this Plante & Moran plastics survey. It’s’s optimistic take. It’s Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.

There’s other good news, too: Consumers are spending more. And many industries are adding jobs.

Still, negative perceptions about manufacturing persist. Manufacturers can’t rely on a little good press like this and a few friendly blogs like ours to turn the tide.

So, will manufacturers step up and tell their good stories?

Individually, they can and should become much more aggressive at not just pursuing a competitive edge, but also exploiting these advantages through strategic communications. And collectively, they can and should be sure to capitalize on the recent positive developments, to keep the momentum going for the whole sector.

It’s about time that manufacturers got some swagger back.

Friday, April 2, 2010

U.S. Census Does Its Marketing Math

Have you filled out your Census form yet?

Of course you have. ;) Yesterday, in addition to being April Fools' Day, was also Census Day. Perhaps you knew this because of all the 2010 Census ads you’ve seen or heard.

Without a doubt, this has been the most far-reaching, demographically segmented and integrated marketing campaign we’ve ever seen for the big count.

The thinking is that, dollar for dollar, it’s cheaper for the Census Bureau to do more marketing and advertising than it is to send people door to door to do interviews. In the words of the Bureau:

“For every percentage point increase in the 2010 Census mail-back participation rate, the Census Bureau saves about $85 million in follow-up costs with households that failed to return their forms.”

Of course, it remains to be seen whether this year’s additional effort actually pays off in the final numbers for 2010.

But the hypothesis is supported by years of marketing results. It’s often more cost-effective to use a range of marketing communications platforms—including TV, radio, social email, direct mail and more—than it is simply to put those good ol’ feet on the street alone.

So what about for your business? Are there ways in which you could be operating more efficiently by supporting your sales staff through better marketing communications efforts?

Count on it.