We've all heard what is wrong with marketing and advertising. From what I gather at most conferences, blog posts, and industry quips, it needs to be more interactive. It needs to be engaging. I think they also say it needs to be more social, and a few other things I can't remember now. It all jumbles together at this point. What's funny is that you never hear someone actually say that it just needs to be good.
And it needs to be found. There are so many ways for people to bury communications methods these days that the big industry money maker this year is going to be promoting promotions. Really, it is. Advertising for advertisements…. Really.
So look out for the great new buzz terms: "viral seeding" along with "tradigital" and "increasing visibility of your program." While they seem rational enough terms (well, except for tradigital), make sure they aren't adding to the budget to push something that won't fly in the first place.
Now, we get asked a lot about Elastic Marketing. As an agency, we're often dubbed a "hybrid" agency that sits somewhere in the middle of a Ven diagram with overlapping circles of advertising, PR, and social media (and I guess digital gets thrown in there too). And we do our fair share of ridiculing the status quo in our pitches, so it's only fair that we share what it is we do a little more here online.
A recent client was ecstatic when he "figured it out." He said we were "like an episodic, story-based sitcom" that "played itself out online and offline." And I have to say, that's pretty accurate in some measures. In a way, it's a more modern version of the soap opera.
I may have to explain that a bit here. Wikipedia defines a soap opera as "an ongoing, episodic work of dramatic fiction presented in serial format on television or radio. The name 'soap opera' stems from the original dramatic serials broadcast on radio that had soap manufacturers such as Procter & Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive, and Lever Brothers as sponsors and producers."
Now, we're not into dramatic fiction, and we certainly aren't television producers. What we do is episodic, but those "episodes" aren't necessarily in chronological order and most likely play out on a multitude of channels. Rather, our storyline is something that organically plays to a specific cause. Say, for example, bringing the mustache back into popular culture. That may include blog outreach, traditional PR, event marketing, and advertising. And it's not something that goes away after a short run on TV. This particular example has been going on for over 4 years.
So does your company want to change the status quo? It may be something as simple as getting people to eat more potatoes. It may be getting you to understand and appreciate rail liquor. Hell, it may be to grow a luxurious mullet. Whatever it is, there are a series of episodic events online and offline that can better get your program goals into the popular vernacular. To actually get people to care about what it is you are doing.
And that is where Elastic Marketing comes into play. We get that snowball rolling downhill. We get the mullet talked about and have it show up where audiences actually care to hear about it. People start talking more about potatoes and celebrating rail liquor. And not because we virally seeded the campaign, but because people actually sought it out and cared to listen. That's Elastic Marketing.
(none of the above examples relate to any past or current client we are actively working with. any resemblance to anybody in any close approximation with mullets, rail liquor and potatoes is purely coincidental. and if you know of anyone in any close approximation to monkeys, mullets, mustaches, Mr. T or wee people, please contact us immediately)