The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing
This is my marketing mantra. It isnt perfect, show me one that is. But it helps me frame my thoughts, a filter I can run an idea through before taking it to clients. Of course they have their own filters and metrics to balance off, so sometimes Im successful with it, some times not so much. The core thing for me is it focuses an idea around what I believe are the key touch points for something I would present, I dont believe in selling an idea I dont agree with. Weve all had to do it at some point, I think we can all agree it is never fun.
Anyway, the mantra goes as follows:
- Markets are conversations.
- Conversations happen around social objects.
- A social object is a product or service that is remarkable.
- Something that is remarkable isnt just good, it is worth making a remark about.
- The most remarkable thing you can have is a good product, and even better customer service.
I was thinking about this as a friend of mine dropped me a line with a great quote in it: Advertising is the price you pay for being boring. Wow, that got me. Right down to the bone, I love that quote! A number of people I shared it with in the industry were a little perplexed by it, what would we do if people talked about our clients without us? Thats an interesting question, but for another post.
What I want to talk about is remarkable. Specifically, spending all this time creating remarkable ads and campaigns. For what? For our clients to be talked about so long as the campaign runs. Then what? Campaign ends, conversation (at least the one we wanted to happen) ends. We rinse and repeat.
Look at Google. They werent always Google, not like we know them. They created one of the most remarkable services the world has ever known and built their empire on being remarkable. Products and services do not get more remarkable than that. Where are those products? The ones that dont require a clever tagline and a media spend to get the attention they deserve? Why are we not sitting with our clients and challenging them on what is actually remarkable about their work? Believe me, they will challenge us to prove the remark-ability of ours!
Im not advocating an unrealistic shift to Crazy People-style truth in advertising. Im talking marketing as business strategy, engineering your offering for maximum talkability. Chances are there is a story somewhere within your product or brand that will generate this for you. If there isnt, its time for a long hard look at what it is you do. These times were made for remarkable products and services, and it is no longer OK to just be ‘OK’.