Friday, June 08, 2007

on integration

When marketing folk use the word 'integration' they refer to integrating different communication channels. 'Integration', they imagine, will mean a greater, more consistent connection with consumers; a "360" campaign, as it is (painfully) labelled. From the agency's perspective integration also means a potentially bigger budget and more control over the big idea. It still amazes me that things were ever not considered holistically, but I'll overlook that to make another point.

Defining a "360" campaign by channel inclusion is about as useful as defining our relationships by the modes of communication we use.

If I tell you that Lucy and I speak on the phone, on IM and by text what does this say about my relationship with her? Not much. If I say we joke a lot together, we speak about serious family matters but avoid talk of politics it paints a much better picture.

Channels are a convenient but misleading barometer of brands’ connection with potential customers. What really matters is how much of the emotional spectrum they occupy (in relation to the service they offer).

I propose a new model for a '360' approach where a single idea is expressed (in whatever channels are appropriate), along this emotional spectrum. I.e. Varying levels of 'meaning', so the brand/product's role in people's lives is a crucial consideration too. Sorry, but a cereal bar is not as meaningful to people as their car. Something else brand managers forget.

Do me a favour, read this aloud and text a portion of it to a friend. I want to be the first person to create a 360 blog.

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Wednesday, June 06, 2007

the editor’s new clothes

As the dust settles around GPS and its associated technologies we are sure to witness the arrival of more and more services that try to satisfy needs we don't yet know we have.

Mobile social networking sites like Dodgeball enable you to find out if a friend of a friend of yours in in a bar near-by, for (a fairly straightforward) example.

I thought of one this morning. You make a digital note of what clothes you wear when you go out; your handset stores what you wore, but more importantly, where you were and who else was there. Now, if you have a new favourite outfit you can wear it as much as possible, making sure only a new audience sees it each time.

The service could include private communities for (mostly) girls who want to make sure they don't clash too. And of course highlight near-by stores that sell a paper bag for your head.

I wonder if you could do this for the jokes you tell too.

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Monday, June 04, 2007

13 words

I've just put some of my work online.

I was about to elaborate but don't want to spoil the whole ‘13 words’ thing.