About the Steve O Zone

Friday, September 21, 2012

Three Of Four CMOs Say Social Media Impacts Sales

Not long ago I wrote an article on the use of social media among CEOs and how many often talk the social media talk on behalf of their brands/companies but very few actually walk the social media walk for their own personal use.

Today comes results of a survey conducted by Bazaarvoice of 100 members of The CMO Club. Now while I realize the sample size is small (100) it is worth nothing that 56.1% of the brands represented have more than $1 billion in annual revenuewhile another 36% have $100-999 million in annual revenue, and just 7.9% have annual revenue of $0-100 million.
Image representing Bazaarvoice as depicted in ...
Entitled “Chief customer advocate: How social data elevates CMOs” the survey and subsequent white paper ”reveals the results of an online survey of 100 members of The CMO Club, which includes CMOs of business-to-consumer and business-to-business organizations.”

Key findings include:


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

September 11th - Not Just Another Day

There are days throughout the year that have a "feel" to them, be it a holiday or a birthday, etc. These are not just another day(s) in our lives. We must add September 11th for it will never be just another day.

The post below is something I wrote years ago and I repost every year on this date. The reason I repost it is for the simple reason I want people to always remember what it felt like on September 11, 2001; to never forget what it was like that day. My fear is that people already have or will in the future treat September 11th just like any other day.

Kramer: What's today?
Newman: It's Thursday.
Kramer: Really? Feels like Tuesday.
Newman: Tuesday has no feel. Monday has a feel, Friday has a feel, Sunday has a feel...
Fans of Seinfeld will of course recall this classic exchange. As was the case with most things Seinfeld, this was an example of something we all could relate to. I mean days do have a feel, don’t they?
But it’s not just days of the week that have “feels” associated with them.
How does January 1st feel? Well that probably depends on what you did the night before.
How 'bout April 15th? Tax day. Doesn’t mean much cause you always get your taxes filed early, right? Or perhaps you are an habitual late-filer and this date causes you to break out in hives.
July 4th? Cookouts. Burgers. Dogs. Fireworks. Summer. Any of these ring a bell?
October 31st? Halloween. Costumes. Scary ghost stories. Soon as night falls it takes on a whole new feeling, doesn’t it?
December 24th? Anticipation. Excitement. Expectation.
December 25th? Family. Presents. Children. Santa. Snow. A certain euphoria and sense of family comes over us on this day, doesn’t it?
Your birthday? Your spouse's birthday? Your children's birthday?
ALL of these are special days in our lives each with their own unique feel to them.
These are all Not Just Another Day in our lives and on our calendars and in our blackberries and cell phones.
Well I think we must add September 11th to the list.
Right or Wrong, September 11th will NEVER just be another day. It can't be.
For if we allow it to become just another day, then we will have failed.
We will have failed to honor those lost that tragic day. Their memory will die. And we simply cannot nor should not allow that to happen.
September 11th? Personally it evokes feelings of: Fear. Anger. Outrage. Bewilderment. Disbelief. Revenge. Shock. Sadness. Innocence lost.
September 11th will NEVER just be another day.
Mark it down.


Sunday, September 2, 2012

When Taglines Go Bad – The Best Buy Saga

So there I was minding my own business when I came across an article on Fast Company entitled What Every CEO Can Learn From Best Buy’s (Continued) Branding MistakesWritten by David Brier, who I know to be not only a great writer but also a branding expert, the article made reference to the new tagline the much-maligned Best Buy recently trotted out after what was surely an exhaustive 18-month odyssey.

Truth be told the 18 months was spent “working to reframe the retailer’sbrand proposition” and the new tagline was one item that came out of saidreframing.

The new tagline for Best Buy is, wait for it “Making technology work for you.”
In his article Brier refers to the tagline as “not only tired, it is a death sentence that is bland, old, worn, uninspired and not reflective of a single strand of your customer’s aspirations.” He also, quite correctly I might add, says the tagline “reeks of “marketing speak” and “committee-itis.”He goes on to talk about branding in general but I want to focus squarely on this horrifically bad tagline.

By the way, is it me or does the title of my article sound like a title for a new reality show? Can’t you just hear something along the lines of “Tonight on the Discovery Channel, advertising taglines or slogans are all around us and most of them serve to help a brand and inform the public. 

But what happens when something goes awry? Tonight at 9, it’s the premier of When Taglines Go Bad.” Cue the loud piercing female scream or shriek and an image of people running wildly through the streets.

But I digress.

The new Best Buy tagline or slogan, whatever you want to call it – and please don’t start with the “they’re not the same thing, Steve” mantra, is all the things Brier said it was but it’s also a line that one would expect to hear from a new company/new brand, not from one’s that been around as long as Best Buy has.

If they were just starting out and they unveiled this tagline, I would laud and applaud it for it would immediately tell me what they do – in a matter of speaking. It would at the very least provide me a glimpse into what’s in their DNA.

But this is Best Buy, a brand that is very well known and instantly recognized.I will never understand why such an established brand sees the need to suddenly become Lucy Literal or Larry Literal, whatever the case may be. You’re Best Buy, we know you. Save the sales pitch. Save the educational angle. You’ve earned the right to be creative, to use an experiential tagline.

The Real Thing

Perhaps you’ve heard of a soft drink called Coca-Cola. Well when Coca-Cola first came to the attention of the public one of their first taglines was “Delicious and Refreshing.” See what they did there? Not many people knew what Coca-Cola was other than a soft drink. But their tagline immediately conveyed the benefits one would get from enjoying some. They realized they better let the consumer know right up front what Coca-Cola can do for them.

Fast forward to today’s tagline for Coca-Cola, which is “Open Happiness” and you can see the difference. Of course there have been many different taglines employed by Coca-Cola over the years but the point is this is a brand that is very well known and instantly recognized.

They know they can have some fun and put people in the moment, if you will, and utilize experiential type of wording in their tagline for the need to inform and educate has long since passed.

Named one of the Top 100 Influencers In Social Media (#41) by Social Technology Review and a Top 50 Social Media Blogger by Kred, Steve Olenski is a freelance copywriter/blogger looking for full-time work. He has worked on some of the biggest brands in the world and has more than 20 years experience in advertising and marketing. He lives in Philly and can be reached via email,TwitterLinkedIn, or his website.