Virtues for a connected age
I have a long way to go, but here is what I have learnt so far...
BUILD WHAT’S RIGHT
Living in a digital world, does not have to mean building digital ideas
Be rigorous about the role of all communications in the mix
Be suspicious of general theories – clients have specific, bespoke issues
Don’t believe in panaceas - there is no silver bullet
Stop saying: “Always on” / “It’s the end of campaigns” / “The richer the narrative the better” / “Utility is the future” / “It’s all about engagement” etc.
Start with the business issue, not the latest piece of fashionable rhetoric
IDENTIFY THE POINTS OF INFLUENCE
Know the consumer’s path to purchase before creating
What are the key moments?
Where are the points of influence, consideration, and decision?
Where and when do they happen?
Who and what else is involved?
Identify the tasks and likely touchpoints
JOIN THE DOTS
Create for a connected age
What’s the journey we want to take people on?
What does this idea begin with?
What happens next?
What’s the ultimate destination?
INNOVATE IN PAID MEDIA
Digital interactions don’t have the monopoly on innovation
Find new ways to use the old-media
Find new ways to use the paid-for platforms
Look for where the ‘old’ and the ‘new’ channels join and interact
Talk to the platform owners early about what’s new / possible (but be aware they’re trying to you sell something)
EXPLORE THE VARIED ROLES OF TV
It isn’t dead and it still works
TV doesn’t always have to act as the primary launch platform
TV can ‘re-broadcast’ consumer involvement online
TV as can act as a recruitment vehicle for other activities
Digital channels can act as teasers/prequels to TV
MAKE IT FINDABLE
There’s too much content and most people just aren’t that interested
Don’t rely on serendipity
Signpost and publicize what you make
KEEP IT SIMPLE
Most people don’t care as much as you do
Build as if you’re not the only one out there
Assume your audience is over-supplied and lazy
Don’t ask too much of people
Could your mum do it?
Reward people appropriately
And ask - “would I (really, truly, honestly) do it?”
Not everything has to be epic
Where and how can you nudge the consumer?
At what points in the consumer’s buying/decision-making process can your idea offer value or wield influence?
EXPLOIT THE POWER OF THE SPECTACULAR
Create for PR
Most online conversation is about stuff that happens in the real (non-digital) world
Embrace non-replicable experiences
Explore what you could do that guarantees an avalanche of media coverage
How could it manifest itself in the real, tangible, visceral world?
Create for the 10% who are highly involved
What influential audiences could act as ambassadors for this idea and what could you give them?
How can they participate?
How do you amplify that participation to the masses?
Create for the 90% who are broadly indifferent
Effective marketing is a game of scale
What you build doesn’t always have to be big
Small things can be amplified
But if it doesn’t somehow scale, it’s not marketing
And scale depends on people who don’t care that much
Create easy and lightweight interaction for the indifferent majority
Innovate in order to learn
Without purpose, ‘innovation’ will always struggle to get funding
Build controlled experiments
Build to generate data
And learn from it
REMEMBER WHAT HASN'T CHANGED
At heart, the art of being a good storyteller has not changed
Start with what people are interested in
Remember that while plays, gigs, shows, and movies have audiences, advertising does not
Assume that attention and interest is earned, not a given
Create by the words of Dan Wieden: “Just move me, dude”
Oh, and don’t work with assholes.
All additions welcome.