How Brands Talk (via Tom Fishburne – Marketoonist)

Tom Fishburne’s cartoons always very nicely sums up some of the marketing problems we face today. This cartoon “How Brands Talk” really made me LOL! looking at how self-centered brands are – even as they claim to be all about “you”; the customer.

His commentary on this is also very insightful. My key takeaways were:

  • Hugh Macleod refers to this as The Cocktail Party Rule: “what’s true at cocktail parties is also true in marketing i.e. If you want to be boring, talk about yourself. If you want to be interesting, talk about something else.”
  • Robert Stephens, the founder of Geek Squad, once said that “advertising is a tax for unremarkable thinking”.
  • Most brands invest in Paid Media to interrupt their consumers long enough to blab about their brand message, whether or not it’s ultimately that interesting to them. Consumers’ collective eyes glaze over in a blah blah blah world and it becomes harder and harder to get your message across.
  • TBWA identifies four types of Media available to brands: Paid, Earned, Owned, and Created.
  • Most brands only think about Paid Media, but Earned Media is a much better litmus test. Is your brand doing or saying something interesting enough that consumers and the press are compelled enough to share it? Consumers and the press share ideas, not because the ideas convey key benefits from your creative brief, but because it’s interesting to them.
  • Owned and Created Media is an even higher bar because it requires communication to be less about the brand and more about the consumers through the brand.
  • Increasing your working media budget is not enough to get your message into the world if your message isn’t interesting enough to share on it’s own.
  • Media is just an accelerant.

Read his original post here.


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