In the week following the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States, our newsfeeds have been full of headlines about policy changes, the Women’s March, and Twitter feuds. However you feel about the new administration, we’re guessing that, like us, you might be a little tired of political news. And so we offer some respite – a brief rundown of some of our favorite marketing & business-related articles from this week!
Check it out, and let us know if we missed any articles you thought were particularly interesting or helpful.
The Takeaway: If you’ve never heard of the Marketoonist, we highly recommend subscribing to his newsletter for a good chuckle every Monday morning. Beyond a laugh, Tom Fishburne’s cartoons and corresponding blog posts provide a much needed service for marketers in all industries: taking a critical look at marketing trends and challenging how they’re being executed.
This one in particular takes on the buzz-wordiness of customer-centric marketing. We couldn’t agree more with Fishburne’s point that, “For all the hype, delivering on the promise of putting the customer at the core of the business is a struggle…. It’s fundamentally an organizational and cultural effort.” For many years, marketers have been ‘going where the customers are’, by adapting their strategies to changing technology. BUT, in the race to adopt the newest platforms, it’s easy to forget about the changing expectations consumers have for not only our marketing messages, but our products, services, and even the role our businesses play in the world. Customer-centricity is about much more than channel selection; it’s about creating a business that serves each customers’ needs, regardless of our preconceived notions about what those are.
Problem Solving: How M&Ms Took a Small Insight and Turned It Into a Big Idea
The Takeaway: Simply put, our big takeaway from this article is that inspiration is everywhere. The foundation for M&Ms’ majorly successful 75th anniversary campaign came from an HR presentation – demonstrating the importance of never skipping a meeting, even if you don’t think it will be useful. (Kidding, of course!)
Jokes aside, this story makes a compelling case for collaboration among the different departments within a company. While the campaign was ultimately created by the Mars Chocolate marketing team, it’s very likely the 75th anniversary could have been overlooked without that fateful HR presentation. In your own organization, think about the departments who work most closely with customers, and get their insight on what messages will most resonate with them. If you have a customer service team, find out which questions they get most frequently, which concerns they are constantly addressing, and so on – then take that feedback and turn it into a message for your next campaign, a social media post, or even content for your website. You might find something surprising.
Stop Trying to Innovate With Your Content
The Takeaway: You may have read this headline with some skepticism. As marketers, it’s our job to think creatively, come up with new and exciting things, and create buzz for our companies. So why would author Marcia Riefer Johnston say that we shouldn’t try to innovate?
The point Riefer makes – drawing from a talk given by Kristina Halvorson at Content Marketing World – is that instead of trying to come up with the next best thing, we should be working toward improving what already exists. Rather than jumping from innovation to innovation, we should strive for a more realistic “evolutionary” process for content, by making small but important changes. Her process for doing so: “Listen. Improve. Repeat.”
4 Key Tenets Of Employee Wellness That Drive Business Success
The Takeaway: As a small business, we know that employee wellness can fall to just about any department – human resources, marketing and communications, operations, and so on. Keeping that in mind, it’s important for everyone involved in your employee wellness efforts to understand what employees really need to be well: physically, mentally, and emotionally. These four tenets – time, transparency, recognition, and giving back – are elements that businesses of all sizes can (and should) consider when it comes to keeping employees happy, healthy, and engaged.