Marketing

Fyre Festival Debacle Shows the Difference between Marketing and Branding

Friday, April 28th, 2017

The Fyre Festival has become the train wreck you can't ignore. The event organizers, rapper Ja Rule and entrepreneur Billy McFarland, promised attendees a "two unforgettable weekends of mystery and music" with acts such as Blink 182 and Major Lazer appearing on a private island in the Exumas April 28-30 ...

Why Uber Remains Disruptive and Dangerous

Thursday, April 27th, 2017

Uber is the Kanye West of Silicon Valley: bold and brilliant. Toxic and troubled. Disruptive and dangerous. Uber's willingness to play dirty and its dysfunctional culture are well documented, most recently in a New York Times piece, "Uber's CEO Plays with Fire" that laid bare the controversial management style of CEO Travis ...

Love Me? Message Me

Monday, February 13th, 2017

Sharing Valentine's Day love means swapping mobile messages sprinkled with emoji and stickers. And brands want a piece of that action. As part of a Valentine's Day campaign targeting mobile users, Dunkin' Donuts features a special emoji keyboard that makes it possible for users to add emoji to their texts. Dunkin' ...

Do You Speak Emoji?

Tuesday, February 7th, 2017

Next time you are on Twitter, check out emoji search by Google. If you tweet an emoji to Google's Twitter account, Google will respond with suggestions of where to eat or what to do based on the content of your emoji. For instance, I tweeted to Google a donut emoji, ...

How Dippin’ Dots Mastered the Real-Time News Arc

Wednesday, January 25th, 2017

How 'bout them Dippin' Dots? One moment it's a challenger brand with a niche following, just minding its own business and selling flash-frozen ice cream at places like amusement parks, sports stadiums, and convenience stores. The next thing you know, Dippin' Dots becomes a national trending topic after its name gets sucked into a ...

Uber’s Future: Snapchat on Wheels

Thursday, December 15th, 2016

I recently received an invitation to check out some behind-the-scenes Rogue One: A Star Wars Story videos and watch cartoon images of Star Wars X-Wings fly through the streets of Chicago. There was only one catch: the experience was available exclusively on my Uber app and viewable only after I ...

Snap Makes a Run at Affluent Millennials

Wednesday, September 28th, 2016

As soon as Snap Inc. announced the launch of its Spectacles video recording shades, the digerati began comparing Spectacles to Google Glass and pondering whether Spectacles would capture consumers' imagination in ways Google Glass failed to do. But I don't believe Snap CEO Evan Spiegel cares whether Spectacles finds a ...

How Pokémon Go Took Over the World with Augmented Reality

Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

They're in my house. They're in my car. They're following me to the store. Of course, I'm speaking of the Pokémon who inhabit the world of Pokémon Go, the augmented reality game that has invaded the lives of smartphone owners all over the world since its general release July 6. ...

When Brands Mess with Our Emotions

Thursday, May 12th, 2016

Jess Goulart of BTRtoday recently asked me how I think branding has changed over the years. I told her that although businesses are sharing their brand stories in more inventive ways than ever before, some of the traditional elements of a successful brand remain unchanged. For instance, a company's name and ...

You Don’t Have to Hug Your Fans

Sunday, May 8th, 2016

  Building fan love doesn't mean pandering to your audience. Radiohead, which dropped its new album A Moon Shaped Pool digitally May 8, builds fan devotion by challenging and even confounding its audience, which is the right approach for a group whose music has always been one step ahead of everyone. Radiohead's actions in ...