Thursday, 15 August 2013

A Marketing Lesson From Birthing Classes



There's something about being entirely responsible for the life of a baby, that makes you do the job well...completely.

I recently attended a range of birthing classes. Other than these classes being completely frightening and teaching you how to best look after your baby, they teach you how to take care of another baby…your brand.

Ask the right questions
Something that all marketers and parents alike must learn to do, is ask the right questions. The parental class kicked off with the acronym B.R.A.I.N. This acronym can be applied to any campaign and/or new technology under consideration (as well as holding you in good stead, when your partner is in labour).

Once you have established the objective and budget, remember B.R.A.I.N!

B – Benefits: What are the benefits to the brand or department?
This is normally a snug fit around the objective(s), which should remain front of mind at all times.

R – Risks: What risks or potential disadvantages may be involved?
Risks can sometimes be downplayed due to lack of knowledge or understanding. If risks present themselves later in the piece, don’t be afraid to pull back and re-assess. Sometimes, being in digital marketing the only way to exercise agility is to – within reason – be ignorant and progress. As Mark Zuckerberg says, progress is better than perfection.

A – Alternatives: Are there any? This is a good time to revisit the objective.
We can all get caught up focusing on the new tool, but are we addressing the objective or are we reshaping it to cater for the tool?..

A classic example of reshaping the objective for the tool is when someone walks up to you and says, “I need an iPhone app”. This may be more about an app, than fulfilling an objective.

I – Impact: What's the impact or risk of not doing this or not following the trend?
Many jump on board just for the sake of it i.e. "I know social, I'm on every social media platform..." fleshing out the positive or negative impact, is a great way of establishing if you should actually proceed.

Sometimes, this point can be the most compelling, when putting together a business case. Impact, in many cases, acts as the ashes from where the phoenix a.k.a the objective is spawn.

N – Now: Does this need to be done now?
I’m a massive fan of being in the head space of 'move quickly and break things' and early adoption only makes sense if you're able to react quickly enough to reduce risk, learn and make amends.

Sometimes though, it is just an inefficient use of resources. If you know your customer and yourself, this should be straightforward.

Love your brand/campaign
I find it incredibly difficult as a marketer, to work on a brand without genuinely loving it. What keeps me checking the insights of an online campaign while I’m on a break, or checking the social feed while at home, or responding to a comment while out at dinner? Why do I take negative sentiment around a campaign or brand I'm working on, personally? Love, that's why.

Just like the love of a baby, it is not only pivotal, but healthy to love the campaign or brand that you're working on. Attend and nurture it as it requires and you will reap the rewards. This I feel, is the only way to do your job, well... completely.

THE MORAL:
NEVER LOSE SIGHT OF THE OBJECTIVE. ASK QUESTIONS. DON’T LOSE YOUR B.R.A.I.N.