Grand Marketer of the Year 2010: James Moorhead, Old Spice

In the 1970s, an Old Spice TV commercial opened with a shot of a woman lounging on a corner-unit sofa covered in garishly patterned cushions, surrounded by a jungle of potted palms and ethnic statuettes—a fading hippie paradise. The brunette, wearing a one-piece catsuit with bell-bottoms two feet wide at the ankles, pages idly through a magazine. “Old Spice,” the woman muses in a breathy internal monologue. “It’s a nice smell to snuggle up to.” The scene cuts to a younger woman walking through a city park with fountains—she’s the classic NYU student type, once a staple of Woody Allen’s movies back when Woody Allen’s movies were funny. “That Old Spice—wow!” she thinks aloud. “He sure knows what he’s doing!”

You could reshoot that spot today for its unintentional comic value and it would fit right in with Procter & Gamble’s current efforts for Old Spice, the seemingly ubiquitous “Smell like a man, man” campaign.


MARKETER OF THE YEAR 2010
By Jim Edwards

Photograph by Tim Llewellyn

In the 1970s, an Old Spice TV commercial opened with a shot of a woman lounging on a corner-unit sofa covered in garishly patterned cushions, surrounded by a jungle of potted palms and ethnic statuettes—a fading hippie paradise. The brunette, wearing a one-piece catsuit with bell-bottoms two feet wide at the ankles, pages idly through a magazine. “Old Spice,” the woman muses in a breathy internal monologue. “It’s a nice smell to snuggle up to.” The scene cuts to a younger woman walking through a city park with fountains—she’s the classic NYU student type, once a staple of Woody Allen‘s movies back when Woody Allen’s movies were funny. “That Old Spice—wow!” she thinks aloud. “He sure knows what he’s doing!”

You could reshoot that spot today for its unintentional comic value and it would fit right in with Procter & Gamble‘s current efforts for Old Spice, the seemingly ubiquitous “Smell like a man, man” campaign. Leer más “Grand Marketer of the Year 2010: James Moorhead, Old Spice”

Geoff Cottrill, Converse

But Cottrill had a plan: His first objective was to build a leadership team that would turn the focus back to the brand’s heritage and loyal fans. Hence, a campaign from Anomaly in early 2008 that showed icons like Hunter S. Thompson and Sid Vicious sporting Converses. But much of Cottrill’s success has been via digital media. Before Cottrill came on board, Converse’s Web site was a largely informative one that was geared towards retailers. Now, it boasts a huge amount of content, almost all created by Converse consumers. Cottrill refers to the online transformation as “a dramatic shift towards being consumer-friendly.” That shift has turned the brand into a curator of sorts for new music, art and fun.

Take, for example, a recent musical collaboration sponsored by Converse. The effort put Kid Cudi, Rostam Batmanglij from Vampire Weekend and Bethany Cosentino of Best Coast together in the studio to write a song. The resulting track, “All Summer,” was downloaded more than 66,000 times in the first 24 hours of its July 14 release and contributed to a 400 percent increase in traffic on a Converse blog that week. Cottrill estimates it brought in an estimated unpaid media value of $6.5 million from mentions.


MARKETER OF THE YEAR 2010
By Rebecca Cullers

Photograph by Allison Cottrill

Geoff Cottrill, whose name is synonymous to many with digital marketing, says he draws much of his inspiration from a decidedly pre-Internet document: The 1913 Converse Catalog.

One passage in particular has resonated: “Our company was organized in 1908 fully believing that there was an earnest demand from the retail shoe dealer for a rubber shoe company that would be independent enough not to follow every other company in everything they do.”

It’s safe to say Cottrill has followed that directive. With a small budget, he resuscitated Converse by focusing—quirkily and imaginatively—on digital and social media. Matt Powell, an analyst at SportsONESource, credits Converse for being “one of the first [shoe brands] to exploit social media and the Web, talking directly to the end consumer and end running conventional retail. Converse has really embraced the alt/indie lifestyle and remained true to that consumer.”

The numbers bear that out. The brand has 8.8 million fans on its two Facebook pages, which is about four times more than Converse owner Nike has. And those fans don’t just “like” Converse, they buy them. Last year, Converse posted more than $2 billion in sales, a 26 percent jump over its 2008 sales.

That’s quite a change from previous years. Back in 1966, Converse—best known for its iconic Chuck Taylor shoe—controlled 80 percent of the U.S. sneaker market. But thanks to stiff competition, a string of owners through the ’80s and ’90s, and other factors, that number sank to a piddling 2.3 percent in 1998. By 2003, Converse was perceived as a has-been brand and Nike bought it for a scant $305 million. Leer más “Geoff Cottrill, Converse”

The Lessons of ‘Losing It’

The focus is on the unending, pervasive stress that many people feel in their daily lives—not only consumers, but the long chain of employees who serve their needs. JetBlue probably took a bit of a PR hit for Slater’s behavior, but generally it has been one of the more successful airlines in recent years because of its unique brand and consistent delivery on its customers’ expectations. But even JetBlue is not immune to today’s stressed environment, which promotes simmering impatience, frustration, anger and dissatisfaction—and causes the kind of outbursts all of us have witnessed in airports, as well as in restaurants, shops and public arenas.

Times are tough and people are not afraid to show it—not only through outward emotional displays, but also by quickly dismissing and abandoning brands they’ve been loyal to for decades.

From the perspective of marketers who are trying to get this economy moving again through consumption, there are a few important or, at least, symbolic, lessons that can be learned from the Slater affair.

There has never before been a time when marketers have labored so hard to connect with an audience that is so wired to their jobs, over-scheduled, overworked, fatigued and concerned about their economic futures as well as those of their families and colleagues. “Distracted and distraught” is a phrase used frequently to describe consumers who are more discerning than ever in their choices.


MARKETER OF THE YEAR 2010
By Frances Allen, evp, CMO at Denny’s

JetBlue flight attendant Steve Slater’s career-ending slide down the air chute in early August generated an extraordinary amount of media attention for what was essentially a bad day at work and an uncivil outburst over the public address system. A month later, thanks to the significant attention still echoing throughout media, commentators and the blogosphere, Slater has been referred to as everything from a workingman’s hero to a tragic symbol of a burned-out service economy.

Slater’s fancy dive could be symptomatic of an overworked, tired employee, career burnout, the decline of civility in air travel or simply the aspirations of a flight attendant to leave his profession to pursue a career in action movies. But the media’s fascination with Slater and his reaction to customers on JetBlue Flight 1052 does point to a broader “spirit of the times” that has caused much reflection these days on what travelers and other consumers seem to be feeling. Leer más “The Lessons of ‘Losing It’”

CMOs Explore Digital Domain

Brand stewards are quick these days to praise the impact digital marketing efforts have had on their products. Jim Berra, for instance, svp and CMO at Carnival Cruise Lines, says tapping into online conversations daily has built brand loyalty and driven sales.

“We are seeing growth in terms of bookings across all channels of distribution from people who are exposed to digital,” says Berra, adding that the arena is one place where marketers can’t overinvest. “It’s powerful, immediate and spending is on the rise.”

According to eMarketer, U.S. online ad spending as a percentage of total U.S. ad spending was 13.9 percent in 2009. The number is projected to advance to 15.1 percent this year and 20.3 percent by 2014. While digital initiatives continue to assume a bigger portion of the marketing mix, company executives differ on what they need to do to compete in the space.

Some, like Bill Morgan, svp of corporate marketing at Sprint, say that CMOs who have not yet become digital marketing officers are doomed. Others are comfortable having a digital-savvy team around them.

Here’s how some marketing mavens and the experts that guide them view the space and marketers’ role in it.


MARKETER OF THE YEAR 2010
By Karen J. Bannan on Mon

Brand stewards are quick these days to praise the impact digital marketing efforts have had on their products. Jim Berra, for instance, svp and CMO at Carnival Cruise Lines, says tapping into online conversations daily has built brand loyalty and driven sales.

“We are seeing growth in terms of bookings across all channels of distribution from people who are exposed to digital,” says Berra, adding that the arena is one place where marketers can’t overinvest. “It’s powerful, immediate and spending is on the rise.”

According to eMarketer, U.S. online ad spending as a percentage of total U.S. ad spending was 13.9 percent in 2009. The number is projected to advance to 15.1 percent this year and 20.3 percent by 2014. While digital initiatives continue to assume a bigger portion of the marketing mix, company executives differ on what they need to do to compete in the space.

Some, like Bill Morgan, svp of corporate marketing at Sprint, say that CMOs who have not yet become digital marketing officers are doomed. Others are comfortable having a digital-savvy team around them.

Here’s how some marketing mavens and the experts that guide them view the space and marketers’ role in it. Leer más “CMOs Explore Digital Domain”

Steve Jobs, Apple | MARKETER OF THE YEAR 2010

Apple CEO Steve Jobs is having none of this. As everyone knows, Apple’s success is based at least in part on opacity. The brand has no Facebook or Twitter page, doesn’t respond to media requests (including one from this publication) and sometimes uses heavy-handed tactics to censor information. Apple’s mania for secrecy reached its apogee with the iPad.

While some news outlets accurately predicted the device’s debut (and its name!) seven months early, not a peep came from headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., until Jobs’ official announcement on Jan. 27. By then, bloggers had whipped up so much buzz that the iPad announcement nearly eclipsed the State of the Union address the next day.


By Todd Wasserman

In 2010, the standard advice for marketers is: Be transparent. Embrace social media. Start a dialogue with your audience.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs is having none of this. As everyone knows, Apple’s success is based at least in part on opacity. The brand has no Facebook or Twitter page, doesn’t respond to media requests (including one from this publication) and sometimes uses heavy-handed tactics to censor information. Apple’s mania for secrecy reached its apogee with the iPad.

While some news outlets accurately predicted the device’s debut (and its name!) seven months early, not a peep came from headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., until Jobs’ official announcement on Jan. 27. By then, bloggers had whipped up so much buzz that the iPad announcement nearly eclipsed the State of the Union address the next day.

It’s easy to conclude now, as sales of the iPad have surpassed 3 million units, that the device’s success was preordained. But industry watchers credit the marketing. Leer más “Steve Jobs, Apple | MARKETER OF THE YEAR 2010”