Closing the Empathy Gap


 

Anyone who tried to avoid hearing the Olympic results until the events aired hours later here in the United States knows how easily information flows across our social networks and into our consciousness. It didn’t matter if you preferred to wait to hear the results of the Men’s 400 meter relay.  If it mattered to your social network, the results of the race were going to find a way to get to you. 

The degree to which social media has become part of our every-day lives allow for greater opportunities for brands to understand and even empathize with consumers. Most brands have established listening posts, using either paid tools or at least a rudimentary Google alert-style monitoring program. These are designed to spot and quickly address detractors, and to uncover pockets of advocates and amplify those positive experiences.

But now, many brands are evolving those listening posts into new sources of empathy. New ways of understanding consumers and turning those insights into a competitive advantage.  This effort requires the social data and conversation-mapping experience, as well as the active participation of the Planning department.

The New York Times recently covered the “social focus group” phenomena describing the ways many brands use social media for product development/testing.  This is an especially important development for marketers, and actually brings us back to the time of Mad Men, when advertising agencies were so tied to product development that they had test kitchens in the office.  All of this is designed to break down some of the bureaucratic fortresses built up over the last 25 years, and get brand managers in closer proximity to, you know, real people.

As brands and agencies work to close this empathy gap, we’ll begin to discover there are many roles social media can augment, or even lead, in traditional planning research.   This is because great ideas are built on a cultural tension — some bigger issue that is, in some way, tangled up with the brand values*.

Social media, specifically real people engaging in continuous non-branded conversations, can help us chart this terrain.  This is based on the simple premise that most people do not talk much about brands in their daily lives,about 10 brand references per day on average —almost all in passing.**

So, how do we move from elementary listening and responding to a more sophisticated source of insight for planning creative, effective programs? Here’s an imperfect list of sources of empathy, and how brands are using the insights to drive business results.

Five Sources of Empathy Leer más “Closing the Empathy Gap”

Mad Men: How the Web Would Change Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce

The audiences as defined by the Mad Men of the 1950s and 1960s were borrowed from radio, print or television. The strategy for nearly every campaign Don Draper has whipped up was a variation of the theme: design an ad and place it adjacent to what people are reading or watching. In this sense, the audience, as defined by the Mad Men of the 1950s and 1960s, was in reality not the brand’s audience but borrowed from media. As one of the original Mad Men, Howard Gossage put it, “when advertising talks about its audience, it doesn’t mean its audience, it means somebody else gathered there to watch or read something else.”


social.ogilvy.com


Mad Men kicked off its fifth season this week, and while the alcohol and smoke have (largely) cleared the air of the modern agency, many of the same departments, principals, and even clients have survived the last half-century. Placing an internet connection in the hands of Mad Men’s Don Draper is not only a fun thought experiment but also a useful way to articulate some of the major shifts in the industry, as well as follow the trajectory into the future.

Brand advertising in the 1950s and 1960s evolved in part to reproduce the feeling of familiarity consumers once had with product makers. The changes brought on by the industrial revolution triggered a shift in the way people bought products. The local bazaars, markets, and shopkeepers gave way to, first, chartered organizations and then corporations. Mass media helped to deliver a brand personality and relationship with consumers through radio and television before the new product hit the shelves. This model was built on brands as fictionalized narratives, the Marlboro Man and Aunt Jemima. The stuff of Mad Men.

The audiences as defined by the Mad Men of the 1950s and 1960s were borrowed from radio, print or television. The strategy for nearly every campaign Don Draper has whipped up was a variation of the theme: design an ad and place it adjacent to what people are reading or watching. In this sense, the audience, as defined by the Mad Men of the 1950s and 1960s, was in reality not the brand’s audience but borrowed from media. As one of the original Mad Men, Howard Gossage put it, “when advertising talks about its audience, it doesn’t mean its audience, it means somebody else gathered there to watch or read something else.”

This is an important shift because the audiences on Mad Men – the folks in the focus groups – have disappeared and in their place are humans with incredible editorial control over the brand and messages they encounter. NYU’s Jay Rosen has described this transformation as “the people formerly known as the audience.”

The integration of paid (borrowed audiences) to an earned media (adjacent content), and the brand as a content creator would usher in a wave of change through the halls of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce.

Mad Men + Social Web: Three Ways the Agency Would Quickly Change Leer más “Mad Men: How the Web Would Change Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce”

7 Practical Marketing Productivity Links


 

Copyblogger | copyblogger.com

This week on The Lede …

  • When Should We Add Marketing?
  • The Best Procrastination Tip Ever
  • Take a Hot Shower. Get Creative.
  • Want More Social Shares? Don’t Ignore These 3 Things
  • The 13 Minute, 33 Second Website
  • 20 Days to a High-Quality, Highly-Engaged Twitter Following
  • One Piece of Indispensable Writing Advice

If you want to grab more useful links (than the seven we highlight here) every week, follow @copyblogger on Twitter.

//

When Should We Add Marketing?
Mr. Godin’s answer to this question is simple, but not easy. He argues that the age we now inhabit has turned the tables on the discipline of marketing products, services, and ideas. The Mad Men are gone, as is the way they brought products into the public eye.

Leer más “7 Practical Marketing Productivity Links”

Smooth! ‘Mad Men’-Era Newsweek Covers & Accompanying Ads (PHOTOS)

The front-cover/back-cover pairings are also revealing: you’ll notice that each lovingly photographed drop of honeyed Scotch was only a flip of the magazine away from a story of national or international “news-significance,” per the publication’s original parlance. The Kennedy assassination. The rise of Brezhnev. Race relations in Harlem. And so on. It’s almost as if the changes of the 1960s were so sudden, and so serious, that our ancestors had no choice but to kick back with a snifter of Chivas Regal at the end of yet another long week.

Don Draper would have been right there with them



Courtesy of AMC (Don Draper)
thedailybeast.com
By Andrew Romano

Glance at the back cover of a Newsweek nowadays and you’re bound to see an ad for a bank. Or a TV show.

Or maybe a fancy watch. But if you’d turned over a copy of the magazine back in 1964, you probably would have seen a promotion for one of two products, neither of which appears in our pages very much (or at all) anymore: cigarettes or alcohol. Leer más “Smooth! ‘Mad Men’-Era Newsweek Covers & Accompanying Ads (PHOTOS)”

‘Newsweek’ vuelve a los años 60 para conmemorar lo nuevo de Mad Men

Pero no sólo la portada echa la vista atrás a los años de oro de la publicidad. Desde el editorial hasta la publicidad del número de Newsweek del 26 de marzo podrán verse diseños propios de 1965 que harán que el lector se sienta de vuelta a la época de Mad Men por momentos.


marketingdirecto.com

Newsweek

estrenará portada retro la próxima semana.
La publicación ha vuelto a los años 60 con su nueva portada inspirada en Mad Men, a la que acompañará un reportaje , “Mad Men vuelve a la oficina”, sobre la vuelta de la serie a la pequeña pantalla el 25 de marzo, más de un año y medio después de que terminara la última temporada.


15 Insights from 15 Years – Notes from a PR and Ad Agency Survivor

This year marks Bailey Gardiner’s 15th year. Recently, I’ve been spending some time reflecting on what I have learned about agency life during that time. Yes folks, it’s time to tear back the onion peel and look a bit more deeply into this world of “integrated communications” and agency life. For some of you, this will be an affirmation of what you live. For others it will be a glimpse into a business that is quite unlike what many of you call “work” each day. It isn’t a whole lot like Mad Men portrays it to be (except for the drinking), but it’s sure been a great ride for us.


This year marks Bailey Gardiner’s 15th year. Recently, I’ve been spending some time reflecting on what I have learned about agency life during that time. Yes folks, it’s time to tear back the onion peel and look a bit more deeply into this world of “integrated communications” and agency life. For some of you, this will be an affirmation of what you live. For others it will be a glimpse into a business that is quite unlike what many of you call “work” each day. It isn’t a whole lot like Mad Men portrays it to be (except for the drinking), but it’s sure been a great ride for us.

1. Most people who start an agency are really good at one thing, and that thing is rarely running a business. From hyper-talented creative types to type-A account people (ahem), we rise through the ranks of our agencies and decide it’s time to start our own thing. So exciting. Look! We have clients. Wow! Our first office. Zikes! We’re winning awards. Wait, what? What do you mean I have to spend time on human resources, payroll, health care, legal contracts, the clogged kitchen sink? This industry needs to get better at training its rising stars to be managers and not just good fill-in-the-blanks.

2. People who have self-confidence in presentations will rise to the top. I’ve watched really talented people choke in presentations and it’s not pretty. Get good at it. Go to Toastmasters. Say yes to every presentation opportunity. I’ve also seen lots of people overcome their fear and go on to be outstanding presenters. It has definitely helped their careers. Leer más “15 Insights from 15 Years – Notes from a PR and Ad Agency Survivor”

2010 Top 49 Most Influential Men

More than half a million AskMen readers voted, along with the staff of AskMen, to determine the Top 49 Most Influential Men of 2010. The men who made the list come from all backgrounds- – politics, sports, entertainment, technology, philanthropy — but every single man on the list is a groundbreaker in his respective field, and some are even outright rule-breakers. These are the men history will remember as having defined 2010. More importantly, they’re the men who inspire the rest of us to become Better Men.

So who tops the list in 2010? Mark Zuckerberg was No. 4 in 2009, but did the growth of his Facebook empire move him up on the list, or did The Social Network damage his public persona? Tiger Woods was No. 30 last year, but did his troubled public image thwart his influence? President Obama grabbed the No. 1 spot in 2008, and fell to No. 3 in 2009, but has he done enough in 2010 to even make the list?


http://www.askmen.com/specials/top_49_men/

More than half a million AskMen readers voted, along with the staff of AskMen, to determine the Top 49 Most Influential Men of 2010. The men who made the list come from all backgrounds- – politics, sports, entertainment, technology, philanthropy — but every single man on the list is a groundbreaker in his respective field, and some are even outright rule-breakers. These are the men history will remember as having defined 2010. More importantly, they’re the men who inspire the rest of us to become Better Men.

So who tops the list in 2010? Mark Zuckerberg was No. 4 in 2009, but did the growth of his Facebook empire move him up on the list, or did The Social Network damage his public persona? Tiger Woods was No. 30 last year, but did his troubled public image thwart his influence? President Obama grabbed the No. 1 spot in 2008, and fell to No. 3 in 2009, but has he done enough in 2010 to even make the list? Leer más “2010 Top 49 Most Influential Men”