16 Keys To Pulling Off A Successful Marketing Stunt

Question: What Is One Of The 16 Keys To Pulling Off A Successful Marketing Stunt?
Answer: Take Over A Space During A Public Gathering Or Event.

“During a large public gathering or sporting event, take over a space with creative installations and imagery that makes people literally ask each other what it is being advertised. Once it’s recognized, the uniqueness ingrains it in their mind, which helps with future brand building.”
Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne Advertising

For the full article go to “16 Keys To Pulling Off A Successful Marketing Stunt” at Forbes.

15 Ways Companies Can Build Brand Reputation Sharing Honest Reviews

Question: What is one of the 15 Ways Companies Can Build Brand Reputation Sharing Honest Reviews?
Answer: Comment On Less-Than-Stellar Reviews To Address Customer Concerns.

“If there is a less-than-stellar review, a brand can take the time to effectively comment and address any customer concerns related to the product. When another potential customer sees the brand’s response, it raises trust in the brand that it will effectively address customer concerns and act to fix them.”
Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne Advertising

For the full article go to “15 Ways Companies Can Build Brand Reputation Sharing Honest Reviews” at Forbes.

Launching A New Product Or Service? 15 Creative Ways To Showcase It

With so many newly released products and services constantly being announced, it can be difficult for companies to get the attention of consumers when they bring something new to market. Many marketers rely on traditional ad campaigns for launches. In the digital age, however, there are countless ways to garner attention for a new offering. What’s the best way to help it stand out from the rest?

Forbes Agency Council

We asked members of Forbes Agency Council to tell us about creative ways a company can showcase a new product or service being launched. See 15 of their best suggestions below to find out how to make sure new offerings make a splash in the market.

1. Challenge The Current Status Quo

A creative way to showcase a product or service your company is launching is by differentiating from tradition. Take on an expansive view of your customers’ current lives, how they are interacting with the service and how they will benefit from it. Challenge the current status quo to appeal to a new audience and reinvigorate your current base. – Sarah Tourville, Media Frenzy Global

2.Preview It With Your Customer Advisory Board

Your customer advisory board likely provided the impetus for creating it and may have even helped to test it with you. They may have some insights and ideas for how to best communicate its value and reach other prospects as well. – Eyal Danon, Ignite Advisory Group

3. Push The Envelope With Video

Video is the powerhouse. Make it short, original, humorous and authentic. The best content is produced when one is willing to push the envelope. For example, let’s say you have a new line of shoes. Instead of hiring models, hire the best long-legged poodles or labradoodles with colored fur, do a photoshoot and create a video. – Ally Spinu, USA Link System

4. Tell A Compelling Story

For a new product or service launch, companies should create an engaging piece of content that tells the story of the product or service. Explain why you created it and how it will make the potential customer’s life better, easier, etc. There is so much competition for attention in the market right now, so products and services that tell a story stand out. – Aliza Freud, SheSpeaks, Inc.

5. Run Targeted Ad Campaigns Across Social Media

One creative way to showcase a product or service your company is launching is by getting ahead with your digital marketing efforts by running paid content distribution across social media. Paying to get in front of your target audience by leveraging targeted social media advertising campaigns will create the meaningful awareness needed for a successful launch. – Jonathan Durante, Expandify Marketing Inc.

6. Tie It To An Event

If there is a local or national event happening, your company can help support it with a new product or service. This naturally shows the benefits of your new service, but also cross-promotes the event where your product or service will be in action. – Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne LLC

7. Tap Into Existing Viral Conversations

Tap into existing high-profile, highly viral conversations to promote your product or service. If you are promoting a virtual event service, identify popular, real-world examples that you can use to promote yourself. For example, you could repost a Twitter post of Britain’s Got Talent going virtual and suggest that, if they can do it, so can you! – Mike Boogaard, MOI Global

8. Try TikTok If Your Audience Is There

This advice is not for every business, and it’s definitely not for B2B, but if you’re working with your customers directly, have you considered TikTok? With a little creativity and a pinch of humor, you have all the chances of reaching a pretty big chunk of your audience, if not going viral. – Solomon Thimothy, OneIMS

9. Plan A Multi-Touch Campaign

Depending on the magnitude of the product or service, a multi-touch campaign is powerful. Think email, social and direct mail to your existing clients. – Michael McFadden, eAccountable

10. Perform A Live Case Study

A creative way to stand out is to perform a live case study prior to your launch. Customers love to see the proven value before buying a product or service. Using the opportunity as an educational resource will also help spread the news through word of mouth and social media. – Jonas Muthoni, Deviate Agency

11. Host A Virtual Press Conference

New products or services can be launched with a number of creative initiatives, including press releases, videos, short videos for social sharing, digital marketing and direct mailers. Virtual press conferences and promotions help to make it a true “event.” It can be cost-effectively achieved and still keep true to some major tech consumer launches, such as Apple’s. Have fun with it and celebrate it. – Ilissa Miller, IMiller Public Relations

12. Create An Interactive Digital Experience

Create an interactive digital experience to walk someone through your solution. This may be dynamic images with mouse-over information boxes, quizzes, product configurators or chatbots. Webinars provide another great way to engage with prospects through in-session surveys and Q&A. These tactics provide a richer and more memorable experience for prospects as well as opportunities for you to gain market feedback. – Wendy Covey, TREW Marketing

13. Collaborate With Influencers

Collaborating with influencers can be a very effective way of showcasing a recently launched product or service. Having these creators try your offerings early on and sharing with their communities what they really think about it will not only raise awareness directly with your target audience, but also offer them a relatable and trustworthy opinion that can move the needle for you. – Emilie Tabor, IMA – Influencer Marketing Agency

14. Collect Testimonials

Testimonials are a great way to showcase what your company is capable of. The main reason for this is that, when you are sharing what is possible, you will see many new people interested in the products and services that you are offering. – Jon James, Ignited Results

15. Send A Creative PR Package Via Mail

With the digital era that we live in, sending a package via mail definitely holds its weight and cuts through—especially when dealing with the press. Sending a creative PR pack to prospective clients or journalists through the mail, rather than simply emailing them a link to your website and attaching a press release, will put you above the rest. – Adrian Falk, Believe Advertising & PR

How To Bring A Brand To Life: 14 Lessons In Effective Storytelling

An agency doesn’t just sell a product; it builds a story around the item that gives it a life of its own. Effective storytelling is one of a marketer’s most critical skills, and while practice can help you improve your ability to craft a compelling narrative, learning from the masters is an important part of excelling at any art.

Forbes Agency Council

The key is to help audience members see themselves as protagonists in your brand story. Below, 14 experts from Forbes Agency Council discuss how lessons they’ve learned about storytelling have informed their approach to the process.

1. Be Yourself

In other words, remain authentic. I realize this may sound as though I have personified the brand, and that was purposeful. Brands need to have their own identities, and the story behind each brand has to not only be believable, but also true. If a brand is shrouded by mistruths or misleading claims, it will likely not survive, and it will definitely not thrive. – Dave Wendland, Hamacher Resource Group

2. Aim To Inspire And Motivate

Stories should inspire and motivate. A story simplifies complex messages and helps a viewer or listener feel more connected. We have seen a 20% to 30% increase in brand engagement through storytelling marketing. – Mandeep Singh, SEO Discovery Pvt Ltd.

3. Make Sure The Timing Is Right

It doesn’t matter how good a story is, if the timing is wrong, especially in times of turmoil, it will come across as tone-deaf. Keep in mind what is going on in the world and assess whether it will impact how people respond to your message. If you don’t, you run the risk of losing the opportunity—and your audience—completely. – Valerie Chan, Plat4orm PR

4. Incorporate Trust Signals

When telling a story, it’s important to send trust signals that communicate your story’s authenticity. That’s what makes your narrative relatable and believable to buyers. Trust signals include customer testimonials, verification of your story by third-party experts or data and many other forms of validation. Your story simply won’t have the impact you’re seeking if people don’t believe it. – Scott Baradell, Idea Grove

5. Focus On Creating An Emotion

Great storytelling is focused around creating an emotion, and brands need storytelling to create an action toward purchase, sharing, awareness or recall. During the creative process, make sure that the desired action is the focus of the creative, then test and measure prior to launch. Creating a great story without a desired response in mind will usually be a waste of time, resources and money. – Brian Meert, AdvertiseMint

6. Make It Compelling For The Audience

The most valuable lesson I have learned about storytelling is that, when it is done well, it makes others want to retell the story. The story can’t be about the person telling it; the story should be compelling for the audience. If the audience members (employees, customers, etc.) are moved, they will carry the story on to others. – Chris Wallace, InnerView Group

7. Remember That Great Stories Are True

Over the years, we’ve learned that understanding what matters, combined with being honest about what you can deliver, creates brand value. The day a brand starts to follow trends that don’t align with it or makes changes to make customers happy is the day its story starts to become hollow. And, sadly, the brand begins to die. – Bo Bothe, BrandExtract, LLC

8. Reflect Your Brand’s Purpose And Values

Stories that are disconnected from purpose and values will backfire because they won’t be authentic or believable. But when an audience sees a clear connection between your story, values and purpose, the storytelling will be more credible, and your audience will feel an emotional connection with your brand. – Don Scales, Investis Digital

9. Be A Problem-Solver Rather Than An Expert

Being a problem-solver rather than an expert has paid off immensely. People are not interested in digging through archives of information. Tell the story, provide immediate value and help with a challenge your prospect is facing. It’s no different with brand marketing. Position your brand to serve your customers, focusing heavily on creating a buyer-centric experience. – Melissa Chang, PureB2B

10. Don’t Go Out Of Your Way To Reinvent The Wheel

Stories have conventions, and audiences are familiar with those conventions because we have been telling each other stories for thousands of years. Also, high production values are nice to have, but they won’t matter if your narrative is not compelling or emotionally engaging. The content matters much more than the sheen. – Tripp Donnelly, REQ

11. Immerse Yourself In Your Client’s World

The best way to be successful as a storytelling agency is to immerse yourself in your client’s world before choosing words to create their narrative. I’ve spent time on the campuses of education clients, sat in classrooms and been a fly on the wall at staff meetings, and those experiences have helped me understand what truly makes my clients’ hearts beat. – Lynne Golodner, Your People LLC

12. Don’t Make The Brand The Hero

Do you know the most common mistake some brands still make? They make the brand the hero of the story: “Our product does XYZ. It’s amazing; look how many people use it.” This is the wrong approach. What they want to do instead is put the limelight on the potential buyer: “You have XYZ problems, and here’s how you can solve them using our product.” – Solomon Thimothy, OneIMS

13. Provide Value Or Entertainment

When it comes to effective storytelling, a brand needs to realize that, before selling to an audience, it must provide one of two things: value or entertainment. The most valuable lesson I learned about storytelling is to make sure we create a strong foundation for our brand’s persona and the right framing prior to pushing our content. A strong plan will create a strong result. – Garrett Atkins, VIE Media

14. Tell Stories Of Real People

Telling stories of real people whose lives have been positively impacted by a brand or product continues to be one of the most authentic ways to bring a brand to life and reach consumers on an emotional level. Consumers can relate to another consumer’s story and see for themselves how a brand can also enhance their own lives. – Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne LLC