10 November 2006

The IDEA Conference Recap 3

This is the third post on the IDEA Conference: Redefining Creativity and discussing implications for small businesses and online marketers. You may view all the recommendations on the IDEA 06 microsite.

10. Flatten management structure -"We don't have enough managers, and we intended it to be that way," said Google's chief engineer, Craig Neville-Manning, who credited that lack of bureaucracy as a big reason for the search giant's success in bringing new products to market.
Run your organization lean and mean. For small business people, this means wearing multiple hats and using contract and temporary employees for special projects.

11. Market to the interested - In analyzing a recent Iams campaign, David Verklin, CEO of Carat Americas, found that 40% of the American population owns a dog. "When I run an ad on TV, 60% of the people watching have no interest in it. It's bad for the client because they don't want to advertise for people who aren't interested. And it's certainly bad for the delivery system, putting ads in front of people that are boring them."
"Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half" (John Wanamaker). Know your target market and your product or service. Do not advertise unless you can track your results. Be flexible and adaptable and do not get attached to any one format or media type. See (8. Prototype early from yesterday's post)

12. Go for a brand back rub - Eric Plaskonos, director-brand communications at Philips Electronics North America, introduced the concept of "brand chiropractics" to the crowd in his closing statement, citing Philips' recent innovative spreads in Gourmet and its sponsorship of commercial-free football games. "It's slightly unorthodox and [hands-on], but when it works it makes you feel really good."
Sponsor a little league or soccer team. Rent a table at a charity benefit and give your tickets to members or customers. Whatever you can do to help members of your online or offline community will pay off in customer goodwill, name recognition and better public relations.

13. Give consumers some control - "Once you've allowed the consumer to create something around your brand, you have to assume that is not something you can control," said Jeremy Allaire, founder and CEO of Brightcove. Brightcove allows marketers to build video-content channels of their own -- and provides users with the building blocks for their own creations. This way you can make sure the ideas are still coming from the marketer, and that's the key to successful consumer-generated media, said Mr. Allaire. "It's highly empowering to consumers and helps to accentuate those brands as opposed to diminish them.
This is a followup to (.7 from yeserday, Let consumers inside). Engagement, interactivity and a rich media experience allows customers to shape their interaction with your brand. You benefit with access to consumer-generated content and clients who are invested in your brand.

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