Congrats to the team at Thinkbox who delivered yet another fantastic event this am and I would recommend anyone in the media, advertising and technology world checks out the thinkbox.tv site when they have a moment.
The event at BAFTA was entitled – Fads, Fashion and Effectiveness: how brands really grow. As always it was filled with great nuggets of wisdom and challenging debate to media trends, fads, hype and buzzwords and where they sit again the status quo.
In particular, the buzzword ‘engagement’ was, metaphorically speaking, taken outside into the car-park and given a good kicking by Martin Wiegel, Head of Planning from Weiden+Kennedy Amsterdam. Engagement, it was argued, is not a metric and not a useful term. Instead, the audience were encouraged to consider that brands will grow by targeting people who don’t know you, don’t buy you, don’t care about you and aren’t even looking for you i.e. not fans, people who Like you or +1 you. It was a refreshing perspective backed by insights from the author of How Brands Grow, Professor Byron Sharp of the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute of South Australia.
Professor Sharp tagged marketers who focus on fans/friends as ‘shy’ marketers and that real growth will come from targeting the people that buy your rival brands and, indeed, can come from people outside the category you operate in. He challenged marketers to strike up conversations with people who don’t know you, indeed maybe even don’t like you…
Jon Goldstone, former Group Marketing Director of Premier Foods and the marketer behind the famous Hovis campaign said that in simple terms a campaign for growth was about increasing mental and physical availability i.e. think about me more and be available to me in more places.
In this brief summary of a great thought-provoking event, I will leave you with the words of Dan Wieden, founder of Wieden and Kennedy, who asked the question ‘are you a good storyteller or a bad storyteller?’ and explained that people have always wanted great stories since the days of sitting around a campfire. His call-to-action of ‘Move me, dude’ was a great reminder of what sits at the heart of every brilliant communications campaign, a story that moves people.