Dec 26 2014
You’d never know over a year has passed since the theatrical delight ‘Frozen’ skated its way into our hearts. In that short time, ‘Frozen’ has gone from a holiday box office hit to a pop culture icon with female lead, Elsa (played by Idina Menzel), paving the way. TIME even named her the “Most Influential Character of 2014,” and her merchandise has topped the Christmas lists of little girls everywhere. Here are five PR and marketing lessons we can learn from this Disney masterpiece:
1. Appeal to multiple audiences Audiences across American quickly fell in love with Frozen. Even I have to admit I crank up the volume and rock out when “Let It Go” comes on. Not only do kids love it – the obvious target – but parents also enjoy the catchy music and pithy dialogue. Even dogs love it! By appealing to such a wide variety of audiences, Frozen got full market penetration and immense success.
2. Take a modern approach Frozen has been acclaimed as the most progressive Disney movie ever, and the strategy obviously worked. Disney decided to roll with the times and created…
Dec 22 2014
Late last week Berkshire Hathaway leader and perennial investment rock star Warren Buffett sent his bi-annual letter to the “all-star” leaders of the more than 80 different companies that Berkshire owns. The central theme?
We can afford to lose money – even a lot of money. But we can’t afford to lose reputation – even a shred of reputation.
The dude gets it. One of the most influential business leaders and financial minds of the last century is telling his top managers that money can be recovered much easier than reputation. And this nothing new for Buffett – he said it back in 2010 when he took over as Chairman and CEO of Solomon Brothers. Back then he said “lose money for the firm, and I will be understanding. Lose a shred of reputation for the firm, and I will be ruthless.”
Characteristic of Buffett, those two quotes say more about reputation than thousands of reputation management, brand and image consultants (me included). A few key points:
It’s all about actions. Buffett makes it pretty clear that it’s what his management does – not just what it says – that will…
Dec 4 2014
Convenience is the most important aspect of the new healthcare world.
These days, a sore throat doesn’t always warrant a call to your primary care physician. Instead, a quick search on your favorite health site can give you the information you seek and you don’t even have to leave your desk. Ever heard of WebMD? (Uh, yeah). The last place any of us want to be is in a doctor’s office, waiting to be seen, waiting to get an answer and just waiting to catch what the guy next to us has.
At the Virginia Society of Healthcare Marketing and PR (VSHMPR) Fall Conference, I learned consumers are no longer accepting the traditional patient-doctor relationship. We are empowered. We are informed. We are connected. And we’ll take drastic measures to avoid a doctor’s office.
That’s why One Medical Group is reinventing the doctor’s office. If you ask them, they prefer not to be categorized as a doctor’s office at all. They don’t treat patients, they engage with members. Appointments are not only guaranteed to start on time, but also last longer and offer a higher quality interaction. They also…
Nov 26 2014
It’s not even December, yet the web is already buzzing with predictions on what’s hot in the wine and spirits industry in 2015. Maybe someone took their cue from Walmart, which started selling Holiday decorations the day after Halloween.
Like it or not, trend reports, much like holiday decorations, no longer wait for sweater weather. Jumping on the band wagon, here are three emerging beverage trends for 2015.
The Boilermaker Celebrates a Comeback
In 2015, craft cocktails will share the spotlight with simpler, more straight-forward drinks, such as a shot and a beer, known as a “boilermaker.” Case in point, The New York Times recently published a full-page feature on the classic pairing. Some of these pairings are the usual cheap-whiskey-and-cheaper-beer marriages one expects, but more sophisticated duos are making their way into bars across the country.
Wine Pairings Go East
Asian food will continue to be a huge trend next year, so think about how to educate your audience on clever pairings for your alcohol beverage brands. For the best pairings with Ramen noodles, Vietnamese Pho and Korean street food-inspired grub, Wine…
Oct 31 2014
Co-authored by Emily Valentine
It’s our best guess that this weekend, you will either a) attend an epic costume party, b) hear about an epic costume party, c) see pictures of said epic costume party or d) all of the above. If you answered “d,” congratulations; your weekend will clearly be black, orange and “basic” all over. It’s not a bad thing. Adults these days LOVE Halloween. They really get into it.
The National Retail Federation predicts that this weekend, some 75 million adults will put on costumes. Americans are expected to spend $2.8 billion on costumes, according to NRF’s Halloween Consumer Spending Survey. Specifically, consumers will spend $1 billion on children’s costumes, $1.4 billion on adult costumes and $350 million on pet costumes. Moreover, total Halloween spending is estimated to reach $7.4 billion this year, with the average person spending $77.52 on indoor and outdoor décor, costumes, and candy. That’s a whole lot of money for one little weekend. Don’t get us wrong. We’re not hating; we just wonder… why?
Is it because it’s the one time each year we can get away with dressing in scary, outlandish or downright inappropriate costumes… in public?
(Maybe Cady Heron…
Oct 6 2014
When I told people we were heading to Los Angeles for a long weekend and not renting a car, they all thought we were crazy. But L.A. is a car city, they all explained. Everyone drives in L.A. my friends from the Valley said…everyone!
But, we were determined to have an Uber-experiment. Despite having never even used Uber, this was going to be our jumping-in point – we had no other back-up transportation so it was “go Uber or go home.”
We discovered a lot on our Uber-venture, and when I looked back, I realized that there were some great lessons learned – ones that can also apply to our role as communications professionals.
Lesson #1: Have a specific destination in mind and share it.
One of the great things about Uber is that you GPS your starting point for pick-up but you can also pinpoint your exact destination (and in fact you should always do this). This is helpful because it avoids wasted time and energy trying to explain to your driver where you want to go, having to program the Uber GPS, etc. It sets expectations for all involved and streamlines…