I loved reading Jennifer Wang’s recent blog post for Entrepreneur.com about 10 Lessons in Marketing Brilliance. I have always been a sucker for great advertising and love when someone conveniently gathers a “Best of” list all in one place.
Jennifer’s blog piece focuses on “marketing marvels from 2011” and the marketing lessons they can impart to entrepreneurs. While I agree with many of the lessons she draws from the ten spots, I think my entrepreneurial clients might want to think about some slightly different takeaways for at least three of them:
1. Contagion’s truly “viral” billboard. Jennifer’s lesson: Go guerilla. Since the very heart of the definition of guerrilla marketing is “low budget,” I have a hard time buying that lesson when it comes to a Hollywood movie starring Matt Damon. But I do think this is a great example of making sure that all of your marketing clearly ties back to your core product. This example does that in spades.
2. Lululemon Athletica’s. Jennifer’s lesson: Woo citizen influencers. I agree with Jennifer that this is a key marketing lesson and a great example. But I think the executional challenge for entrepreneurs who want to do this is to first figure out if your consumers/customers have any common leaders who are somehow relevant to the product. Step two is to make them a “customer”. But they don’t have to be your best customer. With influencers, a willingness to be a “public” customer is often enough.
3. Apple’s Siri . Jennifer’s lesson: Solve a problem. Amen! I wholeheartedly believe that every product should solve a problem. Because of that, my quibble here is that this spot is not brilliant because Siri solves a problem. The spot is brilliant because it’s well executed and clearly, simply demonstrates the problem solved rather than trying to explain how the potentially complicated, new-to-the world product works. There is nothing harder than trying to educate consumers about something completely new-to-the world. Apple consistently does a brilliant job of showing people the everyday problems that their products solve. So I would like to suggest that the marketing lesson here is: Keep it simple.
Take a look at the ten spots – Method’s is especially fun, and I would love to hear what your key marketing takeaways are.