According the Content Marketing Institute’s Australian Benchmark’s 2017 Report, 78 per cent of Australian businesses use email marketing. About half of us say it is critical — indeed the most critical — tactic we have for distributing our content. We’re all using email marketing, but what’s considered best practice?

In today’s podcast, James, Nic and Sarah take a deep dive into how to use email marketing.


 

Here are key take-outs:

  • Email marketing can be extremely effective. People look at their email every day.
  • Don’t be a part of the problem. Don’t create spam. Find out what your subscribers want.
  • Don’t just ask yourself what you want to achieve with your email marketing; ask your audience what they want to read.

“You do get to a point where you can be doing more harm than good (sending out ineffective email marketing).” — Sarah

 

  • Share the responsibility for writing the email throughout your organisation, to share your expertise and provide real insights and valuable information to your readers.
  • Put your personality into your newsletter, as well as your expertise.

“If you’re just going to spam people, it’s a lot easier to just go out and buy AdWords,” — Sarah

 

  • When should you send your email marketing out? It depends. Experiment. See what times and days give you the best result.
  • Segment your database. Don’t hit everyone up with every email, especially if they’re not going to find the email relevant or informative.
  • Focus on your subject line. Don’t use generic ones. Try to be eye-catching.

“Email is so important, but it’s not the only part (of marketing) — it should be one of many parts.” — Nic

 

Here are the links you might need

 

Have you heard the one about…

Last week James, Sarah and Nic spoke to ADMA’s Jodie Sangster about the CMI Trends report.

 

And here’s a discussion about the recent #StopFundingHate campaign.

 

Like what you’ve heard?

Give us a follow on Soundcloud to get the latest episodes.

Or, you can subscribe or leave a review on iTunes.

 

Lego has announced it will no longer do business with British tabloid newspaper, The Daily Mail.

It was a response to a public campaign, called #StopFundingHate, which directly targeted advertisers in several major UK newspapers, urging them not to support publications that promoted “demonisation and division” during the Brexit debate.

Sarah, James and Nic take a look at what this sort of campaign means for brands and the media.

 

Here are some key take-outs:

  • Brands need to uphold the values they claim they represent. Brands that don’t are susceptible to this kind of campaign.
  • What was the honest reason behind Lego’s decision? Perhaps they wanted to walk away from their advertising arrangements with the newspaper anyway? Perhaps they had no more promotions planned.

“This has been hijacked. This is the power of social media. We’ve built up a furore around it and we’ve placed Lego on this enormous pedestal of ‘true value’ — what a fighter for the Stop Hate campaign — when the campaign had actually come to a close.” — Nic

 

  • The winner may well be The Daily Mail, because they’re getting publicity out of this. It might actually win them more readers.
  • The way the media behaves has changed. Media organisations are now partisan. The question for Lego is why it ever wanted to do a promotion with a media organisation with values that are so out of line with the values it claims to represent?

“Obviously Lego had identified that the readers of the Daily Mail were a good market for them, that there were some synergies there, and they probably didn’t take it to the next step and ask themselves ‘do we agree with the editorial?’ It was only when they got called out that they decided to address that. It’s up to individual companies to decide how much criticism they’re willing to take from their audience.” — Sarah

 

  • Social media is a powerful tool — it empowers the public and consumer. A campaign like this can snowball quickly. It is likely Lego just got caught out.
  • Brands can actually benefit from making decisions that respond to campaigns like these, if it’s done correctly. But how you respond is a business decision and simply caving in to pressure may not be the best course of action.

 

Here are the links you might need

 

Have you heard the one about…

Recently James, Sarah and Nic took a close look at whether the desire to “go viral” is killing trust.

 

And here’s a discussion about “newsjacking” and the virtues of controversy.

 

Give us a follow on Soundcloud to get the latest episodes.

Or, you can subscribe or leave a review on iTunes.

It’s Election Day in the United States. We made it. But at what price? The Brand Newsroom team takes a close look at negativity. How should we handle it? What’s the cost of letting it run free? The Donald Trump experience seems to teach us that going negative can get you a long way. But is there a better way to achieve your goals?

 

 

Here are some key take-outs:

 

  • Negative news sells. It’s just a part of the human condition. The media and marketers know that a bad news story is always going to sell more than a good news story.
  • Being negative got Trump out in front of the media and spoke to his base, which feels negatively about the issues he champions. It’s a cheap way to present and while it worked for Trump it won’t work for brands.

“We can be so put off by some negative comments that float around but equally we can get so much attention by drawing attention to the negative”. — James

 

  • There has been a huge backlash to Trump’s toxic way of communicating. It might have got him the attention, but can it win him the election?
  • Don’t just recognise the problem; deliver the solution.
  • You don’t have to go negative the way Trump has to talk to your base. There’s nothing more powerful than saying, “I understand the stress you’re feeling, and I can help you with that”. It’s taking that negative message but delivering it positively.

“Getting the pitchforks out, taunting the natives and inciting riot, even if it’s in the social media space… it’s a race to the bottom.” — Sarah

 

  • We stand on our reputation and if your reputation is negative, that’s not going to stand you in good stead in the long-term. Negativity has a shelf life.
  • Having love and empathy for your audience is far more powerful than negativity.
  • Negativity attracts negativity — so be careful what you wish for.

“My grandmother used to say, if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” — Nic

 

Here are the links you might need

  • James Lush’s blog about negativity.

 

Have you heard the one about…

A couple of months ago Sarah did a little experiment examining the email marketing campaigns of the Trump and Clinton campaigns. Here’s what she found out.

 

And here’s a discussion with Jonathan Crossfield about avoiding social media marketing mistakes.

 

Like what you’ve heard?

 

Give us a follow on Soundcloud to get the latest episodes.

Or, you can subscribe or leave a review on iTunes.

 

Bernadette Jiwa is one of Australia’s top marketing thinkers. Author of five books including Fortune Cookie Principle and Marketing: A Love Story, her blog — The Story of Telling — was named SmartCompany’s best Australian business blog in 2016. Bernadette challenges us to look differently at how we do marketing. Today she joins the Brand Newsroom team to talk about putting a little bit more love into our marketing.

bernadette

Bernadette Jiwa

 

 

Here are some key take-outs:

 

  • As old monopolies crumble, brands are starting to see the value in putting a bit more love into their marketing — and that includes getting better at telling stories.
  • Don’t fall in love with your brand’s story first; fall in love with the customer first. Stand in the shoes of the person you’re telling the story to.

“The challenge for us is not to understand our product and how great the story is, the challenge to understand why we made this thing in the first place, who we made it for and why it should matter to them. — Bernadette Jiwa

 

  • Effective storytelling doesn’t have to be written words, it could well be pictures. Some brands use Instagram very effectively to tell their story.
  • Think about what you want each piece of content to do — not just for the brand, but for the client.

“Too often we’re so intent on saying what we want to say that we forget to listen and observe.” — Sarah

 

  • Ideas for blog posts are all around you. Be alert to them.
  • Don’t pad-out your content. It isn’t a school essay — you don’t need to write for length. Be concise.
  • You have to put the time into content. You start from a point of service — hoping people are going to come and read your stuff. Do it because you love it. If you start from that place then you do better work.

“If you don’t like the work that you’re doing, it shows in your work.” — Bernadette Jiwa

 

Here are the links you might need

 

Have you heard the one about…

Recently James, Sarah and Nic spoke to Content Marketing Institute vice president Michele Linn about the 2017 trend report for B2B content marketing.

 

And here’s a discussion with Jonathan Crossfield on how to avoid epic social media mistakes.

Like what you’ve heard?

Give us a follow on Soundcloud to get the latest episodes.

Or, you can subscribe or leave a review on iTunes.

 

The US Presidential race is well and truly under way, with Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump campaigning relentlessly for support. Rather than yet another discussion of politics, today the team took a closer look at the marketing strategies of each candidate. Sarah Mitchell was recently in the US and signed up to the campaigns of both Trump and Clinton to see who was winning the campaign from a marketing perspective.

 

 

Here are some key take-outs:

 

  • Clinton’s website provides a large array of merchandising options, whereas Trump sticks to a few basic staples of buttons, signs, hats and T-shirts.
  • Supporters wanting to buy merchandise also have to provide personal details, including home and email addresses. This information was then used by both parties to target the supporter.

“This is something that companies generally don’t do very well in terms of the follow up: they get the email address and then they never correspond again.” — James

 

  • Both candidates embrace email correspondence enthusiastically. Trump sent out upwards of 60 emails that all followed the same set template and said the same basic information. On perhaps a positive note, Trump’s message is kept simple and to the point.
  • Clinton’s campaign involves an even greater quantity of emails but with different formats and varying content. Influencer marketing features strongly with the Obamas, Anna Wintour and Barbara Streisand lending support. There is also an emphasis on fundraising from Clinton’s camp.

“The 40 years of political experience (of Clinton) is really showing here in its style and quality.” — Nic

 

  • It’s rare that you see two companies side-by-side competing for the same goal. This experiment provided a unique opportunity to compare and contrast marketing methods of direct competitors
  • Clinton requests for money from supporters, starting at just $1, whereas Trump does not explicitly ask for any funds.

“Hillary wins hands-down. More personalised, more varied… I know a lot about her campaign. I know a lot about what she stands for, about the policies that are important to her. With Trump, all I get from him is he needs me to come to his appearances and he’s really good at name-calling.” — Sarah

 

Here are the links you might need

  • Sarah’s original blog on the marketing tactics of Trump and Clinton, that James mentioned early on, can be found here.

 

Have you heard the one about…

Recently James, Sarah and Nic took a close look at PR disasters.

 

And here’s a discussion about who we trust, and why.

 

Like what you’ve heard?

Give us a follow on Soundcloud to get the latest episodes.

Or, you can subscribe or leave a review on iTunes.