Each year, Marsha Lindsay and her team at Lindsay, Stone & Briggs bring some of the biggest names in branding together on the shores of Madison's Lake Monona for an unbelievable two day conference called Brandworks University. A content-rich Day One is on the books...and here are the synopsized highlights:
Marsha Lindsay: Your best customer is not necessarily the one the buys the most from you. Your best customer could be the one that talks you up to the most people. The sun is a prerequisite for life...but we love it for the way it feels on our face. Don't create a shopping environment...create a buying environment. And that means making the decision process easy and empowering.
Mark-Hans Richer (CMO of Harley-Davidson, who made his entrance onto the stage on his V-Rod that he had just ridden from Milwaukee): Short-term sales versus long-term Branding is a false choice...you must have both. The "consideration" phase for owning a Harley can be up to 20 years for some. It's not just about this quarter's sales...but how we influence the sales of the next quarter century. Last year's Biker-Claus TV spot drove apparel sales in a generally soft market...but 75% that saw the ad said it "made me want to own a Harley." We aggressively enforce our trademark...except when it's in ink on somebody's body.
Dina Howell (GM of Global Marketing of Procter & Gamble): Mobile and Interactive are not emerging media in many parts of the world...it's already established. And, 70% of all product choice occurs at the shelf.
Bob Deutsch (Cognitive Anthropologist): Today, consumers are in control...but when were they not? Don't focus on being top-of-mind...focus on being primal. Don't focus on people's interests...focus on their identities.
Brian Haven (Senior Analyst of Forrester Research): The 4i's of the Brand process are Involvement, Interaction, Intimacy and Influence. Most marketing stops at Interaction...and forfeits the opportunity to mold advocacy for the product by the purchaser. You must think about the entire life-cycle...not just the sale.
Joel Rubinson (CRO of the Advertising Research Foundation): The recent ability to measure almost all performance metrics has sadly caused many to focus on the short-term sales aspects of a product/company at the expense of building brands. Those that say today's youth are not brand responsive aren't looking in the right places. Of course they don't show affinity for paper towels...but they do for products that are meaningful to them. Don't think brands are important? Try grocery shopping in a foreign country. Don't just look at trends...look at "Off-Trends." Was there anything more off-trend than coffee before Starbucks? CFOs need to measure longterm brand equity as an asset on their balance sheets.
Arjen Linders (VP/Marketing for Philips Consumer Lifestyle): If you never experienced the marketing of Philips' entry into the personal grooming arena, you need to click here...and then, once in, on "Body."
My head is still spinning...and I'll be back with Day Two highlights tomorrow.