Monday Morning Marketing Minute: Study On Ads Showcasing Diversity, When PR Spokespeople Become the News

Your weekly roundup of marketing news, tips and mistakes! 

Could Vimeo Business Be Your New Video Marketing Service?
The global video-sharing website Vimeo recently unveiled a business-focused subscription plan aimed at startups, small businesses and agencies. You can not only share videos with calls to action buttons and an email subscription service, but also track your viewers’ engagement in targeted email campaigns…

Study: Ads Showcasing Diversity Connect More with Young Consumers
In the past, industry wisdom has suggested that the best business practice is to separate politics from marketing entirely. That may become less prevalent, however, as young consumers become receptive to or even demanding of more nontraditional representation in their ads…

Marketing Mistakes  
Learning from mistakes is critical. Who said they had to be your own?

When PR Spokespeople Become the News
While no one can argue Sean Spicer has his hands full as the White House press secretary and communications director, it became worse when he committed a PR no-no and allowed himself to become the topic of news (and ridicule)…

Need Sales? Create Your Own Hallmark Holiday

There is a debate whether St. Valentine’s Day is a “Hallmark Holiday.” Some regard it as a made up holiday, much like Grandparents’ Day, Secretary Day and Sweetest Day, where companies like Hallmark commercially benefit. Hallmark denies such marketing prowess on it’s website, citing the history of the holiday, dating back to 498 AD. In either case, it should be noted – and hard to place a value on – a company is associated with several holidays.

This got your Guerrilla Marketer thinking…

How can this concept help drive your business? What “holiday” can you create which will generate buzz, increase awareness and drive traffic?

You may have already done the “Anniversary Sale,” or “Customer Appreciation Day.” Those are okay. However, I’m thinking larger. How can you turn a nationally recognized day, and turn it into your own?

For example, I know on the first day of Spring, Rita’s will give out free Italian Ice to everyone. Every year, this is their big push to let the community know they are open for business. In fact, this year is their 25th Anniversary of hosting this event – at now over 600 locations in 30 states and five countries. There will be lines of people, even in cold weather, waiting for their free cone. People driving by will wonder what is going on, perhaps noticing the location for the first time. And, for those who went last year, many will now associate the first day of Spring with this chain.

So, what holiday or nationally recognized day or date can you use to associate with your business?

Can the first days of Summer, Fall or Winter tie in to your business?

What about Continue reading

Monday Morning Marketing Minute: Super Bowl Ad Reactions, Full-Stack Marketing Trends

Your weekly roundup of marketing news, tips and mistakes! 

Heinz’s Brilliant Non-Super Bowl Campaign
Want to call in sick today? You’re not alone. After last year’s unforgettable Weiner Dog Super Bowl ad, Heinz decided this year to start a petition for having the day after the Super Bowl off, and it has gotten plenty of press…

Three full-stack marketing trends for 2017
What is “Full-Stack Marketing?” It refers to someone who has a ‘full stack’ of skills – creative, technology, and data – and can deliver in any one of the areas, or across all three. Here are three trends for 2017 according to the co-founder and Chief Innovation Officer of Emarsys…


Marketing Mistakes  
Learning from mistakes is critical. Who said they had to be your own?

84 Lumber Website Crashes After Commercial about Immigration
For an ad considered “too controversial” to air completely on TV and directing viewers to see the rest on their website… wouldn’t it make sense to have the website ready for all the traffic?

Super Bowl Ads 2017: The Good, The Bad & What Were They Thinking?

While the confetti is still settling to Super Bowl LI, I thought I would provide a few instant reactions to the commercials from the big game. Even though the Patriots overcame a 25 point third quarter deficit to force the first-ever Super Bowl overtime, many of the 110+ million viewers were also glued to the television set to see the commercials.

Didn’t get a chance to see the ads? Watch them here.

As a marketer, the Super Bowl is one of the top events I look forward to each year. The anticipation is, if you are going to spend a reported $5.5 Million per 30 second television spot, the most creative minds will provide the best commercials.

But… as Howard Cosell said regarding the best laid plans in football, “That’s why they play the game.”

Here are my instant observations. More analysis will come in a future blog.

The Good: T-Mobile, Mr. Clean, Febreeze, Squarespace and Tide get high marks.

T-Mobile ruled the night with several different campaigns all focused on the unlimited service they offer. Whether it was Justin Bieber, Gronk and T.O. depicting the history of the celebration dance, the unlikely pairing of Martha Stewart and Snoop Dogg, or Kristen Schaal getting turned on by being punished by the other company’s overage charges, T-Mobile caught our attention and delivered their message loud and clear.

Perhaps no ad made the room stop and stare at the screen more than the surprisingly sexy cartoon character of Mr. Clean strutting his stuff while cleaning the house. Kudos to the creative team that came up with this clever commercial, including a laugh-out-loud moment at the end where Mr. Clean was actually a real-life, less-than-ordinary man, being passionately attacked with the line, “Ya gotta love a man who cleans.”

Speaking of commercials that made us laugh out loud, Febreeze bluntly came out and announced what their product is really being used for. Part of an overall campaign, this commercial specifically tied into the Super Bowl halftime break and challenged us if our bathroom was ready to handle what was coming.

The Bad: GoDaddy, Lexus and Honda missed the boat.

While it was appreciated GoDaddy didn’t try to use sex to sell their website hosting services this year, the concept of taking various elements of what is popular on the internet was poorly executed and fell flat.

I understand Lexus is trying to target a younger demographic and attempted to do so using dancer Charles Lil’ Buck Riley. But, is that really the right target audience for this $90,000 automobile?

I liked the Honda “Yearbook” commercial for its cleverness, creativity and use of star power. But what was Honda trying to sell here? “Here’s to chasing dreams…” The Honda CR-V? There was little to no connection between the message and the product, leaving me wondering how many Gen Xers were going to be motivated by this commercial.

What were they thinking?:  Continue reading

Monday Morning Marketing Minute – Tips to Navigate the New LinkedIn, Preview Super Bowl commercials


Your weekly roundup of marketing news, tips and mistakes!

LinkedIn debuts new desktop version with ‘chatbots’, new search and more

Having trouble navigating the new LinkedIn? Here is an overview of some of the changes…

Here Are All the 2017 Super Bowl Commercials So Far
In the past few years, advertisers have started releasing versions of their TV ads in the weeks ahead of the Super Bowl to build up hype before the big game. Here’s a list and videos of all the Super Bowl LI commercials out so far…

Marketing Mistakes 
Learning from mistakes is critical. Who said they had to be your own?

Worst Super Bowl Commercials of All Time

Forbes interviewed industry experts who gave their list of Super Bowl failures over the years. Is one of your favorites on the list?

Super Bowl Commercials – What to Look for in 2017

Millions of people tune in to the Super Bowl every year, with last year’s event drawing nearly 112 million viewers. For many, the commercials are the biggest highlight. Besides being entertaining, I have often found the ads can tell us quite a bit about the state of our country, and current marketing trends.

At $5.5M per 30-second spot (nearly double the cost of the same ad in 2010), the big companies and wannabes are going to try to get the most creative minds in the industry to help tell their story in half a minute. Sometimes they win and, a lot of the time, they lose.

Sir Anthony Hopkins is not selling out in this 2016 Super Bowl ad for TurboTax.

Over the years, it has certainly painted a picture of what we like (food, beer, cars, etc.), but it also tells us what is happening in our society. 15 years ago? The Dot Com companies ruled the night. During the recent recession? Soda, chips, candy bars and fast food – inexpensive comfort items – took prevalence. Two years ago? Sentimental ads focusing on parents, kids and empowerment tugged on our heartstrings. Last year? Brands relied upon respected actors like Hopkins, Neeson, Mirran, Walken and Keitel to build credibility and sway opinion.

What to look for this year? If you are a marketer (or just want to sound smart around the water cooler), here are a few suggestions when watching the Super Bowl…
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Brand Loyalty and What it Means to America this Fall

My mom always told me, “Never discuss politics, religion or sports.” She was right, of course, as nothing gets people in more heated arguments than the subjects they hold so dear. As a marketing strategist and a person who has spent a career building brands, I understand the psychological hold brand loyalty can have over even the most intelligent and informed people.

When I mention words like; ketchup, cola, toothpaste, car, beer, fast food, computer and so on, chances are the brand of the product you are most loyal (or most aware) creeps into your subconscious and conscious brain. Some brands we may be loyalty to, while others we can be swayed by new data (opinions, reviews, advertising) or offers (deals, coupons), among other things.

The same can be said for matters more important than what we consume, such as the political party we side with, the religion or faith we practice, or the team we support and root for. For the most part, these topics are heavily weighted in our core being and it takes something drastic to change our minds.

Which brings me to the impact brand loyalty will have on America (and the world) this fall: the elections. In less than 60 days, we will be electing a new President, as well as one-third of U.S. Senate seats, all U.S. House seats and many statewide elections. Many Americans will vote simply based on brand loyalty.

Does this concern you? It scares me.

Another thing my parents taught me was to vote my conscious. Over the years, I didn’t allow the party to dictate my vote. Rather, I have researched the candidates and looked at their voting record, read their statements and did my best to shift through the facts. If I didn’t know enough about a candidate, I simply didn’t vote for that position. Has it been perfect? No, but I do feel like I am making an informed choice rather than simply voting because I like the brand.

Surveys show most Americans have made up their mind when it comes to the Presidential election, and all the social media posts, commercials and debates will do little to change their minds. Only about 10% of the population remains undecided at this point. To those still deciding, I hope you do your due diligence and vote your conscious over the brand.

Brand loyalty is an amazing thing. And as a brand strategist, I could talk about it for hours should we meet over lunch or drinks some time. And just as passionate I am about building brands, I could go on about how important my faith is to me, or how fanatical I am about my favorite sports team. In those, I am brand loyal for life. But, regarding politics? I think I’ll stick with my mom’s advice.

And The Winner Of The Logo Contest Is…

Your Guerrilla Marketer would like to congratulate Gary Bishop of King’s Bishop Design for winning the Logo Contest! His design – as seen at the top of this site – was certainly a crowd favorite. Over half of the comments posted here mentioned they liked his first submission, with 25% stating it was their first choice.

King’s Bishop Design offers mechanical and architectural CAD work, 3D renderings of all kinds, including animation and scenery. They also offer copywriting, collateral work and much more.

I would like to thank all the designers who submitted, including a special thanks to finalists Alan Goon and Luann Ladley. Their designs received a lot of support, and it was a very difficult decision to make. While Gary may have won, there are no losers. I will be speaking with both Alan and Luann to assist them with their marketing needs as reward for their talent and time.

Please visit the sites of these talented designers and contact them for your design needs:

Gary Bishop
King’s Bishop Design


Alan Goon
IT Art

Luann Ladley
Luann Ladley Design


Thank you to everyone who sent in emails and posted comments on the site!


Logo Contest Finalists – Vote For Your Favorite!

Four weeks ago, Your Guerrilla Marketer announced a contest, looking for designers to submit their ideas for what they think should be the new Your Guerrilla Marketer logo. The winner will get one-on-one marketing counseling with yours truly, Rick Verbanas. The response has been amazing, with the finalists listed below.

These are my favorite designs. Like what you see? Please visit the finalists’ sites and contact them on how they can help you with your design needs! Bookmark their pages for future use and forward their contact information to colleagues who may benefit from their services.

The winner will be announced on Friday, March 30, 2012, via e-newsletter and on this site. Please post your comments below on which logo you think should be the winner!

The finalists are: Continue reading

Top Logo Designers And Their Most Famous Creations

[NOTE: Do you design logos? Looking for exposure? Enter the contest – click here for details!]

Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa.” Michelangelo’s “David.” Raymond Loewy’s “Shell.” Wait. What?!? Like it or not, corporate logos have become as iconic as other forms or art.

Many logos are so recognizable, like Shell, they no longer need their company’s name. Some logos are well known just by using a few words, like “Golden Arches” or, simply, “Swoosh.”

When most advertisers consider logos, they think impressions, not impressionism. Viewing the same logo over and over certainly can create a lasting, well, impression. However, can our affinity for certain logos be merely explained as the result of repeated exposure? Your Guerrilla Marketer believes some logos we have come to know (and, in some cases, love) have lasted and endured because they were designed by extremely talented individuals.

In a recent blog, I took a look at the evolution of famous logos and asked “Is it time to change your logo?”

This blog takes a look at some of my favorite logo designers. Most of these artists have had amazing careers beyond any logo they designed. I cannot do their careers justice in a few sentences, so I will mainly cover their more famous logo designs.

Raymond Loewy (1893-1986) was known as “the man who changed the face of industrial design” and his work was featured as an exhibit at the Smithsonian Institution. His work included designing for Greyhound Buses, Coca-Cola bottles, Pennsylvania Railroad and Air Force One. As a testament to the power of his Shell logo design, Shell dropped its name from their advertisements.

Continue reading