Looks Good vs. Performs Well

The danger of designing something new is involving both designers and marketers and expecting them to agree. Most designers and marketers want different things.

Designers want to design something that looks good. Something that looks good should work better, says the mind of the designer.

Marketers want to design something what performs better. And they’ll use data and analysis to prove to themselves and to others what performs better.

And the dirty little secret is that the best design is not necessarily the best performer.

So how do you solve this problem?

You address it at the outset. The project manager, who should serve the role of mediator between the two sides on any disagreement, should lay out the goals of the project so that everyone understands them. And the decision to test multiple versions should be made. This gives designers a sense that they are designing for performance, and that performance will be measured.

At the end of the day, I am a marketer and am biased toward the marketer’s point of view. But the results of a performance test should tell you which design is best, based on which works better.

Guest Post - America’s Top 3 Taglines of All-Time

The following is a guest post by Lucas Miller. Lucas is a young, up-and-coming Wizard of Public Relations. When not writing, running or studying, he’s working tirelessly to perfect what he claims is the “World’s Greatest Pompadour.”

Coming up with great taglines is always easier said than done. The difficulty of creating a tagline lies in the fact that, in merely a few simple words, a brand’s personality, attitude and — most importantly — product or service must connect with all of society on an emotional level. That being said, it’s no wonder that few are the taglines that break free from a strictly advertorial role and become part of our very American culture.

3) The California Milk Processor Board - ‘Got Milk?’

Though the campaign officially hung it up in February of 2014, the “Got Milk?” tagline brought the dairy industry a tremendous amount of success during its 20-year run. Launched in 1995 by the California Milk Processor Board, in miraculous fashion, the tagline managed to transform milk consumption into a funny, and even sexy activity through celebrity appearances from the likes of Beyoncé Knowles, David Beckham and Angelina Jolie.

Yes, the tagline was simple, but it actually stood for something: milk should always be around. Furthermore, it was an actionable tagline. If you’re not running out of milk, then it’s going bad. Either way, you’re in need of milk and there’s no time like the present to get some.

2) Apple - ‘Think Different’

Even though a handful of grammar enthusiasts claimed that the tagline should’ve read, “Think Differently,” there’s no getting around the impact that Apple’s influential slogan had on the brand’s re-emergence as a powerhouse of marketing in the world of personal electronics. Crippled from the boom of the Wintel ecosystem, Apple’s reputation took a heavy blow as the Apple Newton proved to be an epic failure in 1987.

“Think Different” worked wonders for the counter-culture vibe which Apple originally transmitted to investors upon its founding in 1976. The restoration of such a character trait was desperately needed. Thanks to the help of the “Think Different” tagline, Apple — along with the timely return of Steve Jobs — quickly regained its stronghold as a tech leader and promoter of global creativity.

1) Nike - ‘Just Do It’

For over 25 years, Nike’s “Just Do It” tagline has been building the public’s perception of the Oregon-based sporting goods company. Rarely can three little words convey such a powerful, unifying image. Created by Widen + Kennedy in 1988, “Just Do It” is arguably the greatest, most recognizable tagline of all time. In that same year, the tagline made its first official media appearance in a commercial starring 80-year-old Walt Stack, who spends the duration of the feature talking about his daily 17-mile runs. No excuses. No complaints. Only results.

Regardless of whether your official “home court advantage” is found within the hallowed walls of Madison Square Garden or at the public park across the street, “Just Do It” motivates everyone to achieve greatness through pushing the personal limits of athletic ability until greatness is achieved.

Taglines and America’s Ever-Expanding Advertising Needs

Simply put, taglines are vital for entrepreneurial success. In fact, each year, companies all across the globe spend billions of dollars on advertising and branding. Produced by Fusion 360, the following infographic presents the current ongoing relationship between the world of advertising and corporate pocketbooks:

For many old-timers, advertising is merely a type of pseudoscience. For those who embrace advertising’s impact on American society, however, a well-crafted tagline does more than any long-winded white paper, press release or newspaper article ever could: it molds identity.

“I” of the Consumer Week in Review

It’s the weekend before Thanksgiving and most stores that are offering Black Friday specials are already offering them. Black Friday has lost all significance. We have entered the age of a whole November full of deep discounts and special deals. And that’s a good thing for consumers. So I say we stop complaining about all the deals we’re getting.

Here is a review of last week’s posts:

  1. Break the Rules – Part 5
  2. Why is Nobody Subscribing to My Emails?
  3. Guest Post – How Not to Use Social Media

Happy Saturday!

3 Ways to Boost Your Marketing Knowledge:

  1. Subscribe to the monthly newsletter to get answers to all your marketing questions
  2. Ask a marketing question that you’d like me to answer for you
  3. Subscribe to the blog and never miss another marketing post

The Case Against Copying the Competition

Yesterday we made the case for copying your competitors. If you have not read yesterday’s post, I recommend you do so and then come back to this one.

Here’s the case against copying your competitors:

  • If you know what they’re doing is not working, don’t copy them. This should be a no brainer, but too many companies will follow their competitors no matter what they do. Make sure you know something they’re doing is working before following suit.
  • If your plan is to take market share away from your competitors, you need to do something different or better. You are never going to steal customers away from your competitors by doing the same exact thing that they’re doing.
  • If you want consumers to view you as better than your competitor, you should not match every offer that they put out there. If the value that you deliver is better, than you can justify a higher price. Lowering your price just because your competition does is not always the answer, and will usually lead to further price cutting and loss of margin.
  • In today’s crowded market, companies that stand out from the crowd will continue to succeed. If you want to be different, you have to truly look and act different. That means that there is no room for copying your competition. Your competitors should want to copy you because you take all their customers away.