How to predict the future of marketing
Apr 26, 2021 7:40 pm
Because being on the right side of wrong is a winning strategy, right?
Hello Content Creators!
I've been on the road for the past three weeks, hence the lack of emails recently. We were mostly in Utah for family vacation followed by product testing, which provided a ton of insights I'll share further down.
Between canyoning, car camping, finding fossils, and sights like this...
...I've had a lot of time to think about how recent events have given marketers the chance to bolster customer affinity by simply aligning with the right things.
Here are a few examples (tourism, political, product) to illustrate how you can develop a forward-looking marketing and product launch strategy that is guaranteed to succeed.
There's a LOT packed into this email. I promise it all comes together at the end.
Remember when women couldn't vote?
Can you imagine being on the wrong side of that argument?
Or the Civil War?
And most recently, there's a lotta anti-LGBTQIA+ legislation.
(Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual BTW...I had to look it up, too.)
Arkansas's the most recent to pass anti-Trans legislation. North Carolina did it a couple years ago and has slowly and very quietly backpedaled much of it. Why? Because it was totally out of touch with what the populace wanted, and businesses quickly found ways to work around it.
And let's not forget Georgia's very recent (anti) voting law that isn't even trying to hide its discriminatory, racist undertones.
WTF are they thinking?
I have a theory.
In every instance mentioned above, these head-scratching decisions were made by a few people in power not wanting to give up power.
They ignored the will of the people (and history) to create laws that are out of touch with the modern world and serve only to maintain the status quo. The world is changing, and they're afraid of what those changes mean for them.
Suffrage won. Slavery Lost. Gay marriage isn't going away. Trans folks aren't gonna just stop being trans.
Can you imagine if your brand acted the same way, trying to market something that no longer fits with people's lifestyles? VCR, anyone?
Location, location, location...right?
When the NCAA pulled out of NC, and MLB and Hollywood are pulling out of Georgia, those businesses are marketing on the correct side of humanity, and history. (If you disagree with me, the unsubscribe button is at the bottom)
When your business decides where to hold events, you send a message about your values.
Outdoor brands love Utah, but struggled with that state's decision to open up Bear's Ears National Monument to drilling and logging. Brands and events that stayed caught flak. If an event the size of Outdoor Retailer can move to a new state, anyone can.
Being right, early, is a HIGH note
When Colorado legalized recreational marijuana use, they saw a massive influx of people. Tax revenue skyrocketed, giving them a surplus of funds for things like education. Property values tripled or more. Major companies moved there.
Weed will eventually be legal everywhere. Colorado saw it early, capitalized on it, and benefitted mightily.
As more states legalize it, the draw to move to Colorado will wane, and the last to legalize will be a footnote. The same thing happens when copycats encroach on your market share. First to market is a short-term advantage, but worth it.
What about an actual "product"?
Colorado's "product" was the ability to get the munchies without getting arrested.
Communities creating infrastructure for arts and outdoor activities to attract tourists, young workers and new families are another perfect example. Bentonville (AR), Ajo (AZ), and Tucumcari (NM), are good examples of creating a "quality of life" product.
"Artists Welcome" is much more appealing and marketable than "Voting Made Difficult for Marginalized Communities."
No, I mean a physical "product"
Remember when some resorts banned snowboards because they didn't fit the image? The resorts that made halfpipes and ramps got all of that business, and brands like Burton exploded.
When 29er mountain bikes debuted, people laughed, but they were clearly superior. Still, brands dragged their feet, giving upstarts like Niner (who committed 100% to the 29" wheel size) a chance to thrive.
Same thing's happening with e-bikes right now. Hater's gonna hate, but these things aren't going away. Startups like RAD Power are now rivaling or beating legacy brands in unit sales. Parks and trails that allowed eMTBs saw more tourism.
Same for cars. Heard of Tesla? I'll tell you right now, I can't imagine buying a new gas-powered car.
When something is both awesome and very clearly the way forward, people will throw money at you to get it.
The Big Picture Takeaway
Get in on the right things early to reap the benefit.
If you're saying "duh" right now, good.
Knowing what's right is (usually) simple. What does your gut tell you? What does history tell you? Pick an issue, look at the true motivations behind the naysayers, and you can probably guess where society will end up.
As history has shown us, the corporate or political "powers that be" are not the best indicators of the will of the people. Champions of the status quo are tomorrow's losers.
Create the products, services, and features that align with what people really want - equality, fairness, acceptance, sustainability, opportunity, self-improvement.
Already offering them? Make sure you're communicating how they align with the future that we, the people, want.
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A Recent Content Project
Last week, we spent 4-1/2 days riding 23 gravel bikes in the desert for upcoming reviews and buyer's guides for Bikerumor and GearJunkie.
We put in more than 400 miles, captured 2,100 videos, and probably about 2TB of video footage.
And we learned a whole lot about how to manage a mega test event. The key takeaways, which you can apply to your own brand photo shoots, are:
- Have an actual plan
- Know what assets you need to capture in advance
- Make a shot list
- Everything takes longer than you think
- Add a day or two
- Be flexible
- Batch the product shots separately from the action shots
- Have a separate photographer so the talent can focus on performing
- Have dedicated support people for food prep, laundry, etc.
- Take notes after each product test, else it blurs together
I've put on a lot of events before, from 24 hour mountain bike races to content marketing conferences. Even my family road trips are real productions. In every case, proper planning is essential to their success. If you're planning a launch event, product shoot, etc., and need some help, give me a shout, I'm happy to help.
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Cool Stuff I've Found
These Crucial X8 SSD external drives are wicked fast, ultra-small, and extremely well priced for the capacity and performance.
I use them to store all my video files while editing in Final Cut Pro X. The 1050mbps read speed doesn't slow down rendering at all, and keeps those massive files off my computer. That speed is, um, crucial for smooth editing, and these are some of the fastest external SSD's on the market.
Additionally, it's super easy to work on video projects on any other computer, so if you have a team of video people, this makes all of the data portable without relying on networked sharing.
These come in 1TB ($149 on Amazon) and 2TB ($220) sizes, I have both.
I've used Crucial SSD hard drives and RAM for years with zero problems, so I trust them with my data. These X8 drives are tiny, yet durable...mine get tossed around and shoved in bags all the time. I can't recommend them highly enough for extra storage, especially for working with video.
Get it right,
PS - Follow me on Instagram if you'd like to see more pics from my travels, plus tips and gear reviews for how I capture content, video and more!
PPS - If you like this, please forward it to a fellow content creator or marketer... Thanks!
*Any items, services, or products mentioned in these emails are provided solely because I think you'll like them. Some links might be affiliate links, which earns me a small commission and helps support all the free content. Thanks!