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Archive for the ‘Advertising | PR | Creatives’ Category

How to Bring a Sweet Valentine’s Day to Your Customer, Your Colleagues, or Your Sweetheart

In Advertising | PR | Creatives, Business, Inspiration, Viva-La-Vida on 2011/02/14 at 4:42 PM
Today is a day belonging to those who are in love. Yes?

Today is a day dedicating to Hallmark cards, chocolate, and bundles of roses. Yes?

Today is a day expressing your affection to those you’re in love with. Yes?

 

Chocolate for ValentineValentine's Day RosesWell, sort of. But not exactly.

I’d say today is a day making people around you to feel your love and appreciation, for being who they are.

And it’s never too much to say “Thank you, I love you” (or “I appreciate our relationship”) even Thanksgiving was only 3 months ago. After all, we all want to be loved.

Think about what you and I can do to make a sweet Valentine’s day (without filing a chapter 11 tomorrow morning).

  • What are the most valuable items of your recipient?
    Oftentimes we create surveys or ask questions to understand people we care about but then we miss the opportunity to take actions by showing these people “yes, we hear you and understand your needs.” I gave my boyfriend a pair of workout gloves because he once told me that he got callus by lifting weight on a regular basis. Even though I totally let off the secret by asking his hand size, I know that is something he will find it useful. And I guess we all want to deliver the same value by providing what our recipient wants the most.
  • What is your delivery method?How to deliver a Valentine's Day appreciation at workplace
    Have you every given something but did not get the expected feedback from the recipient? If so, consider how you deliver your message. For any type of appreciation, you want to make sure you find the right voice. If you’re in a B2B company and you would like to wish customers a Happy Valentine’s Day, utilize your staffs who are constantly in contact with customers. Your best delivery channel is your staff.
  • Are you creative enough?
    Let’s face it. We are all information overwhelmed. If you start typing “Valentine” on Google, you will find thousands of queries suggesting thousands of things whether it’s about dining location or gift selection. Among all the information we receive, only creative one stands out. I am often intrigued by creative messages coming from someone I’m totally not expected, and this year International Sign Association’s email message totally caught my intention. Do you have an event coming up? Do you have a new product launch? Consider utilizing Valentine’s Day to give your customer a sweet surprise!Creative email campaign - Valentine's Day
  •  What’s beyond an exclusive Valentine’s Day?
    I have seen some sites taking a step further and embracing the “pay it forward” idea by providing charity services or some very neat cause-marketing campaigns. (Read “Re-Booting Valentine’s Day for Good” from Fast Company) In a nutshell, Valentine’s Day is about love and making this world a warmer place. Yes?
What do you do to celebrate Valentine’s Day?

 

      

 

 

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We Creative Folks. Am I? Are You?

In Advertising | PR | Creatives, Business, Marketing on 2010/07/26 at 12:28 PM

I recently had a great discussion with a friend about the difference between marketing and advertising. The takeaway I got: marketing people are like strategist, whereas advertising folks are, artists.

Marketing, from what I’ve learned and been doing for almost 4 years, consists all kinds of fundamentals / formulas: the SWOT analysis, the 4P idea, or as simple as seeing every business as a case study, identifying the underlying issue, analyzing the market & the consumer, then coming up with a solution. It involves studying product life cycle, conducting focus group, digging through all the stats finding the trends & pattern then trying to outweigh what competitors have been doing. To some extent, it’s a bridge between corporate & the market, sales and the customer / consumer. Sounds exciting, doesn’t it?

But I’ve always admired advertising industry. Like an opera with quartet: account team, creative team, media team, and the production team, the advertising realm is the creator of all kinds of masterpieces that makes you resonate, excited, or even open up your piggy bank and pay for whatever amount your monthly statement will shock you later on. I had the fortune to know a few professionals who works in advertising industry, and every time they share, they always blow my minds away.

But for many people, the difference between these two fields is sort of blurry. I mean, everyone can doodle. Right? But just as Microsoft Word doesn’t make all of us copywriters, the ability to doodle doesn’t make us creative. Not to the extent like advertisers, not at all.

Aside from knowing how to use photoshop or indesign doing some very basic rendering / retouching, marketers are far closer to sales. They are driven by stats or numbers. Their work or campaign has to have a track-able data supporting the so-called ROI (Return on Investment). Thus their point of view may sometimes be very different from a creative director’s perspective. Sometimes it’s a good thing; other times? Not so much. I recently read a great article called “The Creative vs. The Marketing Team: Yin & Yang; Oil & Water” by Speider Schneider. It lists out many ambivalent “love triangles” between these two parties. A very good read.

With that diverse angels, how do these two professionals coexist peacefully? Respect & open minds are the key. I’ve had the moments when people asked me to make a cutsheet and threw something like, “it shouldn’t be so hard or time-consuming for you to do this right?” and I couldn’t imagine if the same thing being said to any creative person. Remember? The ability to doodle doesn’t make a person creative. And certainly creating a cutsheet isn’t just about copy & paste an image to a blank document.

As much as I consider myself creative (or at least full of “light-bulbs” very often), I am still amazed how glamorous the creatives work in advertising industry. Only do I hope one day I can work with these people & learn to see the whole business in a different perspective.

Are you a creative person yourself? And how do you manage to work with people driven by different perspectives? Read the rest of this entry »