Our Point-of-View

Hoops and the High Cost of Freedom

Turns out freedom really isn’t free. Professional basketball players and shoe companies who lost millions of dollars in China following a social media post (since deleted) from a National Basketball Association executive sympathizing with government protestors in Hong Kong are understanding just how costly it can be. While many might not be inclined to feel…

Read More...

Is Your Brand Aging Beautifully or Badly?

The problem with being old is that you wake up one day and have no idea how you got there. Oh sure, there are a few signs along the way, but we pay about as much attention to those as we do to seeing cones suddenly appear on a freeway. What starts as a one-lane…

Read More...

It’s Time for New Accounting Rules on Brand

The definition of brand is as diverse as the people who try to frame it. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos describes it as what people say about you when you’re not in the room. I like that because it’s memorable. My summation is a little shorter. Your brand is your bond.  You can interpret that in at…

Read More...

Is Facebook Too Big to Care?

The folks at Facebook are finding Washington D.C. to be anti-social, if not openly hostile, these days. Regulators at the Federal Trade Commission recently tagged the social media network with a five billion dollar fine – and no, that’s not a misprint – for privacy lapses that allowed app developers to scrape data from some…

Read More...

How Big is the Difference Between B2B and B2C Marketing?

For some time a question has lingered in my mind: is there truly a difference between B2B and B2C marketing? Most articles on the topic are set on the idea that both types of marketing campaigns are fundamentally different – but considering the goals and strategies one sees in so many campaigns, there’s more overlap…

Read More...

What Every Company Needs in its Digital Marketing Toolkit

In what we now recognize as a digital-first landscape, online communications platforms have shifted from a luxury to a necessity – and companies that don’t conform simply fall behind their competition. Here we’ll address a few ‘digital needs’ that all brands should have fastened down and optimized to increase their reach, engagement and conversion goals. Dynamic, Responsive…

Read More...

How to Get the Most Out of Your Marketing Agency

You’ve hired an external marketing agency to assist with your next campaign – now, what are you going to do to maximize the value they bring to the partnership? It’s often a million-dollar question. You know that you’ve secured a team of industry experts who are well-versed in strategic planning, execution, and analysis of marketing…

Read More...

Giving Your Brand a Voice – Literally

Marketing has come a long way in recent years, from the takeover of social media and the heavy importance on ‘mobile-first’ marketing, to the looming horizon of augmented and virtual reality; you can see it before your eyes. One of the newest forms of marketing making waves, however, can’t be seen – rather, it’s heard….

Read More...

Metrics That Matter – Part III

As marketing professionals, we’re responsible for the creation and distribution of content across a variety of channels – along with the ever-changing and sometimes confusing analytics that attempt to quantify the impact of that content. For this installment of Metrics That Matter (see links to earlier posts below), we’re going to provide some clarity on…

Read More...

Metrics That Matter – Part II

In part one of “Metrics That Matter,” we took a deeper dive into Google Analytics and helped clarify some of the more relevant, yet often overlooked, audience and behavior metrics available through the ubiquitous search platform. This knowledge will enable you to more effectively track website engagement and conversions. Now it’s time to turn our…

Read More...

Top 5 B2B Digital Marketing Misses

Well over a decade ago I attended a marketing communications workshop in San Francisco that promised to educate all practitioners ...

How Your PR Skills Are Being Re-Packaged and Sold by Ad Pros

by Michael Shepherd, Managing Partner Your marketing people are probably wearing you out these days with their constant references to ...

A Brand Worthy of Admiration

Would you rather be rich or famous? How about most admired? There’s a bank that can make a compelling case ...

How Kleiner Perkins Can Prevail in the Court of Public Opinion

As the dirty laundry piles up in the San Francisco courtroom where blue chip VC firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & ...

Anchor Away: A PR Prescription for NBC’s Brian Williams

One of the rules most parents instill in their children is to always tell the truth. Because nobody is perfect, ...

The Hole in Healthcare Marketing

Say what you will about the pros and cons of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – and as we know, ...

A Penney for Your Thoughts

by Michael Shepherd, President & CEO What’s old is new – at least at venerable retailer J.C. Penney Co. Less ...

The OC Register’s Big Bet

by Michael Shepherd, President & CEO Southern California has become a testing ground for one of the boldest publishing experiments ...

Entering the Blogosphere

by Michael Shepherd, President & CEO Well, I’ve done it. Finally. After years of hiding behind the shopworn “shoemaker’s kids…” ...