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Whenever brands look to strategic marketing and brand “activation” , one component is always how to effectively build, manage and define metrics on sponsorships deals.

With digital marketing and social media tools, athlete/team “activation” has become easier, but you must also have a cohesive, brand driven strategy to reach out to your target demographic. This “reach out” campaign is an integral component to assure your brand stays front and center with “key” influencers and target demo. With attention spans being shorter, this is one the main reasons why “traditional” hard copy media has collapsed over the years, with digital marketing becoming more prevalent. The reason for this is “synergy”, synergy between content activation your demo is looking for (i.e, NFL,NBA, NHL..etc.) and how they obtain this content via on-line activation (Social Media, Digital Marketing). This is a seamless interaction between “brand”, “influencers” and “target demo”. This is a classic case of market evolution, and extinction of another medium no longer being adopted…

Two of the main issues brands have with effective sports marketing is “athlete activation” and “defining metrics”. With the implementation of digital analytics (ie. Google), these sponsorships via on-line activation can be effectively measured and “drilled down” to extreme detail. This becomes tangible data which builds an interactive database of “core” consumers who then become brand advocates, assuming your strategy resonates. Once established, you can continue to build, refine and grow this advocacy group, who should be converted to “viral” generators, spreading the brand “virus” via word of mouth (WOM) and digital/social world.

Welcome to the new world of Sports Marketing Metrics analysis…

Define a Cohesive Digital Sports Marketing Strategy…

Activate your Brand, Sponsorships and Social Media plan…

Reach out to your “Core” audience…

Watch the “Virus” expand…!

Enjoy the Ride..!
Bryan Smeltzer

http://www.bryansmeltzer.com

“Product Innovation & Marketing Success Blog…”

Evolve or Die…

With the retail environment changing at light speed, brands must find ways to stay relevant for their retailers. Any brand must “evolve” as it grows, or become stagnant, and lose all momentum built up since its inception. This sometimes requires making a bold move to obsolete a product, even when sales would tell you to hold on longer.

When moving a product out of the life cycle while still popular, creates an inherent demand for the next “Evolution” of this generation or completely new idea. From both a design and functional perspective, this relentless pursuit of “Innovation” many companies profess is extremely high risk, and not always swallowed in its entirety. Some make progressive improvements, and still keep the previous generation in the pipeline, while others “pull and push” the old with the new.

Either way, each may be right for the brand, relative to the current status of product pipeline, and needs within your specific channel (i.e, price point, draw down’s). However, the truly “Evolutionary” brand not only re-creates the product, but the category and eventually becomes the dominant leader as a result (Apple, Nike..). This is why there are so few “Evolutionary” brands, as this mindset is established through its founding principles and never compromised.

“The only sustainable competitive advantage is out-innovating your competition.”

– James Morse – Change Guru

“Stay True”, “Take Risks” and success will come to those who “dare” to “Evolve”…!

Enjoy the Ride..!

Bryan Smeltzer

“Product Innovation and Marketing Success Blog”

http://www.bryansmeltzer.com

Whether looking to drive customers to your brand on-line or in-store, you must find creative, unique ways drive consumer traffic. This has become easier, and at the same time harder for brands with the evolution of the internet and digital interaction with your customer. As you look to find unique ways to drive traffic,you must always manage all aspects of your marketing strategy, as other brands are looking to outmaneuver you at every turn. Those that do will inevitably grab market share…

With attention spans getting shorter, you must “connect” with customer quicker and have a “point of difference” over other brands. Easier said than done, this requires a clear, concise, impactful branding message that “grabs” your customer either visually, verbally or a combination of both mediums. With a clearly defined marketing strategy, a well thought out branding message via digital, hard copy, social and viral, will build a “pipeline” of connecting points to your consumer.

A brand continually evolves in it’s messaging, however the founding principles should be anchored in its culture, message and products. Through this evolutionary process, the marketing strategy is a “key” component to successfully aligning with your “core” consumer. Establish this alignment, continually interact and engage your “brand advocates” and you will be richly rewarded…

Build a Foundational Marketing Strategy…

Connect and Interact with your “Brand Advocates”..

Stay True to your Brand “Foundation”…

Enjoy the Ride…!

Bryan Smeltzer

http://www.bryansmeltzer.com

“Product Innovation and Marketing Success Blog..”

 

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The ultimate compliment for a brand is when it translates globally. However, when you act global as a brand from a positioning, imagery and lifestyle perspective, you will need to be aware of the intricacies within differing regions of the world.

The brand can and should be positioned with a single unified message, but when defining priorities or strategies for other regions around the world, you will need a clearly defined region/country specific foundation to launch from… This will entail ensuring you understand the political, cultural and geographical nature of these regions. Some countries or regions will clearly be harder to define than others, but most will have a defined culture/structure and the brand can either adapt, translate or move on to another opportunity better suited for the growing the brand.

Once defined, you can develop a clearly defined marketing strategy with a mix of components when blended together provide the biggest impact for this targeted audience. This may involve digital assets, sports marketing development (region specific sports) or traditional hard copy media mix. This “Act Global, Think Local” mindset will allow brands to secure their message, and expand the brand while being sensitive to region specific cultural priorities.

Act Global…

Think Local…

Protect & Grow the Brand…!

Enjoy the Ride…!

Bryan Smeltzer

“Product Innovation & Marketing Success Blog…”

http://www.bryansmeltzer.com

Risk it..!

Innovation-Race

 

When driving your “Go to Market” strategy, the “Safe” vs “Risk” component is always front and center. In determining your strategy, have a very cohesive brand development plan and one that drives home your message, but take a risk ! This is your chance to get people talking, they key is not to be something you are not, but rather something you would like to “eVolVe” into at some point. Brand “EvoLutioN” is key if you are to survive against your competition, regardless of the product you sell.

Being “different” has a proven model for success, and one that allows a brand to evolve and be accepted. This strategy is also very uncomfortable for many brands, with risk there is reward, but also the chance for failure. Failure is the Battle Scars of a “true” Innovator !! Those who play it safe, with a “Imitate vs Innovate” mentality eventually get run over ! Get off the tracks if you are not going to risk failure….

Always take strategic Risks..!
Always assure that Failure makes you a stronger Brand..!

Always encourage Risk taking..!

Enjoy the Ride !
Bryan Smeltzer

http://www.bryansmeltzer.com

“Product Innovation & Marketing Success Blog..”

 


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It is always easier for a company/brand to imitate competitive products than it is to truly reinvent their respective product or category. As a result, progressive improvement is attained, but nothing truly innovate comes out of this type of product strategy.

When a brand is looking to build a product strategy, at the forefront of building this foundation is developing a Product Inspiration formula that allows your designers (Industrial/Graphic) the freedom to create without limitations. You should always have a structured seasonal front end loading process with your required product line planning, competitive analysis and “key” product/category drivers, however you should always look to drive product innovation through this free flowing creative process. This begins and ends with design inspiration. This inspiration should come from and feed off of adaptable technologies, design cues and bloodlines from products that drive your brand. If you are truly a performance driven brand, then look for aspects of your product that come from or could be derived from other performance products, not necessarily from your industry. When we design, our intended purpose is to disrupt the norm, and create outside the boundaries of what has been done before in our industry. Your ability to give the consumer what they never knew they wanted, but have to purchase is the magic formula for success.

“Innovation distinguishes between a Leader and a Follower”

Steve Jobs

This creative product creation foundation assures your company/brand will have a pipeline of designs driven off your brands bloodlines, and innovation that allows you to stake a leadership position. Your intention should be to take that leadership position through innovation, and out-innovate yourself. Consumers will then look to your brand for true, authentic, market driving products.

Enjoy the Ride..!
Bryan Smeltzer

“Product Innovation & Marketing Success..”

bryansmeltzer.com

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Building a platform for continual “Creative” success requires a cohesive mindset, and collective brand effort. These foundational principles ensures first and foremost those “driving” the brand are clear as to the near, and long term expectations.

These expectations are built from defining “what” you as a brand stand for, “how” you are positioned, “where” you are located and “when” you communicate to your “core” audience. Your brand “Advocates” expect a consistent voice, and a clear message both visually and verbally. Anytime there is a disconnect between these messaging mediums, you risk breaking this chain of loyalty.

It is crucial, and integral to a brand, that you “Create” a brand positioning strategy which gives a consistent voice and image behind the brand. If inconsistent, or there is a disconnect, a Brand risks loyalty “Destruction”, and trying to rebuild this foundation is difficult if not impossible to achieve.

I have had this situation with several brands I know very well. They choose the “low hanging fruit” to drive revenue and disregard the brand “foundation” in the hope their “core” will not notice, but inevitably they will and this “disconnect” spreads like a “digital” virus. You have a choice as a Brand, stay consistent to your “Creative Foundational Principles” or “Sell your Soul” and risk “Destruction” at the hands of those who built your brand.

“Always stay “True” to your “Roots”, they will help you grow..!”

“Always remain consistent to your “Foundational Principles..!”

“Always give your “Brand Advocates” a consistent “Voice” and “Image”..!”

Success is driven by your ability to keep consistent with your original “Vision” of “what you stand for..”. Your ability to adapt, while remaining “True” to this “Vision” will be key long term. As I have mentioned, there are many brands who lay in the “wasteland” of broken promises, not to themselves as much as to others.

Enjoy the Ride !
Bryan Smeltzer

http://www.bryansmeltzer.com

“Product Innovation & Marketing Success Blog..”