Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding 5-12-13

Branding and Digital Marketing

Another Sunday in May and another holiday to go celebrate.  Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms that are readying this!  Here are this week’s ‘Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding’ – the top five stories in branding and digital marketing.  For those interested, you can find the archives of this weekly write-up under the Blog-Sunday Musings tab at the top of the page.

#1 – Maker’s Mark’s Plain Dumb Move Proved To Be Pure Marketing Genius – Forbes.com

Premise: Back in February, Maker’s Mark announced that due to rising production costs they would be watering down their product.  This caused a social media circus, with droves of consumers taking to various platforms to complain about the decision.  However, this also drove consumers to the store apparently, as sales skyrocketed for the brand.  Ultimately, Maker’s Mark has reversed its decision to water down its product due to the backlash.

Thoughts: Here is another example of the power of social media.  Fans of Maker’s Mark came out and rebelled against a decision the company made and it helped change its position in only a short matter of time.  There is a bit of a conspiracy theory presented in the article that Maker’s Mark decided to create this news in an effort to boost sales, but I have a hard time believing that; in fact, the author doesn’t seem to either, but brought it up anyway.

#2 – “LinkedIn Tips: 10 Ways to Get the Most Out of Your Network” – Entrepreneur.com  

Premise: With LinkedIn turning ten years old this past week, the author provides ten tips to build your LinkedIn presence and drive engagement with readers/others.  Beyond the ten tips presented, each one has a follow-up write-up and link to a story of greater detail.

Thoughts: There may not be a better article available for LinkedIn tips than this one.  Not only does the author provide ten thought starters, the links that follow each provides you more robust information and detail for each.  

#3 – “Using Pinterest to Grow Brand Awareness” – ICUCModeration.com

Premise: The article provides several key statistics to warm you up to using Pinterest and then provides ten recommendations for how to optimize your Pinterest page.  No surprise, Starbucks is mentioned as a brand/company that is using Pinterest in an engaging way.

Thoughts: This caught my attention given the numbers presented in the article and the comparisons made to Facebook.  In fact, it drove a search on Pinterest to find an infographic that compared the two sites further than this and was a post earlier this week on our Facebook page.  Pinterest is driving engagement and helps spur purchase decisions at a much greater rate and is a site that must be considered as part of your brand/company’s social media platform.

#4 – “Coca-Cola Announces Global Commitment To Help Fight Obesity” – SustainableBrands.com  

Premise: Earlier this week, Coca-Cola announced that it would offer low/no-calorie beverages in each of the 200 countries it currently has business in.  The company also announced that it will help support programs and/or organizations that run physical activity programs and will no longer market towards children 12 and under.  The company has launched a website (Coming Together) to help promote these efforts.

Thoughts: A little bit of an interesting branding story from this past week from one of the largest companies in the world.  The separate online platform caught my eye as well, given that it isn’t branded in the web site / domain itself, but brings you to the company site right away with a single click off of the hyperlink above.

#5 – “Microsoft Mulling Nook Media LLC Purchase For $1 Billion” – TechCrunch.com

Premise: Microsoft is looking to buy into Nook’s business for a hefty price tag, while other tidbits in this article are equally intriguing.  By the end of its fiscal in 2014, Nook will stop making Android-based tablets and will shift its focus to third-party platforms; i.e. drive its business through Nook apps.  Nook e-readers will not follow suit, but they are planned to be phased out given the declining trends in the e-reader market.  Microsoft’s partnership with Nook continues to evolve and may lead to greater synthesis between the two companies with future Microsoft products coming in the near future.

Thoughts: While the tablet and e-reader market continues to quickly evolve, it is hard to see or understand what the short and long term goals are for both Barnes and Noble / Nook and Microsoft.  Every quarter, one or the other seems to announce a decision that is counter-intuitive to their prior plans for development and growth.  Microsoft continues to baffle me with what their plans are as they look to compete with Apple and Google in many of the same areas.

What caught your attention this week in branding and digital marketing news?