Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 1-17-16

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

We are breaking from the themed-approach for this weekend’s #SundayMusings.  There were several stories that caught my eye recently that I wanted to call out, but there is very little commonality between them.  You’ll survive, I’m sure of it.  

#1 –  “Super Bowl Ad Tracker: Everything We Know About 2016’s Commercials” via

Thoughts: Want to know who will be advertising during Super Bowl 50?  Look no further than AdWeek’s on-going tracker that can be found in the link above.  With the NFL Playoffs in full swing, we’re counting down the days for our next Super Bowl Ad Review!

What brands have caught your attention so far this year – whether that be by an ad teaser or news from the link above or elsewhere around the web?  I was a little stunned to see that Colgate-Palmolive has never advertised during the Super Bowl.  The other tidbit that caught my eye is that GoDaddy will not have an ad this year … and that is probably a good thing.   

#2 – “Post-Lafley, Procter & Gamble is Trying to Turn Challenges Into Opportunities” via

Thoughts: One company, and tens of brands, not found in the ad tracker above is P&G and its portfolio.  New CEO, David Taylor, is working on reshaping and redesigning the company and its portfolio, continuing to sell off brands to narrow its focus.  P&G continues to feel the pressure from investors to right the ship or more drastic changes are going to be requested.  

#3 – “Gobble Gobble: Turkey On Board – Woman Flies Cross Country With Her Emotional Support Turkey” via

Thoughts: #SaveThanksgiving efforts are starting in January apparently!  If for nothing else, click on the link above to see the turkey looking out the airplane window.  

There are several references here to the woman that flew with the turkey having coping issues, so I don’t want to make a joke about the state of Washington needing to reconsider the legalization of marijuana … wait …

Tweet of the Week:

Reverting back to Super Bowl discussion for a second, take a look at next year’s Super Bowl mascot.  Terrible.  We have plenty of time to go back to the drawing board NFL.  Please do so.  


Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 1-3-16

Hello 2016! #SundayMusings w/ Shore Branding (Photo credit:

Hello 2016! #SundayMusings w/ Shore Branding
(Photo credit:

Happy New Year!  2016 is upon us and I wish you nothing but the best as we say goodbye to 2015 and hello to 2016.  Before we fully jump into the new year, today’s #SundayMusings takes a look back at some of the best summaries in branding-related stories from around the web.  

#1 –  “2015’s Top Customer Lessons” via

Thoughts: If you are looking for a solid list of hot topics in customer experience, look no further.  Take a look at what trends began in 2015 and where CX is heading this year.  There were two pieces that caught my eye – “Data Discipline” and “Getting Personal”.  Brands and companies must overlay data from various sources and have them break through silos.  At the same time, brands and companies must embrace social media channels and focus on the one-to-one experiences of each individual.  

This all circles back to last weekend’s book review – take a look here.

#2 – “What Went Wrong For Your Brand This Year” via

Thoughts: There isn’t a better branding blog out there in my opinion vs. Branding Strategy Insider.  They consistently pump out must-read content.  Eight different targeted messages are included in this write-up for what may have went wrong for you / your brand in 2015, along with some first-step guidance on how to course correct.  This is absolutely worth the read if you feel underwhelmed with your business results this past year and a great start on how to make the appropriate adjustments.

#3 – “The best social media campaigns of 2015” via

Thoughts: One opinion on what brands had the strongest social media campaigns of the past year.  The two that I liked the most are HP’s #BendTheRules campaign that targeted Millennials and Lowe’s “Fix in Six” Vine campaigns – that we have touted in the past.   

Tweet of the Week:

The tweet above includes a link to the best and worst branding efforts of 2015.  Yes, another compilation article and look back at the past 12 months.  Leading the way – Google.  So much news and noise for the tweaking of their signature logo.  The worst – without getting too political – was Hillary Clinton’s, who seems to be open to doing absolutely anything in order to get elected.  I’ll leave all other opinions off of this write-up.  

What caught your attention in 2015?  Have any particular brands resonated with you or driven a change in your perception of them over the course of the past year?  Let me know in the Comments section below.  

Happy New Year!


Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 10-11-15

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

This week’s #SundayMusings takes a look at the most recent advertising stories that have caught my attention over the past few weeks.  What brands have caught your attention recently with their ad efforts – whether that be by TV, digital, or elsewhere?

#1 –  “Are Marketers Finally Getting the Hang of Locattion-Based Mobile Ads” via

Premise: While location-based advertising on mobile devices has been a small portion of mobile ad spending, there continues to be progress made in this arena.  Companies like Essence and xAd have worked with Google to improve this targeted approach at mobile advertising.  

Thoughts: Location-based marketing continues to slowly move forward and we’re only going to see increases in spend levels here as technology gets stronger and platforms become richer.  Push notifications from the likes of Google, Foursquare and others on my mobile, leave no doubt in my mind that this is going to continue to grow.  

Just over two years ago (wow!) I did some testing with Nearwoo and while this slightly moves the needle from location-based marketing per se, the ability to drill down at such a granular level is a highly impactful resource for businesses – big and small.  

#2 – “Ready or Not, Here Comes Your First Big Weepy 2015 Holiday Prank Commercial” via

Premise: Shaw Communications released an ad for Canada’s Thanksgiving holiday and won the internet for a few hours, surprising family members with others returning ‘home’ for the holiday.

Thoughts: Originally saw this link and thought for sure it would be Christmas ad, which naturally made my blood boil.  However, this was a great ad that truly does get you thinking about what the holidays really are, or should be about.  

As always, let’s #SaveThanksgiving – no matter what country you celebrate it in!!

#3 – AdWords and Social Media: King and Queen of Advertising –

Thoughts: A look back at the history of Google’s AdWords and how it has boomed since social media has taken off over the past decade or so.  Interesting to continue to see how AdWords evolves and how powerful the platform is / has become.  

Is your brand/business using AdWords?  How effective has it been for you?

Tweet of the Week:

Well, Carl’s Jr. certainly sparked the controversy recently with its latest ad.  Let’s just say that this is the least revealing tweet you will find on their #TexMexBacon campaign.  Not only did we get the standard “sexist” commentary from this campaign, they managed to make it political as well with some folks saying it was controversial because of the US/Mexican border “issues” that are on-going.  

Can we just enjoy advertising for what it is and not turn everything into such a PC-driven debate?!  Hope you enjoyed this week’s #SundayMusings!  


Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 7-19-15

A mobile #SundayMusings w/ Shore Branding! (Photo credit:

A mobile #SundayMusings w/ Shore Branding!
(Photo credit:

Welcome back for another #SundayMusings with Shore Branding!  This week’s discussion and links all circle around the world of mobile and mobile advertising.  Here are the top stories that have caught my eye over the past few weeks.

#1 – “Televisions Are No Longer the Screen of Choice for Kids” – via

Premise: A recent report from Miner & Co. Studio finds that more than half of parents surveyed said their children preferred to watch video on a mobile device (tablet or phone) over the television.  The impact of this is yet to be seen as these devices become more and more prominent in US households.  However, it is having an impact on TV ratings, specifically kids stations.

Thoughts: So the study itself didn’t surprise me, but the stories from the research irked me.  There is very little that is more annoying than going out to dinner and seeing a family with their heads down all paying attention to their own device.  Equally annoying is when a parent sits down with their kids and immediately hands the child a device.  STOP IT!

Here is the video linked to in the article above from the study.  I couldn’t even get all the way through it without having to walk away.

#2 – “Top 10 mobile advertising campaigns of Q2” via

Premise: The author / site puts together a quarterly list of the top mobile advertising campaigns and with the recent launch of the Apple Watch, there was a lot to choose from over Q2’15.

Thoughts: The news that caught my attention first was the use of the Cinematic Pin offering from Pinterest.  Several brands have pushed forward with the platforms latest ad-related (and revenue driving) technique, including Virgin America and Gymboree.

One additional piece of feedback though … too many stories centered around “selfies” made the list.  Of course, one story would have been too many …

#3 – “9 Mobile Marketing Stats That Will Make You Look Smarter On Twitter” via

Premise: Unbounce breaks down a number of key stats and numbers illustrating the size and growth of mobile marketing over the years.  Whether it is the growing number of users, the amount of time spent on mobile devices, or the amount of money spent on mobile advertising, there is no denying the exponential growth of mobile.  Finally, when talking mobile in 2015, you can’t leave out the growing push towards mobile video.

Thoughts: Beyond the stats and numbers here, if you just followed Twitter’s business over the past five years, you would understand how to stay on top of recent mobile trends.  You started with Twitter and micro-blogging (I hate that word/phrase) and then pivoted into micro-videos (i.e. Vine) and are now moving towards livestreaming via mobile devices (i.e. Periscope).

Brands and companies that stay with these on-going shifts in behavior and consumption have a leg up on more than their fair share of competitors.

#4 – “Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 the next thinnest tablet in the world with 8-inch Super AMOLED screen display, other montster specs” via

Premise: While a release date remains unofficial, it is expected that Samsung will soon announce the release date of their latest tab – the Galaxy Tab S2.  Specs for the devices are starting to float around the internet (as evidenced in the link above).  The device will run on Android’s Lollipop OS and have a microSD slot for extra storage and as always, is compared to the latest iPad devices.

Thoughts: Why is this in today’s #SundayMusings you ask?  Simple … I need a new tablet and this is 99.9% likely to be the tablet that I purchase in the near future.  As you may have seen me complain about on Twitter, my 2012 Nexus 7 is dead thanks to “upgrading” to Lollipop and has become worthless.  I refuse to buy the Nexus 9 due to the lack of additional storage available on it.  The cost doesn’t help the N9’s cause, particularly with being limited to the internal storage provided.

What tablet are you currently using and would you recommend it?  Let me know, I would love to do some comparative shopping.

Tweet of the Week:

While I don’t think there is any earth shattering news among these five mobile trends, it is good to refresh the memory and to ensure you are keeping an eye on what the latest and greatest is … not that this won’t change three or six months from now.  The biggest takeaway among the tips for me is the mention of content marketing via mobile and to keep an eye in this area.  (I’ll ignore the oversight of referencing Periscope and Meerkat.)

That wraps up another #SundayMusings!  What has caught your eye in mobile over the past few weeks?

Enjoy what remains of your weekend and the week ahead!


Pin of the Month – Sterling Cooper / Mad Men

Infographic by Unmetric

Infographic by Unmetric

The good folks over at Unmetric are at it again in our July “Pin of the Month”.  We have used several infographics from Unmetric since launching our “Pin of the Month” feature.  Earlier this year, one of the more acclaimed shows in my memory, Mad Men, came to an end.  The infographic above takes a look at the accounts that the Sterling Cooper agency held during the seven seasons of Mad Men on AMC.

Overall, 83 accounts were portrayed on the show with only 10% of them being fake brands.  While another 12 have gone out of business, it is pretty cool to see that 64 of the brands referenced on the show are still around today.

From here, the infographic takes us down a path of breaking out the brands by category and then dives into how 37 of the brands are currently on and leveraging Twitter specifically.  This goes to show you that when you cross one of the better TV shows in recent years with the Twitter platform, you have my attention!

My favorite part of the infographic is where it dives into the engagement that these brands are creating on Twitter.  Bacardi and Heinz are the most engaging brands among Sterling Cooper’s clients, followed closely by Gorton’s Seafood – definitely a surprise number three to me, particularly with “only” ~7,500 followers on Twitter.

The other piece that caught my eye is the rank order of the types of content that is/was most engaging on Twitter.  I’m not too surprised that “Brand News” would be at the top, but second on the list is “Campaign” tweets … I’m assuming that these are Twitter ad campaign tweets and these numbers suggest the power behind advertising on Twitter.  This is largely superior to “Events” and “Contests” across the brands examined and somewhat surprising – it might be interesting to overlay this with spend levels to put a bit more context on the results.

So what caught your eye in this month’s “Pin of the Month”?  Did you watch Mad Men?  When these brands came up in the show, what were your thoughts?  Let me know in the comments below or drop me an email at

For those unfamiliar with our “Pin of the Month”, every month we post one of the better infographics, pictures, etc. that we find on our Pinterest page and (over-) analyze it in our “Pin of the Month”.

If you have an infographic that you would like to promote here on Shore Branding, just let me know.  Thanks!

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 7-5-15

Photo Credit: CBS Philadelphia

Photo Credit: CBS Philadelphia


Happy Fourth of July weekend to those of you in the US!  Hope your holiday weekend has been … exactly whatever it is you were looking for.

Building off of June’s “Pin of the Month”, this week’s #SundayMusings is dedicated to small businesses and small business branding.  The following stories caught my eye over the past few weeks.  If you own or work for a small business and you have recently updated your branding or turned up the notch, let me know as I’m happy to pass this along to readers and visitors.

#1 – “5 Digital Marketing Rules Every Small Business Needs to Know” – via

Premise: Now is as good of a time as any to take a look at how you are promoting your small business, whether that be through paid advertising, social, and/or digital marketing.  Focusing on the last aspect, the author puts together five easy to follow steps on how to drive the results you want to achieve.

Thoughts: The steps here caught my attention because I am currently in the process of doing a few of these right now.  The first rule, “Freshen up”, is essentially what I am looking to do with your input in our satisfaction survey (please do fill this in if you have 2-3 minutes … and since you are reading this week’s #SundayMusings, I know you do …).

I am also a firm believer in #2 and #3 in this write-up.  Consistency matters, but so does your overall time and effort.  You’ll also find two solid recommendations for your advertising efforts in the write-up above.

#2 – “Utilize Local Resources to Increase Your Brand Awareness” via

Premise: The author provides a real-life example of leveraging to build his network in his new hometown … leading to the crux of the write-up, networking with local businesses and other business owners is a great way to build your brand and learn on the fly from others at the same time.

Thoughts: Another article near and dear to me right now.  We are in the process of joining a local church and beyond this, I have had a desire to simply be ‘more involved’ in the local community in recent weeks and months.  That continues to be a work in progress and finding the right groups.  If you have any recommendations, I would love to hear them.

#3 – “How to Be A Successful Entrepreneur At Tradeshows” via

Premise: Tradeshows are a great way to promote your business.  However, you have to be wise in selecting the right ones to attend and your message and booth need to be on point.  The author provides six simple steps to adhere to when attending tradeshows in order to get the most out of them.

Thoughts: While it may seem obvious, tradeshows almost never go off as smoothly as you would think and these tips are very rarely executed against in their entirety.  The tips for ‘streamlining your message’ and ‘having a takeaway’ are the two that I would agree with as being the most important.

I did like the thought behind visiting other booths if you have the time.  I would say, make the time.  What other tips do you have for tradeshows that have either worked for you or you have really enjoyed from others?

#4 – “What To Include On Your Small Business Website” via

Premise: Eight tips for your small business branding efforts on your website – which Jill states is or should be the main hub of your business.

Thoughts: Essentially, this is a nice reminder and snapshot of what your business needs to be communicating to prospects and customers.  These tips largely are there to build engagement and illustrate your expertise, while also making it easy for visitors to find out more about you on the site itself and across social media platforms.

Two quick thoughts from this list:

  • Small businesses absolutely should have a blog
  • The “As seen in” tip is definitely a nice to have, with the example image provided in the story being a little over the top

Tweet of the Week:

More tips on small business branding via infographic on Pinterest!  Somewhat related, it would be nice to have Twitter and Pinterest cut some type of deal where the pins that are shared can be seen directly on Twitter via expanding the tweet itself.

Hope you enjoyed our small business branding #SundayMusings!  Have a great Sunday and week ahead!


Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 6/21/15

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

This week’s #SundayMusings is dedicated to all the dads out there as we celebrate Father’s Day with a little Father’s Day branding summary.  Here are a few write-ups from around the web that caught my attention regarding today’s holiday here in the US.

#1 – “Father’s Day 2015: Here Comes the Dadvertising Deluge” – via

Premise: With today’s holiday, brands have been rolling out their Father’s Day advertisements trying to breakthrough the clutter.  Brandchannel has put together a slew of these ads in this one write-up for you to compare and contrast which brands are using the right messaging and which aren’t.

Thoughts: Angel Soft took a unique way of celebrating Father’s Day, that’s for sure.  These Dove Men+Care ads for various holidays have been really, really good in recent months.  But the winner probably goes to Goody Hair …

#2 – “Celebrating Dads on Twitter” via Twitter’s Blog

Premise: Twitter’s blog put together a bit of text analytics behind Twitter profiles.  About 2.5 million profiles have “Dad” or “Father” in their profile and their analytics team took a look at tweets that included content on fatherhood-related topics.

Thoughts: One of the items that I like most about the Twitter blog is that they pull in their own tools and tricks without being very “salesy” in the approach.  This week’s Father’s Day write-up adds a nice touch with the inclusion of a number of fatherhood tweets from users.  I will have to agree with #1 on the “Fatherhood is …” list here.

#3 – “Infographic: Need a Father’s Day Gift? These Are the Top 10 Brands Dads Desire” via

Premise: Y&R did a little research on the modern dad and put together the appended infographic in this write-up on what brands are driving the strongest levels of interest with this audience.  Spoiler alert: Apple has two of the top five brands on this list with “Apple” itself at the top and the “iPad” rounding out the top five.

Thoughts: I have to say that beyond Netflix, there isn’t a single other brand in the top ten that I have any interest in.  Completely understand why Apple is on the list, though it would be nice to see Android break the top ten list here.

Not to be a stickler, but do you see the typo in the infographic?  This type of stuff drives me crazy.

#4 – “Why We Should Get Rid of Dad of the Year Language on Father’s Day” via

Premise: Interesting read from Danny Brown on pushing out the Hallmark “Father of the Year” slogans and such and that how our kids turn out is really what will ultimately drive how you are viewed as a parent down the line.

Thoughts: I wasn’t sure if this was a rant at first against Hallmark, but I then read the comments to the article and it all fell together for me.  Danny does a great job of engaging with his audience and addressing their commentary.

At the very least, some food for thought as you go about your Father’s Day!

Tweet of the Week:

MLB, along with most national sports these days, do a nice job of raising awareness for various diseases, events, and such as their respective season progresses.  A nice effort here from MLB to celebrate dads but also raise a little awareness and salience for prostate cancer.  For those of you heading to the ballpark on Sunday, look for the blue ribbon decals throughout the park for these efforts.

Have a great Sunday / Father’s Day and hope you enjoyed our Father’s Day #SundayMusings!


Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 6-7-15

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

As we enter Summer and people head to the shore, I figured it was a good time to dedicate a #SundayMusings to the top Summer branding news entering the season.  The following stories caught my eye over the past few weeks.  What campaigns or brand positionings have caught your eye for this Summer?

#1 – “To Kick Off Summer, Miller Lite Stages a Mini Awards Show on Twitter” – via

Premise: For the second consecutive year, Miller Lite is using the turn of the season to invest heavily in its Twitter advertising.  For $200K, Miller Lite was the ‘promoted trend’ on Twitter for a day, using a tweet with the hashtag #ItsMillerTime – a refurbished marketing message from advertising used years ago by the brand.

Thoughts: Aside from providing the cost behind what it takes to advertise on Twitter, there was a second nugget in here that piqued my interest; Miller Lite is NOT tying this Twitter campaign to a television ad.  The move to online advertising is real folks …

#2 – “7 Days to Building a Stronger Brand This Summer and Beyond” via

Premise: Many businesses rely on the Summer months to drive sales/revenue.  This write-up helps you think about ensuring you have done enough to drive brand resonance.  This was the start of a seven day series of write-ups regarding branding your business to further drive sales.

Thoughts: I thought this was a great idea to promote the free e-book being offered and to continue driving people to download their material.  I don’t think there is too much groundbreaking material here, but I did want to call out the 7th tip, “Be patient”.  In short, “cosign”.

#3 – “Marmite readies ‘summer of love’ campaign with flower-power logo design” via

Premise: Marmite has filed a patent claim on a logo for the brand that includes the tagline “Summer of Love”.  Unilever has not provided any further information at this time, but the brand looks to pivot with a new campaign, logo, and tagline.

Thoughts: Had to go across the pond for more Summer branding news.  Have you ever tried Marmite?  The ‘love it or hate it’ motto/mantra seems to be very true.  I tried it on vacation once and let’s just say I fell into the latter category of that motto.  However, people swear by it.

#4 – “Target Branding 2015” via

Premise: The Target logo is nice and simple, but also rememorable.  Peters has created a new ad campaign for Target taking this theme to another level with vibrant images.  However, the red and white colors remain firmly in place.

Thoughts: There are a number of images from the various Target ads/campaigns but they all stay true to the Target logo.  I particularly like the ones that have the red polka dots that seemingly go over the person or object also in each piece of creative.

What do you think of these ads?  Too much?

Tweet of the Week:

I’m not going to lie, I laughed out loud when I saw this tweet from Captain Morgan.  Maybe it is a New Jersey thing, but I loved the hashtag #SunsOutRumsOut.  We have a winner for the best Summer branding hashtag of 2015!

Hope you enjoyed our Summer branding #SundayMusings!  Now go outside and enjoy the start of the Summer!


Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 3-1-15

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding - The Valentine's Day Edition! (Photo credit:

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – The Valentine’s Day Edition!
(Photo credit:


We are closing out February with a Valentine’s Day #SundayMusings – taking one last look at the branding and digital marketing news from brands and companies as they relate to Valentine’s Day.  Here are the holiday stories that caught my eye heading into and through the month.

#1 – “Love Across the Twittersphere” – via

Premise: The Twitter blog dives into some Twitter Analytics and how “love” is spread across the network.  Sweden comes out on top as the most “in love” country around the globe.  Twitter also takes a look at some of the most commonly used hashtags across the calendar year.

Thoughts: The Twitter blog is a great bookmark to see the latest and greatest from the site.  It hits on current and relevant news, holidays, sporting events and more.  I’m not sure what level of humor vs. sadness I find in the hashtags across the span of a calendar year.  (OK, it’s funny) [Read more…]

Pin of the Month – Super Bowl Ads

Super Bowl Advertising by the numbers. Infographic by Engagor

Super Bowl Advertising by the numbers. Infographic by Engagor

Our February “Pin of the Month” wraps up our NFL and Super Bowl coverage this month.  Building off of our Super Bowl Ad Review, our “Pin of the Month” summarizes the overall impact of Super Bowl ads and which brands got the most out of their investment.  The infographic above was created by engagor who measures social customer experiences and engagement. [Read more…]