Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 2-9-14

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

This week’s #SundayMusings w/ Shore Branding refocuses on branding and digital marketing and moves us away from news on the Super Bowl and its advertising.

#1 – Only Twitter TV Can Save Twitter – via 

Premise: Twitter held its first earnings report since going public last year and things are off to a rocky start.  The company reported a profit, despite posting a one-time, half-billion dollar loss for going public.  A major concern is the slow growth in total users, while CEO Dick Costolo also suggests that while Twitter has high awareness, engagement is not where it needs to be.

The author’s suggestion to help Twitter grow is to launch “Twitter TV”.  The idea is to have a steady flow of tweets across a number of popular categories (sports, celebrities, technology, etc.) and have related tweets under each channel on the Twitter home page vs. the basic sign-in screen, where only users see anything at all, and that is among the people that they follow.

Thoughts: This article quickly caught my attention, as I was under the impression the author was suggesting that Twitter should release its own TV platform, similar either to what Intel and others have tried to do, or similar to Apple TV and Chromecast.  I’m glad that isn’t the actual suggestion here and the author’s comments do make sense.  At the very least, this gives non-users the ability to see what Twitter is all about and the ability to look at news/tweets on the topics they are specifically interested in.

#2 – “Esurance Hands Out That $1.5 Million, Releases Mind-Boggling Stats From Twitter Stunt” – via    

Premise: A fantastic use of digital marketing from Esurance, who purchased the first ad slot after the Super Bowl for $1.5 million less than what it cost to advertise during the game itself.  Esurance’s campaign was to give that $1.5 million to someone that used the “#EsuranceSave30” hashtag on Twitter.  What ensued is an impressive outpouring of reach and impressions across social media and a spike in traffic to the Esurance web site itself.

Thoughts: What a way to leverage Twitter and the power of a hashtags to run a wildly successful digital / social media campaign by the company.  4.5 million people used the hashtag in the first 24 hours, and all of this created over 2.5 billion impressions on Twitter alone!  Kudos and congratulations to Esurance for coming up with an engaging campaign on the biggest night in TV history.

#3 – “CVS Brilliantly Encouraged People To Share Its Tobacco Story” via

Premise: Earlier this week, CVS announced that it would no longer sell tobacco products in its store by 10/1/14.  Beyond simply making the announcement itself, it encouraged others to share the story on social media and put together several steps to turn this announcement into a feel-good campaign / promotion for itself.  The pharmacy company built its own landing page ( that includes a plethora of information, including facts and figures, pictures, etc.

Thoughts: A second example this week of brand/company taking a little bit of time to think about a better way of getting their message out to the masses and allowing the power of social media to allow others to take care of most of the work.

#4 – “Foursquare Gets $15M And Licensing Deal From Microsoft To Power Location Context For Windows And Mobile” via  

Premise: Foursquare received additional funding from Microsoft, strengthening the relationship between the two companies, and giving more location-based data to Bing and Windows products.  Microsoft will be able to leverage Foursquare’s geo-based targeting system on its platforms and will provide users with notifications and stronger integration into Microsoft products and devices.

Thoughts: Foursquare continues to move further and further away from “mayors” and “badges” and deeper into ‘big data’ and the future of location-based services.  Pretty soon, your mobile device is going to be directing you where you want to go for dinner based on your prior input and preferences and where you are located.  That probably scares some people, but I think it is pretty awesome!

#5 – “Is Seattle’s Russell Wilson the Perfect Brand Ambassador? We’re About to Find Out” via  

Premise: The starting quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks, Russell Wilson, stands to heavily benefit from last weekend’s Super Bowl result.  Wilson is a young QB and seems to have many of the attributes brands are looking for in a celebrity endorser.  Wilson already has deals with Nike, Levi’s, Alaska Air, and American Family Insurance … but expect this list to continue to grow as more brands find out more information about the type of person Wilson is and what he does on and, more importantly, off the field.

Thoughts: You didn’t really think we would miss one more opportunity to talk about the Seahawks victory in last weekend’s Super Bowl did you?  What a great victory!

Back to the article though, I wholeheartedly agree with the premise and will not be surprised when Wilson’s name and face are all over the TV in the coming weeks and months.  In just two seasons in Seattle, he has taken over the city and would almost definitely win in a landslide if he ran for office in the city or state.

Tweet of the Week:

We’re cheating here due to last week’s sports-geared write-up.  This tweet from Laura Ries is a great resource for all things branding-related and how/why your brand should “focus” in a particular area in order to win.  The link will take you to a PDF that offers up Ries’ prior writings and various consulting options that they are offering for brands.  I’ve read several of their writings and others are in the queue – this is certainly worth looking into for those interested in branding.

That’s it for this week’s #SundayMusings!  What caught your attention this week?

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 1-26-14


Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

Hope you are enjoying another weekend!  Welcome to #SundayMusings w/ Shore Branding, the top branding and digital marketing stories from the past seven days.

#1 – The Healthy Brand: Take Your Brand From Good to Great – via 

Premise: The write-up starts out with a good introduction to the importance of branding via 90 second YouTube clip from ParkerWhite Brand Interactive.  How do you make a great brand?  The company provides a thorough checklist of items to consider and answer for your brand/business in order to ensure your branding efforts are doing the most for your business.

Thoughts: ParkerWhite has dubbed brands that are fulfilling items on this branding checklist as “healthy brands”.  I just came across this site this week and will be keeping an eye on it in the coming weeks, given the comments towards the end of the write-up that they will be providing further information in the coming weeks on what makes a “healthy brand”.

As for the checklist itself, “Focused” and “Supported by brand loyalists” are certainly topics that have been discussed quite a bit here in the past within Sunday Musings.  I wouldn’t question any of the items on the checklist at all.

#2 – “20 iconic brands – and why they work” – via    

Premise: While potentially not the biggest, CreativeBloq has created a list of the 20 most iconic brands.

Thoughts: An interesting list to say the least, including several brands I’ve never heard of and a few missing that I thought for sure would be included in a list like this.  I’m a little surprised to see The Red Cross at #1, ahead of Apple and others.  I’m also not sure I see how or why Bass Ale is rated so highly, when there are a number of more popular and iconic beer brands out there.  Where are McDonald’s, Nike, Starbucks, etc.?

What are your thoughts on this list?  

#3 – “Our first birthday: A year on Vine” via 

Premise: Saturday, 1/24, marked the one year birthday for Vine and what a year it has been.  People are connecting on Vine and producing a wide range of content from jokes to meaningful events.  The writer says that Twitter introduced Vine with the desire for others to create and share videos from mobile.

Thoughts: In one year, Vine has helped create a new marketing machine for both brands and individuals.  The six second clips are perfect for today’s short attention span and brands that are successful at it should be congratulated.  The one thing that I would have liked to have seen here are a few updated numbers on the success levels that Vine is seeing – number of users, number of uploads per day/month, etc.

#4 – “USA Today Expands Super Bowl Ad Meter” via  

Premise: In 2013, the USA Today Super Bowl Ad Meter was opened up to the public for the first time.  USA Today is taking it one step further this year and will be segmenting the results by various demographics.  Since 1989, USA Today has been gauging reaction to Super Bowl ads and they are now adding new wrinkles to the system.  Results will appear online and in USA Today’s 2/3 print edition.

Thoughts: For those interested in voting on the Super Bowl ads, you can sign up here.  This is certainly an easy way for the paper to build a little engagement with both readers and non-readers of the newspaper itself.  Voters get a chance to voice their opinions on the most popular advertising event of the year here in the US.

What are your thoughts on brands/companies now releasing their Super Bowl commercials before they air during the game?  Personally, I don’t like it.  I think it takes away from the “mystique” (for the lack of a better word) of watching the ads for the first time during the game.

#5 – “The Future of Facebook [Research]” via 

Premise: A research study conducted by Princeton’s Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering focused on the behaviors of social media users, taking a look at what to expect for Facebook moving forward.  The research says that Facebook has reached its peak and that the downward trend will continue in the years ahead.  Heidi Cohen provides four indicators that support the findings from the report, and three tips on how to adjust/adapt your digital marketing efforts.

Thoughts: You have probably seen the “Facebook is doomed” posts and predictions before.  However, this does seem to paint a ‘not too rosy’ picture for the site moving forward.  We know how quickly Myspace fell and it wouldn’t be a complete shock to see something similar happen to Facebook (or others).   The four indicators that are provided here are certainly items that Facebook must account for and find the means of adjusting.

What are your predictions for Facebook moving forward?

Tweet of the Week:

Old Spice is at it again, bringing back Isaiah Mustafa back in the fold for another humorous campaign.  From the tweet above you will be taken to a landing page and if you wait a few seconds, you will find the true meaning of the site.  The ability to prank your friends and family with these marketing ideas is yet another great use of digital marketing for the brand.

Hope you enjoyed this week’s #SundayMusings!  Have a good week ahead!

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 1-19-14

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

Welcome to #SundayMusings w/ Shore Branding, the top branding and digital marketing stories that caught my attention from the past week.

#1 – The Best-Perceived Brands of 2013 – via 

Premise: YouGov’s BrandIndex results are in for 2013 and Amazon has become the strongest perceived brand, followed by Ford and Subway to close out the top three.  Banks/Financial institutions started to rebound in 2013 as well, with four out of the top five most improved brands coming from this arena (with the other being American Airlines).  The article includes an infographic of the results and at the bottom you find the top brands by political affiliation.

Thoughts: It isn’t surprising to see Amazon at the top of the list, given their customer service and experience, along with the growth in Amazon Prime and the Kindle.  What is surprising is to see the Kindle itself come in at number 10.  Also surprising are the number two and three top brands – Ford and Subway, respectively.

What brands would be at the top of your list?  I would put Google and Amazon at the top of mine. [Read more...]

Brand in Focus – Cadbury

After doing a little searching for our next ‘Brand in Focus’ – it was quickly decided that Cadbury (UK) would be the nominee due to a slightly unique status across social media platforms.  The Cadbury web site promotes its social media pages on Google+, Facebook, and Twitter.  What immediately caught my eye were the number of fans and followers on each.  Cadbury’s Twitter page has ~185K Followers at the time of this writing and their Facebook page has 518K Fans.  However, their Google+ page has over 3.1 million Followers.

Cadbury’s own web site heavily promotes the G+ and Twitter feeds, as you can see in the image below.  The G+ page has also been heavily supported and used as an example of one of the better/stronger pages out there on the network.  Given this, let’s start there. [Read more...]

New Poll – Where will you be advertising in 2014?

What advertising platform will you be leveraging in 2014? (Photo credit:

What advertising platform will you be leveraging in 2014?
(Photo credit:

Over the course of 2013, we covered off on several different trends in the advertising space, including the shift to advertising on various social networks (throughout many of our weekly Sunday Musings) and mobile advertising (most specifically with startup Nearwoo).

With that in mind, our opening poll question for 2014 is relatively simple: which advertising platforms will your brand/business be leveraging in 2014 to increase awareness and/or build stronger loyalty?  The options include:

  1. Mobile
  2. Paid Search
  3. Facebook
  4. Instagram
  5. Twitter
  6. LinkedIn
  7. Foursquare
  8. Other Social Media Networks

After voting, if you would like to endorse a particular avenue, please feel free to do so in the Comments section below.  If you have already leveraged any of these streams, let us know what level of success you may have encountered.

Thanks for taking the time to vote and Happy New Year!

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 12-22-13

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

Welcome to this week’s Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding, the top stories in branding and digital marketing from the past week!  Again, we have largely been able to focus on one particular subject this week.  As we come to the end of 2013, it is natural to look ahead to 2014 and this week provided a lot of content for predictions and tips going into next year.

Throughout the links below you will also find several write-ups that we put together here on that particular subject over the course of the past nine months.  Take a look if you missed any of it! [Read more...]

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 12-15-13

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

Welcome to Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding, the top stories in branding and digital marketing from the past week!  This week has a strong focus on advertising across various social media platforms, a new example of “brandscaping”, and a SlideShare on the top company pages on LinkedIn. [Read more...]

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 12-1-13

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding - Thanksgiving Edition (Photo Credit:

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – Thanksgiving Edition
(Photo Credit:

Welcome to a special Thanksgiving edition of Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding, the top stories in branding and digital marketing from the past week!  As we have treated other major holidays, this week’s Sunday Musings have a holiday twist to them, covering off on Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and this weekend’s Small Business Saturday. [Read more...]

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 11-17-13

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

Welcome to another edition of Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding, the top stories in branding and digital marketing from the past week!  Be on the lookout for an announcement later this week for a project that I am really excited for!  (Teaser alert!)

#1 – 5 Reasons Why You Need to Be Mobile Ready for 2014 – via 

Premise: Danny Brown provides five (more) reasons that your business needs to have a mobile game plan based on the results of a study conducted by Nielsen and Google.  Consumers are doing more research/search on mobile – looking up information on products, for deals, etc.  While results are mixed thus far, the benefits of geo-location apps can be seen when your business is found on the likes of Foursquare and Facebook Places.  Finally, consumers are beginning to use mobile devices for purchasing / at the point of purchase and that trend is more than likely going to continue upward.

Thoughts: Over the past few months we have spent a good amount of time and effort on the importance of mobile – including our Foursquare tips and introduction to the mobile advertising company Nearwoo.  The shift towards mobile devices will continue and I hope your brand/company is ready for it.

Are you making adjustments to your mobile game plan?  Have you had early success or failure? [Read more...]

Brand in Focus – Oreo

It has been a few months since we put a ‘Brand in Focus’.  Our second deep dive into a successful digital marketing strategy will focus on Oreo.  Let’s dig a little deeper into the brand’s efforts to see what has helped drive the brand forward and see how things look across social media platforms.

Oreo did not grab our attention until last year’s Super Bowl with its now infamous tweet and it has been history ever since:

We’ll focus on Twitter first, but before we do that, let’s outline Oreo’s efforts.  When visiting its own web page, you will see that they have links to their Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube pages.  One of the first things that caught my attention was the use of the same image/icon/logo across each platform – showing consistency in their branding efforts across each page.  Well done!  Now, how do they compare?  Let’s take a look … [Read more...]