CX and Your Website: It’s Not about You

CX and Your Website: It’s Not about You

Are you familiar with the term customer experience (CX)? Not just for app developers or folks operating on the fringes of innovation, CX is a pervasive value system that will affect your company’s success. So what exactly is CX? I like Forrester’s definition for its simplicity:

“How customers perceive their interactions with your company.”

Anytime you interact with a customer, whether it is online, in-person or over the phone, you are engaging in forming customer experience—good, bad or ugly. Most of us, apparently, feel that we’re doing a good job—only we’re not. According to Bain & Company, 80 percent of CEOs believe they deliver a superior customer experience, but only 8 percent of their customers agree.

How do companies bring those two numbers closer together? When it comes to your first chances to nurture positive CX — your website and social media profiles — it’s important to set your brand ego aside. Think about this…

“There are only 86,400 seconds in a day. Given that we are universally bound by this limited resource, how can we make things easier, quicker and simpler for our customers?”

This question, posed by MGM Resorts International’s chief experience officer, Julie Hoffmann, at the American Marketing Association’s National Conference in September, is one that you should ask regularly.

In addition, here are two exercises you can do today to positively impact the online customer experience you provide.

Exercise 1: How would you describe your company or product to a 10-year-old?

Now look at your website. Without scrolling, does it answer this question in under eight seconds?

The average attention span for the notoriously ill-focused goldfish is nine seconds, but according to a recent study from Microsoft Corp., people now generally lose concentration after eight seconds.

If a first-time visitor sees only your clever brand tagline, then it’s time to make one critical change on your home page. Add a succinct single line message that explains your value proposition. A quick web search turned up these examples of effective home page value messages:

  • The easy, fast, affordable way to send money online—from your desktop, tablet or mobile device.
  • Comprehensive, easy-to-use cloud-based law practice management software.
  • Software for automated sales tax compliance. “Sales tax is hard. We make it easy.”

That value message will help a visitor confirm their interest in your product or service. Make sure this simple description also lives on your social media profiles.

Within the first eight seconds, visitors should also see one or more simple, low-risk ways to engage with you. An opt-in subscription form, download offer or free trial may extend the visit well beyond eight seconds.

Exercise 2: What are the top five questions your prospective customers ask you?

You are sitting on the most valuable insights money can buy—actual customer interactions. Ask your sales team to account for the questions they continually get asked by prospects at the beginning of the relationship. Do you address these questions on your website’s most important pages? How many pages and links does it take to get the answers? Your customers are coming to your website to figure out if you provide a solution for their pesky, nagging pain point. Is there a way to provide relief in fewer interactions?

Sometimes, particularly with B2B, we get caught up in trying to deliver so much information that the most customer-relevant part gets lost or left out. You don’t need a new website to make real strides in your CX. Real improvements can result from simply creating headlines and separating blocks of copy and important callouts with more white space.

Your brand is not just a tagline, a collection of bright colors and a logo. Ultimately, your true brand is your customers’ experience of your company over the duration of their relationship with you. Your website is a prominent part of that, so start your CX initiative there.

This is an edited version of a post that originally appeared on The Edge Room.

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About the Author

Kim Tidwell, Inbound Marketing, Content Strategy & Development and Social Media Management ConsultantKim Tidwell is a storyteller and creative marketer, with a consultancy focused on content strategy and inbound marketing.

An avid community-builder, she splits her time between Austin AMA and CreativeMornings/Austin.

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Related Topics on the AMA Austin Blog:

Brand or Be Branded - Austin AMA

Customer Archetypes & Irrational Loyalty with Deb Gabor from Sol Marketing

Thanks to all who joined us last month to hear Sol Marketing’s Deb Gabor discuss brands, customer archetypes and developing irrational loyalty in your audience! We’re not going to recap the event, as Sol Marketing has a great post on their blog. You can also find a link to Deb’s presentation: Your Ideal Customer Archetype. Read the blog.

We did, however, want to share some of our favorite sentiments and quotes from Deb’s excellent presentation. Enjoy!

Hope to see everyone on Feb. 26th at our next luncheon with TV personality and business superstar, Jeffrey Hayzlett! For something more interactive and focused, join us on Feb. 18th for our SIG event on how to create presentations that don’t suck.

Brand or Be Branded - Austin AMA


Deb Gabor Sol Marketing Austin AMA 2


Deb Gabor Sol Marketing Austin AMA 3


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Consumer Insights Event Recap for Rob Malcolm

Have You Found “THE ONE”?

We’re talking brands, not dating.

Finding “the one” – as in, the consumer insight – can make all the difference for your brand and your bottom line.

If you were with us this month to hear Rob Malcolm dish on this most important topic, we hope you enjoyed it as much as we did. For those who weren’t able to join, we wanted to recap some of the key takeaways and share his presentation, below.

So, how do we go about finding “the one” key insight for our brands and businesses? Follow Rob’s framework:

  1. Frame the issue. What specific question about which specific customer do we need to answer?
  2. Gather information.  What relevant information do we need to address the issue?
  3. What’s the insight?  What is the single most penetrating discovery from this information?
  4. What are the implications?  What potential strategies, plans, and benefits can be identified to drive growth as a result of this insight?

Perhaps the most surprising part of Rob’s talk was that when searching for true insights that drive growth, asking the right question is key. Framing that specific question can be your biggest job as a marketer.

In practice, here are two examples of great questions yielding great insights that allowed these brands to win the day.

Metamucil understood that their customers didn’t want to talk about regularity. Really, who does? The question for their customer is not how can I be more regular.  The question is how can I feel better so that I can do all of the things I want to do in life. Speaking to this motivation has driven spectacular growth for this most unsexy brand.

The Obama campaign understood that to win a key state, they had to appeal to this key audience – seniors in South Florida. How to do this? We all know how it ended. Watch this video and see the successful question and insight process in action:

It was refreshing to hear from a marketing and advertising veteran, on something that we too often overlook. These days we’re so busy parsing and analyzing data as marketers, that we sometimes forget that going back to basics can be even more valuable.

Want to read more on this topic? Check out these two recent blogs:

Customer Insights: 4 Questions for Rob Malcolm

What These Brands Know About Marketing That You Don’t

Customer Insights 4 Questions for Rob Malcom Austin AMA

Customer Insights: 4 Questions for Rob Malcolm


Every company is looking for “insights” to grow their business. Why then do so few find insights that will truly transform and unlock tremendous company growth? We caught up with Rob Malcolm for a sneak preview of his session at Austin AMA’s December luncheon, “Marketing Insights from Dos Equis, Johnnie Walker & Folgers,” held Dec. 10 at Abel’s on the Lake. Register now! Attendees will learn an easy but dynamic framework, get new usable tools you can put to work tomorrow and learn how these tools work in multiple case study examples.

In the past, you’ve called this topic the “single most powerful motivation” driving growth for brands, more than digital marketing or even product innovation. Why is that so?

In every category, and in every business, there are two first steps to cracking the all-important challenge of accelerating growth. The first is identifying the highest value business opportunity—the most valuable and reachable segment. The second, and this is where our topic comes in—is to identify the most powerful motivation or insight that drives their choice of brand, business or service.

For every business, there may be many things at play, but in my experience, there is always one that is more powerful than the others. If you can find this and unlock it, you can build your entire business strategy around it and achieve growth that you would not have thought possible. The right target and single insight drives your strategy and every tactical element of it. Digital marketing and product innovations are tactics—but you can only do this well if you know your target and why they make the choices they do in your category. Think of them as arms and legs of the marketing body—without a powerful “head” providing clarity of direction, they flop around uselessly.

Our AMA session will reveal why this is the case, how you can find and harness it and illustrate it through numerous case studies. It will also give you a simple tool to use to take back to your business and use immediately.


Can that one true insight be found amidst the heaps of big data? Or does it take a different, more personalized approach to really understand consumer behavior?

Big data is a hot topic at the moment—everyone has more and more data today…indeed data is bigger than ever before. But few are able to answer the “so now what” question. In my experience, data can be great to identify “what is happening?” questions—like who is buying my product, where they are buying it and maybe how often and how much they are paying for it. But big data almost never answers the question “why are they buying or not buying it?” That is the key question to answer and it requires very deep understanding of motivations to buy—and this comes from deep and penetrating discovery work of largely qualitative digging.


What are some common mistakes that marketers make (or myths) about consumer behavior insights?

There are two common mistakes people make. First, they don’t know that there is always one insight into customer motivation that is far more important to all others. So they find lots of them and try to figure out how to use them. I gave a training a course at Procter & Gamble a couple of years ago and discovered that many brands kept “insight logs”—with as many as a dozen so-called insights in the list. Not surprisingly, they did not know what to do with them—use them all or pick some? Which ones? The second problem, and we will get into this in the session, is to avoid confusing observation with insight. There is a huge difference—but you will have to come to the session to learn the difference.


What’s one action that we could start doing right away to keep consumer behavior top-of-mind in our day-to-day roles?

Commit to find the one transformational insight for your business now and don’t sleep until you do.


Learn more about the secrets to unlocking customer insights from Rob at the Austin AMA’s next luncheon on Dec. 10: “Marketing Insights from Dos Equis, Johnnie Walker & Folgers.”



Robert MalcomIn a marketing and general management career spanning 40 years, Rob Malcolm has been a student, practitioner, consultant, and teacher – successfully applying all aspects of marketing in the US and internationally. Following completion of his bachelor’s and MBA in Marketing from the University of Southern California, Rob joined Procter and Gamble in Brand Management in 1975. In his 24 years with them, he held various positions in marketing and general management working on more than 75 brands in 40 countries.

Connect with Rob on LinkedIn


Austin AMA What These Brands Know That You Don't

What These Brands Know About Marketing That You Don’t

Every company is looking for “insights” to grow their business. Why then do so few find insights that will truly transform and unlock tremendous company growth? Here’s a sneak preview of Austin AMA’s December luncheon, “Marketing Insights from Dos Equis, Johnnie Walker & Folgers,” held Dec. 10 at Abel’s on the Lake. Register now! Attendees will learn an easy but dynamic framework, get new usable tools you can put to work tomorrow and learn how these tools work in multiple case study examples.

Each of these brands achieved dramatic and transformational growth within static or declining categories many years apart by mastering perhaps the most powerful and under-appreciated lever in marketing. No, it’s is not social media, harnessing “big data,” going digital, having the coolest “mobile app,” or even product innovation—although many of these tactics and tools were part of the implementation of their successful turnaround programs.

All of them—Folgers coffee in the 1980s, Johnnie Walker starting in the late ’90s, and Dos Equis in the 2000s — uncovered what I believe is the most powerful secret to unlocking growth for brands of all types. This is the discovery of the SINGLE most powerful motivation driving their behavior in the category in which your brand or business competes and what I call THE TRANSFORMATIONAL INSIGHT.

Let’s briefly examine each of them.

Folgers was stuck for decades in a head to head share fight with Maxwell House, trading marketing arguments about which coffee “tasted better.” Neither brand made much progress. They were stuck in “tit for tat” promotion and pricing wars of attrition. Mrs. Olsen tried to convince you that Folgers’ “Mountain Grown Beans” resulted in better tasting coffee while Cora the shop keeper argued that Maxwell House was “good to the last drop.” Stalemate.

It was only when the marketers at Folgers changed the question from the rational “why do you choose Folgers” line of questioning to the deeper qualitative line of probing around describing their best cups of coffee that they found the larger category motivation that no one else was addressing. The answer was “to get their day off to a brighter start,” and that led them to abandon 20 years of “better taste” positioning to create what became the most successful, longest running television advertising campaign in the history of US marketing. “The Best Part of Wakin’ Up Is Folgers in Your Cup” is now in its 31st year on air and created dramatic growth for Folgers even in a home brewing category that has continued its slow decline.

Johnnie Walker—and the Scotch whiskey category—was on a long-term decline in the late ’90s when the management at newly created Diageo took on the turnaround task. The brand and category had lost relevance, and the next generation had abandoned Scotch for cooler categories like vodka and tequila.

But then marketers discovered that the target group of 25-30-year-old upwardly mobile men all over the world were motivated by the same singular driving force—the desire to make progress. Johnnie Walker decided to embrace this fundamental motivation and “inspire men all over the world to make progress in their lives.” This led to the breakthrough 1999 global campaign “Keep Walking” that turned years of decline into rapid, sustained growth and was awarded “global advertising campaign of the decade” in 2010. The success continues to this day, some 15 years later.

More recently, Dos Equis cracked the code and separated itself from the tangled mass of imported beer by uncovering that its target—guys 23-28—was maturing and no longer wanted to be seen as crazy frat boys. At this point in their lives, they wanted to be seen as more complex or sophisticated—a unique and powerful motivation that was not being addressed by any other brand. Enter the “Most Interesting Man in the World.” It’s been the most successful campaign in the beer market for the last decade, driving accelerated growth for the brand.

I was struck by a recent blog from Rishad Tobaccowala, Chairman of Digitas and Razorfish, where he laments about a particular malady in marketing today. He calls it “too much plumbing, too little water,” referring to the over-focus on data, technology, and digital marketing tactics at the expense of finding the true “water”—the powerful insights into consumer behavior we can use to unlock and support growth.

What so many marketers seem to forget in today’s world of digitally enabled cool tactics is that the root of all consumer behavior lies first in finding and harnessing the singular most powerful motivation that drives their behavior: their choice. Oftentimes it is about a fundamental human truth about your target — as in the case of Johnnie Walker and Dos Equis. Other times, it’s finding the driving category motivation, as with Folgers. Whatever it is, each brand and category does have ONE insight about purchase motivation that is the most powerful driver of their consumers’ behavior. Find it and the potential is enormous.

Until this foundation work is complete, the rest really doesn’t matter.

This is an edited version of a post that Rob Malcolm wrote for Texas Enterprise and was reprinted here with the author’s permission. Learn more about the secrets to unlocking customer insights from Rob at the Austin AMA’s next luncheon on Dec. 10: “Marketing Insights from Dos Equis, Johnnie Walker & Folgers.”



Robert MalcomIn a marketing and general management career spanning 40 years, Rob Malcolm has been a student, practitioner, consultant, and teacher – successfully applying all aspects of marketing in the US and internationally. Following completion of his bachelor’s and MBA in Marketing from the University of Southern California, Rob joined Procter and Gamble in Brand Management in 1975. In his 24 years with them, he held various positions in marketing and general management working on more than 75 brands in 40 countries.

Connect with Rob on LinkedIn


Insights on mobile strategy from InnoTech Digital Marketing Summit speaker Bryan Eisenberg

Mobile is Not the Next Big Thing…It’s Already the Big Thing

This post originally appeared on Bryan Eisenberg’s blog and has been republished here with permission from Bryan Eisenberg. Join Austin AMA to learn more from Bryan at the 12th Annual Innotech Austin Digital Marketing Summit held at the Austin Convention Center on Oct. 8. His session, “Designing Legendary Brands: a business process to customer experience, analytics, and profits” will take place during lunch at the conference.

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In mid-2013, mobile Internet access surpassed fixed Internet access, and according to comScore the gap is only widening.

Many people are not as easily frustrated with mobile as they are with desktop because their expectations are still low. It was the same way in the late 90s and early 2000s with desktop experiences.

However, that forgiveness won’t last very long. Consumers will keep expecting more and more great experiences like those they get from mobile-optimized companies like Amazon.

As more apps and mobile websites improve, we will see more companies leapfrogging forward by creating richer, easier, and more persuasive mobile experiences, allowing their customers to become comfortable with starting and finishing their buying process on mobile alone. Still, the current metrics show mobile has a long way to go when it comes to its ability to convert.

Marketing conversion rates by mobile device type













There is no bigger opportunity online than committing yourself to evolving your mobile customer experience into something that doesn’t feel like it is a desktop experience crammed onto a teeny weeny screen where gigantic thumbs and a finger are the primary modes of interaction.

If you don’t want to wait for this to change, then you must commit sufficient resources to creating superior mobile experiences for your customers. They deserve it, and you will reap the reward.

To begin, consider the constraints of the mobile platform, and then figure out how to use those constraints as a positive. Find ways using design, tech, or UI to make the experience satisfying, to become more like a snack-sized version of your desktop experience, which will highlight your service or products. Find an alternative that will keep your customers from having to perform difficult tasks with their thumbs.

  • Can you use a smaller screen to your advantage?
  • Instead of forcing mobile customers to type awkwardly on the phone, can you use their cameras to take pictures of their credit cards?
  • Can you use an API like Google Maps to autocomplete their addresses when they start thumb typing them?
  • Can you find a way to make your product pages snack sized, instead of trying to cram everything you have on the desktop version?
  • Can you allow mobile customers a way to email their carts to themselves so they can finish on a computer or a tablet?

There are just a few things I had at the top of my mind. What ideas do you have about improving the mobile buying experience?
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Bryan Eisenberg, Internationally Recognized Speaker, Co-Founder and CMO, IdealSpotBryan Eisenberg is the co-founder and CMO of IdealSpot. He is the co-author of the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, USA Today and New York Times bestselling books “Call to Action”, “Waiting For Your Cat to Bark?” and “Always Be Testing”. Bryan is a professional marketing keynote speaker who has been the keynote speaker for corporate events and conferences such as Gultaggen,, Direct Marketing Association, DreamForce, E-consultancy, Emerce, and the Canadian Marketing Association. He is also the co-founder and Chairman Emeritus of the Web Analytics Association (now the Digital Analytics Association). Bryan serves as an advisory board member of Search Engine Strategies, the eMetrics Marketing Optimization Summit and several venture capital backed startup companies (e.g., Bazaarvoice,, Monetate, Nomi, Sightly, BoostMedia, AllClearID, ChatID, OneSpot etc.). Find Bryan on Twitter, LinkedIn and on his website.
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Don’t forget! Register for the 12th Annual Innotech Austin Digital Marketing Summit on Oct. 8 to hear more from Bryan at the summit’s luncheon. Use discount code AMA69C for the special Austin AMA rate of $69. Includes full Digital Marketing Summit, AMA luncheon and all InnoTech conferences and networking functions.

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Five Questions Catherine Jewell - Career and Leadership Coach

Five Questions for Catherine Jewell, The Career Passion Coach®

Are you in the middle of a job search, or just feeling the drag in your current 9 to 5? Catherine Jewell, The Career Passion Coach®, has some advice about what it takes to pull ahead in this tough job market and how to find what inspires you.

To hear more from Catherine Jewell, make sure to join us on July 16th for the “From Peeved to Passionate: How to stay motivated at work when things look down.” luncheon event.

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1. Job searching has fundamentally changed—in many cases your candidacy for a particular role is funneled through an algorithmic maze long before you get to state your case face-to-face. Considering our competitive Austin market, what is the most important “current” tactic you believe job seekers should employ?

Since you folks are marketers, I know you can be bold. Believe it or not, I believe telephoning your future boss is the best way to make an impression. Figuring out who your future boss is—that’s a marketing challenge.

2. What is your favorite blog or resource for marketing news, industry insights or just plain old inspiration?

I like The Daily Flame – Messages from Your Inner Pilot Light. It’s like having a message from Source, encouraging you every day.

3. Talk about the day that you decided to go into leadership training and career coaching. What was the catalyst that sparked you to change careers?

I was 29 years old, and Account Executive for Young & Rubicam Advertising. I was presenting a co-op advertising program to promote Iowa tourism to a room full of small business owners. It was electric. I knew I was home.

4. So, how do you know you’ve found the right career niche? Alternatively, how do you know when your role is NOT the right one?

Not being in the right career feels like you are swimming upstream or slogging through mud. Every little thing is a hassle. When your career is right, you feel on top of your work, you’re pleased with yourself, and you can’t believe how EASY your work is.

5. What’s the most helpful skill or trait one must have during a career transition?

Optimism and boldness.

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When Catherine is not busy with one-on-one coaching and speaking engagements, you may find her at BJ’s with a berry mojito in her hands. To reach out to Catherine, find her on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and

Whether you need a refresher at your current job or are looking to jump into something new, rediscover your passion and reignite your motivation at our July Luncheon with Catherine Jewell.

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Austin AMA Member Spotlight

Get to Know Katharine Rovinsky, Our June Volunteer of the Month

Katharine Rovinsky, Austin AMA Volunteer of the Month, June 2015

Katharine Rovinsky, Austin AMA Director of Volunteer Engagement


A self-proclaimed data nerd, Katharine works in market research, supporting clients in technology, finance and energy. Originally from northeastern Pennsylvania, Katharine and her husband moved to Austin after stints in Orlando and Chicago. Having studied urban planning, she takes an unusually keen interest in the transportation, politics and tourism of every place she visits. Here in Austin, she enjoys bar trivia, swimming, hiking and outdoor events.

As director of volunteer engagement, Katharine helps connect members to our committees. She’s eager to hear from members who are looking to get involved and grow their local network.



Why did you join the AMA?

I work from home, which gets lonely. I joined AMA to connect with other professionals.


Where do you go for marketing information and thought leadership online?

I tend to read up on clients’ industries such as BAI Banking Strategies and E-SOURCE for energy.


What is the one thing you’ve been inspired by lately?

I love tacky outdoor advertising. When I see all of the neon signs in Austin – I wish I had the skills to design something like that.


What is one word you’d use to describe yourself?

Intense. “Too seriously”…“only a game”… in my heart, there is no such thing.


Connect with Katharine on LinkedIn.

Interested in volunteering for Austin AMA? Email Katharine at

Austin AMA: Five Questions for Corey Maynard, VP of Marketing at YETI Coolers

5 Questions for YETI Coolers’ Corey Maynard

In advance of Marketing Jam on June 18, 2015, we sat down with our speaker, Corey Maynard of YETI Coolers, to get his take on branding, what marketers need to learn to stay competitive, and what B2B brands can learn from successful B2C tactics.

Like many of us, you’re not from around here. But Austin-transplants and Austin-natives alike are very fond of our local brands. How important is the local story when marketing a product sold globally?

There are a few key factors to keep in mind when figuring out how important the local story is for your brand (and company).

The first – and most important – is how important success in your local market is to your overall business. If most of your customers are local, it’s critical they know you’re one of them, and that supporting your brand will benefit their community. If hometown success is not as important to your overall business, the local story may not justify prioritization over other brand messages.

From a broader market perspective, the importance of a brand’s place of origin depends on the brand’s larger narrative and position – and the perception of your hometown within your entire consumer base. If your hometown is a defining part of your DNA and is positive and meaningful to your consumers, it should probably play an important part of your messaging.

Austin has its own brand identity locally, statewide, nationally, and globally. If your company’s position is reinforced by association with Austin’s brand, your hometown can be a powerful part of your brand story. It’s safe to say that Peoria City Limits would have been less compelling nationally than Austin City Limits. If perceptions of your hometown conflict with your desired brand position, however, the association is probably not an asset for the brand.

A third consideration for the local story is less about the brand and more about the company. Being seen and respected within your home community can have significant positive benefits for recruiting, employee pride/satisfaction, and retention. I’m not sure this would justify making Austin a central part of a global campaign, but it could help rationalize participation in local events and media.


In our ever-evolving industry, what are the skills younger marketers should learn from more experienced marketers and vice versa?

This is a good question, and I think an important one in our industry. Technology has so fundamentally rocked the marketing world that it’s not unfair to categorize marketers as those who were around before the digital marketing revolution and those who grew up in immersed in it. Both groups have a lot to learn from each other, and I worry that various social barriers (ego, title, salary, arrogance, ignorance, fear) prevent the collaboration that each group desperately needs.

Technology has blown up every link in the marketing chain to allow nearly infinite options for creative (what you say/how you say it) and media (where you say it), and has completely blurred the lines between those once-distinct disciplines. Digital Marketing now allows pinpoint targeting, real-time optimization, and reams upon reams of analytics. Tastes and trends and even platforms rise and fall at lightning speed, fueled by communications frenzy.

For those who came of age before all of this came to be, it can be flat-out overwhelming. Staying on top of every trend and app and business model feels impossible. For those who grew up with hyper-connectedness as a way of life, it’s neither overwhelming nor daunting. Like growing up in a household that spoke French, it’s much easier for younger marketers to process the language of media complexity and navigate its waters effectively. And that’s something “experienced” marketers need from their younger peers.

But the digital revolution also did serious damage to quality marketing, and this is where younger marketers could take cues from their more experienced peers. Technology has lowered the costs and other barriers to creating brand messaging, and the explosion of media options has given everybody the chance to publish their content to the world. While this has enormous positive social implications, it shifted many marketers’ mindsets.

In the pre-digital world, campaigns were very, very expensive, and successful marketers had to carefully consider every aspect of their mix, for fear of blowing their budgets and losing their jobs. Storytelling, emotional resonance, connection to brand position, and ability to move sales numbers could shine as driving consideration points, in part because media options were so limited, and in part because the investment required deep scrutiny.

To me, building human connections with consumers – seeing through the noise of technology, media, content, and analytics over-proliferation — to achieve real emotional reactions through quality storytelling is absolutely critical to successful brand building. And I think pre-revolution marketers tend to have more experience considering the importance of storytelling rather than falling in love with a technology or relying on analytics to chart a course.


Many of our Austin AMA members focus on B2B. What B2C tactics do you see best-in-class B2B companies adopting that are separating them from the B2B pack?

The basics of marketing apply to B2B just as much as B2C; it’s just the media that changes. It starts with understanding your consumers: who are they? What do they care about? How do they make decisions related to your product? Who influences their decisions? How do you find those influencers? What media (broadly defined) do they consume? How do they feel about your brand today? How do they feel about your competitors? You have to start with a deep and unbiased understanding of the how the people you are trying to reach behave and what they care about.

Then you need to have clarity of your own voice. What does your brand/company believe in? What is your personality and position relative to your competitors? Will consumers’ experience with your product or service legitimately back up the position you are trying to achieve?

Ultimately, effective marketing (both B2B and B2C) occurs in the convergence of your understanding of your consumer and own brand voice/position. Each marketer is then charged with identifying the media that can most effectively deliver their message to their unique target.


Your wildly” successful social campaign is #BuiltForTheWild. What wild adventure would you undertake with a free afternoon, a YETI cooler, and a transporter to beam you anywhere?

I imagine myself on a boat in a tropical location with a fishing rod in my hand.


What would you pack in your YETI?

Cold beverages, orange slices, and a Franklin brisket.

YETI Coolers' Corey Maynard in the Grand Canyon

Photo: Grand Canyon, May 2015; courtesy of Corey Maynard










Join us on June 18 at The Rattle Inn to hear YETI’s brand story. Register here!