The 5 Worst Mistakes "Expert" Marketers Are Making in 2014


When online "experts" share their "expertise," it is always advisable to observe with some skepticism. While the Internet can be considered the modern bastion of knowledge, opinions, and ideas, it is not completely dependable.

In fact, most of what you can find on the web is unreliable information. Take the case of online marketing as an example. Many online marketing "experts" who preach their supposedly effective strategies embarrass themselves by the failure of their ideas in their own practical application.

The following can be considered the worst mistakes in online marketing in 2014. They represent the biggest misconceptions in marketing being peddled by self-proclaimed marketing experts and even by those who have had some real experience in online marketing.

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by Steve Hall    Nov- 7-14    
Topic: Brands

40 Brand Logos With Hidden Messages


Here's an infographic from UK agency Oomph that details the hidden imagery and meaning in 40 big brand logos. Many, like the arrow in the FedEx logo, you may already be aware of. Some you may not.

Take a look.

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by Steve Hall    Oct-29-14    
Topic: Brands

Victoria's Secret's 'Body' Bra Line Comes In Many Sizes But You'd Never Know It From This 'Perfect Body' Ad Campaign


Pity the poor woman who doesn't live up to Victoria Secret's definition of perfection which probably hovers somewhere around 5'8", 34C-22-34. If you don't come close to those measurements, it appears you should should shop elsewhere.

A new campaign for the brand is touting a line of bras they call Body by Victoria. The ads carry the headline, "The Perfect Body," along with images of, well, women with "perfect" bodies.

Certainly there's an aspect of every advertising campaign which aims to be aspirational, motivational, uplifting in a way that, ideally, cause a person to respond, "I want to be like that. I want to be better. I'll have what she's having. I want to be better. Etc." And a nice motivational kick in the ass is a good thing every once in a while.

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by Steve Hall    Oct-28-14    
Topic: Brands

How Omni-Channel Marketing Can Help Brands Better Connect With Customers


A few weeks ago, a friend of mine received an email from HSBC Bank informing him that as a platinum cardholder, he was entitled to "fabulous wedding offers." From the banquet, gown and jewelry to photo packages and honeymoon travel, his wedding bases were covered. It might have been nice if he weren't married with two young kids - details that were stated clearly on his HSBC profile.

This is one of many innocent but avoidable blunders we encounter in the digital age. As marketers try to conquer every 'touch point', many risk diluting the personal, human touch of commerce. Despite covering QR codes, email, mobile, social, web, events, webinars, etc. all at once, marketers continue to provide a unichannel experience in a multichannel world.

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by Steve Hall    Sep- 3-14    
Topic: Brands

How Affiliate Marketing Can Fund Your Advertising Budget


If you mention the term "affiliate marketing" to some brand marketers they either don't know what you're talking about or they think it's some kind of shady method of generating traffic.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Affiliate marketing, simply put, is the use of third parties (affiliates) to help sell your product or promote your brand. Even better, affiliate marketing is a better way for a brand to pay for advertising. What do I mean by this?

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by Steve Hall    Aug-18-14    
Topic: Brands

Without Admitting Its Products Were Ever Bad, Johnson's Touts Reformulated Baby Products


Without admitting the ingredients formaldehyde and 1,4-dioxane, present in 100 of its baby products, Johnson's Baby, which earlier this year began introducing reformulated products, is out with a delightfully fuzzy, feel good campaign touting the removal of those ingredients.

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by Steve Hall    Jul-30-14    
Topic: Brands

What's to Debate? Of Course That BMW M4 Aircraft Carrier Ad Is Fake


What's to debate? And why is everyone debating? Just ask yourself this simple question. Even if it were physically possible to do so, do you really think the Navy is going to allow some marketer to modify an aircraft carrier so it can make a stupid ad?

This is advertising we're talking about. Not national security. And last time I checked, the Navy falls into the category of national security, not helping marketers make stupid ads. Though, in this case, the ad is pretty cool!

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by Steve Hall    Jul- 9-14    
Topic: Brands

Yawn. Bud Light Takes Over Town. Calls It Whatever, USA. We Pardon the Millenials Who Came Up With the Idea


The whole brands takes over a town thing? So done. So over. But when you think about it, Bud Light taking over a town and calling it Whatever, USA for a period of time just might get a pass? Why?

Because the Millenials who came up with the idea were likely in junior high school when started the whole brand-renames-town thing way back in 2000.

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by Steve Hall    Jul- 2-14    
Topic: Brands

VW Stuns Entire Movie Theater With 'Don't Text And Drive' Stunt


While it's unclear how the organizers of this VW don't text and drive campaign managed to send a text to everyone in a movie theater at exactly the same time, the message is an effective one and they way they did it is brilliant.

Watch what happens as these movie goers view the screen and then receive a text. Ogilvy Beijing created.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-10-14    
Topic: Brands

Read These Lips And Smell Rio De Janeiro And Your Beauty Needs Will Be Met


- Want to win some lipstick. All you have to do is lip read these lips. In Dutch or French.

- Want to experience the smell of Rio de Janeiro? Check out this perfume.

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by Steve Hall    Jun- 3-14    
Topic: Brands