A prominent business speaker launched a conference with a gut-bursting “true story” in his opening remarks. After the speech a colleague approached him and quietly told him, “That was an incredible opening story, but I have heard it elsewhere, before. Did that really happen to you?” The polished speaker responded, “It was indeed a true story, I simply re-purposed it!” Recognizing the parallels between storytelling and marketing, the same great ideas are often presented in multiple contexts to achieve different goals. Honorable professionals would never steal an idea. But, a successful idea in one circumstance can very easily be re-purposed for another!
In a marketing campaign ideas, images and verbiage can be protected. But, owning a concept is trickier. Considering that a brand is not what you say, but what you deliver, great marketing results rely more on execution, than ideas. A brand is memorable and effective because it delivered. Consequently, when communicating marketing benefits for assorted prospects and customers, having multiple applications available maximizes effectiveness. For example, a retailer that crafts a social media calendar to communicate to millennial working parents can then use that tactic to drive traffic to a website targeting Type-A divorcees. The key to success is consistent marketing execution resulting in generating revenue growth for both channels.
Another success characteristic of re-purposed marketing is introducing a specific tactic inside a different strategy. For example, the beer industry has recently experienced growth through the explosion of localized craft beers. Their marketing emphasizes localization. Then, mega-brewer Budweiser launches a campaign focusing on their localized, St. Louis roots. Nostalgic visuals in commercials coordinate with their classic images on their product to demonstrate that their story is relevant to modern trends while celebrating its long-established heritage. The product’s story has not changed, but its connection to a younger market segment has. Even social media as a modern marketing channel, has established, astute marketers like Disney promoting it’s classic characters, in conjunction with new video clips in their Instagram accounts. The coordination directly results in communicating with customers of several demographics and motivating future purchases. Whether the actual products are movies, vacations, or merchandise, the expected customer experience is consistent with the delivered message.
Nevertheless, execution makes the difference. When proven marketing ideas are re-introduced, their success depends on coordinating the current medium with the re-purposed message. Great ideas are valuable, but they are common. Effective execution is rare and unique. Consequently, execution creates value. The idea can be old, but the perspective must be fresh. Whether a marketing campaign involves a direct mail piece that used analytics to identify an incredibly narrow target niche, or a clever jingle with a 1970’s disco beat, customers must acknowledge that the images and sounds accurately create emotional connections. Ultimately, marketers must use all available marketing assets toward forming a lasting impression to benefit the product or service. The branding tools and messages are available. Deploy them effectively to communicate specific business benefits, and then use them differently for more value!
By Glenn W Hunter
Principal of Hunter And Beyond