Chris Brogan

Yesterday, I had the great opportunity to hear Chris Brogan give a presentation about branding at Boston University.  He was extremely entertaining and informative and provided the audience with a lot of information about marketing and public relations.

He started off by asking everyone who was a marketing major, public relations major (there were only four of us, surprisingly), etc.  Then he asked who was in sales and few people in the audience raised their hands.  Then he told us that if we were in these fields, we were all in sales and customer service.

He told us a world class brand has velocity, distribution, relationship skills and true measurement.  Nobody cares how many Twitter followers you have or what your Klout score is.  These four items are what matters when working in these disciplines.

As companies adjust to using social media in their marketing strategies, it is also important to remember some of the older tactics.  Citibank conducted a survey of people 18 and older to see how they had a relationship with brands.  Four percent said their relationship was through Twitter, 15 percent by Facebook and 93 percent still claimed that they used e-mail.  Brogan did say that if e-mails from companies are sent from a “do-not-reply-I-don’t-want-to-talk-to-you” address, they are not doing e-mail marketing the right way.

When pitching a product, service or brand, remember that brevity rules.  200-500 words in a blog post and e-mail works.  People do not want to hear everything that exists on a topic through these mediums.  And they most likely won’t read everything.

Marketers often forget to LISTEN to what people are saying.  Brogan said to stay topical and current, you have to listen to what people are saying they want.  Comcast did a great job of this through their Twitter handle @ComcastCares.  They listened to customer complaints, responded to them, fixed many of them and had increased revenues as a result.

Many people think marketing campaigns can be measured by how many people like a page on Facebook or follow a company on Twitter.  The real opportunity is to make the next thing happen after the like.

In terms of networking, Brogan referenced the Dunbar Effect that says that you only have 150 people in your network.  He said to try to be part of everyone’s 150 network.  And the best time to keep your network alive is when you do not need the person’s help.

Marketing should never be safe.  The best campaigns are often the most risky ones.  Brogan said the cool, awesome thing with many of the new tools out there is being flexible and trying something new.  Coke had a very successful campaign with user generated videos, but they will not be able to do something again.  Marketing is about fresh, new ideas and keeping a brand alive.  He did admit though that Geico’s Gecko can be used repeatedly without being stale.

When keeping in touch with people, interact with them through multiple mediums.  Brogan has a huge network and keeps in touch with people by posing questions at the end of his blog posts, commenting back to comments on his blog and even commenting on other personal blogs.

Some other interesting facts he said included:

  • 40 percent of business do not have a web presence.  They live by what other people write about them.
  • The #2 search engine in the world is YouTube.
  • 1 in 6 Facebook users is a Facebook fan of Disney.
  • The Will It Blend campaign was created by the person in charge of the agency (not an advertising agency) and led to a 500% increase in sales.

Thank you again to Chris Brogan for an informative and entertaining lecture.  What did everyone else think?

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4 thoughts on “Chris Brogan

  1. I certainly liked when he mentioned how commenting on blogs was a key piece to building relationships (as I comment..) Really though, what makes a great blogger is being able to listen to what your audience has to say, providing that relevant content, and showing your praise support for the work that they do. (promoting their work more than your own..)

    When I came home after the conference I had a DM from Chris. He apologized because he knew that I couldn’t stay after to speak with him. As much as I wanted to get to know him, he took accountability and showed that he cared through his simple gesture. For a man who has 175k following (not that twitter followers matter) he was still able to follow up with his fans post-conference following along with his “practice what you preach” methodology that was instilled throughout his speech.

    Great post Rachel and thanks for the informative tweets all night!

    • Thanks for the comment, Trent! I had a DM as well and was VERY impressed that he took the time to send it. I definitely didn’t expect it, but it was such a nice surprise.

  2. Great post Rachel! I really enjoyed the event yesterday and was so inspired by Chiris’ speech. I LOVED how he compared marketing to theatre and mentioned “breaking the fourth wall”. He too dmed me and impressed with how personable he is 🙂 Let’s have him back soon!

  3. It’d be pretty jerk-baggy of me to not respond if that’s what I’m telling people to do, right?

    I’m glad you took some notes. Clearly, I have lots of thoughts that I put out there in a strange way. I’m glad you sucked the real ideas back out of them.

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