Posts Categorized: Thinking

Five things that need to DIE in 2012


There are a number of things wrong in marketing today. Or rather there are a number of things that marketers do that have little relevance or impact–long term or otherwise. Some started off as a “best practice,” which means that they were dated and over-used as soon as they became a “best practice.”

So, here’s our list of things that we’d like to see die in 2012.

  • Blog posts made of lists. Yes, we know this is a list. Call us hypocrites, that’s ok. Quite honestly, this was the easiest way to make our case. Too often, marketers use lists as eye-candy. They’re effective for attracting views and links, but they’ve become completely over-used and a substitute for real conversation and substance. Hopefully, we’ve been able to transcend that in this list.
  • Going through the motions. Speaking of lack of substance, too many marketers are so gung ho about leaping into social that they overlook activities that are substantive and offer any real value for their constituents. Let’s make 2012 the year where marketers stop going through the motions and take a good, hard look at their activities with the goal of creating real relationships with clients and other their audiences.
  • Gurus. Yes, gurus need to go away. Whether its social media gurus, a marketing gurus, or even dish washing gurus. The point here is that marketers needed to stop thinking in silos and start thinking in cross-disciplinary terms. Some might call this integration, but that’s not really enough, in our opinion. Cross-disciplinary, as we’ve always thought, means working on the edges and overlaps of disciplines, where far more interesting things happen, creating even more opportunities for innovation.
  • Social media automation. OMG! Does this have to stop or what? How many companies are out there linking up all their accounts and spreading the exact same content across every single network? It doesn’t even look good, especially when the posting parameters are different (such as a Facebook post that gets cut off on a linked Twitter account). Marketers need to invest the time to treat each individual network–and their connections on those networks–as the individuals they are.
  • Spreading links just to show “thought leadership.” This is such a common Twitter and Facebook tactic that it’s actually gotten old. Just because a company (or a person) tweets a link to an article with a smart headline doesn’t mean that they themselves are smart. The result is that there’s an utter proliferation of links that are just irrelevant clutter.  That’s not to say companies shouldn’t share links, but rather, they need to do them more judiciously. That, and they need to actually read what they’re linking to.


Can Advertising Save Our Souls This Holiday?

Screen shot 2011-12-29 at 11.34.44 AM

(Hat tip for the video to @mmmcdermott)

British retailer John Lewis thinks so. In this heart-warming holiday ad, the retailer turns the viewers’ expectations of greedy, present-hungry kids on its head and reminds us that the holidays should be about giving.

It’s a smart strategic move that’s bold in its appeal to our higher selves, especially when the National Retail Federation estimated that shoppers spent more than $100 on themselves over the holidays. And it’s quite common for holiday ads to play to our selfish interests–be they buying gifts for our loved ones or ourselves.

The lesson to learn here? Zig when others zag. And more importantly: Advertising can be shocking in a good way and still be memorable.





2010 Year in Review

Now that 2010 is officially over, we thought we’d take a moment to highlight some of last year’s successes and talk about the future of Evolve Communications.

Last year was not only our first full year in business, but it was also a PHENOMENAL first year! We worked with a number of phenomenal clients, some through our white-label services and some direct clients. Part of this year’s success comes from better defining what we do. The concept of white-label digital marketing and PR services has really been a lightbulb to all of our agency clients, and for that we thank them.

Some other highlights from this year include:

We think 2011 is going to be a tremendous year for growth. We’ve already started thinking more about how we can scale better (a very valid concern for some of our clients), and in doing so, we have figured out what the next phase of Evolve is. We think–no, we BELIEVE–this year will be the start of something really, really big. We expect this to include an expansion of services offered, as well as plans for expanding our geographic reach.

We sincerely thank all of our clients for a fantastic 2010, and we look forward to working with current and new clients to continue to grow their business in 2011!