As cellphones, PDAs and other wireless-handheld appliances become essential personal accessories -- sometimes called "lifestyle devices" -- advertisers are busily planning to cash in on this lucrative market. However, they face obstacles such as understanding ROI and securing collaboration between agencies, brands, manufacturers, operators and service providers.
Enpocket has successfully penetrated the mobile market by providing integrated entertainment and marketing services that build and retain mobile audiences. Its marketing technology and campaign solutions empower clients to target brand messages and content.
In today's presentation, Enpocket's Mike Baker will teach you what works best by presenting two recent U.S. campaigns, as well as one that achieved phenomenal success in Europe.
Mike Baker is president and CEO of Enpocket and is also a member of the company's board of directors. A seasoned executive with more than 15 years in digital media, Baker has been at the forefront of interactive communications in the wireless, internet and multi-channel video markets. He brings his experience pioneering online advertising and analytics technologies to drive the emergence of an interactive mobile media. Baker joined Enpocket in 2004 from GrandBanks Capital. Prior to that, Baker was executive vice president at Engage Technologies, Inc. where he guided the company through its IPO, international expansion and series of acquisitions.
Note: Our podcast theme was written by Derek K. Miller. Visit him online at penmachine.com.
Organizational lack of respect for personal lives
Digital marketing is a young industry. Our world has excellent room for career growth and plenty of opportunities at the entry level. As such, marketing attracts new college graduates and otherwise young people. Therefore it's easy for companies to neglect the very large subset of marketing professionals with families. "Work all day / work all night" seems to be the motto of many startups. But the obvious problem with this mentality is that it doesn't leave time for anything else. We all need breaks from the grind. And for me, just like many others, these mental breaks come in the form of spending time with my family. When I'm running around the block alongside my 3-year-old son while pretending that I'm part of a giant, elaborate Hot Wheels track, I'm not spending a moment of time or energy thinking about work. I need those breaks.
How to combat: If you are a policy maker at your company, don't maintain your organization in a way that makes people a slave to the 9 to 5. Encourage flexible hours, customizable schedules, etc. And for goodness sake, make your employees take their vacations. Another simple way to encourage family time is to allow employees a +1 to company functions, etc. Yes, I know it's more expensive. But even though your company party has "party" right there in the name, believe me, without a +1 it's just another meeting.
Lack of inspiring projects
Sometimes the most lucrative clients and brands are also the stodgiest ones. The ones who are happy with standard banner ads, like to count clicks, and heaven forbid they infuse too much "voice" into their messaging. While these clients can keep the lights on, they're a drain on creativity in an industry where creativity is brain food. Over time, it becomes hard to care anymore, even though your paycheck continues to get signed.
How to combat: Seek a creative release elsewhere. If you're in the agency game, hopefully there's a client or two with which you can keep the creative wheels turning, even if only briefly. But you might not even have that. If you're working in-house at a brand that doesn't inspire you, there might not be many options for that creative release in your day-to-day. So you're going to have to look somewhere else and make time to stretch your brain. In that respect, you might be the person who raises his hand when it comes time to redecorate the office or redesign signage. Hell, you could even take on the task of bringing in the office birthday cakes, knowing that you'll get the opportunity to write something amazingly witty and humorous in the icing. Or, look outside your office walls and make time for a painting, design, or fiction writing class. But no matter what you do, find a way to create something that makes you proud.
Seeming lack of purpose
We're marketers. We spin messaging in order to move product for a living. There's no getting around this fact. And though it can be fun and -- yes -- sometimes we even get the opportunity to do something uplifting, there are definitely those moments where you can't help but feel like a worthless shill who isn't bettering society in any way. Feeling that way for very long is a sure path to burnout. We are, after all, not curing cancer. (With the exception of the few of us who might be marketing cancer non-profits -- hats off to you folks.)
How to combat: Take on passion projects around causes that inspire you. Hell, be the marketer who does try to cure cancer by founding or joining a cause that you believe in. And while you're at it, try to get your agency or brand in on the process. Work to create a culture of charity in your organization, whether that's the occasional pro bono campaign for the local food bank or a day out of the office working with Habitat for Humanity. It'll be good for the soul and for business.
Insane deadlines and approval processes
Look, I know insane deadlines and overly elaborate approval processes are the nature of this beast called Marketing. To some extent, you can't get around it. But one of the reasons you can't get around it is that we've all accepted this to be the case. We strive to work faster and faster, and layer on approval after approval, and rarely do we stop to say, "Why in the hell are we doing this to ourselves?" It's stressful. And over time, it burns us out.
How to combat: Admittedly, this is a hard one to get around. And often change has to come from the top. But even the simple acknowledgement -- again, from management if possible -- that every dang thing doesn't have to be a four-alarm fire can go a long way. Streamline processes where possible, minimize needed sign-offs, and try to involve as few people as possible in after-hours freak-outs. Save your all-hands-on-deck emergencies for the last-minute RFPs that really matter. Don't stress people out over the fact that the sandwiches might be 10 minutes late for today's lunch meeting.
Lack of recognition for work
Almost every good marketing idea or piece of creative comes from the collective efforts of a number of people. So it's rare that everyone's individual roles are acknowledged in a successful campaign. Not everyone gets to attend the Cannes Lions festival. Even fewer get to walk on stage to accept awards (and those that do tend to have the most expensive suits). If you're more of a cog in the wheel than a face of a company, odds are you've felt underappreciated in some of your organization's big wins, even if you secretly know it was your offhand comment during a brainstorm that kicked the whole thing off.
How to combat: Again, this is one that best comes from the top. However, marketers at any level within an organization can recommend programs and initiatives to better highlight stellar work and ideas. Your company might consider its own monthly awards programs, with categories ranging from "Best Client Web Design" to "Most Hilarious Internal Email." Likewise, consider formalizing a plan for touting campaign success outside of your own walls. You might have a PR company on hand for this. But anyone can raise their hand to offer to pen a case study or collect testimonials regarding a job well done. By being the person to ignite recognition efforts, you can actively call attention to the lesser known heroes of a given initiative -- and in doing so, you call attention to your own role within it as well. It might seem forced or even corny at first, but there's nothing wrong with creating a culture of high-fives and job-well-dones.
"Overworked burnout business man standing headless with smoke instead of his head" image via Shutterstock.