Archive for February, 2010

Bonafide Monkey Business

February 25, 2010

This is a couple years old but a restaurant in Utsonomiya, Japan has monkeys working as waiters.  Imagine the draw!  Watch:

I blog this at a time when I have proposed a couple outlandish, grand, ridiculous campaigns lately that my customers haven’t pursued.  The toughest part of my job is knowing a marketing/PR stunt will work and not seeing it come to pass.  Sometimes it’s hard to not get emotional about great ideas that never get a chance to manifest.

I encourage you to take absolutely crazy risks with your company.  Do things that are so far out of your realm of comfort and routine that, even if the risk doesn’t produce the fruit you want, you’ll be happy you stretched your team/brand and tried something wild.

The joy of risk is refreshing, and will stimulate new streams of thought.


Is JAPA DOG’s Engrish Deliberate?

February 22, 2010

The Vancouver hot dog stand with a sometimes 2 hour line up has a website with some seriously funny spelling mistakes on it.

The company, which calls itself a Japanese Consulting Corporation, says they might be closed 3 days a month depending on “whether”.  They also call Kurobuta the “Kobe beef” of pork, and their Recruit page is kinda hirarious.

Are they playing the Japanese Engrish card to the max, or can they just not spell?  I think it’s a viral marketing strategy, but sometimes I’m stubbornly naive.

Joking Isn’t Lying

February 22, 2010

doesn’t like this but I think it’s awesome.  People will shop here and tell people about it based on one goofy sign.  Imagine how many people do a double take then cruise in to inquire.

Does anyone else think most retailers are too serious and stuffy?

Effective Street Tactics

February 22, 2010

Here’s 3 companies milking marketing during the Olympics:
Canon rolled in 2 Mini Coopers with massive fake Canon lenses on top. Rolling tandem is a LOT more than twice as effective, and the lens props make everyone look to make sure they weren’t actual lethal castle destroying cannons.

had about a dozen rickshaws downtown, giving people free rides. The catch?  You got to hear the driver talk about how easy it is to tow 2 people in a rickshaw while wearing Rockports!  Captive audience + high touch marketing = genius.

had stiff balloons sticking out of cute girls’ backpacks.  Nobody does this, yet it’s SO cheap, easy and effective!

Inject Subtle Humour

February 15, 2010

I’m on this tear to teach companies to talk the way normal people talk.  Acting too corporate and businessy is a huge turnoff.

Invoke Media, the makers of Twitter’s BFF Hootsuite and have a line at the bottom of their site: “Call us to see what we can do for you. You won’t regret it in the morning.” So subtle, yet it shows real humans work there.

You don’t have to be ROFL funny, but display that your company has a certain wit and cheekiness.  Let your office clown pour over into the website.

And it’s not too late to slightly tweak your website!

Vitamin Water ad: Taken by Kyle MacDonald in Vancouver BC.

It’s Totally Worth It!

February 12, 2010

For you naysayers who still think the Olympics are a waste of money, put your marketing cap on for a minute.  Now check EVERY major news website,  search engine home page, prime time TV news show, and any top newspaper in any country.  If you find one that doesn’t mention “Vancouver, Canada” let me know.

It’s not just about the games. This is the biggest PR stunt on planet earth. It literally couldn’t be a better marketing campaign for our city and country. Ever.

Companies can spend a lot of money to get ‘impressions’, and for 2 weeks we will bask in impression heaven.  The price we pay for billions of people to see our city comes at, believe it or not, a very heavy discount.  If Vancouver was ugly and a human rights nightmare it might not be effective.  But our hot city will reap the harvest from this exposure for years to come.

photo: Rudy Sulgan, bing home page 2.12.09

also posted at Metro-Blenz News Squad

Timmy Bans Jimmy

February 9, 2010

Even though it’s a bona fide fact that Tim Horton’s coffee tastes like mild swill and the service pales in comparison to a penitentiary’s mess hall, their provocative and very public move of banning customer Jimmy Craig because he complained about burnt coffee one too many times is a spectacular example of a big brand showing its fangs.

Why does company news always have to be fluffy and positive?  Why do you have to get your sugar coated marketing team involved?  Be bold.  Take a stand against something.  ‘The customer is always right’ is an 80s term – stop embracing it, then brag about it.  The media will eat it up.

If you wanna be like most companies aren’t, you gotta be willing to do what most companies won’t.

pic: Health In Motion

Warm Fuzzy Random

February 6, 2010

Commercials that make people say ‘What the heck?’ with a massive smile on their face are in full swing.

Kia is one of the fastest growing car brands in North America for so many obvious reasons – their commercials is one of them.

via Autoblog

Chat with Your Target Market

February 4, 2010

Last night at Pereira PR‘s PR meet up we were graced with the honour of having 3 sweet speakers: Jenn from 6S Marketing, Curt from BIV, and Raul from Hummingbird 604.  For 2 hours, the speakers dished out precious info and our PR sponge brains ate it up.  Nom nom nom.

Raul kept bringing it up KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE. He has one of the biggest blogs in BC, and gets pitched the most random stupid things all the time because PR people don’t pay attention that his blog wouldn’t suit their audience.  Raul believes PR people would do a much better job producing results for clients if they focused on their clients’ audience vs. just being pitching whores to anyone with a media outlet.  Mmhmm!  Point taken.

And Jenn pointed out the power of relationships, you know, since it’s called SOCIAL media and all, not SPAM media.  This is big time emphasized in Shane and Stephen‘s new book Sociable! which I’m reading and highly recommend. Don’t just promote – converse.

Social media and blogging are still on the upswing big time: master them before the masses and their granny surpass you by sticking to the genuine basics.

top pic: Nicole Hall, Curt Cherewayko, Sara Pereira & Tara Padidar
photo by Peyvand Padidar

Get Your SEO On!!

February 4, 2010

Most companies have still not maximized their websites to be found by search engines.  My friend Carlos of Bloom Marketing – a local SEO firm that everyone I refer to is very very happy with – says that he thinks less than 20% of companies use search engine optimization as a marketing tool.

Carlos says the other big mistake companies make is they try and use their internal, existing marketing terms for SEO.  So, Johnny’s Kayaks (made up name – I hope) in Revelstoke BC would bank on key words like ‘Johnny’s Kayaks in Revelstoke’, when what they should be doing is optimizing words the way people think, ie: ‘Kayak rentals british columbia’, ‘outdoor adventure kootenays’ ‘whitewater rafting Canada’, etc..

And instead of having an SEO peeing contest with your nearest competitor about who’s higher on Google, try and think of what other words people ponder when they need a company like yours.  That is where all the hidden gold is online.

Eskimo roll pic: Wavelength Magazine