A joke is never as funny if you have to spell it out, but in this case we're dissecting a couple of well thought out marketing campaigns that do a great job of using humor.
I know it sounds a little funny to use a mattress company as an example of humor in marketing, but it's seriously one of the first brands that comes to mind when this topic is presented. If you've never seen any of their commercials, I highly suggest doing so. They're clever and present some really interesting characterizations. They create a storyline within a short time frame while also providing all of the information needed regarding their products.
One of their more popular commercials is centered around Goldilocks, their expert bed tester. In three minutes she easily explains how the raw egg test simulates where pressure is distributed throughout the body during sleep all while providing hilarious commentary. The information sticks because her characterization is perfect for this skit and the information provided isn't too detailed. Another example of this is their commercial featuring a Sasquatch mother who is fed up with lower-quality mattress toppers. The entire commercial is one continuous joke that sprinkles an appropriate amount of information throughout. One of my favorite lines, which I'm sure others will love is "Other toppers turn your bed crinkly or stiff and they make your mattress noisy, hot, and uncomfortable. Like a Nickelback concert." One-liners like these are abundant and absolutely get the point across that Purple Mattress is unlike the competition. The company truly knows what will hit home for their consumers and uses that to their advantage.
Sometimes it can be difficult to produce content for platforms like Twitter. You only get so many characters and therefore you really need to hit home with the content quickly. Denny's is a fantastic example of a company that is using humor in social media effectively. If you've not read their Twitter feed then I implore you to do so. You will NOT be disappointed!
The majority of their content is quippy and entertaining with useful information divvied throughout. This brand is so successful because their tweets are so incredibly relatable. How many times have you thought about something - THOUGHT, not searched for or even talked about - and seen a targeted ad for it relatively soon thereafter? I can tell you it's happened to me on several occasions. Denny's caught on to this and replied with: "the reason you see our ads so often in because we can read your mind. You think about your ex and pancakes a lot." This is too funny, and way too real. It makes followers interested in their content, so as they follow along with the hilarity they wind up seeing deals being promoted. It seems so casual, but it works into consumers' feed perfectly. Bravo, Denny's!
Philly, Philly! Need I say more? This was one of the most prevalent marketing campaigns of the year - and for good reason. Anheuser-Busch listened to their consumers and played off of their interests. With Game of Thrones being one of the most popular shows on television right now, Bud Light created a campaign with a series of commercials that mimic the medieval setting found on the show and gave it a humorous undertone.
One example focuses on a man who escapes a treacherous dungeon to come back carrying a case of Bud Light. When another prisoner questions his decision to return, everyone else cries out in protest because they all want their favorite brew. The brand took it a step further when the Eagles not only made it into the Super Bowl, but won. The series continued with the king announcing that "The injury gods threw mud at you, but the perseverance gods wiped you off and patted your behind. So for you, I'll say it only once: Philly Philly." Playing off of the pride of Philadelphia fans shows that Anheuser-Busch understands their demographic and gives us another reason to love this fan favorite.
It can be difficult to use humor in marketing. Sometimes campaigns focus too much on trying to be funny and lose sight of the fact that they're still trying to sell something. It's a fine line, but the call to action and supporting information need to be present and highlighted. Take the lead of these brands and listen to your audience, be relatable, and do what's right for your brand.
As Elysium celebrates its third birthday and we enter our fourth year, I’m reflecting on my time as both a business owner and a marketing consultant. Much like how I feel when it’s one of my kid’s birthdays, in some ways it seems that Elysium should be much older, and in other ways I can’t believe it’s already been three years.
If I had to narrow it down to only three takeaways, these are the ones that stand out:
1. There are opportunities everywhere.
As a marketing consultant, you can’t help but judge - err - look at everyone’s marketing creative, messaging, and more with a sharp lens. And truthfully, sometimes you wish you could shut off that lens. We create menus, so you bet that every single time I’m in a restaurant I check out the layout, art direction, and more. I know my husband just loves this when we’re supposed to be out for date night (love you Phil!). But the same is true for logos, sales brochures, and any other piece of tangible or digital marketing. I find myself scrutinizing emails during the holidays and wondering why that subject line was chosen or who decided to use those two colors together. A lot of this judging is helpful when we work with our designers. We share the pieces we love for inspiration, and we share the pieces we don’t love as very clear “dont's.”
Another opportunity is when we talk about what we do and our love for Elysium with our friends and family. They tend to share that love, and it’s a pretty awesome thing. I’m already super excited for what 2018 is going to bring because I already have a new phenomenal client joining the Elysium team, a lead that came directly from an old boss, a meeting scheduled with a potential partner from a connection of my Dad’s, and a prospective client meeting from a Mom of one of my son’s friends. Elysium’s third year wouldn’t have been half as successful without the love, support, and encouragement from friends and family.
2. You will find yourself doing things and in situations you never imagined (and loving every second of it.)
No, this isn’t like an - all of a sudden I was on Broadway situation - but when you and your team whole-heartedly invest yourselves into a client’s success, and see yourselves as a true part of the client team, you jump in to do anything possible to move the business forward. A couple of quick examples:
- An investor meeting that we orchestrated for an organic skincare client
- A focus group analyzing tampon use
- A farm visit and a menu tasting for every.single.item
- A construction site of the largest observation wheel on the east coast
3. No two days are ever the same.
I often get asked “What is your favorite part of your job?” and more times than not my answer is that no two days are ever exactly the same. One day we will be launching a gorgeous website, another day we'll be onsite at a video shoot, and a third day we will be in an all-day strategy planning meeting. It's not all sunshine and roses everyday, but most days we're working together as a team to come up with strategic ideas and campaigns to better our client's sales. As Elysium continues to grow I’m trying to celebrate our successes more and truly learn from the challenges.
I know how lucky I am to be doing what I love everyday. And I know that these three years have flown by with a higher amount of good than bad days. I’m ready to continue learning, meeting amazing people, and celebrating the good stuff. Happy 3rd Birthday Elysium Marketing Group!
We're excited and grateful that Elysium can now add award-winner to our portfolio!
As you may know, Elysium Marketing Group has been providing high quality digital marketing services to clients in the greater Philadelphia area since 2015. However, today we’re excited to celebrate our designation as a Top Local Agency in Philadelphia by UpCity! We were selected as one of twenty-five companies in Philadelphia as a Top Marketing Consulting Firm.
What Does This Mean?
UpCity’s Top Local Agency marketplace is a resource designed to connect small and medium sized local businesses with high-quality digital marketing service providers in their local area, allowing business owners to get the services they need quickly, from a service provider they can trust. The UpCity team independently reviews agencies across North America to determine the best service providers in each local market, ensuring that no matter where you are, great digital marketing services are never more than a click away.
To check out our profile and follow this link: https://upcity.com/local-marketing-agencies/profiles/elysium-marketing-group
We will continue to strive to bring our clients hands-on, strategic marketing creative and campaigns that move the needle and get real results. Thank you for being a part of Elysium's journey!
Social media has provided brands with the opportunity to be viewed by their consumers in a different way than ever before. They can now get in front of their customers in an approachable way to remain top of mind with every post they share. Here are some brands who are utilizing Instagram to stay relevant to their core followers while also bringing awareness to potential consumers.
GoPro – User Content
Everyone has seen an amazing (usually adventurous) video that has been filmed using GoPro. The tech company invented a camera that is built to be waterproof and withstand any damage that would have prohibited that thrill-seeker from capturing their journeys on film for the world to see. Due to the nature of their business, it should be no surprise that GoPro is at the top of this list.
What They Do: With 13 million followers on Instagram from across the world, GoPro utilizes their best asset (their customers) to sell their cameras. The GoPro Instagram feed is full of amazing pictures and videos that were taken using their cameras. Trust us, each picture will give you that feeling of wanderlust that just might inspire you to purchase a GoPro of your own.
Why They’re Killing It: User-Generated content! Not only does GoPro show you the best images and videos that were captured by the product they are showcasing but they do it by highlighting pictures and videos sent to them by their best spokespeople, their users. Each day, GoPro shares either a “Video Of The Day” or “Photo Of The Day” where they share posts that were submitted to them on the platform, this not only engages their audience and consumers but also provides GoPro users with an incentive to take that next adventure (with their GoPro) and submit their own footage!
Moleskine – Brand Aesthetic
Moleskine started by selling their classic notebooks, which are insanely popular (the Elysium team even uses them). The brand has evolved and now carries an entire line of office supplies as well as bags and accessories. The products are high-quality, affordable and even customizable – one reason why this brand has become a fan favorite.
What They Do: Moleskine might not be a company who screams as one you should follow on social media, but I highly recommend giving their Instagram a follow. Their feed is aesthetically pleasing, they highlight their products in a unique way, often by having their notebooks open to beautiful sketches. While you’re scrolling through old posts, you will never feel like you are looking at “just a notebook company’s feed.”
Why They’re Killing It: The real beauty to Moleskine’s Instagram is when you look at their feed in the grid format. Instagram breaks down their layout so you see three photos on each line of the grid. Moleskine takes advantage of this and posts 3 pictures in a row that are complimentary to one another – they’re essentially a picture within their profile which allows the brand to show an image in two different formats to their followers. Scrolling throughout a person’s daily feed they see beautiful pictures of the Moleskine products, but upon checking out the company’s profile they are also treated to a thought out, cohesive feed that showcases exactly what Moleskine is helping their consumers achieves – organization!
Lush – Customer Service
Lush is a beauty and cosmetic brand, priding itself on their “homemade” products that are natural, organic and produced cruelty-free. Their products are colorful, smell amazing and are a hit across the world, so much so that they have gathered a group of followers who have become some of the greatest spokespersons for the brand itself.
What They Do: Lush creates fun products so it is only fitting that their feed is full of beautiful, colorful posts that highlight exactly what their products are made for - fun. The majority of their feed is focused on their bath bombs, which is their #1 top seller allowing Lush to showcase bright photos and videos of their fun bath bombs. For example, they show a video of their rocket bath bomb dissolving in a tub – SO COOL and makes you want to order 1 (or ten) as you’re scrolling through your feed.
Why They’re Killing It: The true reason Lush made this list of a brand who absolutely thrives on Instagram is because of their comment section (weird, I know) but Lush has a team who replies to every relevant comment on their posts on the platform. This is a huge part of Lush maintaining their insanely loyal customers. Here’s an example: @healthybalancedblonde commented on a post and said “What is this one??? I needed!!!!” Now typically, larger brands would ignore a comment like this or maybe “like” it so the customer felt important but not Lush. Rather, Lush responded that same day tagging the previously noted customer – “This is our ever-gorgeous Tisty Tosty bath bomb, Morgan! – Meghan” Now, not only does this customer feel like they are getting to know the brand they buy from by the employee adding her name to the comment, but also, she took the time to click on the customer’s page and learn her real name. This personalized touch goes a long way and has helped Lush grow to having 3.9 million followers.
Halo Top – Exciting, Fun Content
Okay, so who doesn’t love ice cream?! Halo Top Creamery is gaining popularity for being the world’s first all-natural light ice cream, and due to that, supermarkets can’t stock the freezer aisles with these pints quickly enough. Each pint is under 350 calories for the ENTIRE pint and thus ice cream lovers and health-enthusiasts alike are championing this brand.
What They Do: Halo Top highlights their product in fun, innovative ways that excite their followers. Let’s be honest, they’re working with one of the yummiest products that automatically provides their consumers with joy. However, the brand consistently highlights their products in new enthusing ways by often incorporating the “ingredients” for the flavors of ice cream. Their captions are also fun, uplifting, and often full of puns which truly fits with the tone of this brand.
Why They’re Killing It: Halo Top just gets it, their posts are fun on-brand and they always make me want to go out and buy a new flavor of their product line. They are also masters of new product launches. Here’s what they did before they launched 7 new flavors this month. Each day for a week, the brand posted a picture of an object indicative to the flavor of ice cream that corresponded with a number. For example, on day 6 they posted a 6 made of cinnamon rolls to introduce their new Cinnamon Roll ice cream. Then, on day 7 they posted all 7 new flavors in one group shot.
Shinola – Personal Experience
Shinola is a USA made leather company from Detroit who got their start only 5 years ago by selling watches with a goal of bringing American jobs back to the city. Since their start, the brand has escalated into selling high-end leather goods, jewelry and accessories.
What They Do: Shinola shows off their high-end products in a way that truly makes you want to purchase from the company. They utilize the “Link in Bio” feature so followers can easily link out of the app and go straight to the product they’re eye-ing up and make that purchase immediately. This is currently the best user-experience an e-commerce company can provide to their customers on Instagram, and Shinola is executing this perfectly.
Why They’re Killing It: The story behind Shinola is an important piece of the company’s identity and therefore is an important piece of their presence on Instagram. Shinola highlights their team members on Instagram to give followers that personal connection that further allows them to feel as if they know the brand they are buying from. To further expand on showing their identity, Shinola uses #RollUpOurSleeves – throughout their feed you will see this hashtag shared with different pictures and videos. These posts highlight Shinola team members who have gone above and beyond the brand’s mission and brought positive change to the communities in which the members work and live. These feel good, inspirational stories are posted just enough to provide you with that warm and fuzzy feeling but not too often to make it feel overdone. It shows their consumers that they practice what they preach and truly care about the places where they are building factories to help bring jobs to different cities across the country.
1. Creative –
Sugarwish’s logo is clean, whimsical, and locked up with a solid tagline, “sweet happiness.delivered.” Their colors are a combination of Tiffany’s blue (for a little luxury) and red (for a little love), plus gray as a secondary color. It’s nice to see two colors not usually paired together being used, and used in such a complimentary way.
Their website is clean and shows beautiful, playful pictures of their candy offerings. The tone of the Sugarwish brand is fun (as it should be… it’s CANDY) and they use language like “Lickety Split” and “Wish Granted,” which just makes the whole experience more enjoyable.
When the Sugarwish arrives, it comes in the cutest packaging – a Tiffany's blue box, with a red ribbon around it. The inside showcases the candy and has red and white stripes that are reminiscent of the old-school candy striper days.
2. Website’s Ease of Use -
Sugarwish has been implementing a new concept – sending a candy gram online to a recipient who selects his/her own gift. Instead of complicating the messaging, once you arrive on their site, it clearly shows you where to click if you are the sender or the recipient. It incorporates a video if you need further explanation, but it doesn’t cram it down your throat. Most of the content on each page is above the fold, so there’s not a lot of scrolling needed to get the information you want. The website does a great job of making navigating the site a cinch!
3. Email/Ecommerce Best Practices –
So far, we’ve touched on the cute concept and exceptional branding, but Sugarwish wouldn’t be as successful as it currently is without using best practices in ecommerce. Once you order, you get an email confirmation. If it’s your first-time ordering, you get a thank you from the founders with an offer to purchase again. Both pretty standard, but necessary steps.
At each turn, they both subtlety and not so subtlety try to persuade you to purchase another Sugarwish. But even when it’s not so subtle, it’s still on brand and it’s not bothersome at all. They track when your wish has been sent and when it’s been seen, so if for some reason the recipient doesn’t pick it up, you can either send it again or say something to your chosen recipient to make sure they select their candy.
Their emails are visually appealing with minimal copy. As you can see from the email below, it’s easily digestible and definitely makes you want to click through to their site.
Not only is their onsite presence and email marketing strong, but they are also implementing the next step and using a remarketing campaign. As soon as I left their page, a cute little reminder popped up on another site that I should send that deserving someone some candy. “Sugarwish Em’”
4. Social Media -
Some of the most fun we have when we manage our clients’ social media accounts is when we’re working with food brands. There’s so much you can do and so much fun to be had. People want to see puppies and babies on social media, but I’d say good looking food/candy would definitely be next in line.
If you look at Sugarwish’s Instagram feed, it contains beautiful pictures of colors through candy. They do a wonderful job of incorporating their logo and some of their brand lingo like “Work Fuel” and “Sweet Appreciation.” The entire feed uses a consistent look n’ feel and exudes their brand essence. We see so many Instagram accounts that are all over the place and really don’t tell the brand’s story, so this is a breath of fresh candy air.
I would suggest that Sugarwish post more often on Facebook; however, I have found that when they do post, it is relevant and on-point. You can see below that for Valentine’s Day (a holiday they should definitely be capitalizing on) they posted a charming picture of one of their boxes with a message about how they are the ultimate Valentine.
At the bottom of their emails, they entice you to follow them on social media with clever copy that fits their brand and actually does make you want to join.
For a brand that isn’t well known to the masses yet (every time I send one, the recipient says “What a cute idea!,”) Elysium is very impressed with what we’ve seen from Sugarwish so far. They seem to really know who they are, what their brand stands for, and how to incorporate best practices in ecommerce.
Lastly - maybe most important - If you have two email addresses, there’s no shame in ordering one for yourself. ;)
Have you dug out from your holiday emails yet? They’re probably still coming…. And will, all the way up until December 24th! We received so many holiday emails, that we decided to concentrate on one day instead of the entire holiday season to give some feedback on the best and worst this year.
Black Friday used to mean everyone rushed into the physical store for the best items. Now ecommerce has made it so easy to shop those crazy deals from the comfort of your couch. To this point, retailers need to competitively compete with each other on subject line, creative, and discounts.
We poured through the good, the bad, and the cluttered… here are 3 of the best and 3 of the worst Black Friday emails. Just like previous email reviews, I will grade each email on Subject Line, Relevance, Creative, & Call to Action (CTA).
Who Made the Nice List?
1. My Custom Case
2. Bobbi Brown Cosmetics
3. Old Navy
Who made the Naughty List?
1. MAC Cosmetics
2. Oriental Trading
3. Marc Jacobs
Overall, there were a lot of great emails. So many cute animated gifs and so many great deals! Consumer expectations are that big brands will continue to 'wow', so we’ll see if they get the message by our Spring Email Review!
1. Make it Stand Out!
In the Tony Roni mailer we created and sent (pictured below), we have two very eye catching components: 1. The headline: We Like Big Crusts and We Can Not Lie. And now you have the song “I Like Big Butts and I Can Not Lie” in your head. Since the Tony Roni brand lends itself to it, we had some fun with the headline so people not only get a chuckle, but more importantly, remember the piece.
The other thing is that we decided to send an oversized postcard that is 9.5 X 13, which is significantly bigger than your average piece of paper. This way no one will miss it! Smaller postcards can get lost with the rest of the mail and thrown away without a second thought. This big honking postcard will get noticed, if nothing else. The other side of the postcard had compelling coupons so recipients could take an action based off of the card.
2. Use a Code to Track it!
In the mailer (pictured below) for Harvest Seasonal Grill & Wine Bar, we used an affixed card with a code on it. Customers who redeemed the card would receive half off a second entrée. This card was collected by servers to track the outcome. The code on the card can be used in the ordering system to track the meals that use the code. This part of the equation is crucial, so we know what the return on the mailer is. If we don’t have this, it would be difficult to know whether the campaign was successful, and whether we should keep using it in the marketing strategy.
3. Let Visuals Tell the Story!
Although the Eventions Productions piece we’re showing here was not used as direct mail, it still does a good job of showcasing that you don’t need a lot of copy to get your message across, especially if you have a very visual business. Since Eventions does high-end event lighting and sound, they can let their stunning work speak for itself, and use some supporting copy to drive home the message. Here you can see the inside of the tri-fold we created.
4. Have a time limit!
You might think keeping the code/coupon/card valid for a longer period of time would give you a better response, but the truth is that consumers get lazy, lose the card, and/or forget about it. An expiration date will give recipients the jump they need to use the deal now or lose it.
5. Use a good printer!
This one may seem obvious, but there really is a difference when you’re selecting your direct mail partner. Make sure they are super knowledgeable about postage rates, how to properly print your creative, what paper works best, and what postage areas you’re mailing to. We’ve had amazing experience with companies (thank you FMI Direct) and we’ve had terrible experiences. Pick your partner wisely.