What Marketers Can Learn from the Wu-Tang Clan

Many of those who are familiar with the Wu-Tang Clan might not know much about what they are, but certainly know what they ain’t. But now, listeners can add the moniker “ingenious marketers” to the list of phrases that could be used to describe the hip hop collective.

WuTangClanThe New York City-based rap group recently announced that it will sell only one copy of its “secret album,” tentatively titled “The Wu—Once Upon a Time in Shaolin.” Before that copy ultimately ends up in the hands of a collector—who will either hoard the music or share it with the world—fans will be able to hit “tour dates” across the country and fork over $50 to hear the 128-minute album’s 31 tracks. Continue reading “What Marketers Can Learn from the Wu-Tang Clan”

Calling All Marketers: Is Your Job Starting to Feel Easy? Uh Oh…

shutterstock_179538596As a marketer, do you come home exhausted at the end of the work day? Do you find yourself looking for compelling marketing messages and branding concepts in all facets of life—whether you are watching a TV commercial or attending the opening reception for a museum exhibit? Do you feel like your job is hard?

If you answered “no” to any of these three questions then perhaps you need to ask yourself another one: Are you truly an industry-leading marketer or are you just doing enough to get by?

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What We Can Take Away from Facebook’s Oculus Rift Purchase

Right now, all the focus in the marketing world is on mobility, as the number of smartphones in use topped 1.4 billion in 2014. But everyone wants to know: What will come after mobile? This week, Facebook gave a strong indication of what’s coming down the pike next when it announced it acquired the Irvine, Calif.-based company Oculus Rift for $2 billion.

Oculus Rift, which makes an advanced virtual reality headset, is being hailed as the next major solution in the tech industry for its ability to literally transport users directly into a three-dimensionally rendered environment. Instead of staring at a screen, in other words, a user can be completely surrounded by it.

13013107993_9f0de59bcb_oRight now, Oculus Rift is primarily a video game platform. But according to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the platform has the potential to do a lot more than entertain. As Zuckerberg explained recently, Oculus Rift will transform the way that people learn, experience entertainment and communicate in the future.

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Celebrating a Decade of Social Media and Preparing for What’s to Come

facebookIn today’s ever-changing consumer and corporate environments, a decade might as well be a lifetime. Flashback 10 years ago, for example, to see just how far we have come.

For starters, Mark Zuckerberg was tucked away in his Harvard dorm room inventing a social network that would fundamentally change the way in which we interact on both a personal and professional level. BBM, thanks to BlackBerry, was sweeping the nation and the terms “iPhone” and “Siri” were not yet a part of our common vernacular. And TV shows like “The Sopranos” and “The Wire” still dominated our TV line-up.

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Is Content Marketing Fashionable?

fashIt’s not every day that you see the words “content marketing” and “fashion” together— but as we all know, stranger things have happened (Lady Gaga’s SXSW performance anyone?). The fashion industry has embraced content marketing with open arms. After all, designers are natural storytellers. From Burberry to ShopBop to Anthropologie, familiar names in the fashion world are using this avant-garde marketing strategy to engage with readers and boost brand loyalty. So is content marketing fashionable? The answer: Yes!

Don’t believe me? Below are three famously fashionable brands that have perfected the art of content marketing. (Take notes!)

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Tipoff is Here: Do You Have What it Takes to Play till the Buzzer Sounds?

shutterstock_90617275With the play-in-games behind us and all 68 bracket spots filled up, now the fun really begins.

Today, 16 teams take to the court to inch one step closer to the Sweet 16, and millions upon millions of fans from across the country figure out a way to squeeze in pressing work meetings with live streaming from their desks. (Did you know the groundswell of excitement surrounding college basketball and brackets costs $1.2 billion for every unproductive hour at work?)

March Madness is officially here and every company can actually learn a thing or two from the tournament about best practices and corporate mindset.

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Let the Madness Begin: Have You Put Together Your Marketing Bracket?

shutterstock_178064603With a regular season record of 27-4—not to mention an undefeated streak of 25-0, despite a number of near upsets during that reign—there was no disputing what my husband and I (Syracuse alumni) would be doing at 6 pm this past Sunday night. Tuning into CBS to assess see how the Cuse’s recent spate of losses (don’t get me started on Friday night’s North Carolina State game) would affect Selection Sunday.

Sadly, our pitiful performance these past few games undoubtedly cost us a No. 1 seed. But since we will never stop bleeding Orange, bring it on Broncos.

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Yes, 311 is Still Around, Their New Album is Great & Their Marketing Strategy is Even Better

These days, unless you’re Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus or Lady Gaga, odds are you’re not going to sell a lot of records. Whereas the Backstreet Boys sold 9.4 million copies of Millennium in 1999—the most of any artists that year—Justin Timberlake topped the charts in 2013, selling 2.4 million copies of The 20/20 Experience.

311_AustinKeep in mind that those numbers represent the highest-selling albums of the entire year. One can only imagine how many copies the average album sold.

Musicians used to depend on album sales to support their livelihood, but in the age of the Internet and easy digitally sharing, it is reasonable to conclude that people are simple sharing (read: stealing) music from these artists rather than buying albums. Because of this, musicians are increasingly depending on their live act to serve as their main source of income. Continue reading “Yes, 311 is Still Around, Their New Album is Great & Their Marketing Strategy is Even Better”