I just got back from ad:tech New York and as I reflect on the two-day conference, the presentation that really sticks in my head is the opening keynote delivered by Frank Cooper, CMO of Global Consumer Engagement at Pepsico. His keynote address on a snowy Tuesday morning really livened the spirits of the crowd. His message was simple but universal – when creating a marketing initiative, make sure it’s a H-I-T.
So what makes a campaign a H-I-T?
- First stop, humanity – what Cooper described as the personal identity we use to connect with each other as people. The innate humanness in us that drives us to be empathetic and philanthropic. Having a human element to a campaign taps into our natural drive to help one another and work together.
- Part two, imagination – the aspects of a campaign that harness creativity and problem solving. There has to be something original about a campaign that makes it stand out among the thousands of cues we have to sift through in consumer society.
- Finally, truth – having palpable transparency in our communications with others. Being straightforward and trustworthy in the way that we share information with our audience makes the consumer feel comfortable with a brand, like a friend or advisor.
It takes all of these elements to create communications with the H-I-T factor, a quality which allows a brand to become part of greater popular culture and ingrained into the day-to-day lives of our audience
So, how can your company encourage H-I-T campaigns from its team? Get ready, we have three more takeaways.
- Shift your cultural behavior to a creative life – Cooper encouraged the audience to take the time to “waste time.” Read a book for fun. Take a walk. Paint a wall. Have a few seconds when you aren’t concerned about the problem to allow yourself to find creative ways to solve it
- Restructure relationships – both internally and outside one’s companies. Foster a spirit of sharing and collaboration and encourage an environment filled with a diverse group of people and ideas.
- Pursue truth. Marketers spend all day helping sales teams sell. Ensuring that the information we put out into the world is truthful is critical. Take a step back from your messaging – look at it as if your brand were on the outside.
Not a shabby philosophy – in fact, these three essentials can be easily translated to one’s day to day life. I enjoyed Cooper’s presentation – his examples, using clips from the film “Inception” (a little Leo never hurt anyone) and the example of Pepsi’s DEWmocracy campaign highlighted the three key elements of H-I-T.