Welcome to our weekly edition of What We Are Reading! Each week, the marketing team reflects on emerging trends and company promotions that help shape the marketing landscape. This week, our featured stories are five articles that reflect originality, corporate social responsibility, and digital marketing.
1. The Science of Social Selling
Erase your preconceived thought about sales. Sales is a delicate fusion of both art and science. Creativity and personality will help illustrate a picture for a potential client. On the other hand, concrete research on the client will showcase your diligence and intelligence. In today’s world, selling requires more than “pushing” products onto customers. Selling has evolved into relationship building based on commonalities. These commonalities can be extracted via social media sites prior to an initial meeting. The culmination of this sales process is called social selling, and it is helping sales professionals in more ways than one. The goal of social selling is to increase sales while maintaining a long-term relationship with the client. Simply going on a client’s social media pages will provide a glimpse of potential commonalities. These commonalities will enhance your relationship and decrease the tension between the initial meeting.
Read more from Forbes about this trend.
2. Girl Scout Cookie Sales Go Digital, With Help From Visa and Dell
Never underestimate the power of an ambitious Girl Scout, especially during cookie season! These young ladies have created a very sweet partnership, landing them with some powerful business intelligence. In exchange for logo exposure of Visa and Dell, the Girl Scouts have landed themselves an online retail empire to distribute their cookies. This platform was created due to an increase in online shopping for daily commodities followed by a decrease in in-store purchases. A great takeaway from these girls is to form powerful partnerships with complementary products. Individually, these businesses are strong, but together, they are unstoppable.
Check out The NY Times for more.
3. Can You Deduct Girl Scout Cookies? Thomson Reuters Answers Quirky Tax Questions in Facebook Campaign
Thomas Reuters implemented humor as a marketing strategy to jazz up tax season. The results were successful because it was unlike any other accounting campaign. It was attention-getting, comical, and original. Those attributes lead to better advertisement recall. Because financial service companies rely on factual advertisements, adding humor is an unconventional way to gain customer attention and loyalty.
Read more in Advertising Age!
4. Where on Earth Is Buzz? Why Honey Nut Cheerios Nixed Its Busy Bee.
A business has a larger role in society than generating profits and jobs. Participating in philanthropic causes that align closely to your brand will help to generate a sustainable competitive advantage. In addition to developing higher ethical standards, a company’s sponsorship of causes will show consumers the “human” side of a business. General Mill’s cereal, Honey Nut Cheerios, dissolved their famous bee mascot into an outline. Because that simple bee has been plastered on this iconic American cereal, consumers have developed brand association and an attachment to the adorable little insect. This was executed to represent the disappearing bee population. Initially, with the absence of the bee, panic consumed loyal customers. However, this panic triggered an emotional reaction by consumers because it linked the fictional disappearance with the reality of the declining bee population. Was this public relations campaign worth the temporary absence of the brand’s icon?
Check out more in Entrepreneur.
5. Target’s savings app Cartwheel now lets you clip real coupons
Will you be doing cartwheels over Target’s new mobile application? If you’re a Target shopper, you can trash those Sunday circulars, because Target has released an online promotional system on their app. In an effort to capture the savers market, this app promotes deals prior to entering the store. This draws customers into the store and eliminates the frustration of coupons sinking into the bottom of your wallet (only until you get home and realize it was in front of you the whole time).
Check out more on TechCrunch.