Wednesday, 6 January 2010


Ideally acts as the “hub” of all digital activities linking and integrating with all third-party sites and applications (i.e. “spokes”). It should also:

  • Extend the ability to capture and share information, understand current and future user needs, calculate lifetime value, improve the customer experience, and provide customers with relevant messaging in their preferred channel.
  • Extend an ‘active’ versus ‘passive’ dialog (i.e. Gives your customers a voice.)
  • Note: The web acts as the one (and only) ubiquitous channel to ALL other media (TV, Radio, Print, et al.) Not TV versus interactive, Not Radio versus interactive, Not Print or Billboard versus interactive.  Rather, what can be achieved when ALL mass media drives-to-Web.  
  • Note:  This vision extends the brand relationship to a 1:1) 1:1 marketing is a simple, powerful concept: promoting your products to individuals in a way that reflects an understanding of each person's individual preferences,
  • Build a participatory community while allowing for user segmented paths (which would address all constituents versus only primary target),
  • Extend your brand your consumers are migrating to (i.e. online.) Fish where the fish are.

 Integrated Pillar programs into existing platforms

  • Firstly, to clarify, building a micro-site costs essentially the same amount as setting up a traditional website.  Maintaining a micro-site however requires additional budget and resources.  While some companies create multiple micro-sites that point to the main site in an effort to rank higher on search engines, having a larger site with a lot of updated content has proven more successful - as all links and site activity are attributed to the domain as a whole.  The big trouble with micro-sites is that they typically inherit none of the trust, authority, ranking power, consideration, etc. that search engines give to established, well-linked properties. 

What is the correct balance of functionality and emotional messaging (Form versus function)?

  • The form should complement the function---serving to attract visitors, increasing the satisfaction by prompting an emotional response. A site that lacks form will seem dull and drab and not entice users for a prolonged initial visit to experience the site functionality.
  • The functional elements of a site are what ultimately bring value to the user experience.
  • The reality is that the most aesthetically pleasing sites are not designed to rank well in search engines, and the best ranking sites are typically not the best looking.
  • The goal of the developer is to meld the design and functionality such that they are inseparable to the user. Form and function should have a symbiotic relationship that makes user experience the priority; as this will determine visitor retention rate and the duration of their stay. 

The role of Online Media in the Communications Plan

  • The role of online media is two-fold.  The first (in combination with detailed segmentation and media planning) is to ensure that the appropriate message (or offer) is served to the right person at the right time. 
  • The second is to entice, invite, and usher the online user to additional content.  Both online and offline media impressions create awareness and equity.  The primary difference however is that one is passive (and static) and the other is active (and dynamic.) 

 Shotgun or sniper rifle

  • While static (non-interactive) media by definition must address a much wider target audience (typically primary-only), online media can be served to a unique user (1:1) based upon any number of variables.
  • All online media should therefore be carefully architected to extend a clear value-proposition that will resonate with the intended audience - whenever and wherever users are most receptive to a brand’s message.   
  • Note: Online media can also be optimized in real-time based upon a number of primary and secondary variables, allowing brands to become far more targeted and nimble; effectively lowering lead acquisition costs and extending much higher return on investment.