All posts by Peggy & Arthur Winters

BIOS: Arthur A. Winters and Peggy Fincher Winters Dr. Arthur Allen Winters and Prof. Peggy Fincher Winters are active in brand image research in brand concept and content development for local and global fashion companies. They conduct international seminars and professional training in integrated and experiential marketing and multimedia communications. Dr. and Prof. Winters are partners in TFI Geomarketing, a consulting firm specializing in strategic planning for integrated marketing and communications. They have served as judges for several advertising awards, such as the NY American Marketing Association EFFIES. They are currently offering branding concept education through seminars and certification curricula for The Center for Professional Studies at the Fashion Institute of Technology / State University of New York. They have contributed to the development of FIT’s certification programs and teach in Retailing: Customer Experience Management; Retailing: E-Commerce and Social Media; and Brand Management Experience. www.fitnyc.edu/professionalstudies. They currently contribute to the Center’s BLOG: http://blog.fitnyc.edu/hottopicsinsider. Arthur and Peggy Winters have authored and co-authored books, videos, and online blogs and newsletters. Their co-authored books include: What Works in Fashion Advertising; BrandStand, Strategies for Retail Brand Building; and The Power of Retail Branding, Innovative Marketing Strategies for Achieving BrandPower. They are now doing research for publication of their examination into “Brand Buzz vs Brand Does.” They travel worldwide in order to observe and evaluate ongoing changes in the international retail, advertising and marketing landscape. The Winters have created academic curricula and given industry consults and seminars in England, Italy, France, Brazil, Kenya, Korea, Japan, Israel, China, and Russia. Dr. Arthur A. Winters is Professor Emeritus and founder of the Advertising and Marketing Communications Department, at the Fashion Institute of Technology / State University of New York. He has over 60 years of experience as an advertising agency and marketing professional. He is an educator and an author with a specialty in strategic brand management, planning and creative execution of marketing and communications. He is a pioneer in Integrated and Experiential Marketing, Advertising and Communications, who believed then and now, that brand building requires more than brand name recognition. Dr. Winters holds degrees in economics, public relations, marketing and education from Williams College, Pace University, and Temple University. Quoted in numerous professional and trade publications, he has written many articles and authored and co-authored seven textbooks. He has created innovative curricula for advertising and marketing communications and developed interactive multimedia matrices for experiential education. Prof. Peggy Fincher Winters has been a professional and an educator in fashion marketing, advertising and marketing communications for over 40 years. Her career spans the industry from specialty and department store retailing -- to retail and producer direct marketing, advertising, promotions and public relations. She is a strategic planner and creative producer of advertising and public relations and integrated marketing campaigns. She has been a TV spokesperson, written articles, books and videos, and has been quoted on fashion, marketing, advertising, as well as experiential education and career development issues. Her education career includes being the founder of the FIT/SUNY college-wide Internship Program, professor of advertising and marketing communications. She has developed curricula and mentoring matrices that provide internship programming and career coaching. Prof. Winters holds degrees in merchandising, marketing, and education from Ellsworth Community College and The University of Memphis. peggy_fincherwinters@fitnyc.edu arthur_winters@fitnyc.edu

GOOD THINGS TO DO FOR BETTER CONTENT

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Sometimes we need a checklist to remind us of what is important. In the new world of all things “Content,” let’s review:

➢ Emphasize what your products and services do to satisfy your customers’ wants and needs

➢ Don’t market based on YOUR own preferences and behaviors. Think / Be Consumer Centric! Develop and use the number one communications skill of –“I’m Listening,” which indicates that you care if you act on what you are hearing.

➢ Explore customer behaviors and lifestyles and shopper personas. How do customers self-define their personas?

➢ Have customer data that is not influenced by your mindset. This is the customer era – bottom up not top down.

➢ Rely on onsite research to deliver insights into content useful to customers. What will initiate their discovery that you/your brand can help them solve their wants and needs problems?

➢ Good marketing content begins in imitation and develops innovation. The innovation doesn’t have to benefit those who are not your target market. Create specific strategies to focus mainly on loyal customers.

➢ Create your ideas for interactions by engaged-with potential customers

➢ Plan to answer customer questions in Real-Time (or Close-time). Remember – “I’m Listening – hearing – and acting upon your requests.”

➢ Develop intriguing, fascinating, compelling content that draws consumers into your brand’s world. The sense of discovery will bring attention, interest, desire and action (AIDA still applies).

➢ Trust and transparency in content and actions are critical to maintaining a sustainable relationship with today’s customers

brand content Drawing by Art Winters
Drawing by Art Winters

What do we understand and what can we put to use from this review of some of the key elements of Content Marketing Communications?

Let us know what you think…

Arthur & Peggy Winters co-teach SXB 200 Brand Marketing Communications for Image & Meaning and SXR 050 Intro to Branding: The Art of Customer Bonding.

RELEASE the PRESS RELEASE? To Deliver SEO or Not to Deliver SEO? That is the Question…

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Up to this moment in “cyber news”, the press release has worked as a significant contributor to what we used to call journalism.  The press release was able to give reporters and editors at newspapers and magazines – print, and TV, radio — broadcast media an essential story.  Relevant information was the currency between news makers and news reporters.

Now, there are so many omni-media ways for the PR practitioners to reach their audiences:  blogs, tweets, social media, e-mail newsletters, webinars, et al.  And, in this cyber world, search engines provide another major tool for omni-information seekers.   The press release remains useful as always, if it is relevant in this new environment of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  P.R. managers and marketing directors may possibly add “journalist” to their job descriptions, since at this time they manage many more operations and produce publishable content, which can directly reach their key audiences.

If there was a period when the preponderance of media might have been a problem for a public relations operation to continue using the press release, it’s no longer the case.  One of the reasons the release gained publishing power, is because it helps to deliver the coveted SEO.  As such, these optimized links have brought companies their most useful keywords, helping them to obtain more acceptance on the Internet.  This is now a successful strategy to aid brands and companies with their online presence and recognition.

However, these optimized links are being questioned.  Some industry voices have described these as “link devices,” warning that the anchor text in the news release will no longer build a company’s SEO and creating more links may even damage SEO.  Thus, brand content groups that produce readers to build “unnatural” links will be seriously stymied.

Point — Counter Point!!

by Art Winters Dec2013

 

As always, if the press agent dished out bad information, the media rejected it.  If they provided valid news of relevance to the media’s audience, the media appreciated the helpful, newsworthy information.  There are fewer gatekeepers to filter the news, aka content.  Then as now, high content stories provided in today’s press releases could still service market education and offer online discoveries through the omni-channels.

Therefore, we believe the press release is still a valid marketing strategy and tool, even if it is different from the past.  It needs to strive to be an effective communicator of authentic and timely content.

 

Arthur & Peggy Winters co-teach SXB 200 Brand Marketing Communications for Image & Meaning and SXR 050 Intro to Branding: The Art of Customer Bonding.

EDITORIAL AND PRESS RELEASE – P.R. influence through $$

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PRESS RELEASES BY PUBLIC RELATIONS COMMITTEES lead to content that functions like press releases but are paid-for in so-called NATIVE ADVERTISING. Here are some vital questions to consider:
Is a brand’s PR’s use of mobile media a sign of authenticity?
Will media have explicit editorial surveillance for a press release content that is paid for?
Will editorial content now be dominated by press releases in omni-media and omnicon?

Also, if Native Advertising consists of paid-for deals made between PR committees and a variety of media, how will reward advertising affect authenticity? Will the significant audience care – as long as they are rewarded? (see our July 2013 blog on Native Advertising.) (reward-based advertising rewards consumers for interacting with branded-content in their favorite mobile apps.)

Considering these new forms of PR content, what will editorial content become? Will it lead to an erosion of inconvenient factual positioning found in Brand Marketing Communications?
Will the PR factions of Brand Management actually create “contracts” between Brands and Media? Will the media be receptive to this idea as it changes the role of gatekeeper — to what exactly?

drawing by Art Winters
drawing by Art Winters

Now that we have omni-tweets and facebook updates and e-mail blasts, what will the consumer believe is the real story of the brand’s positioning, its image and meaning? A significant answer to this question is in the changes in marketing communications. We now have so many more methods of messaging and outlets for those messages: e-books, infographics; blogs, social media, email newsletters, webinars, … , not to mention, the traditional media that still exist.

These can be effective especially when they are a creative part of a brand’s PR and marketing campaign strategy. News outlets still need connections with the people and stories behind the brand.

The press release that was, is still useful. However, it is so much changed. What is needed now is relevant content that truly involves the receiver. The receivers of press releases used to be the media gatekeepers – reporters and editors… but this has changed due to the advent of social and mobile media, company websites and blogs. And a serious reality in this new age of PR is that the receivers of press releases are now almost any audience … and the harsh reality that content providers must face is that their press release content might never be read!

The evolution in information exchanges now requires a whole new
Brand Think!!

What do you think???

 

Arthur & Peggy Winters co-teach SXB 200 Brand Marketing Communications for Image & Meaning and SXR 050 Intro to Branding: The Art of Customer Bonding.