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This story was originally published on CO— by U.S. Chamber of Commerce and was written by Mark Hamstra.

Mega brands including Hot Wheels, Barbie and Looney Tunes are forging licensing collaborations that align with social causes and tap into the hot digital collectibles market — trends that businesses of all sizes can monetize, too: That’s because they’re courting younger audiences via the buying triggers shaping how they shop for toys to T-shirts today, executives said at the 2021 Licensing Expo attended by CO—.

Dr. Seuss and NFTs: ‘This is a whole new way of interpreting the characters’

Dr. Seuss Enterprises, for example, is preparing to roll out its first NFTs (non-fungible tokens), which are limited-edition or one-of-a-kind digital works of art that have rapidly become collectors’ items, and are particularly popular among young consumers. They are traded on digital networks and such as Ethereum and often bought and sold using cryptocurrencies.

“We are jumping in in a big way with our characters,” said Susan Brandtpresident, Dr. Seuss Enterprises, which publishes the popular children’s books featuring characters such as The Grinch and Horton the Elephant. “This is a whole new way of interpreting the characters.”

Likewise, Mattel recently unveiled Hot Wheels NFT Garage, which is a line of NFTs leveraging the toy company’s iconic toy car brand. The line debuted with three one-of-a-kind digital versions of popular Hot Wheels cars that Mattel auctioned off this summer.

“We put a lot of thinking into it,” said Richard Dickson, president and chief operating officer at Mattel, who noted that it was the company’s first foray into the NFT space.

Robert Marick, executive vice president of global consumer products and experiences at MGM, said consumer interest in NFT collectibles “opens up a whole new world of collaborations” for licensors.

“I am excited to see what that morphs into in the years to come,” he said.

Similarly, he said MGM properties such as the James Bond movie franchise also lend themselves to digital formats popular with young consumers, such as video games. Getting a licensed brand into a video game tends to have a ripple effect, spilling over into other licensing opportunities in the form of new products and experiences.

Related: Google, Walmart’s Outdoor Chain, QVC and More on Turning Inspiration Into Innovation

Aligning with social causes: Recycled plastic Barbie hits shelves

Brands are also reaching consumers by focusing on social causes, such as sustainability and diversity.

Barbie, for example, recently launched its first doll made from recycled plastic, called Barbie Loves the Ocean, supported by the tag line, “The future of green is pink.”

Millennials and Gen Z are attracted to brands that demonstrate a purpose, said Dickson of Mattel, which owns the Barbie franchise.

“Our brands have been purpose-built right from the start,” he said, noting that the company’s corporate values around diversity and inclusion are also woven into the stories of each of its brands.

Dr. Seuss also lends itself to tie-ins with social causes, said Brandt, citing the success of the company’s partnership with sustainable clothing brand Tentree and the Dr. Seuss book, “The Lorax,” about a character who “speaks for the trees” against forces that would destroy them.

The partnership has generated millions of social media impressions, she said, keeping the Dr. Seuss character front-and-center among consumers interested in sustainability.

Related: Not Just Skin Deep: Marketers From CVS to Startup Geenie Take on Mental Wellness in the Beauty Aisle

Expanding e-commerce via DTC ventures

As they lean into trends, licensors are also expanding their reach through direct-to-consumer (DTC) platforms, although they have to tread carefully to avoid conflict with their brick-and-mortar and e-commerce partners, executives said.

Mattel, for example, has established a new DTC brand called Mattel Creations that features limited-edition collectibles. The goal of such DTC ventures is to complement the offerings of other retailers, said Dickson.

Similarly, Warner Bros. also has its own DTC e-commerce and retail channels, but works closely with its retail partners to understand their customers.

“We lean into what the retailer wants in terms of what they see as the bigger opportunities,” said Pam Lifford, president, WarnerMedia Global Brands and Experiences.

Data analytics are key to ensuring that licensed products appeal to the specific consumer demographics of each individual retailer, she said.

“It’s not just important for us to understand who our customer is, it’s also important for us to understand who is walking into the Walmart environment and the Target environment, and understanding what their needs are, and then bringing those two things together,” said Lifford.

Case in point: Licensed product related to the Looney Tunes-themed movie Space Jam: A New Legacy, has been a strong success, she said.

Warner Bros., which owns the Looney Tunes and Space Jam franchises, worked closely with LeBron James, the pro basketball player who is the star of the most recent incarnation of the movie property, along with his sneaker partner, Nike. (The new movie comes 25 years after former pro basketball player Michael Jordan launched the first hit Space Jam movie in partnership with Warner Bros. and Looney Tunes.)

“The fact that that we showed up in all the right places at the right time, integrated with the right [intellectual property] — it’s pretty special,” said Lifford.

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How often do you reinvent yourself? Sometimes we do it automatically and sometimes because the environment forces us. The COVID-19 pandemic was undoubtedly one of those times when we had to restart various systems and paradigms that we were used to.

Prateek Katyal vía Unsplash

And, although, little by little the reactivation begins, we can still find events completely online that we can attend from anywhere on the planet and hybrids that combine the best of both worlds.

In this context, on October 13 and 14 the hybrid version of Social Media Week Mexico 2021 will be held , which seeks to generate dialogue between digital leaders and the audience around the theme “REINVENTION”.

Image: Courtesy of SMWMexico.

Right now we are in the midst of a great reinvention of both society and business and ourselves personally. Importantly, systems undergo a stress test.

“All the systems come from public health, education, government infrastructure, business and, also marketing, and in 2020/21, many of these systems failed or collided with their own arrogance,” the experts explain.

According to the spokesmen of Social Media Week Mexico, some of the failures of the marketing system are:

  • Focus on the tactic and forget the strategic truths
  • The short-term view of looking at short-term profits
  • Exalting any trend or the most striking thing in social networks
  • Don’t think of smart data more than big data
  • The inability of marketers to put themselves in the shoes of their customers and lead with empathy.

During the pandemic, many brand messages were inconsistent and many leaders, completely out of their comfort zone in the way of marketing, and there was a disconnect vacuum with their audience.

According to experts, some of the brands that did stand out in this situation were Postmates, P&G, Clorox, Aviation Gin and Airbnb, since their brand values, their leadership, and their messages were previously aligned to something bigger than themselves. .

So we ask ourselves: how should marketers reinvent themselves and respond to the challenges of our time?

Crises bring inventions and this is achieved through constructive resilience. But what should be invented and what should be reinvented?

In her October 2020 article ” The ABCDE of Marketing Re-Invented “, Rishad Tobacawala addresses this question by developing a framework on how marketing has changed and how it is changing in the future.

  • A = Audience
  • B = Brand
  • C = Content
  • D = Data
  • E = Company.

By adapting to the ABCDE framework for reinvention, the organizers of Social Media Week Global drew up a list of questions that represent priority areas that we can or should focus on:

  • Audiences: How can we think of people and not consumers?
  • The brand: How should experience and purpose influence brand strategy?
  • The content: It has always been the key to marketing, but now there are trends in TikTok and IG Reels minute by minute, there are new ways to do it, faster and cheaper, so how do we break through the noise?
  • Data : How can we focus on quality versus quantity?
  • Company: A current company that wants to survive must show transparent information and decision-making and its leaders must be responsible. How do we empower people and inspire leaders?

Where does this reinvention begin?

Of course, like many change processes, reinvention begins with recognizing what does not work, asking ourselves difficult and important questions, and willing to accept the transformation, no matter how expensive or uncomfortable it may feel in the first place. This will allow anyone to survive and walk into the future.

It is time to reevaluate and rebuild systems that lead to a less divisive, more transparent and just world.

To participate in #SMWMexico during 2021, check their Social Media Week Mexico City page or follow them on social networks where you find them as SMWMexico Fanpage.

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Ready to start your business? Many who start a business launch in the industry they have been working in already have some familiarity. Due to this, many assume they know what they need, especially regarding overhead, such as office space, equipment, employees, and other factors. However, this is a flawed approach, as many do not start and budget for any brand identity or strategy, as the assumption is made that “if you build it, they will come.” This assumption can result in a costly pivot after launch or, worse, higher and unnecessary overhead costs that could delay or prevent business growth. How does an entrepreneur ensure that this does not happen? 

Related: If You’re Not Approaching Your Brand This Way, You’re Losing Customers

Start with a strategy first

While the idea is just a concept, before the first conversation with a bank, landlord, investor, or other parties, start with a brand strategy. Identify what type of brand your business will be and an initial concept of the customer base. In addition, begin developing goals for the first six months, year, five years, and more. What do ‘wins’ look like in those time frames? What is truly necessary to spend now, and what can wait? With sound strategy, many startups can use incoming revenue after opening to help fund additional expenses if required, rather than purchasing everything at once before launch. With sound strategy first, an entrepreneur can spend both less and better and realize better results. 

Related: 3 Tips for Mastering Storytelling as a Small Business Owner

Work with a team of experts to ensure your brand identity 

While many marketing agencies claim to assist new startups and existing businesses with their brand identity and clarity, entrepreneurs should be cautious of such claims. Some agencies are more interested in a monthly retainer or pushing companies to purchase services and deliverables that may be unnecessary for business growth but instead helps the agency in an area where they may not have enough work. While an entrepreneur should always do their due diligence, this is one of the critical areas required. Ask for references, and check those references. Ask other businesses how the agency has helped and what impact the recommended strategies had on their business. 

Define the “me only” differentiator

One of the first steps in working with an agency is to define the “me only” differentiator. Not a “me too” or a “me better” difference, but something offered in a way that the customer base wants it and cannot source, or perceives they cannot source elsewhere. Getting the help of brand strategy professionals with experience navigating this process is critical, especially before launch. Determine competitors, the value or perceived value those competitors bring to the market, and then determine what differentiating factors separate all in the market. 

Related: How to Craft a Compelling Brand Story That Drives Sales

Consistently evaluate and pivot when required

After launch or opening, evaluate the brand strategy. What is working and what is not? Are there other opportunities for the business that are not currently realized? In choosing and working with an agency, make sure it is an agency that can produce on strategy both before launch and after. It is not enough for an agency to create videos or social media content, ensure that the agency can build a strategy that promotes continued growth and expansion.  

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Whether you have a good year or miss your revenue goals, all entrepreneurs and small business owners want to boost their bottom line. One simple way to do this is by changing the payment method you use for business expenditures.

Choosing a credit card that earns rewards is essential for scaling startups and small businesses. Selecting a card with cashback rewards can add to your bottom line as you invest in your company. It is literally a way you can “spend money to make money.”

Related: How Entrepreneurs Can Scale And Save Money Without Startup Capital

How cash-back cards can help your business

As a consumer, you are likely aware of the many options for cash-back credit cards on the market today. Companies like Capital One, American Express, Chase and others aggressively advertise on TV, via mailers and other media.

You might see these advertisements and recognize the value of a cash-back credit card. You might even use one in your personal life. Many entrepreneurs and small business owners, however, do not connect the benefits of a cash-back card to their business.

Cash-back credit cards for businesses pay you back a percentage of the money you spend on business-related expenses. This includes expenditures on supplies for the office, gas and accommodations for business-related travel, vendor services and more.

The amount of cashback varies by card. Most companies offer a cash-back rate ranging from 1.5 percent to 5 percent. Such a refund might seem small, but the money you receive adds up when you consider how much you spend on your business.

Related: How to Choose a Business Credit Card?

Recouping money from a cash-back program directly offsets a portion of the money you spend on your business. This is money that goes straight to your bottom line without requiring extra work or expenditures on your part.

For example, our agency uses the Capital One Spark Pro credit card, which provides two percent cash back. This can augment our revenue by as much as $100,000 without adding to the payroll or requiring us to take on more projects.

What to look for in a cash-back credit card for your business

Entrepreneurs have a number of choices for credit cards with cash-back programs that are specially designed for business owners. When considering a cash-back credit card, evaluate the following:

Cash-back rate: How much money you are awarded for your business spending is not just a question of more. Although you want to maximize your cash back, it is also important to assess the other features of the card before you apply.

Minimum purchases: Some programs require you to spend a minimum amount of money before you are eligible for cash back. For entrepreneurs and small business owners with a high volume of business expenses, this is generally not an issue. However, if the monthly minimum is higher than what you typically spend, it may be best to look for a different card.

Spending categories: The awards on purchases vary by cash-back program. Some cash-back cards provide full reimbursement on any expenses related to your business, while others offer varying levels of cash back for different types of purchases. Be aware of the different levels of cash back when you sign up for a credit card and carefully review the terms and conditions so you are not confused by your rewards.

Cap-on rewards: The majority of programs offer cash back on all eligible purchases with no spending limit. However, some cards only provide the maximum cash back on purchases up to a certain amount of spending. Once you exceed this amount, your benefits are reduced. If you spend a lot on your business, you will want to make sure that your cash back is not subject to a cap. 

Bonuses: The attraction of cash-back credit cards is not limited to the extra money you earn on purchases. Programs vary in their incentives, but you may be able to take advantage of bonus cash after your spending reaches a certain level, $0 annual fees and more.

As with any credit card, it is also important to budget for annual fees, APR and other costs. Cash-back programs can help defray some of the expenses associated with the card, but you want to be aware of fees and interest rates that offset the money added to your bottom line.

Related: What 6 Money Pros Wish They’d Known About Credit Cards

Adding it all up

Many entrepreneurs have maxed out credit cards and even gone into debt to get a business off the ground. Given the expenses associated with starting and running a small business, credit cards can seem like both an essential ally and — when the balances are high — an implacable adversary.

Cash-back credit cards enable entrepreneurs and small business owners to invest in the company while getting something back. The rewards may seem small in terms of percentages, but the money you are reimbursed on purchases can add up to a large chunk of change.

Ultimately, businesses with a lot of purchases can add hundreds of thousands of dollars to the bottom line without having to work harder or hire more people.

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After years of struggling to make ends meet, your business is finally booming. Old clients are referring new clients, new clients are taking notice and your staff can barely keep up with the influx of client-related tasks.

The boutique business model you worked so hard to create has worked better than you ever dreamed and you are nearly drowning in new business. The phone keeps ringing and the prospects for the future look incredibly bright. By all accounts, life couldn’t be better. So why is everything suddenly so challenging?

Related: Why Does Coaching Matter for Entrepreneurs?

Just when a robust workforce is more important than ever, some of your best talent is quitting. The rest of your staff is stressed to the max as they work around the clock to manage a burgeoning workload. A behind-the-scenes balancing act is holding together an uneasy peace.

The growing pains are real and how your organization handles them will shape your company’s future. It’s a pivotal time for your team that must be addressed with care.

Proceed with caution

During these periods of rapid growth, companies need to hire quickly to accommodate the increasing workload, but it is important to be smart about it. With so many variables in play, statistics on the long-term success rate for startups are not in your favor. According to Fundera, 20 percent of small businesses fail the first year, 30 percent fail the second year, 50 percent fail within the fifth year of business and 70 percent fail by their tenth year.

Causes of failure

Let’s consider why startups collapse in the first place. According to a research brief by CBInsights, the causes for failure range from no market need, poor marketing and inadequate finances to having the wrong management team, burnout, legal challenges and a lack of passion among employees.

In other words, miscalculating your target market and personal capabilities can be disastrous.

Entrepreneurs who don’t do their homework and don’t adjust to ever-evolving market challenges are setting themselves up for failure during periods of growth. Successful businesses can pivot quickly in the face of a bad hire, a poor product or misguided decision whether they are experiencing a lull or a growth period.

For example, the smart luggage manufacturer Bluesmart shut down in 2018 after most major US airlines began requiring passengers to remove lithium-ion batteries from their checked luggage, CBInsights reported. The company couldn’t pivot because their product relied upon lithium-ion batteries to operate.

Related: Morning Brew Founder Alex Lieberman Isn’t an Overnight Success. Instead, He’s Harnessing the ‘Balloon Effect’ — Here’s What That Is

In another instance, an e-commerce startup DoneByNone failed because of poor customer experiences. The company illustrated that getting distracted in the race to the top and forgetting your customers’ needs can be a company killer.

The CBInsights study shows that many companies nosedive when they don’t spend enough time talking to customers, rolling out features or getting feedback from clients. Squabbling over company goals, mission statements and management hierarchies can also sink a ship.

Preparation, planning and a careful evaluation of the existing marketplace will save you time, money and loads of disappointment during periods of rapid growth.

Stay true to core values

The best way to make sure you are on track is to retain your company’s core values, no matter how fast or slow your organization grows. A company’s core values are its roadmap to success and will steer the organization in the right direction, even if it means navigating some bumps along the way.

If you built your company’s reputation on top-notch customer service, then stay the course and make sure you continue to provide the same quality of goods or services that vaulted you to success.

Here are 4 tips to manage growing pains as you progress to the next level:

  • Create mechanisms for quality control. The products or services that got you to the top should never suffer because of growth.
  • Hire carefully, making sure each new employee is inducted into the company culture. Introductions to existing employees are important when so many people are working remotely, and it is easy to feel disconnected. If face-to-face introductions are out of the question, video conferencing can be a good alternative.
  • Show appreciation to people who have been with you through the ups and downs of the company’s earliest days. Loyalty to those who helped you get where you are today is one of the keys to successful growth. Startup CEOs and C-suite leaders rely upon devoted employees who will stick with him or her through thick and thin.
  • Provide management and leadership training. Employees don’t instinctively know how to manage. Employers must invest in leadership training so when employees move into positions of authority they can learn how to effectively manage others.

If your company has reached that sweet spot in growth where business is booming, staffing is lean and work is piling up, then hold on tight. Dig deep, ask for assistance if you need it and remember help is on the way. Growing pains are temporary and commitment to abiding by these principles ensures that the best is yet to come.

 

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Twitter will now allow content creators to receive tips in the form of bitcoin from their followers and will launch a fund for users who are leaders in the audio chat rooms in Spaces, the company announced in a session with journalists.

Depositphotos.com

Convert followers to fans and fans to backgrounds

The microblogging social network wants to help content creators who contribute to public conversations through Super Follows, Tip Jar, and their hosts on Spaces.

What will this tool be like?

  • Super Follows : Twitter is testing Super Follows with a small group of creators on iOS, in the United States. This is a monthly subscription service so that creators can charge for an extra level of content, such as behind-the-scenes opinions or private conversations, so their followers can have more of the content they like.

  • Tips: O Tip Jar, as it is known in English, allows you to send and receive payments through third-party services. Since May, a small group of people in the United States have had access to Tips, but today the tool has already been deployed globally for iOS devices. They also added more Tipped payment services so that people can do it with Bitcoin by using Strike , a payments application built on the Bitcoin Lightning Network, which allows people to send and receive bitcoins for free and instantly.

  • New Spaces Host Program: Twitter announced that it will soon introduce a Spaces Host program designed to provide financial, technical and marketing support to emerging audio creators interested in creating recurring content on Spaces.

More ways to tweet

The social network that became famous for only allowing 140 characters per message also announced today that it will open up new ways to open a conversation, beyond its current 280 characters.



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When most people go home and park their car in their driveway, they’ll lock it for extra safety precautions so that no one can break in or steal anything.

Twitter

Twitter via @ijayt205

Usually not on the list of potential carjackers? Giant black bears.

This was the case for one woman in a video that has since gone viral on Twitter who found an unlikely guest sitting in the driver’s seat upon walking up to the front door of her car.

Related: Teenager Goes Viral After Fighting Off Giant Bear to Save Family Dogs

The clip, presumably taken from security footage at the woman’s home, shows the woman walking towards a black Lexus SUV in her driveway while carrying a picnic basket.

As she approaches the open door and peers inside, she jumps back and attempts to close the door shut in a frantic frenzy, trying to jam it shet several more times before bolting back to the house and dropping the basket, leaving a trail of apples behind over muffled screams.

As she runs away, the black bear can be seen leaping out of the front seat of the car and running in the opposite direction before turning around and walking slowly back in the driveway and towards the picnic basket.

The nearly unbelievable clip has been viewed over 4.7 million times and received over 31,500 retweets.

“She gave the bear the Lexus,” Twitter user @ijayt205, who posted the clip joked, alongside several crying laughing emojis.

“The fact she tried to trap him in HER car,” Twitter user @SomaKazima pointed out.

“The fact she was still screaming tho off camera and the bear wasn’t even chasing her,” Skeeter Jay said. “But she was OUTTA there.”

The woman in the video and the location of her home have not been publicly identified.

The video is reminiscent of another viral video from earlier this summer where a teenage girl fought off a bear that was trying to enter her home and attack her dogs.

It is estimated that there are around 40 bear attacks around the world each year, with 23 reported fatal attacks by black bears on humans from 2000-2016.

Related: Why the ‘Save Ralph’ short went viral



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Financial innovations and trends can often propel businesses forward in ways they never imagined. But it isn’t always easy to keep tabs on the ever-evolving world of finance, especially when you’re an entrepreneur already stretched thin.

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Join us for a free webinar, 10 Financial Trends Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know for 2022, presented by Oracle NetSuite and produced by Entrepreneur. We’ll hear from a pair of financial industry experts to uncover the financial tools and strategies every entrepreneur should be aware of when analyzing the full picture of their business.

Speakers include Jason Cherubini, CFO and partner at Dawn’s Light Media—producers of films such as Money Plane and Black Water—who will shed light on entrepreneurial financial mindsets and trends, and Daniel Gilham, CFP and managing director of advisor strategy at Farther—a digital family financial office—who will add insights on how to strategically protect your company and personal assets. The conversation will be curated by Dynamic Communication author Jill Schiefelbein.

Register Now

We’ll give you 10 considerations for your financial future, including:

  • Tax changes, capital gains, and what that means for you
  • Asset consolidation and strategies to be more efficient and financially effective
  • KPIs and understanding how they tie into your financial picture
  • Revenue strategies to keep your business on a recurring cycle
  • And more 

The 10 Financial Trends Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know for 2022 webinar will take place live on Tuesday, 10/26, at 12 p.m. EST | 9 a.m. PST.

Register Now

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The United States Government reported this Monday that it will allow entry to the country of travelers from the United Kingdom and the European Union (EU) who are vaccinated with the full schedule from November.

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Frontera México – Estados Unidos.

According to the Expansión site, Jeff Zients, head of the response team against COVID-19 at the White House, announced that travelers must show proof of vaccination and a negative test carried out three days before entering the country.

Travel restrictions to the United States had been in effect and unchanged since March 2020.

These are the new measures to enter the United States

Starting in November, travelers entering the United States – whether they are residents returning to the country or business travelers – must present their vaccination certificate and a negative COVID test taken three days before entering.

If it is a resident who has not been vaccinated, you will need to submit a negative COVID-19 test one day before your return trip and another as soon as you arrive in the United States.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will issue an order for the airlines to collect the information of the passengers (telephone numbers and email address) to be in contact with the passenger in case of a case of COVID-19.

And Mexico and Canada?

For North American countries with land borders with the United States, the White House said it will extend restrictions on non-essential travel (such as tourism) until October 21.

The Ministry of Foreign Relations (SRE) of Mexico pointed out in its social networks since July 7 that the US government clarified that “neither the entry of travelers to its territory nor the eventual reopening of the common border are conditioned on the use of specific rates of vaccine “.

With information from EFE and Reuters.



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There will always be forces that throw your plans by the wayside and recalibrate — whether they take the form of political changes, a natural disaster, a cultural shift or a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic. So for marketers, the question is not “How can we plan for the new normal?” but instead, “Why are you expecting one?”

While on a general level the phrase “new normal” just represents a desire to get back to times when we weren’t all constantly stressed out and life didn’t depend on being highly socially and politically aware, what it really represents is a desire for stagnancy. To be able to take a breather. But no matter what’s going on in the world, marketing has never been about taking a breather.

Our clients don’t hire us to create a “new normal”. They want to lead the pack in their industry and be positioned as movers and shakers. But with more competition and an increasing rate of media circulation, it’s getting harder and harder to be at the front of the curve.

There are a few techniques marketers should either adopt or dust off that can help place their clients at the front of the pack.

1. A heavier focus on social listening

Effectively, social listening is just an elevated version of the research you already do into your industry. It’s a bit like doing a competitive analysis, but of your audience instead of fellow industry members. What are customers saying about your brands versus the others? When they search for you, what terms do they use? How many mentions are you getting versus your closest competition? These and many more reasons why social listening is my most highly recommended technique that marketers should start adopting if they want to get to be cutting edge.

But think ahead: Once you’ve been actively social listening for a month or so and you have a good amount of data piled up, what should you do with it? Data is of no value if you collect it and let it sit there. Start incorporating it into your strategy discussions to help guide your campaign. If you were listening closely enough, you should be able to identify at least one key desire or pain point among your audience that your competitors aren’t addressing.

Related: 10 Marketing Strategies to Fuel Your Business Growth

2. Reputation is everything

The world is more connected than ever before and people have more outlets to make their voices heard. While this is a net positive for global communications, it does mean that brands have increasingly less armor against online outrages and bad reviews. For this reason, reputation and review management are going to be crucial services for marketers to add to their repertoire.

This is also where a strong competitive analysis and social listening techniques will do marketers a huge favor. The ability to know what successes or misfortunes your competitors are having is going to be the best navigator of your campaign. Emulate what similar businesses do well, but don’t shy away from highlighting the differences between you and your competition if one of them accidentally finds themselves at the mercy of an online mob.

Marketing is a full-contact sport. When you have the means to — ethically, of course — knock other players off the field, you should take it.

Related: 10 Laws of Social Media Marketing

3. Build a community, then a campaign

A loyal fanbase can help a brand weather pretty much any storm unscathed, so channel a lot of your marketing efforts into fostering a community around your clients. Play to the audience in the first few weeks of your campaign. 

Engagement isn’t something that you have to pry out of your client’s audience — you just need to put more effort into asking questions. Audiences will see liking and sharing as a Herculean task if you’re not giving them anything to chew on, but they’ll gladly write you a novel in the comments of a Facebook post when given the right prompt.

Make sure that they feel like they’re part of a semi-exclusive club. If you don’t have a newsletter, start one. If you have one, start another one that’s only for the most devoted members of the brand. Hire influencers your audiences connect with and have them start making content for you.  

Marketers should realize that there isn’t going to be a new normal. Instead, marketers should use this time to get fully experimental with campaigns and see what kind of content hits the bullseye in the ever-evolving content cycle. With more competition and more content comes less of a chance that the tried-and-true methods of digital success will continue to hold up. In this way, as much as it might feel like constant chaos, we’re being given an opportunity: The world is clearing the board and saying, “Impress me.”

Related: 3 Reasons Marketing Is The New Sales

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