Canva AI Copy, Bitmoji Fashion Drop, Lazy Tassie Summer, What Went Wrong in 22 - Marketing News 023

Canva AI Copy, Bitmoji Fashion Drop, Lazy Tassie Summer, What Went Wrong in 22 – Marketing News 023

by | Dec 14, 2022 | Brand, Marketing News

Click through to the good bits.

00:00 Catch Up

05:09 What’s been happening in the marketing news?

09:14 Magic Write – Canva’s AI copywriting offering.

22:15 Snapchat and Adidas announce first-ever buyable Bitmoji fashion drop

27:54 Tourism Tasmania’s lazy summer campaign.

42:38 Marketing Week’s 2022 in review, where it went wrong.

42:54 Purpose not meeting brands promise.

47:36 Overinvestment in performance and promotions

54:53 Brands failing to keep up with lockdown growth

56:42 Brands inserting themselves where they don’t belong.

1:00:33 An awful year for silicon valley.

00:00 Catch Up

Martin Henley: [00:00:19] Hello there. My name is Martin Henley. This is the effective marketing content extravaganza and if you are new here, you won’t yet know that I’m on a mission to give you everything you need to be successful in your business. Providing of course, what you need to be successful in your business. Is to know more about and be implementing more efficiently, effectively and enthusiastically sales and marketing in your business, which is of course what you need. You need more customers. More importantly, you need more customers profitably that will give you the nicer car, the nicer holidays, the nicer house, the nicer retirement, the bigger investment fund, all of those things that you deserve. If you are running your own business or you are busy framing a marketing career for yourself.

Martin Henley: [00:01:02] So what goes on here is I’m here giving you everything I know about sales and marketing. I pull in anyone I can find with experience of sales and marketing to share their experience with you. We look at the very best and the very worst of marketing content on the Internet and every other Wednesday we bring in Melanie, the Concierge of Co-creation at Crazy might work, and we speculate wildly about what the marketing news might mean for you in your marketing business, in your marketing life, in your marketing career. So if all of that sounds like it might be interesting or useful, take a second to like share, subscribe, comment, get involved because that will give us the motivation to continue on this epic journey to provide you with everything you need to be more successful in your business. Today is Wednesday, which means it’s marketing news, which means the Concierge of Co-creation at Crazy Might Work is with us. It’s Melanie Farmer. Good afternoon. Melanie Farmer.

Melanie Farmer: [00:01:55] Excited to be here. I’m very excited. Look at all this stuff that I’m going to pick your brains. That’s why I’m here.

Martin Henley: [00:02:02] Okay, Super cool. You are very welcome to do that. So we start with a boast, don’t we? So what is your boast? Do you have a boast from the last couple of weeks? Something that you’ve achieved that you’d like to share with us?

Melanie Farmer: [00:02:14] Yeah, well, we’re pretty happy to have just started running leadership programs face-to-face. It’s been two years. The other thing is we just got our highest success rate on an email campaign, which we’re pretty happy about, which was 46%. So that was above, well above, the sector. So we’re kind of happy with that outcome. And onward and upward. Yeah.

Martin Henley: [00:02:39] Excellent. Well, that sounds like a win. Didn’t you just tell me also that you’ve already completely sold out your first course of next year? Half sold out the second course. I think that’s a win, isn’t it?

Melanie Farmer: [00:02:51] Yeah. Yeah. Well, that’s the result of that, that high click rate because we got some sales out of that. It’s just nice to be a bit more, you know, booking stuff well ahead of it happening. That’s got to be good.

Martin Henley: [00:03:07] That’s got to be good. That’s always good.

Melanie Farmer: [00:03:09] You know, you go to Christmas and you go, let’s have a break and we’ll all just sort of look at this sunset on the beach and all that in comfort. I mean, we’re very privileged to be able to enjoy knowing that you must be doing something right.

Martin Henley: [00:03:25] Yes, you must be doing something right. Good. I think you’re doing plenty right there at Crazy Might Work. That’s what I think. Here’s my boast. Are you ready for my boast? This is my boast. Do you see this? This is my recommendation for anyone who uses a desk-type microphone. These 11 centimetres have changed my life. This extension here, the silver piece because now I can put the microphone actually where I want it. Whereas previously it was right on the joint here and it was never in the right place. The other thing, my other recommendation these people aren’t sponsoring us is a little bit of WD40 because you’ll notice it ain’t squeaking anymore. You know, I have a squeak-free microphone that sits exactly where I want it to sit. So that’s my boast. That’s what I’ve achieved in the last two weeks. Good. Good. But we’re not here.

Melanie Farmer: [00:04:16] I’ve been waiting for you to get this setup so that I can just copy it so I can The times right now, I need to get exactly what you’ve got there by way of a setup.

Martin Henley: [00:04:25] I can give you exactly what I’ve got here. You’re right, it has taken me two years to put this together, and you were right to wait. So it was exactly right before you got involved. I can give you exactly the specification. It will save you hundreds of hours. What I’ve realised is I actually prefer investing in this than I do actually producing the content. I’ve spent much more time investing in my little desktop studio-type situation than I have actually produced content. It’s good, and it’s good fun, but we’re not here to talk about my desktop studio. I’m not here to talk about the fantastic marketing that you’re doing at Crazy Might Work. We’re here to talk about the news. So what has caught your attention, Melanie Farmer, in the last couple of weeks in the way of news?

05:09 What’s been happening in the marketing news?

Melanie Farmer: [00:05:09] Yeah. Little things, we’re coming towards the end of the year. So there’s going to be a bit of that sort of stuff, watching what’s going on in that regard. I’m noticing that Canva, which many listeners would know of, is now getting involved with AI copywriting. So you can now hire an AI copywriting assistant by just putting in a few keywords on Canva and it writes your articles for you. I’ve got mixed feelings about that. I’m noticing yet the second one is Snapchat and Adidas. So this was from a few days ago. They’ve now created the first buyable bitmoji. So you can buy Adidas fashion using SNAP tokens. So it’s interesting because it’s currency that’s not currency is officially worth $0.00087, apparently. The third one is Tasmania, which is an island off the south coast of Australia, part of Australia. Their clever campaign I think for the summer holidays, which it will be of course in Australia very shortly, and how they have sort of switched up their marketing of what holidays should be and, and the idea that they should be a time when you do nothing at all as opposed to run around and try and have a high pressured good time with your kids and really all you want to do is sleep. So they have done a really interesting campaign which, which I like because I think tourism is growing. So that got my eye.

Martin Henley: [00:06:55] Excellent. Okay. So if I were to theme your suggestions for this week, we’ve got digital content creation, digital products, digital detox. That’s the way it looks. Is that the way we’re going? Okay, Super cool.

Martin Henley: [00:07:14] I’ve only bought one story this week because it’s the marketing week year in review and the headline that marketing Week have given us is 2022 marketing year in review. It’s been a bad year for dot, dot, dot, dot, dot. So this is basically the things that have gone wrong in 2022. It’s hardly new because we’ve spoken about all of these things across the year. So it feels to me like we’re doing like a proper journalism type thing here with the marketing. If we’re doing, if we’re talking at least about the same things that marketing week are talking about, then we must be somewhere in the right area. We must be doing it right, and we’re only making this up as we go along.

Melanie Farmer: [00:07:58] I hope they mentioned that how Facebook was it now? Is it Facebook haven’t got legs. Anyway, let’s see. What’s what have they got? What do they reckon has gone bad?

Martin Henley: [00:08:07] What we will do is we’ll do all of your stories and then we’ll do my story. So that’s the way we’ll do it. So we’ll kind of do all of your stories and then we’ll do the year end review and we’ll see how close to the mark we’ve been, you know.

Martin Henley: [00:08:20] Actual teams of people paid to actually produce marketing news as opposed to you and I coming together every Tuesday, every other Tuesday and making it up.

Martin Henley: [00:08:30] Okay, so super cool. So tell us about this, Canva, a AI content situation. I’ve got comments to make before we start. I’ve pulled up the link you’ve given me. This is from Marketing Mag, the Australian version dot com dot au. This content clearly isn’t working. Why have they got this text image behind this headline? Canva joins the bandwagon with a copywriting assistant like you can see that’s not working, can’t you? They’ve put a text image behind the text. Now, I’ve read this story already, so I know where it’s going to go, but you tell us what’s going on Melanie Farmer.

Melanie Farmer: [00:09:09] I wonder if I can share screen because it doesn’t look at all like that for me.

Martin Henley: [00:09:13] Oh, does it not.

09:14 Magic Write – Canva’s AI copywriting offering.

Melanie Farmer: [00:09:14] No I can see the whole thing. So. Yeah, who knows? But basically the they’re just signaling the the rise of AI copywriting. Canva, which of course is really land of templates for, for many things, marketing and all of that. They’ve launched this thing called Magic Write. Magic Write. Which is AI copywriting bots and they basically write whatever article that you want in beta. So you know, you can have a little play and whatever. It’s a few days ago that they, they’ve kind of done this. It is worrying for me because I think, What does this mean for the writing industry? Does it mean that A.I. is trying to take over and can you trust this? I mean, I’m not happy at all about it, I’ll be honest. But, you know, I can see that it would be a nice way to be fairly lazy and save a lot of money because you’re not paying people to actually write things. Yeah. So that’s my take on that. I think it’s just sad and I just wonder how, how well it is going to serve the reader. That’s the truth of it.

Martin Henley: [00:10:35] Yes.

Melanie Farmer: [00:10:37] Then I always think is that adding value to the reader if you’ve got a bot doing it. I mean, in some ways the bot might go and scrape the internet and find trends, but is it actually going to be groundbreaking? Is it actually going to be the thought leadership you’re looking for? I don’t know. That’s what I worry about the reader. And also not understanding that a human hasn’t written this because it’s not like it’s going to have a badge saying this was written by a bot because someone might have edited it for 2 minutes before they published it. There you go. That’s me. Not happy with Canva. I can see why they did it. But yeah.

Martin Henley: [00:11:18] Yeah, you can see why they’ve done it. And the thing is, this is the history of Canva, isn’t it? This is what Canva has always been about, is short-circuiting the design process historically. So they can give you design templates so things can look good. I think that was useful for small businesses, for people who can’t afford designers necessarily. I can see how that’s really useful and really cost-effective and really worked apart from anything else. I’ve got issues with artificial intelligence and because I don’t think there is such thing as artificial intelligence, it’s like astroturf, it’s artificial grass, it’s not grass, it’s like virtual, means it’s not real. It’s not real, all of this stuff.

Martin Henley: [00:12:06] This year, and especially in the last couple of months, the AI that I’m experiencing, seeing, is blowing my tiny mind a little bit. I don’t know if you’ve seen these graphics things where you just put in a sentence and it produces an amazing image. They’re now doing it with profile pictures, like people are going crazy with these things, putting up profile pictures. So I am really worried about this right now.

Martin Henley: [00:12:32] A friend of mine on LinkedIn, he’s a successful guy. He’s very successful guy, but he is openly testing these things and saying, I used an AI to produce this social media post, which I think is like AI copywriting, which I think is really weird because why would you admit? I mean, probably the only way to do it is to admit, like I’m using an AI to do this, because otherwise, if you get busted, that’s not a good look ever.

Martin Henley: [00:12:59] Why would you admit that a computer can produce … Like surely the point of having copy is to establish your expertise. Then just to say, actually, a computer in 30 seconds is cleverer than me with my 30 years experience in this market. Surely the point would be to be in the market saying, Actually, I’m really clever, that’s why you should use me, I’m really invested in this thing. I’ve already researched this thing. I’m really in this thing.

Martin Henley: [00:13:26] What I’m thinking about, because I’m going to write a book in the next 12 months, that’s that’s my new mission. If I was to use one of these things and say, okay, this is the topic, and then it produced me several thousand words and then I edit it and make it, you know, that surely is going to be a short circuit to writing this book maybe the book will be better. Maybe the book will go deeper because I have this assistance in the writing from AI.

Martin Henley: [00:13:53] I don’t know. I am actually at this point torn. I don’t think it’s a good look to be coming out and saying, AI wrote this post for me. What the world doesn’t need is more content at this point. I mean, it’s like really? Or it’s certainly more poor content. What the world needs is more really good content, I think. The thing I think what you’re saying about the copy industry, this is my last point, is the sun has been shining, for the last 15 years, for copywriters. You know, this will go down as the most productive, profitable time for copywriters like Google says you need content and copywriters have been rammed for the last 1520 years. So I kind of feel like I’m always saying to people, Make hay while the sun shines. The sun has been shining for copywriters. Maybe this is the death knell for them. I don’t know. I’m kind of also kind of torn. The thing is AI is achieving stuff that’s really interesting and useful. Now, all of a sudden, inb the last two three months and it hadn’t been before that.

Melanie Farmer: [00:15:00] I mean, of course the plus side of it is it can scrape the internet, which a person would struggle to have the same time and whatever access to be able to pull that. So I could actually see copywriters using it honestly and then making it their own so it could be a lot cheaper to to hire an actual copywriter in the end. So I look at like so with the templates and so forth, I use those all the time in PowerPoint and then EnGage and all these other platforms which offer up marketing templates. So I think as a customer, I like something that’s well designed in terms of look and feel, and it makes me more likely to consume the message of that company, their brand and so forth, if they look a bit more professional. In that way it adds value to me, when they’ve got this way of achieving a professional look through templates. Also, if you’re landing a plane is not an embarrassment to say autopilot landed the plane today, ladies and gentlemen. In fact, it’s almost a brag about British Airways to say, look at us, we can land a plane with this incredible tech it doesn’t even need me. So there’s a place for AI to say where it’s clever. Whereas with this, Yeah, I wonder about the value to the customer in the end and like you, I think, well, if it does scrape the internet and find like everything about this subject, then maybe it’s going to bring that together. I’d love to see what copywriters think of it. Are they going to use it themselves to get a first draft knocked out in 2 seconds? That could be quite interesting if that’s where the market is ironically. Because I know designers will go to Canva and they’ll do a graphic design inspired by something they’ve got off Canva.

Martin Henley: [00:17:02] Yeah, I think 100%. I suppose this is what the technologists will tell you is it’s not like the technology is the mechanism, it’s not the outcome. Do you know what I mean? So technology is the opportunity. So 100%, if a copywriter goes to this and says, look, I’ve got time and energy, I’m going to invest in making the very best copy that I possibly can with the assistance of this tool, that’s one thing. As opposed to the copywriter that goes to this and says, well, this would normally take me an hour, I can get it done in a minute and throw it out to my customers and they’re not going to know the difference, then that’s the difference. That’s a different thing. I suppose it’s a catch 22, but I am at this point actually quite worried about this whole thing of artificial intelligence because I think … What do I think? I think it’s really scary. I think we’re getting to a world where if the computer says, no, you are basically screwed because there is nowhere else to go to. All the time artificial intelligence was looking a little bit sketchy. I was much less concerned. Now it’s starting to look much more useful, because for me, that’s the issue, is where the authority goes. It’s like the computer knows better than you do, then we’re all in trouble. Do you know what I mean? Because I don’t think computers do no better than we do because at the base layer, it was an idiot coder who put this thing together who didn’t really have a great grasp on reality. That’s what I kind of think.

Melanie Farmer: [00:18:24] The computer is not making values based decisions aligned with your company’s values. Values is not something that it particularly is filtering for, saying that I do know a company who does sentiment analysis, so they do look at values interesting. Still in general, I don’t think a computer’s going well ethically, I’m not going to report against that sort of like this, is it?

Martin Henley: [00:18:52] The thing is, here’s here’s my actual take on it. I need to be thinking about I’m going to do this in my new Thinking out Loud series. Artificial Intelligence is like, what is intelligence? What are computers good at, computers are good at data, really good at data. So you can take all the knowledge in the world and make a computer can make sense of it for you. Maybe. But that’s not what intelligence is. Intelligence is data, and emotion, and experience, and compassion, and all of these things that computers couldn’t ever possibly do. They can put pixels in the right place to make a really stunning piece of art. We’re seeing that now. They can put the words in the right place to make an interesting, useful piece of copy. What they can’t do is make a decision. They can’t make a decision based on anything other than data. So more people responded to this. Okay, that’s interesting data. Actually, like we were talking about two weeks ago, what about the 11 million people who aren’t in a position to keep up with the technology? Do you know what I mean? Those those people get lost. So I am, in my life, a little bit concerned for family members who are younger than me, who are following through, a little bit concerned for whether all of this is going. I can also see if you if you are still going to invest energy and enthusiasm and insight, then this could be a really useful tool to drive you further forward quicker, you know? So I don’t know. I don’t know.

Melanie Farmer: [00:20:25] I wonder if I could write a bestseller through it. Now I want to just see what happens that be Canva.

Martin Henley: [00:20:31] You could and people will. This is this is now, Canva are probably the biggest name that have done this but I’ve looked at some of these content generating tools you literally put in a sentence and it gives you the next 500 words. It’s useful. It needs an edit. Like we’ll probably be able to see the really lazy people because they won’t be giving it the edit. It’s like my little mission I’ve been on with these transcriptions. I’ve been through all the tools. Now I’ve found one that is, it’s not 100%, but it doesn’t need an edit for it to be published, you know? I mean, it’s like that’s where it’s got to. That’s been going on for the last six months that I’ve been transcribing things. Interesting story Melanie Farmer, are we scared of entering the world of the robots? It feels like we are. 100% the world does not need more content at this point. Everything that needs to have been written has been written at this point. You know, we’ve been producing content to satisfy Google, copywriters have made a lot of money for the last 15-20 years because Google has been consuming all of this content. But Google has already come out and said it doesn’t like AI generated content. So is this going to serve the purpose of SEO? Are they going to be able to identify what is AI generated. The purpose of content was always to attract Google and engage the user, the reader. If this AI generated content, if Google can find a way to identify it, I mean, what about duplicate content? I mean, it’s like, oh, it’s a whole can of worms. It’s interesting. We’ll have to watch this. I think we’ll be talking about this more next year.

Melanie Farmer: [00:22:04] Yeah. So you move on to digital products.

Martin Henley: [00:22:07] Let’s go on to digital products. I think I feel like we’re going to have the same kind of conversation again. So this is your second story.

22:15 Snapchat and Adidas announce first-ever buyable Bitmoji fashion drop.

Martin Henley: [00:22:15] Snapchat and Adidas announce first ever buyable Bitmoji fashion drop. Not their first ever fashion drop, but the first buyable Bitmoji fashion drop. What’s going on with Melanie Farmer?

Melanie Farmer: [00:22:27] Well, I think this is interesting because you can use SNAP tokens from Snapchat as a currency. I think that’s kind of interesting that you can buy this Adidas jacket using SNAP tokens. Snapchat declares that the Snapchat tokens are not worth anything, that you can’t sell them. You can give them to people and then people can use those tokens to buy stuff but the things you buy are virtual. They are not real things. I don’t feel super happy about it because I think it’s another way not to live in the real world. I don’t think it’s super healthy for anyone to find yet another way not to leave the virtual world and go into the real world and whatever. It’s an interesting partnership. Adidas, as you see there, Adidas are probably one of the first and fashion brands to fully embrace the metaverse and get involved. They’ve been doing stuff with the World Cup and all that sort of thing but I think this is the first time they’ve partnered with someone like Snapchat and that’s just interesting because that platform is fairly young in itself. To think of this currency, so you’re now buying clothes with weird currency online that don’t exist in you’re not in the real world anyway. So, you know, I just wonder if this is just another way not to exist. I don’t like that.

Martin Henley: [00:24:10] We don’t like that, do we? We’re so old fashioned. Us people who like the real world. What do I think about this? It makes perfect sense to me that if you are, like, fashion conscious, like if you’re brand conscious, if you want to be wearing brands, then of course you want your avatar in the metaverse or wherever it is to be wearing these brands. So it kind of makes sense. The difference here is they, as I understand it, they had a drop for the World Cup, but that was free. Now this this is the first time you can actually buy it with these snap coins, whatever they’re called. The thing is, it kind of just exposes what fashion is, which is just having that logo. The first thing I thought about was I thought about how easy would it be to counterfeit this because people will counterfeit this. How easy is it to do that? I don’t know. I think clever of Adidas, if people aren’t actually going to be dressing themselves, if they’re not going to be presenting in the real world, they’re not going to need actual branded clothing in the real world they’re going to need branding clothes in the in the pretend world of the metaverse. So I think maybe these fashion brands do need to be thinking about this. You know what? People aren’t actually going to need to be wearing clothes in the future. You know, nobody’s going to see the clothes that they’re going to be wearing.

Melanie Farmer: [00:25:37] I think it is interesting to see how in the real fashion world there is scarcity, so there’s not an unlimited number. So I do wonder how that plays out. Like they have to buy it but is that jacket going to be available forever, unlimited? Can you, just at any time are they going to turn it off so you can only have it for a certain amount of time or there’s only certain number of them? I think that’s an interesting direction for them to go in is to create scarcity. So it’s not like available for every person. We’ve got 1000 of these and when they run out, they run out but it’s in the digital world, What do you mean you’ve run out?

Martin Henley: [00:26:21] So this proposition, isn’t it, that the NFT proposition is that you are producing unique things. So there is probably this like this one will be available to the masses .00000 something of a penny, but somebody really rich and famous is going to turn up with the unique one that will never be replicated, which is worth $10 million or something stupid. The thing is, they’re taking these principles into the digital world, scarcity, rarity, brand, you know, and it will be interesting to see how successfully they can do it. I can’t imagine a point in my life, if there is a point in my life where I appear somewhere in a metaverse looking like this with branded jacket and shoes, you just please come around my house and put a bullet in my head because my life is not worth living anymore. I can imagine that there are lots of young people who really care about the way their avatars look, unfortunately, and so of course, these brands are going to make money from that. Of course they’re going to leverage that. Of course they are.

Melanie Farmer: [00:27:33] Yes, so does that. And then my last little story was digital detox.

Martin Henley: [00:27:40] That was the worst segue we’ve ever had on this.

Melanie Farmer: [00:27:44] Well, it’s the opposite is okay. Get the hell out of there, because it’s making me feel things.

Martin Henley: [00:27:49] Okay, good. All right, so we will get out of the way, out of there. We won’t say another word about it. Okay, good.

27:54 Tourism Tasmania’s lazy summer campaign.

Martin Henley: [00:27:54] So your third story, Tourism Tasmania’s lazy summer campaign.

Melanie Farmer: [00:28:00] Yeah. I just like this campaign, and I actually think it’s smart, it’s on point because we’ve all had two years where we’ve become deeply fatigued and we’ve had it. The pressure of trying to have Christmas, which was cancelled twice because of border closures and whatever so it’s been a hell of a time. I think Tasmanian tourism have actually got the right tone here because they say, look at this, get your step count down, do some hardcore pondering firm plans and no match for soft grass and then there’s this ad campaign they’ve got with this woman with this incredible view, which is what you get in Tazmania, unbridled happiness, these views of wilderness and what they’re saying she’s just sleeping with that in the background saying I’ve seen one view, you’ve seen them all. Basically what they’re saying is a successful holiday is one where you do nothing at all. You don’t care, you do nothing and come to Tasmania where there’s amazing food, amazing views, you’re in the wilderness, but you don’t have to do anything at all. You can just breathe.

Martin Henley: [00:29:10] You don’t even need to.

Melanie Farmer: [00:29:11] You know, you’ve got your breathtaking view of this wilderness walk that you don’t have to bother taking. Just just go to bed.

Martin Henley: [00:29:20] Yes.

Melanie Farmer: [00:29:20] It’s kind of like, oh, that sounds amazing. I don’t have to because if you go to Tazmania, you do feel like you have to go hiking. It’s like going to Machu Picchu or something. So I think they really hit that sweet spot of the families trying to plan holidays and after two years of failed attempts, we sort of lost the will to live with it and they’re like, listen, come to Tasmania and do nothing at all ,don’t hike, don’t enjoy the views, just breathe, sleep. You just see a lot of families going, yes, I want to go to Tasmania and do nothing at all.

Martin Henley: [00:29:56] Yes. Live life to the fullest. They say seize the day. But Kate’s parasympathetic nervous system disagrees. Dear is sweet. She hasn’t checked her phone all morning and she she reckons if you’ve seen one view, you’ve seen them all. The breathy voiceover narrates. Shall we have a watch of the little video? See this? This is like a real. This is almost like a meditation.

Melanie Farmer: [00:30:16] Yeah.

Narrator: [00:30:18] Liv life to the fullest they say, seize the day.

Narrator: [00:30:25] But Kate’s parasympathetic nervous system disagrees. The air is sweet. She hasn’t checked her phone all morning, and she reckons if you’ve seen one view, you’ve seen them all.

Martin Henley: [00:30:45] Good. My only criticism would be it does look like she’s dead for the first 8 seconds that we’re looking at her face until she breathes. So that’s my only criticism here.

Melanie Farmer: [00:30:58] Next on a stretch out, you know how to do a stretch.

Martin Henley: [00:31:02] Yeah. And it doesn’t need to be like she’s actually neglecting her kids because she is in the wilderness. So it probably is worth opening your eyes. Mom, I’m in a ravine.

Melanie Farmer: [00:31:14] So,honey. Teddy Bear.

Martin Henley: [00:31:17] Yes. So here’s my prediction for 2023. I think we’re going to see a lot of this. I think we’re going to see, well, firstly, what occurs to me when I look at this story is this goes back to a time when you antipodean lot, you and the Kiwis, the Australians and the Kiwis were really good at this marketing thing, inverting the message and coming up with something more interesting and engaging. So I welcome that if that’s coming back. But I think this is what’s going to go on. I think there is going to be some kind of pushback in the next year or so on this whole digital thing. Do more, be more, blah, blah, blah, blah. I think that’s what’s going on. I said to you, my first thing, my first thinking out loud is going to be about objectives. I think about objectives, I was thinking of Greta Thunberg, which I’m going to include in this thing, like this fantasy of never ending growth in profit. That seems to be the thing that everyone has been driving for in small businesses, of course, it’s ridiculous. And so the only conclusion, there’s not much of a conclusion because I am thinking out loud, is surely the first objective of a business is just to get to somewhere where it’s all cool, like everyone’s taken care of, everyone’s getting paid, everyone is doing something they enjoy that should be the first objective. The other thing that I saw was Simon Sinek and he’s talking about everyone’s driving for the win all day, every day and the comparison he makes is with the Vietnam War. The Americans lost because they were driving for the win and the Vietnamese were just fighting to be in the battle every day, all day, every day, just to stay in the game. So there’s that idea that you should be building something continuous, that feeds you continuously. That’s what business should be. So I think based on nothing other than I’ve just been thinking about this for a few weeks and I’ve come to the same conclusion that kind of less is going to be more. I think we’re going to see some of this in 2023. I think we’re going to see people talking more about actually not driving so hard, finding more satisfaction and more enjoyment and all of those things. That’s kind of my prediction.

Melanie Farmer: [00:33:29] It reminds me of Jerry Seinfeld when he first came back from the successful series of Seinfeld and his first stand-up routine where he says, I’ll tell you what I’ve been doing nothing. I’ve been doing nothing. Of course, his whole show was premised on this being a show about nothing and all that. He says in that routine is pretty hard doing nothing. Pretty soon someone invites you over and they ask you to do something, next thing you’re doing something. So he said, it’s taken a lot of effort to do nothing. But like I think we worship the idea that What are your plans for Christmas? You can’t say I’m doing nothing. Actually, our the clients who we deal with and work with, paramedics and police and so forth, the idea of doing nothing even for a day would be a utopia for them. That would be a dream come true. Instead, they’re triaging an unreasonable number of people with COVID. They’re dealing with having to arrest someone because they went to visit their grandmother because of lockdowns, you know? So for them to say, you know what, I did nothing. I didn’t do anything, that would be just heaven. So I think they’ve hit the nail on the head with the sentiment going on at the moment, as opposed to saying, well, I climbed mount whatever, and I wrestle some alligators in Mount Etna.

Melanie Farmer: [00:34:49] You know, this idea that you have to continually be in fifth gear when actually the studies that we’re doing on insight. Most good ideas happen in nature. Most good ideas happen when you’re not thinking about the problem. So if you’re trying to solve a problem, you actually it’s really important not to do anything for a bit. So our end of year email to everybody, we’re encouraging people not necessarily to go out for your summer reads and all that, but actually do nothing at all for a bit because that’s when you’re going to have your revelation. Your brain is not meant to be constantly stimulated. So I kind of think this is really a no brainer, but I love that they they were brave enough to say, because we know Tasmania well enough, Australia particularly, to know how stunning it is. So they don’t need to tell us that now. They’re now able to tell us just come here and do nothing and that will be.

Martin Henley: [00:35:49] Don’t even look at the views, don’t.

Melanie Farmer: [00:35:51] Don’t feel bad. Just sleep, don’t feel like this fear of missing out crap. Just come here. Then your parasympathetic nervous system is going to get half a chance of recovering because you’ve been through some bullshit for two years. So I quite like that. They tapped right into and it’s often the mother who’s organizing. Not always, but it’s often that person who’s organizing this holiday and has the pressure of making it all perfect.

Martin Henley: [00:36:19] Yes. So.

Melanie Farmer: [00:36:21] You know, that person is going to be like, yes, let’s go there and do nothing.

Martin Henley: [00:36:25] Yes but the thing is that doing something is so deeply ingrained in us. Like, you’ve got a sense of my story. I got divorced in 2012. I carried on for a couple of years. Then I remembered you’re supposed to have adventures when you’re single, then I fired all my clients apart from those that really refused to be fired and I went off to do nothing in New Zealand. I was there for six months. I spent a couple of months in Australia. I eventually arrived here. But for those first six months, getting up with nothing to do every day was really, really difficult, really difficult. Now I’ve kind of been on sabbatical for eight years. I’ve only done what I’ve needed to do for the last eight years, but I’ve got a sense of what that is now. Now I’ve had those eight years I’m on a mission, you know, I’m going to get back on it. I’ve got some value to add in the world. I’m really going to drive that now. You know what I mean? There’s a friend of mine I was talking to this week, and he did well out of crypto and he is essentially semi-retired. He’s dabbling in projects and he’s busying himself with the with his residents association and these things. Do you know what I mean? But he was saying the same thing, like people respond really badly when you’re when you’re not doing very much because it is so ingrained that we have to be doing too much.

Martin Henley: [00:37:38] I think there’s the opportunity for the world, but there’s the opportunity for people who want to take it to actually be doing less, to be to be getting what they need rather than getting everything they could possibly dream of, but to be getting what they need and doing much less. This was my idea. I was going to put together a thing called Spare to Share. Did I ever say this to you? This was like my idea for a charity where you actually give people the opportunity to contribute to people’s lives, not just money, but time and energy. So if you could make people realise that there is spare in their lives, they don’t have to drive themselves for 60 hours a week, they can do like a four day work week, and that would give them a whole day to invest in people’s lives who aren’t as well off as them. That is the thing I think that makes people really happy, feeling like they are contributing to other people’s lives in a really meaningful way.

Martin Henley: [00:38:25] This is good timing because next week’s talk marketing is with a woman who’s kind of spearheaded the four day workweek in the UK, and her sales are up, motivations are up, staff retention is up, everything is up and they’re only.

Melanie Farmer: [00:38:38] Just taking four times in a week sleep in the week, they’re getting enough downtime. They get into, do you have a balanced life? It’s absolutely like I mean, I haven’t heard about how all the stuff you’ve just said about the stats and whatever, but there’s, you know, it’s it just makes perfect sense. Yeah.

Martin Henley: [00:38:56] It does. It’s counterintuitive, but actually, in reality, it makes perfect sense because the other thing that’s gone on is that everyone’s working now like it used to be. There was somebody at home looking after the kids and there was somebody out working. So all of the home stuff kind of got done and all the work stuff got done. If we’re both working, then when does the home stuff get done? I mean, you do need some space to be able to do that. So the way she’s working it, like half the team are in Tuesday to Friday and the other half the team are in Monday to Thursday and she’s nailing it. I’ll send you the link when that goes up on Tuesday. It’s really interesting that she’s doing that. Yeah. And everything’s up, you know, everything is up and she’s just done her first year trial. I think she’s part of 100 companies that they formulated to do this trial and she’s just done it and they’ve just extended because this is working so well. She says, what’s interesting is that the Mondays and Fridays, where there’s half as many people are the most productive days because there’s less distractions, you know, I mean, everyone’s getting on, there’s no meetings, there’s nothing. Everyone’s just free to do stuff. So, yeah, I think this is going to be a trend. I hope it’s going to be a trend because like if my spare to share thing is true, definitely the global population has spare to share. It’s stupid that 80% of us work 60 hours a week and the other 20% have absolutely nothing is ridiculous. This could fix that situation.

Martin Henley: [00:40:16] Good, good on you, Tasmania. You’ve almost yeah, you’ve almost motivated me to come back to Australia, but not quite. I still can’t get over the fact that you locked up all those people.

Melanie Farmer: [00:40:27] Yeah, well, working on baby steps is interesting because we talked about the World Cup last time, everyone’s got this struggle. Every country has its own kind of nemesis internally that is battling to get out the other side and mature. So we’re no exception. I love the idea of celebrating just breathing because it is so undervalued and it’s critically important for functioning as a human being and finding joy. And they said, look, the pure joy of just sleeping, that is in itself an amazing holiday. What a gift. And I can see them getting on a cruise to Tazmania and all she does is sleep on the deck and they’re like, Look, mama whale and she’s like fast asleep. It’s because we’ve spent two years where everyone’s developed conditions of anxiety, because there isn’t downtime because we work at night and all that hybrid meetings and you’re over-included in everything because people think, well, you don’t have to commute, so I’ll just invite you to everything. So there’s a lot of that stuff going on. So I like the idea of like, don’t include yourself, miss out and enjoy the absolute pleasure of missing out. I just can’t wait. That’s my plan for this summer is to miss out on as many things as I can and just have a lovely time watching sunsets, and eating food, and sitting around.

Martin Henley: [00:41:58] Yeah, I think they’ve nailed this. It’s not without its issues. I think it would be better if she didn’t look like she was actually dead for the first 8 or 10 seconds that we’re looking at her asleep. I think it’s better if they weren’t suggesting that she was neglecting her children in the wilderness. And also, I think there is an issue that some people might realize that they don’t have to go to Tasmania to sleep. They can actually just sleep at home. Do you know what I mean? They could do that. They could have a staycation. So there are issues. All right, good.

Martin Henley: [00:42:24] Which brings us then to my one story, which is interesting because it’s not a million miles away. So basically it’s Marketing Weeks year in review. I wonder if they’re going to come back and say it’s been a good year because of this, this, this, this.

42:38 Marketing Week’s 2022 in review, where it went wrong.

Martin Henley: [00:42:38] So 2022 marketing year in review. It’s been a bad year for … from the overfocus on performance and the purpose backlash to brands inserting themselves into situations they don’t belong, 2022 has not been a good year for everyone in the marketing world.

42:54 Purpose not meeting brands’ promise.

Martin Henley: [00:42:54] So the first thing they’re saying is purpose, not meeting up to brands promise. A company which feels it has to define the purpose of Hellmann’s mayonnaise has, in our view, clearly lost the plot. These were not the words of a marketing polemicist, but of a leading investor and not just any investor, Terry Smith, who’s Fund Smith Equity Fund has a major stake in Hellmann’s owner Unilever. Smith’s conclusion in January was part of a diatribe against Unilever executives for their ludicrous focus on brand purpose at the expense of profit.

Martin Henley: [00:43:27] His conclusion on the merits of applying a purpose to Hellmann’s the brand is the brand has existed since 1913. So we would guess that by now consumers have figured out its purpose. Spoiler alert, salads and sandwiches. A rallying call for all those who believe that purpose is pointless and the need for it overstated. Meanwhile, so it talks about Patagonia. Yes, we’ve been I mainly me I’ve been saying this all year. It used to be that purpose was like a nice little addendum for a brand, like, here’s the value we deliver in the world and here’s how we feel about the world and it was a nice little thing. I think the issue is that it’s become the main player and I think that’s appalling. I agree with this guy 100%. Mayonnaise doesn’t have to have a purpose. Its purpose is, although it’s missed the key one for me, which is potato salad. Everyone knows what the purpose of Hellmann’s is, and I actually think there’s a danger in these brands having purpose. Like we’ve seen M&Ms with their anxious character and doing away with the high heeled shoes in favour of comfortable shoes. You know, we’ve seen this a lot. I think it’s really lazy marketing. Actually the marketing should find a product that adds value to the world and then communicate that value to the world and then the purpose was only ever intended to be the cherry on the cake, and we care about animals. I mean, we make delicious salad toppings and we care about animals, you know what I mean? Not we really care about animals and that’s it. What do you think?

Melanie Farmer: [00:45:12] Yeah, I think that there’s a balance between create and capture, so creating a market and capturing the market. So for me, I think, you know, Apple for me is one of the great brands and they invest heavily in brand marketing versus capture marketing, which is where I think Hellman’s rightly should be investing more heavily because the identity of Apple is important and meaningful in that category. Whereas with mayonnaise maybe not as polarized in terms of needing to have its own specific brand. Then if you look at Vegemite, that is a polarising brand so it makes sense for me that they would they would, you know, split their difference and have a bit more on brand for that category. So it just depends for me, it just depends on which category you’re entering as to what your split and the science on it says about 60% should be on capture and 40 on brand, I believe. It really just for me that that shifts depending on how polarizing that or how clear the brand identity is. So you look at red.

Martin Henley: [00:46:30] So what are you saying? Capture and.

Melanie Farmer: [00:46:33] Create.

Martin Henley: [00:46:35] Create, create the market. Capture the market. That’s what you’re saying and it should be 60% create the market, 40% capture.

Melanie Farmer: [00:46:43] 40% creating, which is brand. And then let’s say 60% capture. So if you look at like Dr. Pepper famously was like, what’s the worst that could happen? So that was a very heavy investment in create the market because we didn’t need it. So they had to create an identity and that this whole brand about how different and Apple create a thing where we’re crazy, we’re different, we’re not we’re not PC we’re Mac. So they had to create the market where we didn’t need Mac, right? but we did love the idea of being different and breaking the rules. The whole Pepsi generation thing That was a very heavy create the demand investment.

Martin Henley: [00:47:27] You’ve broken through the matrix because you’re actually talking about the second thing that they’re talking about rather than the first, I think.

Melanie Farmer: [00:47:34] Oh, really?

47:36 Overinvestment in performance and promotions.

Martin Henley: [00:47:36] Yes. Okay. So let’s go to the second thing. So we’re on the same page. So the second thing is they’re saying the second issue is it’s been a bad year for overinvestment in performance and promotions. So this, to use your vernacular, I think is the create. What they’re saying is “all the evidence points in one direction, businesses must invest in their brands to drive sustainable growth in the long term and resist falling into the vicious cycle of chasing short-term sales boosts with excessive performance marketing and promotions.” So to use your reasoning, this would be the capture, short-term sales boost and excessive performance marketing and the create would be the branding. “This year, online fashion giant ASOS confessed to getting the balance wrong. In October, the retailer reported a loss before tax of 31.9 million for 2022, down 118% versus 2021. The new CEO, Jose Antonio Ramos Clemente says ASOS problem can be narrowed down to insufficient brand investment over recent years, resulting in a customer acquisition slowdown. More than 80% of its marketing investment had been spent on performance, he revealed.” So that supports your idea that it should be 60/40. I don’t agree with this. I’ll be honest with you.

Melanie Farmer: [00:48:55] Well, I think it’s a sliding scale depending on the category. If you get a fashion brand like ASOS and I’m a big shopper of theirs, they over the year have got worse and worse because it’s very much, if you like, the issue also like that and they’ve made it really easy for me to buy things, but they now look like everyone else. So there’s not, you know, the experience of shopping with them has lost its uniqueness to what it is shopping for let’s say Patagonia, who is a quite different story. I feel good about buying stuff from them and they have a very different, the real estate isn’t like I’m going to show you 500 things and so surely going to buy one of them. Whereas ASOS, the shopping experience, for me, it’s gotten pushy. It feels pushier than it was a year ago. That is because they’re going for the volume. For those of us who like going there because it’s more of a boutique shopping experience as opposed to a sort of like shop til you drop experience. So I would agree with that. I think they need to differentiate a little bit there. The ones who do that really well, they kind of say, you know, this is the history of this outfit or this is a little bit more than just like buy this, it’s cheap, 50% off. That’s not the experience I’m looking for, there is nothing unique about that.

Martin Henley: [00:50:28] Yes, 100%. Okay. So I think the reason I disagree slightly is because a lot of the work I’ve done in my life has been with small businesses. I’ve always said to and this was actually reinforced by Barnaby Winter, he defines brand as like the customer relationship. So he says, before you’re a customer, no one should be investing in a relationship with someone who isn’t a customer or isn’t going to be a customer and actually you should only invest in the relationship once they are a customer. That’s what Brand is. He says brand is the promise of a relationship. So I think what’s gone on here is not too much like, have the sales because there’s return on that investment. So invest in selling stuff because then you get a return on the investment, you know what I mean? Then you can start to think about customer acquisition, average customer values, all these good metrics that make marketing make sense. So I don’t think it’s the two things are literally diametrically opposed, you either spend on performance or you spend on brand. I think you spend and probably the thing is right, that you’re saying you invest maybe 40% on creating the market and 60% on realising the market. But what’s gone on is that these brands have got lazy and they’re like, okay, we don’t have to invest in the customer relationship anymore. The customer experience, we don’t have to invest in that anymore because we can just pull customers out of thin air really, really easily through these performance methods. We’re probably saying the same thing with a slightly different tone.

Melanie Farmer: [00:52:02] Or they do what Hellmann’s did, which is like double down on the brand beyond reason.

Martin Henley: [00:52:09] So I think the balance.

Melanie Farmer: [00:52:12] It is, you know, and I think it’s a sliding scale, depending on, there’s a big difference between Coca-Cola and me and my new drink that no one’s ever heard of. So if you’re marketing something that’s new and a start-up company, so forth, you really want to say, Why are we different? Not why are we the same? Because if I’m the same as Coca-Cola, well, I’m going to go with Coca Cola because I know I will not have food poisoning. With you you’re not telling me you’re any different and I’ve never heard of you so that’s my problem solved. So if I’m going to try and convince you to drink my new drink, it’s got to have some special magical quality that Coke doesn’t have. Yes, different values or whatever it is. So then you would spend more on brand. I think in the beginning you really want to get out there and be telling people this is who we are and it is a relationship thing because it’s about, who are you having, entering into a relationship with?

Melanie Farmer: [00:53:11] So with Patagonia, you get a feeling this has a history. There are some values that in this learning and reflection on what we used to do and what we’re going to do now and in the future and it’s all about nature. So that’s their promise now. But it’s really leaping ahead of where others are trying to join them and have that message as well. So for them, I think they’ve got the balance right because it’s also very easy to buy on their site. So they’ve got that strong brand and they’re doing also the correct investment in capture. It sounds to me like Hellmann’s just forgot about the fact they have to capture the market as well and really went all down with this where we don’t care enough about mayonnaise to need to have that much spent on the identity. Then others who like ASOS have neglected their identity. So we no longer have a relationship with them because they don’t look different to anyone else.

Martin Henley: [00:54:13] Yeah, I think I mean, I think there are different issues. I think marketers have become, at the same time, they’ve become too lazy. They can just buy customers, they can do these performance marketing things, they can just buy customers. So then they stop investing in the relationship or the customer experience. Then I think that maybe they’ve just become lazy in their mission. Their mission should be to deliver value, not communicate the fact that they really care about puppies or whatever thing, the latest thing is that they need to be seen to be caring about. So I think those things are different. Okay, let’s roll through these. Let’s roll through these because there’s more.

54:53 Brands failing to keep up with lockdown growth.

Martin Henley: [00:54:53] The next one is brands failing to keep up with lockdown growth “while no one welcome the pandemic there were brands that saw a marked commercial boost during COVID lockdowns in 2020 and 2021. This year was viewed by many as the first normal post-year, post-pandemic, where people were not having to stay home most of the time.” I don’t really agree with this because I don’t think what they’re taking into account is the fact that everyone was stuck at home with nothing to do but spend money online. That was what was going on. Then the other part of that, the second part of that shitty sandwich, was that inflation has gone completely stupid this year, so everyone’s driving up interest rates to try and drive up the price of credit to drive down inflation. So I think this is an effect of global economics. Do you have a view on that? We don’t have to dwell on this very long.

Melanie Farmer: [00:55:39] Yeah, no, no, I agree entirely with everything you’re saying. I think it’s been crazy prices, energy prices as well with there’s a lot of reasons, with Ukraine and all of that. There’s some unexpected things to happen with inflation, like the cost of recruitment and so forth. So, yeah, there are some interesting things that, you know, when you move one part of a system, if you’re a systems thinker, like we are in our company, if you do something, you don’t realise the butterfly effect sometimes and you do see these really weird kind of unexpected things suddenly. For most of us, we didn’t expect to see flowers sell out, you run out of toilet paper the first time you get a pandemic. Why would that happen? There’s some very weird things and if you do that, what does that do down the line? And so, yeah, I think it’s something you just cannot without fully system thinking why and what would happen if so I’m not surprised.

56:42 Brands inserting themselves where they don’t belong.

Martin Henley: [00:56:42] Yes. Okay. Good. The next point for them brands inserting themselves where they don’t belong. The example they give here is Queen Elizabeth’s passing in September. “It was only a matter of time before brands try to insert themselves into the conversation, from trying to be respectful to hackneyed attempts of condolences. The moment highlighted that brands don’t need to be in every conversation.” I would applaud that. “Let’s not forget Center Parcs attempt to kick out his visitors on the day of the Queen’s funeral, a decision that was ultimately reversed following an outcry from the public. According to a YouGov poll, 58% of people in the UK thought brands were more motivated by PR reasons rather than out of a sincere desire to pay tribute to the monarch.” I would say they’re talking about rainbow washing, LGBTQ, and all of these things. Yes, I think part of the skill now in 2023 is going to be knowing when to shut the **** up. You know what I mean? You don’t have to comment on everything. You don’t have to be involved in everything.

Melanie Farmer: [00:57:42] I mean, you do wonder, someone starts and a waterfall happens. So is it waterfall marketing as a new term? Like because it’s not like everyone wants to have an opinion. But if Pepsi has an opinion about something, then what does Coke do with that information? Do they get thrown under a bus by their customers because they’ve been silent? But you don’t win either way. So I do wonder about the cascade effect if someone responds, for example, the queen’s funeral and then the next one says, well, what are we going to say but say something to and next thing you know, and then at the next death, what do you do? You just, you only care about the queen and you don’t care about Charles. So you’re now locked into this weird cycle of having to have an opinion about things that you should never have had opinions about. I don’t know. Is a bit of a….

Martin Henley: [00:58:36] This is what I think 100%. Your role as a business is to add value in the world for your customers and extract value from them in the way of money. That’s your job. I mean, just do that. That would be great. Like give your customers a great experience, give them amazing value. That’s your job. I think the issue is now that marketing departments think that they have to have an opinion on everything. Everyone’s got an opinion on everything, and everyone wants to express that opinion on everything. And I don’t think that’s necessary.

Melanie Farmer: [00:59:12] If Lego think you’re going to get on the front page or something because they do a Lego version of the Queen, then they’ll do it because it’s like, let’s get our press out, we need to get something out. The press are talking about the queen. So we’ve got to do some stuff about a queen. Like I wonder if that.

Martin Henley: [00:59:28] Just to be clear, because we don’t want to get sued by Lego or Playmobil, this was the Playmobil version.

Melanie Farmer: [00:59:33] Of I do beg your pardon, not Lego.

Martin Henley: [00:59:37] And it’s really a fitting tribute to 70 years of service to the country and the empire, I really do think that’s exactly appropriate.

Melanie Farmer: [00:59:46] Thank you, Playmobil, for the gift at this difficult time.

Martin Henley: [00:59:52] Yes.

Melanie Farmer: [00:59:53] Also, Center Parcs in their defence never closed Center Parcs, they said we’re going to not have staff on, only a skeleton staff. So what they were never saying we’re going to kick people out that was misquoted. They were just not going to have a full quota, every cleaner on deck. They were going to have only emergency level of staffing.

Martin Henley: [01:00:17] And the thing is.

Melanie Farmer: [01:00:18] Never going to.

Martin Henley: [01:00:18] It was a public holiday so that didn’t have to be a thing. Do you know what I mean? They could have. The thing is that we are stuck all the time for content, so every kind of little issue is magnified. Okay, so this is the last thing in Marketing Weeks. I keep going the wrong way.

1:00:33 An awful year for silicon valley.

Martin Henley: [01:00:33] This is the last thing in Marketing Week’s thing, which is the one that you alluded to, which is it has been an awful year for Silicon Valley. Mark Zuckerberg in particular. But Google are also facing challenges. Twitter obviously changed hands. “It isn’t just Twitter that struggled in November, Meta owns both Facebook and Instagram, laid off 30% of it’s staff.” So maybe this ties in to the performance marketing thing. People are realizing that performance marketing isn’t necessarily delivering the performance that it should or could, in my opinion, and so these poor little social media platforms are actually, to coin a charming little South Africanism, seeing their arse. That’s what I think is going on. I think they could be delivering more value, they should be more focused on that.

Melanie Farmer: [01:01:26] So I think it was funny, not funny. Mark Zuckerberg was interviewed on Joe Rogan. You might have heard this. And he said waking up in the morning is like being punched in the stomach. So every day he wakes up in the morning feeling he’s being punched in the stomach and he’s not getting much sympathy or love on the internet for that statement. I’m sure he’s right because it’s not doing well and it is kind of his fault. If he’s not adding value, that’s all we need to do. It’s not hard to add value when you just have to say to people, how can I add value and they’ll tell you and then you do that thing. I feel there’s a disconnect with customers which you’ve alluded to as well, where they just say, well, let’s just create legs in the metaverse. That’s what they must want. We’re guessing because no one’s ever said that’s the most important thing right now for us. When you change our name to Meta, really! So there’s a lot of things that are a mystery to the audience who are predominantly in their seventies, may I just point out, depending on which country. It’s just bizarre to me that it doesn’t seem like a hard equation, listen to your customers.

Martin Henley: [01:02:45] No. I think I think this is going to be a major challenge for the world, while I’m in prediction mode, for the next for the next five, ten years, I don’t know. The world needs to wake up to the fact that these techies are not, do not know best what’s best for humanity, they really don’t. I think the issue is that that these techies believe they know everything and they don’t know anything. The world has allowed them to think that they know everything. Like the reason it’s hard to have sympathy for Mark Zuckerberg is because he had the best thing in the world and pocketed something like $100 Billion for it. Then what he’s done is just neglected that thing, he’s basically broken it by introducing these algorithm things. It’s taken four or five years for him to break it, it was so unbreakable. Now he’s completely focused, he’s looking in completely the wrong direction. He’s gambling on what he thinks is going to be the next big thing when the last big thing he broke and doesn’t seem to have any interest in fixing. So it’s hard to have sympathy for them and it’s hard to have sympathy for them because I think that the value that these platforms could have delivered, they haven’t got anywhere near 50 or 60% of the value they could have delivered.

Martin Henley: [01:03:59] They are much more interested in extracting value, taking money away from their customers and nowhere near interested in delivering enough value because Google can give you cost effective customers all day, every day, you know, Facebook can give you cost effective customers all day, every day they choose not to is the reason that they’re failing because they’ve decided they’d rather just take all of your money and give you as little as possible. That’s why they’re failing. And I really think the world needs to wake up to the fact that we’ve given these geeks too much power. It’s not like anyone ever saw a geek in the street and said, Yeah, he’s leading the life that we should all lead. It’s that geek in the street who’s dictating the way we all have to lead our lives. I’ve told you before about McDonald’s. You. You said it was my guilty secret. Did you tell me it was my guilty secret? It’s not my or my guilty pleasure. What I realized this is not guilty pleasure it’s my last self harm. This is the last way I hurt myself, I’ve given up smoking, I don’t drink much, I exercise. I do all these things that are good for me. The last thing I do that is that is clearly not good for me is eat breakfast in McDonald’s. So they’ve spent two years teaching me how to be basically a member of staff that places their own order in the last week they’ve just completely replaced the whole customer interface on these kiosks and I’ve got not a clue how they work now, you know, for no good reason. So it’s like they’ve completely changed it. All the categories are changed everything. So the world needs to wake up to the fact that these geeks need to be directed. These geeks should not be dictating the way we lead our lives, because I think if you put up 100 geeks, none of us would say he’s the coolest guy. We should all lead our lives like him. I think we should look for the coolest people in the world and see how they’re leading their lives, and that should be directing the future of digitalization. You got me on a roll. I think these.

Melanie Farmer: [01:05:50] These people, I want to give one quick example, which is I went to a very large takeaway chain that is known for selling chicken. So you can guess who that was. They’d run out of chicken. So we go through the drive through to order this particular thing, and it was chicken tenders, a particular part of the chicken that was in the thing we were ordering. Chicken tenders, it turns out that’s in about five of the things because we were saying, well all right, if that’s not available, we’ll have this and then the lady’s going oh, that’s got tenders in it too. So we can’t, we can’t sell that to you. So we ended up with ordering five things, none of which we could have all had chicken in them. Then I said to her, it might be quicker for you, tell us what you can sell us. She said, Oh, we can replace any of those things with roast chicken and that would have been good information to start with, because now we just want to look for things that is there anything here with no chicken? We’ll have an onion ring. So it does come down to if the human had understood what you want is a wrap with chicken in it, I can give you that it just won’t be this official one that you asked for, but it will be just shredded roast chicken instead, basically going to be the same thing. So it comes down to listening to the customer and providing useful, adding value information as opposed to going, No, we don’t have that, that’s got tenders in it, that’s got tenders in it, this is hilarious. We’ve gone through a drive through, multi mega, multinational shop that drive it and they don’t and they sell chicken, pretty much that’s all they sell and they’ve told us that they’re a chicken. Yeah. Something’s gone wrong there.

Martin Henley: [01:07:39] Something’s gone wrong. The thing about this McDonald’s thing that occurred to me is that they’ve done away with the genius of McDonald’s. Like there are two geniuses of McDonald’s. One is that it’s not actually a burger company it’s a real estate company. And they own real estate on the corner of every block in the world, supposedly. That’s the first genius thing. The second genius thing is their silly question. Would you like fries with that? So literally, they take an order value of whatever it is, and they add 40% every time because once you’re getting the fries, you might as well get the drink and then your order has gone up 40%.

Martin Henley: [01:08:14] They’ve buried that by just saying actually it’s better that they don’t interact with us at all. You know what I mean? And that’s what’s gone on. The world, these businesses need to adjust their thinking 180% and understand that if you’re in business, you’re in the business of having customers profitably. All the time you have customers profitably, you’re doing well. So what they’re doing is they’re trying to drive product by taking out staff who are unreliable and expensive and replacing them with machines. That’s not the way to do it. The way to do it is actually to add more value for your customers, make their experience better and better and better, and then you will have more and more and more customers. That’s the way I think people should be driving business. Hopefully they will wake up to this at some point because the alternative is, I’ve started taking photos like nobody’s going, everyone’s going up to these kiosks, they’ve got no idea what they want to buy and they’ve got no idea where they can find. They are literally scrolling through every category. So the time to take an order must have gone down from 45 seconds to three and a half minutes. If I drive by and there’s a queue at these kiosks, I’m not even stopping because I know I could be there 20 minutes before I even get to place my order. You know, Whereas So yeah. Anyway, let’s not be on this.

Melanie Farmer: [01:09:32] Well, just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should do it and that’s a lesson for all of these platforms as well. It’s saying think before you act and are you adding value? And the person to answer that question isn’t you, it’s actually your customer and especially those who got the money. So if you’re going there daily, virtually, then I mean, absolutely your opinion is more important than the one timer and is like, this is what I’ve heard from McDonald’s executive in their right in saying this is that the drive thruough should suck like a vacuum cleaner. That’s the language that they use. So it’s like fast, if it’s not fast it’s a fail. So they are all about efficiency, speed and so forth. So the idea that that you would find a way to make it really slow and cumbersome inside, that that is a very weird I mean unless yeah, I mean there’s no logic to the amount of money that you spend building effectively giant iPads inside as, as like a forest you’ve got to navigate through to get to a human. That’s my experience of these kiosks inside McDonald’s.

Martin Henley: [01:10:40] Yes.

Melanie Farmer: [01:10:41] It’s the opposite of family friendly, which is supposed to be it’s a very bizarre set up.

Martin Henley: [01:10:49] It’s very bizarre. I worked when I was 15 or 16. I spent that summer between school and sixth form working at McDonald’s and it was hustle. This was when McDonald’s was new in the UK and we would have queues that were long, like there would be 15 or 20 parties in the queue, you know, I mean, on a Saturday lunchtime and it was insane. We worked and we sweated and everyone was doing the hustle thing. The other thing I think that’s gone on is that sense of like serving because they’ve put that barrier between the customer and the staff, then they don’t have that sense of urgency anymore, which was always pushed. Do you know what I mean?

Melanie Farmer: [01:11:30] Their mission is to make every customer in every restaurant smile. I think they’re playing it fast and loose with the word restaurant, but to make every customer in every restaurant smile. So if they’re going to smile, it’s because you’re hustling, because you’re focused on them, because you’re interacting and making it happen. And as opposed to like making them cry because they feel stupid, that they don’t know what they’re looking at and they’ve alienated you and you’re trying to give them money. I mean, all of those things that we talk about, like you’re not adding value and I’m not smiling. Fix it Mcdonald’s.

[01:12:07] Fix it McDonald’s. So here’s the last thing. I went to McDonald’s on Sunday with Devon for breakfast, that’s what we like to do on a Sunday and we waited half an hour for our food. So I made them give me my money back and then sat there and ate their food. What happened is there was a staff member and I called a staff member. I’m like, I like to speak to the manager. She went to the manager. I saw her pointing at me, the manager turned around and walked the other way. I was livid. I go marching up. I’m like, She asked you to come speak to me like you don’t do it. And he’s like, Oh, it’s the staff. It’s the staff. And I’m like, No, it’s you. You’re supposed to make all of this work. But anyway, it’s not working. Mcdonald’s definitely need to think again about these kiosks. They’ve given too much power to the geeks in their business, no-one wants to live like a geek. Geeks are representative of geeks only that’s 1% of the population, them forcing the behavior of the rest of us, I think is a really bad move for humanity, let alone business marketing for humanity.

Melanie Farmer: [01:13:05] For humanity Martin.

Martin Henley: [01:13:06] Humanity, McDonald’s, fix it.

Melanie Farmer: [01:13:08] Fix it, fix it. Let us breathe.

Martin Henley: [01:13:12] Yes, Let’s breathe. Okay. Super cool. I think we got to the end. What are we going to do now? Because now two weeks from now is like Boxing Day or something ridiculous. Should we do this in the first week of January? Can I put something in your diary, or do we can we put it in the week between Christmas and New Year? How are you fix this?

Melanie Farmer: [01:13:31] Is it? Say I’m back on the 16th of January. Yeah, I am going to be breathing. That’s what I’m going to be doing between now and then.

Martin Henley: [01:13:41] So what’s the world going to do without your take on the marketing news?

Melanie Farmer: [01:13:45] I know it’s just you can make it up. You would probably could guess what I would say, but.

Martin Henley: [01:13:51] I won’t do that. That woulde.

Melanie Farmer: [01:13:52] Amazing. 16th of January, that’s the week that I’m back and I could do any day. But Tuesday we got a full workshop Tuesday, so I’m free the other days.

Martin Henley: [01:14:04] So the 16th on Monday. Can we do it on that Monday? Is that cool? Yeah. Okay. Excellent. Let me put that in your diary right now.

Melanie Farmer: [01:14:11] Pay attention and see what’s been going down.

Martin Henley: [01:14:13] Yes, yes, yes. Super cool. You’re an absolute legend. Melanie Farmer. I hope you have a great Christmas. You deserve to have a great Christmas. And I’ll see you on the 16th of January.

Melanie Farmer: [01:14:23] Enjoy. I have a wonderful, wonderful break. If you managed to get some downtime.

Martin Henley: [01:14:33] Okay, I definitely will.

Melanie Farmer: [01:14:35] Make you a lesson for all of us. Enjoy.

Martin Henley

Martin Henley

Martin has built a reputation for having a no nonsense approach to sales and marketing and for motivating audiences with his wit, energy, enthusiasm and his own brand of audience participation.

Martin’s original content is based on his very current experience of running effective marketing initiatives for his customers and the feedback from Effective Marketing’s successful and popular marketing workshops.







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