BRANDE : blog archives for August 2014

August 23, 2014

Aiming at Generation Y? You May Miss Generation Z

Many experts have examined the challenges of marketing to and recruiting Millennials, or Generation Y; people born between about 1981 and 1998. But coming right behind them is Generation Z — and they have the capacity to turn decades of strategy upside-down.

For years, professionals in marketing, branding, and recruiting have used to Facebook to target both Generation X and Millennials. But Facebook’s 2014 Demographic Report has just announced the news that 3.3 million users aged 13-17 have left the site since 2011. That’s 25% of the country’s entire age group. And Twitter? Only 10% of high school students are on it, according to Statista.

Where are the young social media users going instead? As Mashable points out, “Gen Z favors SnapchatWhisper, and Secret — ephemeral and visually engaging platforms that cater to the youngsters’ eight-second attention span”…and which are yet to be penetrated by any sort of marketing presence. Luckily, the age group is also joining Instagram, where brands like Audi and Oreo have found great success. 12% of Generation Z was on the photo-sharing network in the fall of 2012; a year later, 23% of them were on it.

What does this mean for brands trying to reach this rising demographic? Let’s quickly review the latest info on Millennials to see how the two groups differ.

60% of Millennials upload videos, image, and blog entries to the web, compared to 29% of other age groups. 84% say that user-generated content on company websites has at least some influence on what they buy. 95% wants brands to actively court them, while 80% expect brands to entertain them. Millennials also send about 20 texts per day.

When it comes to talent acquisition, 53% of Millennials are applying for jobs through LinkedIn — but 19% are also doing so through Google Plus and 10% are using Facebook. 39% of Millennials want their jobs to have a positive impact on the world. And here’s a useful stat for non-profits in both marketing and recruiting: 73% of Millennials volunteered for a non-profit in 2012.

The next generation of workers

What about Generation Z? Forget about Generation Y’s two-screen activities; every day, Z’ers multi-task across at least five screens, according to a Sparks & Honey report, and 41% spend at least three hours on computers or mobile devices for non-school activities. The internet plays a huge role in their lives: 52% use social media, including YouTube, for school research assignments. 20% read their textbooks on tablets. 32% collaborate with their classmates online.

While the Y’ers are texting, Z’ers are sharing images (such as on Instagram) and videos. Generation Z is also focused more on creating social media content, as opposed to just sharing others’ creations.

In terms of employment, 26% of 16- to 19-year-olds currently volunteer, a number that I’m sure will rise as the rest of cohort ages out of middle school. 60% wants their jobs to impact the world — 21% higher than Millennials. And 76% would like to turn their hobbies into full-time work, compared to 50% of Millennials.

And lest you think that Generation Z is “just kids” — their average weekly allowance is $17, which adds up to $44 billion a year.

So, marketers, branders, and recruiters, you need to be where the two generations overlap — and where a huge segment of the population is heading. That means looking beyond LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. It means more images and videos. It means “snackable” content for short attention spans. It means campaigns with user-generated content, so Gen Z’ers can create their own stories. For recruiting, it means highlighting corporate social responsibility and environmentalism, concepts that have not been embraced by the generation before them.

Generation Z is just now entering college, which means they’ll be interning and working during the summers. Some will forgo college and its mounting debt altogether, and head directly for the workforce. They’ll be looking for jobs and for ways to spend their money. Will you be there for them when they are? My agency can help.

Jody Ordioni is President of Brandemix.

August 19, 2014

Is Radio Dead? Marketers Changing Media Mix

Nothing can bring about more bad karma than squashing the hopes of the hopeful. That’s why I kept my mouth closed when a friend ebulliently shared his excitement about his new opportunity with a popular major market radio station. Just kidding. I actually said “Radio? Do people still listen to radio?”

With Playlists, Grooveshark, Pandora, Sirius, SoundCloud, Spotify and Audible (just to name a few), I question the continued relevance of radio in our lives.


Further research unveiled the  latest data from the CMO Council which confirmed my suspicions. Radio spend is indeed dropping, albeit not as fast as its ailing cousins (print and TV). Not surprisingly, the biggest changes upward are in interactive spending including social advertising, social media, video, retargeting, and search.

I also read that an unnamed source at GM predicted that car makers will remove radios from the dashboard of new cars within the next five years.

But before you turn the dial off, there are a few inconsistencies.

– In a recent MarketingCharts Debrief on ad channel effectiveness, traditional media such as TV and print outweighed digital channels in stated purchase influence among consumers.

– Highlights from the March 2014 RADAR® 120 National Radio Listening Report claims that the total U.S. radio audience has increased by more than 1.2 million weekly listeners since March 2013, and now reaches 244.4 million Americans on an average weekly basis. Daily time spent listening among radio listeners ages 12 and up now averages approximately two hours and 41 minutes a day, holding steady from the previous year. I also believe in radio’s ability to connect with a both a local community as well as a passive audience of people who are hearing your message as they drive to work, or sit at work or listen to the weather, news, and traffic delays.

So, whether you’re on the air or on the internet, or just in charge of radio ad sales, there’s still some hope for your career. Like everything else, radio is evolving to a digital platform but will still be an important consideration for marketers looking to extend their brand reach through an integrated marketing approach.

The most important thing is to reach for your dreams, whether they’re on the air or in the clouds.

August 11, 2014

Nothing Engages Audiences Like Video Content

Integrated marketing success hinges on having a great website. And consistent, relevant social media. And consumable content across responsive media. But the crucial element to bringing it all to life is video. Validated in the latest surveys and best-practice case studies, it’s evident that video is truly changing the way we brand, market, inspire, and engage with our target audiences.

General statistics

How important is video? Here are just a few statistics: ComScore has found that the average person watches 17 minutes of video ads a month. 73 percent of shoppers are more likely to purchase a product or service if they can watch a video explaining it beforehand. And eMarketer claims that more than half of computer users aged 25-54 share videos online.

On the employment marketing and talent acquisition front, CareerBuilder internal’s data shows that job postings with video icons are viewed 12% percent more than postings without. Employers on CareerBuilder receive 34% more applications when they add video to their job postings.

Video is reaching shoppers, job-seekers, social media fans, and the general public. Here are some specific examples:

Marketing and Branding

A CopyPress survey showed that 52% of marketing professionals cite video as the content with the best ROI, second only to feature articles. Brands are using all sorts of videos to reach audiences in unusual ways.

As Brandemix’s CEO, Jody Ordioni, showed earlier this year, some of the most shared videos of recent memory found the perfect balance between on-brand communications and out-of-the-box thinking. Dove went far beyond its TV commercials with its “Real Beauty Sketches” that examined how women view themselves. Volvo created a series of “epic stunts” of amazing feats atop, around, and between its trucks. And Chipotle produced a short film about a scarecrow that will bring tears to your eyes.

But video marketing doesn’t have to be as elaborate as a woman tightrope-walking between two moving 18-wheelers. Employers are using short-form video platforms — Instagram (15 seconds max) and Vine (6.5 seconds) — to create some truly astonishing content. I’m thinking of Oreo’s recipes and magic tricks on Vine or General Electric’s “ain’t science cool?” videos on Instagram.

Why is this news? Because all of these companies already advertise on TV. But, whether it’s four-minute computer animation or six-second optical illusions, these videos take the brands and their messaging into a whole new direction. And find thousands of followers waiting for them.

Employer Branding and Talent Acquisition

Video has really transformed employment marketing. It allows employers to show off its workplace, its workers, and its culture. For example, I’ve always loved this recruiting video from Rackspace, which shows not only how much fun it is to work in a former shopping mall, but also the culture that the company has created within that unique space. Hubspot now provides one-minute videos for each of its featured positions, with current employees telling job-seekers what they’re looking for in each department. And Accenture has created a “day in the life video” that stars four employees and shows what each of them does all day — and I mean all day, starting at home, with breakfast.

Video content leaves regular job listings in the dust, but it also outshines the most robust careers sites, where text and photos only go so far. Video can touch job-seekers in a way like no other. A recent Aberdeen report found that 65% of employers are planning to invest in video recruitment tools.

Companies can use video for general employer branding as well. Adidas recently shot a fantastic video that makes its employees look like sports champions — not the pro athletes who wear the gear. Adroll’s “How We Roll” video (love that “roll” branding) shows off its entire workspace, with a long pause at its kitchen of free food. And I’ve concocted a few ideas about how Google Glass can even let job-seekers get a peek at the C-suite of some bold organizations.

The Future of Video is Now

You can see how video is changing virtually every interaction a company has with the public. Whether you’re a local business, major retailer, non-profit, or government agency, it’s time to add video to your marketing, branding, or recruiting campaign. If you’d like to learn how we can help you with your video project, drop us a line.

Jason Ginsburg is Director of Interactive Branding at Brandemix.

August 4, 2014

How a Company You Never Heard of Gained More Followers Than Disney

Park Place Career has the distinction of being the most popular careers account on all of Twitter. Its 106,000 followers exceeds its nearest competitor, The Walt Disney Company by 27,000 followers. How does the Dallas-area car dealership franchise do it?


One way to get 106,000 followers? Follow 107,000 people. It may not be “cool” to be following the same number of people that are following you — Justin Bieber’s ratio is 400 to 1 — but I doubt Park Place cares, when it has such a vast talent pool to recruit from. And I imagine many job-seekers take it as a nice compliment that a company they may want to work for is following them.

Handy Hashtags

Park Place isn’t shy about using hashtags. One recent tweet included not only #Jobs, but also #DFWJobs, #DallasJobs, #FortWorthJobs, and #PlanoJobs. So anyone searching for jobs with any of these hashtags has a very good chance of spotting a Park Place tweet. I also think it’s smart to mention not only Dallas and Fort Worth but also “DFW” and the suburb of Plano, to make sure even different search terms bring job-seekers to the same destination. It’s a sort of Twitter version of SEO.

Park Place used a similar strategy for a recent tweet about body shop jobs. The company added #Painter, #Technician, #Prepper, and #Estimator to its link. So the car dealer is doing all it can to be found by people looking for opportunities by location or job title.

Park Place Career Twitter

Who Needs Variety?

What else does Park Place tweet? Very, very little. Their short and sweet YouTube video, A Rewarding Automotive Careeroccasionally gets a mention, as does their video about college internships. But aside from a mention of news or events in the Dallas area, that’s it. The Park Place Twitter is really just a stream of job listings with links and hashtags. But it works. Park Place attracts and retains the type of employees who help give many of its dealerships five-star ratings on review site DealerRater.

Small But Powerful

With such effective tweets, Park Place doesn’t even have to post that often. According to the Social Recruitment Monitor, last week, Park Place’s nine tweets generated 17 retweets and a surprising 48 replies. I also count seven favorites in that time period. For recruiters and HR managers lamenting the time and resources social media can require, here’s proof that a small-scale but well thought-out strategy can be very effective.

Park Place Drives Careers

Park Place’s Twitter is pretty simple: Job listings, hashtags, and an occasional link to other content. It provides a model for any organization to start a no-frills Twitter recruiting campaign. Of course, Park Place has employer branding on its side; the Dallas Morning News has named it one of the Top 100 Places to Work in the Metroplex four years in a row.

Need to improve your employer branding or social recruiting? Brandemix can help.

Jason Ginsburg is Director of Interactive Branding at Brandemix.