Archive for Michael Leis

Behavioral Storytelling: Social Media Content Strategy

Posted by Michael Leis on May 21st, 2013 at 1:43 pm

The brand insight is where a lot of teams stop with social, handing writers and designers a gaping void within which to structure a social media presence.
What results often times is either: 1) shoving traditional campaign structures into social networks, or 2) a big bowl of tactics that are stand alone gimmicks, giving neither the creators or brand managers a fair way to evaluate whether integrated campaign tactics actually do integrate. And when they do integrate, how do you create consistency without droning sameness?

The Single Most Important Principle in Brand Strategy Today

Posted by Michael Leis on April 7th, 2013 at 3:33 pm

The start of another Mad Men season reminds me of the shift in marketing strategy that I most often discuss with colleagues and clients now, but have yet to expressly write about.
What separates great brands and marketing from good, or even bad ones can be boiled down to this one thought I first heard at sxsw 2011:
Make The Customer The Hero

Never Say You're Sorry In Social

Posted by Michael Leis on March 25th, 2013 at 12:53 pm

In this latest era of social media, many brand presences have either been originating from, or spanning to include the customer service department. On the surface, it makes sense: this is the department of the company that handles communication with individuals.
In practice, though, it's usually a shortcut that lacks a real content strategy for social media, leaving the brand open to all kinds of liability instead. How? Because of a simple turn of phrase used on the phone all the time: starting out by saying your sorry.

Transform Your Loyalty Program From Bank to Park

Posted by Michael Leis on February 25th, 2011 at 3:47 am

There are a lot of discussions going on about how to create loyalty in a world where the next best offer is a click away. Should we change the cadence or targeting or content of our emails? How can we add badges? Do we need a redesign?
Then, towards the end of the year, it hit me. I fell just a few flights short of getting status on United. So what was the point of taking all those flights on United? Giving one brand my loyalty throughout the year ended like a reverse jackpot. It’s incredibly disappointing and de-motivating to come up empty on recognition for that level of investment.
This all-or-none loyalty framework certainly isn’t unique to United. Many loyalty programs demand you save up points for long periods before they give you any token of preference or thanks. Until then it’s a steady parade of confirmation and survey emails, the latter again asking for me to fill out a form in the hope of winning a ton of points.
So why are loyalty programs turning more people off than on?

It's The Thought That Counts: Gifts and Behavioral Economics

Posted by Michael Leis on February 24th, 2011 at 4:12 pm

Ever get a gift from someone that you weren't expecting? What's your next reaction? If you're like me, it's the feeling like you have to do something in return.
In game mechanics, Amy Jo Kim would call that the implied exchange.
In terms of behavioral economics, it's about surprising your customers with gifts like Zappos' expedited shipping at no extra cost. Zappos already knows that they get what's called "skip zone" benefits from UPS because of the volume of stuff they ship. But they hold that information and make it separate from the purchase path so that it becomes a surprise gift.
The gift economy is driving many of today's business successes, like the fiesta movement: driving marketing costs down by changing the way businesses structure relationships into products and gifts.
I am lucky enough to have been invited to talk a little about gifts, surprises, and marketing at DraftFCB as part of John Kenny's excellent series on behavioral economics as part of the Institute of Decision Making. Let's go to the video tape!
What are your thoughts? Feel free to share them here or on twitter @mleis