What are some of the most influential brands you can think of? Apple, McDonalds, Progressive? What makes a brand influential? Last week the Hersh PR and Marketing team attended the Rocky River Chamber’s luncheon and was able to listen to Jeff Charney present “The New World of Marketing: Cracking through the Clutter.”

Charney is the chief marketing officer at Progressive Insurance, and the leader behind campaigns with the Aflac duck and Flo. We were very excited to hear him talk and walked away feeling inspired and energized about marketing. Here are some highlights of what he had to say:

Be brave or go home

Charney reminded us that in today’s age consumers are faced with nearly 5,000 messages a day and it takes a more radical, disruptive approach in order to impact your target audience. As marketers we must start thinking about how we can create disruption and that we should take greater risks when it comes to new ideas.

Are you willing to take a completely different approach this time around? Does your brand need to make a comeback? What can you do breathe new life into your brand? What is appropriate and what is too much? These are all important questions to ask but if you’re not willing to take the risk then you might not achieve as great of a success.

Outcreate rather than outspend

Charney reiterated that having creativity is key to being successful with your brand. Big ideas lead to big impact and will create the disruption you desire. Here is what he said it takes to be successfully creative:

  • Confidence – You must be confident in your campaign, product, brand and audience. If you don’t believe in what you’re selling, your audience won’t either.
  • Relevance – Be fresh and know how your audience is reacting to your message. Know when it’s time to change things up to continue to be relevant.
  • Edge – What sets you apart from other brands? What makes you memorable? Don’t have a wow factor? You need to get one!
  • Awareness – Know what is going on in the world, what’s trending and what your audience wants to hear and see.
  • Think – Set time aside every day to think. Our minds fuel our creativity and we must give it time to just simply think.
  • Execute – The way you execute your campaign is just as important as the creative ideas that go into. Know which channels are best and be yourself. Don’t be afraid to take risks.

We appreciated Jeff’s insights on marketing. We plan on incorporating some of his knowledge in our future campaigns and hope you do too.

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