The brand in interactive dialogue

Recording is rewarding. That’s how it was already in 2000: I found one of my oldest specialist book publications in the field of online marketing and “online trade”. The book was published just in time for the new millennium. I think I wanted to make sure that important about digital marketing for the new millennium is available before it begins.

Events und E-Commerce - Buch aus dem Springer Verlag
A book dinosaur: “Events and e-commerce” as an e-book in Google Play

This book was first published in 2000, but it has been reprinted since then. For instance, there are some 2013 editions of the book from Springer Verlag Heidelberg still available on Amazon. Google Play also has digital copies of this if you don’t feel like turning to a traditional work for a flashback.

“Events and E-Commerce” is a summary of articles on the subject of customer loyalty and brand management on the Internet. At the time my article was published, many people called the internet “World Wide Web”. It is known today as web 1.0 because it had only very few social features.

Screenshot 2022 02 01 062848
A review of the book “Events and E-Commerce” on Amazon

What do I think about my publication today? Learn something new every day! I reread this old article of mine and have to say that it’s a lot better than I remember! It looks like a lot of people had good things to say about the book as well

Conclusion: My impression is that we’re always changing the packaging instead of trying to find something new. We could go faster, but innovation quality would suffer because it’s too hard to produce something new.

Branding Advertising Influencer Marketing

In Search of Relevance

When was the last time you had an expensive product in front of you that worked very poorly or not at all? Baby boomers like me still remember VW Beetles, Golfs, Jettas and Audi 80s where there were workshop discussions about creaking dashboards, wind noise in the interior or play in the steering or whether the car would even drive.

In Search of Excellence for 202X

“In Search of Excellence,” the nonfiction book by Tom Peters and Robert H. Waterman Jr. was a box office hit in 1982, selling over 3 million copies. While it doesn’t come close to the 5 million copies of “How to Win Friends and Influence People” (in German – Dale Carnegie made the title an instant bestseller in 1937, appearing in 31 languages).

“In Search of Excellence” quickly became the “bible” for business managers, engineers and young entrepreneurs. Japan was the model for efficiency and quality at the time.

Today “excellence” is standard, right?

We have learned over the past 30 years, set new records with our own top performances, and exported quite a bit of the excellence knowledge abroad. Today, in 202X, every craftsman can launch his own collection of drills and dowels. Having something of high quality produced in smaller quantities (or producing it yourself) is not only no longer a problem, but for certain target groups it is even highly desirable: handmade, ETSY-cool, sustainable and “from here” or from the influencer around the corner.

What matters today? My follow-up to “In Search of Excellence” I call “In Search of Relevance.” The book talks about the gatekeepers of today: algorithms behind search engines and social media, influencers (or key opinion leaders), artificial intelligence, tips, tricks and growth hacks.

For example, let’s take a look at the promising “D2C” business: direct-to-customer, what a great buzzword whose inventor probably forgot “direct sales” in his gradual digital dementia.

Direct to Customer, Dropshipping and the “Solopreneur boom”

D2C gurus are people who, after careful data analysis with or, think they have figured out which products as FBA or FBM on Amazon or in concert with a store and eBay, Etsy, and more will make them multimillionaires without further ado. Not because they are camera enthusiasts and apply the LED light they import from China. But because a sales data analysis program told them that the market could oversee even more camera lights. Therefore, they looked on Alibaba and Aliexpress for suppliers to send half a container to the rented warehouse to be re-labeled and repackaged. So, the challenge today is not finding products, suppliers or store systems! With millions of solopreneurs around the world hoping to strike it rich with drop shipping, print on demand and custom production, it’s about creating relevance for your own offering! How do you make yourself visible?

It’s no different in the entertainment business: first YouTube, then Amazon Prime, then Netflix – a gigantic amount of new streamable material has to satisfy the hunger of the providers and their subscribers; there are hardly any real new screen heroes left with a lot of choice and low impact duration, and the existing ones struggle to become or stay relevant.

Soon as book and seminar program

“In Search of Relevance” is a book proejct, a seminar program and a coaching series. It looks behind the scenes of the influencer, KOL and PR business. It examines new trends on online platforms like Amazon Live and the future metamorphosis of YouTube into a direct shopping channel. Of course, the author team also looks at the techniques that today’s relevant personalities have employed to swim above the water’s edge and break through the goldfish-like 8-second attention threshold.

Branding Advertising DIY - Do it yourself

Better first impression? Design your own masks!

Do we give up a piece of our individuality when we cover half of our face with disposable masks? Are there alternatives to the OR green or white of the standard paper versions that we get at every corner? And what is the subject of “mouth and nose mask” actually doing in my blog about digital lifestyle?

This week, the second Covid-19 wave has Europe firmly under control. Official requirements for wearing masks or protective shields that “glass in” the entire face are becoming more stringent. Even if we have been doing our coaching and consulting business more and more often via online conferences lately – Zoom & Co. does not go shopping for us, to the restaurant or even on the first date with the flirt.

As a co-founder of the Influencer Marketing Academy (IMA), I have a natural professional interest in the fields of beauty, style, personal care and travel. Even if we prepare a wide variety of business customers in our academy to make the best possible use of social media and influencers and of course not only cover B2C topics related to appearance and well-being – what we depict our customers in posts, stories, videos and live casts , should be as authentic as possible. This authenticity, and actually very practical “(self-) branding” options offered by masks, have moved me to write this article.

Standard disposable masks, designed to protect us and others, cover almost half of our face. This is the first time in our hemisphere that we are forced to adapt our appearance to a certain extent to comply with legal requirements. Masks become part of our outfits and tell others something about our style. How do masks change?

The influence of masks on the perception of others

“If the eye cannot convince, the mouth does not convince” – there seems to be something to this quote from Franz Grillparzer. As the editorial team of the “Brigitte” magazine sums up, there are six little things that others use to judge you without knowing you. The dress style comes first, according to “Psychology Today” especially the color choice. Then the eyes follows. Cobus market research confirms in a study that eyes are true “eye catchers”. Handshake, posture and voice occupy the rankings three to five. The mouth is listed #6 and was noticed by 22 percent of those surveyed. Studies have found that a smile, especially when you first get to know each other, “remembers us better and feels a little connected to us,” says Brigitte.

Make the obligation to create your own style with self-designed masks

Because masks will probably be with us for a long time, there are several aspects that stand for reusable mask products: If the functional quality and hygiene are ensured, high-quality fabric masks are certainly more sustainable than disposable ones. By far the most important aspect, however, is that designed masks – picked from artist collections or self-made – underline your own personality more strongly. Because everyone needs masks, the purchase is not only suitable for yourself, but also for family, friends, colleagues (employer branding!) And for customers, of course.

The possibility of applying individual prints to masks is a new way of adding fashionable accents to the face. DIY masks are as well suitable for abstract patterns, plain colors, but also for displaying the (own) brand, e.g. for social media personalities, influencers or “public figures”. As a small gift for customers in times when real social contacts are rare, mask presents are really meaningful and the opportunity to break new ground in marketing and advertising by connecting your own brand with something positive, useful and groundbreaking .

Where can I get individual masks?

Reusable masks are available from major sports and lifestyle labels such as Adidas and Nike. More exclusive fashion brands like Yoshi Zen offer design face masks from $ 89. Profound has a selection of colorful paper masks and more elaborate prints on washable fabrics.

In Europe, Vistaprint with it’s mask creator is certainly one of the pioneers when it comes to the quick and easy implementation of your own creations. In addition to the selection from artist collections, it is possible to upload your own graphic or photo here. There are self-designed masks for adults (in two sizes for 18 euros) and for children (14 euros). Part of this money goes back from Vistaprint to small businesses. The masks printed with your own motifs can be machine washed up to 25 times at 60 ° and then prepared in the dryer for reuse. The manufacturer writes about the product: “The new IF masks are equipped with an integrated filter so that you no longer have to worry about replacing them. By wearing a self-printed everyday mask, you can fashionably and creatively show attentiveness to your fellow human beings when you are out and about.” Order the individual, customizable masks from Vistaprint online here (no longer available).

Ethical Notice: The creation and publication of this article is aided by product placements and affiliate links. Nevertheless, this potential remuneration in no way affects the editorial independence of the author.

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