Knowing your audience intimately is essential to any successful marketing campaign. In fact, it’s the first and most essential ingredient when you’re leveraging the power and allure of tabloid #journalism to reach as many customers as possible. As I covered in an earlier blog, tabloid journalism works because it gives us what we want and taps into our impulsive desires for scandal, fun, and entertainment. When done well, we find it irresistible. But to enrapture and tempt your audience, you have to first know what they want. There’s a reason movie trailers show us explosions and hinted-at nudity—they’re making us anticipate what happens next. Read more
When most people hear the term investigative #journalism, they think of Woodward and Bernstein, and the fall of the Nixon presidency. While the Watergate scandal of the 1970’s may be the most notable example of the form, our current era, in many ways, could be considered the heyday of investigative journalism. Print publications like the Times and The New Yorker have continued their tradition of muckraking, but the Internet has provided a platform for more people than ever to delve into the art. Notable examples that come to mind include Wikileaks and Edward Snowden, dedicated investigative sites like Pro Publica, or even gossip blogs like Gawker. Or take a look at the non-fiction best-seller list, which is dominated by incredible first-person accounts by writers like Katherine Boo and David Grann. It’s reasonable to argue that there’s more high-impact investigative journalism being done now than ever before.
Even if you have a Ph.D in astrophysics or biochemistry, or your artistic interests include Bach and John Cage, or your regular reading includes Thomas Pynchon and James Joyce, if you see a headline reading “17 Photos of Plastic Surgery Gone Disastrously Wrong,” you’re probably going to click on the link. Call it what you will—base, trashy—but there’s a part of us all that simply cannot resist the lure of tabloid #journalism. It’s why we eye the headlines on Star when we’re paying for our groceries and why sites like Buzzfeed, Upworthy, and Dose have all become so popular. No matter how refined we are, the sensational is scintillating.
Increasingly, technology allows people to have customized experiences, finely tuned to their personal preferences. ESPN.com lets me filter sports news so that scores and updates from my favorite teams appear first. Apps like Feedly show me only the news that I’m interested in. Hulu asks me whether I find its ads relevant, and changes the ads I see based on my responses.
Technology constantly changes the way we interpret and think about language. The result is that words carry different meanings for different generations. Say stream, text, cells, and tweets to a grandmother and she’ll probably think of water, a book, prisons, and birds. Mention the same four words to her grandson, and it will likely invoke Netflix, messaging, iPhones, and Twitter. Our technology changes the way we speak as much as it changes the way we work.
Is big data the death of creativity? Speculation has run rampant in the marketing world for the past few years. But in reality, big data is neither a killer nor a savior. The key is how you use it. Adobe’s Ajit Sivadasan shares a fresh perspective on how marketers can leverage data and analytics to accelerate creative experimentation and shorten the customer feedback loop.
Big data. You collect it, you store it, you analyze it, but then what? Many marketers struggle to turn the raw material that is data into valuable, actionable, even inspiring insight. How do you transform mere numbers into a strategic vision?
Today we take a step outside of the world of B2B tech, and take inspiration from The Living Data program, a dynamic intersection of art and science in which data is an artistic armature for story-telling, generating sensory experience, and deepening the understanding of a subject.