Cross Promotion or Marketing Mutualism?

“Is this an ad for headphones?” “Who’s the guy with the beard?” “Wow this is long.” “Oh it’s definitely an ad for headphones.” “Maybe speakers?” “Ohhhhhh.”

This was my chain of thought as I watched the mac daddy of all cross promotion that was Jay Z’s Samsung Galaxy commercial which aired during game 5 of the NBA finals. The 3-minute commercial shows Jay Z and crew (composed of Pharrell, Swizz Beats, Timbaland and an unspecified bearded man who I later discovered was co-President of Columbia records, Rick Rubin) in studio working on his upcoming album. It’s not until the final seconds of the commercial that there are any definitive hints as to what is being promoted (save Jay Z’s general coolness) until a black screen flashes once, proclaiming “The Next Big Thing Is Here,” again with the website for Jay Z’s newest album, Magna Carta Holy Grail, and finally with the nucleus of it all, “Samsung Galaxy.”

In continuing their partnership, Samsung purchased 1 million copies of Magna Carta Holy Grail, giving Jay Z an unofficial Platinum album before it has even been released. As a result of this purchase, 1 million Samsung Galaxy S3, S4 and Galaxy Note II owners will receive Jay Z’s album for free, 72 hours before the album is officially released, simply by downloading the Magna Carta Holy Grail App. Samsung reportedly paid $5 a copy, totaling $5 million for the exclusive edge.

Now, we all remember learning about the different types of Symbiotic relationships in Biology; one in particular, Mutualism. If not, it’s the one where the bee gets to eat the nectar from flowers and the flowers in turn get pollinated as the bee goes. Each party benefits but also relies on the other for a specific outcome. No flowers, no nectar. No bees, less pollination.

So this commercial begs the question: are Jay Z and Samsung benefiting from successful cross promotion or are they each mutually dependent on each other to achieve their desired result? Without Jay Z’s certified cool-factor and exclusive edge with the release of his newest album, would Samsung be able to take the lead amongst its smartphone competitors? And, without Samsung’s ad dollars and album stimulus, would Jay Z’s new album suffer the same poor sales as so many others in this age of music piracy?

When you consider that Jay Z’s last album sold just under 500,000 copies in its first week and Samsung has spent years in the shadow of Apple’s iPhone, the pair’s “cross promotion” starts to look awfully similar to the mutually benefiting/dependent relationship between the flower and the bee.

Social Networking by the Numbers

Active Social Networkers* are:
47%    more likely to be heavy spenders on clothing, shoes, and accessories
45%    more likely to go on a date
18%    more likely to work out at a gym or health club
19%    more likely to attend a professional sporting event
53%    of active social networkers follow a brand online
64%    of Twitter users and 51% of Facebook users are more likely to buy from the brands they follow
75%    of small businesses maintain some type of social media presence

Social Media is an important addition to any business marketing campaign.  If you would like to know more about how The MOD Studio can help your business grow through social media campaigns, then shoot us an email at
*when compared to the average adult internet user
sources: Nielsen: Social Media Report Q3 2011; Crowdspring: “How Small Businesses Are Using Social Media”, 9/28/11

3 Surefire Ways to Engage Clients!

Once you’ve developed your branding, printed business cards, finally launched your meticulously revised website. Once you’ve created a Facebook page, setup your Twitter, Google Place Page, Yelp Page and all the other necessary avenues. After all these things have been checked off the list, what happens next?

This is a question faced by most business owners.

Upon reaching the other side of this mammoth launch, you may be surprised to find customers aren’t streaming in. Have you done something wrong?

The answer is no and sort of.

You’ve done nothing but establish the cornerstones of your company thus far, and these are vital steps.  These are not to be overlooked, underrated or skipped. But the reason you’re not doing everything “right” is because you’re assuming that’s where it stops.  Although those foundations were tough to build, the bigger challenge is yet ahead.

How will you uniquely engage your potential customers? What sets your company apart? In what ways will you:
A} Place your business at top of mind and
B} Ensure that every applicable service you offer has been introduced to them?

These questions are not to be answered by startups alone. If you have a long established company, are you continuing to engage your current clients, are they aware of your entire suite of services? Are they enmeshed in every one of your capabilities that will benefit their business?

Let’s look at a few ways to engage current and locate potential customers.

  1. Blogging. We know you’re sick of hearing it, but don’t skip out on us yet. Yes, everyone continues {and will continue} to throw this word around. Why? Because it’s a great tool. You are the only one who knows your business like you do. Sharing this wealth of knowledge does NOT prevent customers from coming to you, it simply alerts them to your level of expertise and prompts them to see the need for your services.
  2. Email Newsletters. Email, in opposition to the belief of many, is not yet dead.  It’s still the number one place to speak to your customers on their own turf. If you’re not using your website, blog or social avenues to capture the information of those interested in what you have to say, you’re missing a great opportunity.
  3. Buzz Word Platforms.  You should continue to explore these. If everyone in your industry is rallying around a new potential marketplace like Pinterest or Instagram, take some time to research it.  Don’t simply jump on board because it’s popular. But if you find it does reach a portion of your clientele, give it a whirl.

What’s the recurring theme here? Content, Content, Content. But not JUST content; content that is specific, intentional, that’s focused on what you DO. We’ll keep beating that dead horse and so will everyone else. Because content, above all other tactics, is the only thing that draws a person in. This doesn’t always mean something written. This means solid information, resources, examples of your work, anything you have developed or created.  Without this, it won’t matter how much effort you throw in, people just aren’t coming to find you. And they’re definitely not passing you on to their networks.

Lastly, once you have this stellar content in place, don’t forget to monitor the traffic. This is where that SEO copywriting and Analytics setup included in your foundation building will begin to play its role.  By tracking visits, most clicked content, keywords used to reach your site, most shared content, etc. you can begin to get a picture of the audience that’s finding you and tweak accordingly to ensure it’s the audience you desire.

Now, how do you start building this content library? How do you share with and create interest among potential and current clients? We’re so glad you asked ;) We’d be happy to discuss your company and what we can do to help. Go ahead, drop us a line: we can’t wait to hear from you!

MOD discusses Email Marketing

Here at MOD we always keep up with the latest on Social Media trends. We love utilizing Facebook, Twitter, and now Pinterest to stay in touch with our clients and market our fabulous work.  We also stay informed on cutting edge marketing techniques and ideas such as this great article on words to avoid when writing emails on by Sarah Kessler.

Summarized in the chart below, Sarah’s article “Want People to Return Your Emails? Avoid These Words.” explores the G-mail plug-in Boomerang and a study on email responses.