October 2023 Marketing News You Can Use

Taylor Swift Mania Sets Off a Marketing Frenzy

Key Point: Singer Taylor Swift may or may not be romantically involved with pro football player Travis Kelce — but that’s a moot point. True or not and regardless of the outcome, fans of both music and football are wild about the idea. And that is a marketer’s dream come true. It’s tough to create “buzz,” but finding buzz and hitching up to it can be a quick path to success. 

Heinz leveraged the opportunity first. The company’s limited edition “Seemingly Ranch” campaign launched within 24 hours after a post about Taylor Swift’s choice of condiments went viral on X. A week later, State Farm hopped on the bandwagon by seating “Jake from State Farm” next to Kelce’s mother (now known as “Mama Kelce”) … and the television cameras loved it.

So, marketer, here’s the question of the month: What do you think when you see a buzz eruption? Do you join friends in talking about it, or do you get to work finding a way to connect your brand to the excitement? Your answer might determine the size of your paycheck.

The Value of Resonance

Key Point: The same vibrational force that can shatter a wine glass or even make a bridge over a river wobble can make your ads more effective, says TikTok for Business. The phenomenon is known as “resonance,” and the concept, when applied to marketing, is fueled by attention and engagement. When your ads “resonate” with your audience, amazing things can happen.

Neuroscience tells us that brain waves are electrical patterns generated by the brain, and TikTok extends that concept accordingly: “Attention is the selective focus of the brain potentially processing something. In advertising, it depends on the intention of the audience and the creativity of the message. Research commissioned by TikTok found creative elements that feel native to the platform generate longer watch time: featuring real people (+9%), remixing a TikTok trend (+14%) and crafting a creative story (+16%).”

You may not be a science buff, but if you’re a marketer who wants to gain the attention of your audience and get them to engage with your brand, you are quite likely to find something compelling and useful in this one. It’s an article well worth reading.

Why Chipotle Would Rather Be Loved by Customers than by Competitors

Key Point: Every marketer knows determining competitive advantage is crucial for business success. It’s a jungle out there, a dog-eat-dog world. You have to determine your marketing edge and use it like a knife. Chipotle executives, though, say their focus is a little different.

Chipotle would rather be “visible, relevant, and loved” by its customers than fight with competitors. That means, of course, the company must take a stand on certain social issues — a tactic that hasn’t paid off well lately for brands like Target and Bud Light. It could be that the challenge is determining which issues best connect with customers and have a direct tie to your brand. For Chipotle, that means championing causes like organic farming and environmental causes … but companies should not comment on every issue that arises. Says Chipotle CMO, Chris Brandt, “We have a definitely progressive culture, but the way I framed it for our teams is that we’re not a political action committee.”

Toys“R”Us Charts a Strategic Return to the Retail Landscape

Key Point: Parents, grandparents, and children alike bemoaned the demise of Toys“R”Us when the beloved retailer tumbled into bankruptcy six years ago. But, that’s not the end of the story: Toys“R”Us is in comeback mode. You may already have seen Toys“R”Us sections in Macy’s department stores or at the American Dream mall in New Jersey, but the footprint will soon expand to “24 flagship stores” in the United States along with locations in airports and cruise ships.

Here’s a clip from the September 29 news release: “The Company announced today a partnership with Go! Retail Group to roll out Toys“R”Us flagship stores nationwide in the U.S. beginning in 2024. In addition, WHP is set to bring Toys“R”Us to the travel industry with a new retail experience for airports and cruise ships. The first Toys“R”Us airport store will open in November at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport through a partnership with Duty Free Americas.”

The company already maintains a robust e-commerce website and has significant investments in stores overseas. It appears this holiday season, Toys“R”Us shoppers will need to head to Macy’s, Dallas, or New Jersey … but next year your favorite toy store may return to a location near you. 


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