Marketers, Just Stop It: #467

In this installment of “crap we wish marketing professionals would just cease from doing”, we’re going to address the obvious blather that is The Email Subject Line. In our profession and task list, we are requested all of the time for amazing email campaigns. And we do ‘em… like whoa. Nonetheless, we recognize that newsletters can be tricky terrain to navigate. There are so many points to consider:

In our profession and task list, we are requested all of the time for amazing email campaigns. And we do ‘em… like whoa. Nonetheless, we recognize that newsletters can be tricky terrain to navigate. There are so many points to consider: template design, deployment service, module content, call-to-action, UTM links, email migration, database synching, tone of voice, graphics, etc etc (the list goes on and on)… BUT the one thing that really gets our goat is the simplest one of all: what to say to customers when that email first hits their inbox.

We’re of the ilk to clean out our inbox as frequently as possible. Meaning, we hit the “Inbox Zero” mark as much as we can, which also means that we cleanse spammy nonsense often. Since email is kinda our thing, we also are subscribed to a myriad of newsletters and communications that help us to stay inspired and see what works (and what doesn’t). On a recent Monday morning, there appeared not one, but three (3!) newsletters that led with the vomit-inducing “

On a recent Monday morning, there appeared not one, but three (3!) newsletters that led with the vomit-inducing “Spring Theme.” All of the eye rolls. Seasonal puns are for amateurs, but these were major brands, what kind of creative drought is going on here?

Okay, leading with seasonal changes can be a fair use case if you’re serving a fashion or lifestyle audience. And understandably, every tone and brand voice is different, so we get leaning on a more formal copy strategy versus tongue-and-cheek wordplay, but we just really want to do away with the painstakingly obvious holiday-leaching newsletter. Or, at least, pick some more interesting (read: unique) holidays to embrace. In fact, here’s a handy list. Pretty much anything to do with food tops our personal preferences, hint hint.

Alright, we’re done venting. See you in your inbox, kittens.

Client Spotlight: Martin Marino

Martin Marino is the purveyor of made-to-order, gorgeous, Italian handbags that emphasize style, individuality, and craftsmanship, and coincidentally one of our favorite clients. We can easily picture ourselves sipping Prosecco on the shores of Santorini in head-to-toe luxury with one of their tailor-made handbags.

With over 150 years of Italian craftsmanship at your fingertips, Martin Marino has a passion for fashion. From their classic silhouettes, to the leather color option, the beauty is in the details. Martin Marino’s bags are strikingly versatile, able to go from everyday wear to evening ready.

They make it perfectly simple to get the bag of your dreams. Choose from one of their six silhouette designs and get to customizing. Crafted in Italy to your specifications, in four easy steps your bag will arrive at your doorstep, without the middle-man or up-pricing that happens with other luxury brands.   

Interested in learning more about Martin Marino? Here’s an event in the Bay Area on March 28th. And by attending, you immediately get 25% off the regular retail price! Click here to sign up.

Oliver + Sons Life Hacks

It’s 2015, which means the Internet has to have some tricks up its sleeve. And guess, what we’ve found a way to hack them! Below are three ways to hack the system this year.

Make Your Own Ringtone!

While shopping around, you hear the default ringtone to almost all Apple iPhones. You, and everyone else in the vicinity, immediately dig around in your purse or fish your phone out of your pocket, quickly trying to answer the call before you miss it. But, then you realize it’s not your phone that’s ringing and now you may be annoyed. Well, not to worry, we’ve got the answer to all your default ringtone issues.

Ever want to create a ringtone that you knew would be yours and yours alone? Well now you can by following these 10 steps!

  1. Figure out which part of the song you want for your ring tone—about 30 seconds worth.
  2. Right click on the song and select “Get Info.”
  3. Select the “Options” tab and plug in the start time and stop time from step 1 and click “OK.”
  4. Listen to the shortened song and make sure it is the right clip.
  5. Right click the song again and select “Create AAC Version.” (After you do this you will notice there are two version of the song in your iTunes library).
  6. Right click on the new (30 second) file and select “Show in Finder” if you’re on a Mac or select “Show in Windows Explorer” on a PC. This will open up a new window and bring up both versions of the song in the iTunes Media folder.
  7. Right click, select “Get Info” and rename with .m4r. The file has to be in this format so it can be recognized as a ringtone. Hit enter after overwriting it. It will ask permission to say it will be a different file type, select “use .mr4.”
  8. Copy the .mr4 file to your desktop then go back to iTunes and delete the shortened version of the sing by right clicking and selecting “Delete.”
  9. Drag the file from your desktop to your iTunes library under Music. It will then appear in your “Tones” section
  10. Sync your iPhone to your computer and your ringtone will be ready to go!

Woohoo! But wait, there’s one last step. You have to get your original song back to normal. Get back into iTunes on your computer and find the original song. Right-click on it and select “Get Info” and then “Options.” Uncheck the boxes next to the “Start Time” and “Stop Time.”

Now that that is settled, feel free to do a dance like Turk and the rest of the Scrubs cast when they hear his N*SYNC ringtone “Bye, Bye, Bye!”

Prank Your Roomie with Targeted Facebook Ads

By now you have probably noticed the advertisements that are in your timeline and on the side panel of your Home pages on Facebook. Maybe you have even noticed how personalized they can get. That’s called targeted marketing. Facebook’s ad targeting tools called “Custom Audiences” allow marketers to build a campaign geared towards 10,000 people to just 1 person. And Brian Swichkow took it to the next level.

Swichkow is a marketing pro and continues to test the limits of Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit advertising, among others. It said he likes “pushing the boundaries, seeing how I can break things” and that was definitely true with the campaign her ran specifically for his sword-swallowing roommate Roderick Russell.

Roderick Russell is a professional sword-swallower but has trouble swallowing his vitamin pills without gagging. So, Swichkow decided to run a series of personal ads directed at Russell pertaining to the difficulties of swallowing pills. See the ad below:

After noticing other weird ads pertaining to sword swallowing he began to become paranoid, thinking that his digital life was being tracked. He even stopped using his phone for fear of it being bugged. Swichkow finally admitted to the prank and said he was researching the effectiveness of one-to-one marketing and the success rates and says “social media allows your digital sales team to stalk your customers with an accuracy that we’ve never seen before.”

So, if you’re interested in pulling a prank on your roomie or your archenemy, it can cost you as little as $1.70. Happy advertising!  

Stop Getting Annoying Notifications from Group Messages

Raise your hand if you hate group messages!

Well, we know how to stop your phone from blowing up without having to block your friends and family. Here are the simple steps:

  1. Make sure you have iOS 8.
  2. Open the Group Text you want to Leave
  3. Go to “Details” in the upper right hand corner
  4. Click “Leave this Conversation”

If “Leave this Conversation” is not an option, that means that one of the users doesn’t have an iPhone or is using an older software. So, simply click “Do Not Disturb” and the notifications will be muted for the conversation, giving you the ability to choose when you want to catch up with the message.

We love to help you not be bludgeoned every 10 seconds with 20+ texts from your overly zealous friends.

We’re Dying Over Here: Ridiculous Unfinished Business Movie Stock Photos

[3/3/15, 1:19:27 PM] ummm this is brilliant:
[3/3/15, 1:20:02 PM] loling so hard
[3/3/15, 2:15:04 PM] dude
[3/3/15, 2:15:05 PM] i die

Yes, that’s a real conversation that happened via Skype when we saw the images below.

“[T]he new Vince Vaughn movie Unfinished Business, comes out Friday. Twentieth Century Fox has teamed up with iStock by Getty Images to create a set of stock photos featuring Vaugh along with co-stars Tom Wilkinson, Dave Franco and others.”

— Alfred Maskeroni for AdWeek

If you’ve ever worked in marketing or PR, then you know the insanely deep dark k-hole of stock photos. Business stock photos, to boot. We applaud the perfect comedy of the following images and have subtitled them appropriately. Use at your own discretion.

The Intense Lecture & Idiotic Smile-Listening The Intense Lecture & Idiotic Smile-Listening Debating Corporate Take-Over Debating Corporate Take-Over Idyllic Formation of Migrating Employees Staring to Upper Left Future Idyllic Formation of Migrating Employees Staring to Upper Left Future Writing Business Is Hard Writing Business Is Hard Dreaming of Lunch Dreaming of Lunch