Don’t let the flaws hold you back from frontiers

What’s the single most important factor in the success of any marketer? It would be easy to cite the strength of the brand or the depth of resources that a brand owner is prepared to invest as the measure that ultimately divides good marketers from great ones.

Easy but wrong. Ideas and creativity are still the benchmarks of great marketing and rightly so. A belief in “the big idea’ is at the very heart of the case studies examined in our cover feature this week. Space Age Marketing looks at some of the more incredible ways in which brands are using technology to get in front of their audience. Each idea required somebody bold enough to disregard the economic downturn, a climate that doesn’t necessarily suggest itself as an appropriate environment for spending on wild, wacky and untried innovation. And they’re all designed to excite the consumer.

Despite some good creds with a range of brands, some marketers are telling Bluepod that its idea seems ‘too good to be true’

Such dynamism (and the 20% price premium that research suggests you can place on products that excite consumers through innovation) is not, however, confined to new ideas and technologies. There is still great marketing to be built out of ideas that maximise technologies and channels already out there. Bluetooth is a fairly new technology but is unlikely to be described as “space age”. Yet a small company called Bluepod Media is using Bluetooth to make the mobile marketing dream come true. While some marketers in the mobile field have concentrated efforts around WAP-enabled digital banners, Bluepod Media knows the majority of the population use pay-as-you-go contracts and are therefore unlikely to use the web on their phones. Bluepod has partnered with cinema chains, shopping malls and bars. It has then delivered campaigns for clients such as Xbox and Nokia by directing free content to the phones of consumers who opt in to a branded experience in their own leisure time. The content can include videos, wallpapers, ringtones and promotions, or in the case of Carling, for whom Bluepod recently tested out a new idea in a range of Bristol bars, a pub quiz – winners claimed a free pint at the bar.

Strangely, not every brand is flocking to be Bluepod Media’s next client. Despite a compelling argument and some good creds with a range of brands, some marketers are telling Bluepod’s management that its idea seems “too good to be true”.

If an idea has flaws then it needs work. But an idea that is too good to be true? It might just be good and true. And it might be the idea. How many ideas in our cover story would you have ditched for being too good to be true?