Creativity in Public Relations » Interviews http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal Creativity, marketing, great ideas, smart thinking, public relations, insights, inspirations, innovations and more. (Formerly known as Ryan's View) Wed, 05 Aug 2009 00:52:54 +0000 http://wordpress.org/?v=2.9.2 en hourly 1 Interview: Virgin Mobile Australia http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/05/28/interview-virgin-mobile-australia/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/05/28/interview-virgin-mobile-australia/#comments Thu, 28 May 2009 01:20:31 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=599 My mission to speak with some of the smart marketers around the world today leads me down under to Australia, where I recently had a chance to speak with Chris Jones, head of acquisition marketing at Virgin Mobile Australia.  Chris is responsible for creating awareness of Virgin Mobile products and services, showcasing how they can make someone’s life better.  As with previous guests Chris tackled “5 Big Questions of Creativity.”  Here we go:

1.    Why is creativity important to your brand and business?  We operate in a competitive category where it’s easy to be drawn into price wars with the competition.  As a challenger brand operating with fewer resources we have to leverage the power of our ideas to gain cut through in a very crowded marketplace, and that’s where creativity is a major contributor of our success.  This becomes an even greater priority in light of the recent merger activities in the telco space.

2.    Where do you find creative ideas/thoughts for inspiration?  We look to understand the consumer’s mindset to understand what’s important or relevant to them right now.  With this as a foundation, we then try to generate ideas based on what we believe the consumer is open to accepting or wanting to hear at this point in time.  Listening to the customer in this way creates a platform from which strong ideas can make their way to the fore.

3.    What do you do to encourage/nurture creativity in your business/campaigns?  The pace of our business often makes this a difficult task.  We try to create an environment where employees feel empowered to take ownership of their campaigns.  In addition we really look to our agency partners to push us and push our thinking.  We’re not where we’d like to be with this yet but we’re moving in the right direction.

4.    Can you share an example of a creative campaign that really stuck with you, and why?  I am very impressed with Turkcell, a wireless provider in Turkey and their award winning efforts around gnctrkcll, a 15 million strong youth mobile club.  They’ve created a new revenue stream that adds value for their customers and for brand partners trying to reach their customers through the mobile phone as a platform.  The concept and campaign are very innovative and creative leveraging products & technologies that are widely available (ringback tones & their delivery platform) in a new way that better meets the needs of their consumers.

5.    Can you provide one short phrase or sentence of your definition of creativity:  the application of insights to deliver value for consumers

Virgin Mobile continues to be a force down under, and with Chris and the rest of his team leveraging creativity to its fullest, it’s easy to see why.

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Creativity Interview: Cranberries http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/04/14/creativity-interview-cranberries/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/04/14/creativity-interview-cranberries/#comments Mon, 13 Apr 2009 21:20:31 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=562 My mission to speak with some of the smart marketers around the world today leads me to the cranberry bogs of the United States, where I recently had a chance to speak with Michele Silbey, international Account Manager for the US Cranberry Marketing Committee and client of H&K (full disclosure).  Michele is responsible for enticing more people around the world fall in love with the great taste and healthy benefits of cranberries.

As with previous guests Michele tackled the “Big 5 Questions of Creativity.”  Here we go:

1.    Is creativity important to your business?  Definitely.  We rely on creativity to jumpstart and/or expand exports of cranberries in each market.  Creativity also goes a long way to maximizing our budgets.  If we can use a creative idea that may cost less than a standard promotional campaign but delivers more results, that’s an ideal situation.

2.    Why is delivering or having creativity important for your efforts?  Smart and creative thinking helps us stretch every dollar.  In many markets cranberries are competing with local fruits which means it’s tough for our fun little red cranberry to break through in some aspects.  Creativity is a tool we use to break through the clutter.

3.    How do you define creativity?  For me creativity is thinking outside the box for ideal ways to reach consumers or the trade, whomever you are targeting.  Creativity is taking a normal, often used idea and turning it on its head to come up with a different angle to a common theme that would draw more viewers or eyeballs.

4.    What’s the latest campaign you came across that you think rocked on the creative scale?  I have to say the way the Australia team leveraged the Sex and the City movie last year was very creative – they identified an opp for cranberries to piggyback on the launch of the movie – given the heavily featured cosmopolitan which was throughout the series and in the last scene of the movie. As a result, cosmos were very much back on the bar menu and featured in every magazine. They were even able to get some of Sydney’s  top mixologists shaking up their own rendition of the cosmo to add some spice.  And on a global scale I have to say I love Apple’s recent campaign when they went head on with Microsoft as part of their “I’m a Mac” effort – great, simple, lighthearted and memorable.

5.    On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 not important, 10 very important) how important do you think creative thinking/approaches are to solving business challenges?  I think it does depend somewhat on the actual challenge you’re facing.  If it is a timing or budget challenge, then creativity is maybe not as important as plain old strategic thinking.  However, when it comes to marketing/increasing awareness, creativity can make or break a product.  I give it a 9 in those situations.

So even the little cranberry relies on creative thinking to raise its profile and get people to, well, eat it.  For more on cranberries check out www.cranberries.com.au where you can find great recipes, health benefits and more – you’ll never guess so much good can be packed in something so small.

Get Creative!

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Creativity Interview: Positively Wellington Tourism http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/04/03/creativity-interview-positively-wellington-tourism/ http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/2009/04/03/creativity-interview-positively-wellington-tourism/#comments Thu, 02 Apr 2009 21:52:46 +0000 Ryan Peal http://blogs.hillandknowlton.com/ryanpeal/?p=551 My dream/mission to speak with some of the smartest marketers around the world leads me today to Wellington, New Zealand, where I recently had a chance to speak with Sarah Peacock, the Australia Marketing Manager for Positively Wellington Tourism and client of H&K (full disclosure).  Sarah is responsible for enticing more Australians to spoil themselves and head a bit farther down under (and to the right) to visit the capital of New Zealand, a vibrant boutique city close to the some of the best wine and scenery in the world.

As with previous guests Sarah tackled the “Big 5 Questions of Creativity.”  Here we go:

1.    Is creativity important to your business?  Extremely important – across the board (domestic, international, corporate, etc.).  Getting the word out about Wellington in Australia is priority #1 as we compete with lots of destinations in the region . . . but of course we are a stand out destination with a huge amount to offer.

2.    Why is delivering or having creativity important for your efforts?  You need creative ideas to cut through the noise and get people and the media interested in Wellington.  We can’t just say “hi, we’re wellington,” you need to engage with consumers,  build a relationship with them, get them interacting with you and add something to their life.

3.    How do you define creativity?  For me it’s about innovation and having a unique voice that’s different (and more entertaining) then our competitors.  And in the end, being clever and smart.

4.    What’s the latest campaign you came across that you think rocked on the creative scale?  It has to be this funny video I saw called “Beached As” which is a funny take on New Zealanders by Australians.  It’s a great example of clever thinking that didn’t cost a lot but got people talking.  It has the right authenticity to it and “went viral” as many people also thought it was great and passed it around.  There’s nothing more powerful than friends and family sending something your way.  And my back-up favourite was a simple commercial by Cadbury with the gorilla playing the drums – nothing to do with chocolate but such a great way to add some fun to their brand.  (link to video)

5.    On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 not important, 10 very important) how important do you think creative thinking/approaches are to solving business challenges?  Of course I’d say a big 10.  In today’s fast paced world you need to have an emotional connection with consumers, and to do that you need to think of the right and smart way to engage with them.

It’s easy to see that creativity is alive and well in Wellington as Sarah and her team continue to develop campaigns that motivate people to discover this amazing city waiting to be explored.  And if you now have visions of the wonders of Wellington in your head join the Wellington Facebook group or sign-up for the Wellington e-newsletter and start planning your trip.

Get Creative!

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