Branding Becomes Poetic
Irish poet David Whyte once said “poetry can’t be used for manipulation; it’s why you never see good poetry in advertising.” Whyte was right, until now. Adweek tells us, several companies have tapped into their inner Shakespeare to attract disengaged viewers. Postproduction house PS260’s David Blackburn says “viewers are wise to conventional advertising. Poetry is more entertaining than most ad copy, and viewers are inclined to respond to a lifestyle or feeling rather than a hard sell.” Check out Under Armour’s “Unlike Any” and A&E’s “Look Closer.” Read our take on poetry in advertising in our On Advertising column.

" Unlike An y"
What It Means To Be A Man
Popular shaving company Harry’s is changing the way we discuss manhood, and it all comes from the viewpoint of a young boy and his new alien friend. The boy is tasked with explaining what it means to be a man to the outworlder, all while figuring it out for himself. It’s a rite of passage story, or as the agency hints, it’s not really about the alien but about self-exploration and expression. Harry’s branding has always brought men’s health issues to the forefront, but this space oddity is a nice touch.

A Shoe That Can Keep Up With The Fastest Feet
We imagine if you have the world’s fastest feet, you’d go through a lot of shoes, and we’re sure Luis Badillo Jr. does. Badillo claims to have the “the fastest feet in the world,” and for good reason. Reebok recently hired him to sport their new shoe, the Fast Flexweave. The one-minute spot is a bit chaotic, jumping shot to shot like a Jason Stratham fight scene, but it captures the world Badillo lives in, fast. You can watch it here. 

One Small Step For Man Is One Giant Leap For Corporations
Following Elon Musk’s Falcon Heavy launch that put a Tesla Roadster into space, Audi, Nokia, and mobile carrier Vodafone Germany partnered to build a mobile network on the moon. According to Tech Crunch, the project is planned to feature 4G-connectivity and be operational by 2019. Musk’s SpaceX is set to be the launching provider behind the mission. For those unaware, SpaceX has been partnered with NASA since 2006.
Driverless Cars Merging In A Lane Near You

Late last year, Arizona left the testing stages of driverless cars and the vehicles hit public roads. Last Monday, the DMV of California created rules that will allow tech companies to test driverless vehicles without a driver behind the wheel. Up until now, companies were allowed to test their tech, but were required to have a safety driver prepared to take over. Waymo is set to be the biggest beneficiary of the new laws, which take effect in April. 
Troubling News For iPhone Owners

If you own an iPhone, you may be experiencing some technical difficulties. The main issue plaguing Apple right now is an iPhone 6 and 6 Plus battery shortage. Following an announcement where Apple confirmed they slow down older phones, the number of iPhone 6 battery replacements has skyrocketed. The Verge tells us that initial reports had the wait time at a week, but now some users are waiting up to ten weeks for a new battery. 
We’re firm believers in breaking the mold and testing different strategies. When a potential February social media promotion came up for our client, SCE Federal Credit Union, we knew we had plenty of inspiration and aimed for something unique and lovable.

The goal was to organically increase social media engagement and followers with an authentic approach.

For Valentine’s Day, we played off “ShareTheLove.” The word play can go either way; it’s a call to action for members to share their love for the credit union and a moment for the credit union to express their appreciation for the membership. Since #ShareTheLove is a fairly common hash tag, this also increased the exposure and reach of the SCE FCU brand.

Throughout the day, we asked members questions about the credit union and how they share the love. An email was sent out the week before, not mentioning the promotion, but teased it with an entertaining poem. The results were outstanding.

SCE FCU saw an increase in Facebook reviews and a 5% growth in followers on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. We also reached a different segment of their membership, as new followers engaged. Half of them were already following before the email. Their platforms saw an increase in engagement, but most importantly, it was an exchange of quality feedback from the members.

Last year, we learned SCE FCU’s followers really love animals, specifically dogs. So the Tuesday after #ShareTheLove, we took advantage of #LoveYourPetDay. SCE FCU team members sent in pictures of themselves with their pets. It was crucial to the strategy for the images to have both the team member and the pet. We wanted members to recognize the faces they see every time they’re in a branch. It also provided the opportunity for members to put a face to team members that work behind the scenes like the call center. Did we mention they really love dogs?

Engagement skyrocketed. Likes and retweets are often considered vanity figures, and chasing them isn’t necessarily the most productive goal. But promotions like these do help with combatting algorithms. For instance, Facebook arranges a user’s feed based on how likely that individual would interact with the content. Manipulating this feature was key going forward, as Facebook’s latest update prioritizes friends’ content over business posts.

In the end, these two promotions were the perfect fit. #ShareTheLove brought in quality engagement for the credit union, but most importantly a new wave of followers. #LoveYourPetDay used authentic photos of real team members and their pets (did we mention SCE FCU members really love dogs?) that gave them something worth engaging with. Between the engagement with the two campaigns, we’re looking to have a one-up on the Facebook algorithm and a happy, engaged audience.

Poetry has disappeared from mainstream America. Liberal artists and intellectuals around the nation may still enjoy it, but the common person has abandoned it for other forms of expression and entertainment. The public doesn’t hold it in the same light as it once did. Now, only a small subculture specializes in it. Poetry has become a wayside art, but that position will give poetry power in branding. It’s very cliché, yet poetic, that poetry would share the same fate as the legend of the phoenix. 

“Advertising is fundamentally persuasion and persuasion happens to be not a science, but an art.”
– William Bernbach