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Blog Archive

Does Creativity Still Matter in Marketing?

Baby pictures. We’ve all seen them. When a new parent or grandparent sticks that smartphone under your nose to show you their precious darling, you automatically start to spit out compliments. “He’s definitely his father’s son,” you say, as the proud papa swipes through the first 200 digital images for …

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Farris creates “Discover the Love” campaign for Lillo

Premium Infused Spirits, LLC., makers of Lillo Limoncello and Lillo Coffee Liqueurs, selected Farris Marketing of Boardman for branding and social media marketing. The story of Lillo began more than two decades ago when two Italian priests presented one of the Lillo founders with a generation’s old recipe from their …

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Slang in Ads: Is it Tight or Wack?

I admit I was excited. Six months ago, I bought a new refrigerator, but because of the pandemic, it took three months to come in. The store sent two younger guys to deliver the shiny new appliance to my house. The new fridge was a lot bigger than the old …

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YouTube: Modern Version of Cave Painting

It’s sometime during the Paleolithic Age (aka the Stone Age) near what is now Spain. A cavewoman named Canta and caveman named Lopa are spear fishing in a river. “So Lopa,” says Canta, “What’s new?” “Same ol’, same ol’ for me.” replies Lopa. “But some of our friends saw one …

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AI for Marketing: Usually Helpful, Sometimes Annoying

If you’ve read, heard, or watched any developments in Artificial Intelligence, you’ve probably heard the paranoid whispers that one day an army of AI robots will rise up, take over the world, and enslave the human race. That’s crazy, right? Maybe not. What if… I mean…what if? What if the …

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How Batman beat Superman with brand equity

Years later, as Superman is puttering around his home in the Fortress of Solitude, he tells visitors that he’s happy and enjoys retirement. But Lois Lane, his ageless girlfriend of 70+ years, tells a different story. “He’s OK until he hears about another new Batman movie — then he gets …

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Lessons on Peace and Branding from Oreo

Want to cure the divisiveness in this country? Start by finding common ground. But don’t use words. Just get the opposing sides to sit down across a table from each other. Then give them a mug of ice cold milk — and a dozen or so Oreos. Within minutes, someone …

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Estée Lauder: Female Guerrilla Marketer 

Are you awed by the marketing savvy, strength, and perseverance of visionaries like Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, and Jeff Bezos? Does their commitment to building their respective brands (Apple, Tesla, and Amazon) into culture-changing powerhouses impress you? You should be impressed— considering their innovative, aggressive, unrelenting styles. Yet, if Jobs, …

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Brag About Your Brand to Build More Business

Does the word “brag” in the headline above bother you?  Does the idea of “bragging” about yourself or your brand make you uncomfortable?  That’s not surprising.  Many people put bragging in the same category as the “G word” (Greed).  Neither is illegal, but many of us are of the opinion …

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Do April Fools Gags Bring in Business for Brands?

If the April Fools gag works, the benefits to the brand of a well-thought out and successful April first joke are numerous. You get publicity. The brand name is mentioned in social media and around the virtual water cooler. If done right, you can increase awareness, generate interest and revenue, …

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Books and Podcasts Recommended by Local Leaders

“Leadership” is an often-used word in job descriptions and the mission statements of companies and non-profit organizations. Great leadership is usually linked to the success of the organization. That’s appropriate. But many successful people will tell you that leadership goes beyond the bottom line. Leadership is also about teaching, sharing …

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Marketing Madness: Winning Works Wonders

By Anthony Farris and George Farris Small colleges all across America work hard to recruit new students each year. Their marketing teams set up displays at college day forums, host open house events, send direct mail to qualified prospects, post clever and inspiring billboards. They appeal to alumni to encourage …

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Pay Attention to Podcast Popularity

I walked into the tiny reception area of my friend Jimmy’s office and saw the receptionist Marge at her desk. She’s a Russian immigrant in her early 80s who thinks retirement is for lazy people. Marge’s brass blonde hair is spun into an amazing beehive hairdo.  We chat for a …

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Marketing Lessons from Genghis Khan

If you were asked to name a marketing genius, who comes to mind? Would it be Apple’s Steve Jobs, who created beautiful consumer tech and our desire to own it? How about Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, who literally changed the way the world shops? Or, SpaceX and Tesla’s Elon Musk, who …

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How Celebs and CEOs Have Disrupted the News Media

“Never pick a fight with people who buy ink by the barrel.” is a quote often attributed to Mark Twain. It’s a warning, telling us to stay on the good side of newspaper publishers. The people who ran newspapers were powerful and could make you a hero or a reprobate …

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Annual List of Top Marketing Quotes Includes Advice from Farris CEO 

Words of advice from George Farris, President/CEO of Farris Marketing, are cited in a popular annual list of the nation’s best marketing quotes.  365 Marketing Quotes to Keep You Fired Up All Year is published online each year by skyword.com, the leading content platform company for national brands such as Campbell’s …

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Jeans Makers Turn Blue as Athleisure Goes for Gold

What drives changes in fashion? Is it changing tastes, art, environment or functionality? Nope. Those are the consumer excuses for purchasing the new items. Most changes in fashion are generated by entrepreneurs who envision an opportunity. Looking back, the women and men who are the founders of some of these …

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Did the Pandemic Destroy Customer Loyalty?

Who do you picture when you hear the word “disloyal?” Benedict Arnold? He accepted 10,000 pounds sterling ($2.6 million in today’s dollars) and a commission in the British army to betray the U.S.A. How about mob boss Lenny Strollo? He broke the Omertà— the Mafia code of silence — when he turned …

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Marketing Success With Little or No Paid Media

Marketers— whether working in-house or for an agency — rarely get to determine the marketing budget for their employer or client. Oh, we suggest, we recommend, we even put together elaborate presentations to explain why paid media are necessary to achieve the strategic goals. But in the end, the amount …

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How Brand Marketing Supercharges Growth

Before Steve Jobs, there was George Westinghouse.  Westinghouse, who was from Pittsburgh, became a popular figure in the U.S. when his company was among the first to provide long-distance transmission of electricity. His firm demonstrated its expertise by lighting up an entire city — Great Barrington, Massachusetts — for the …

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Pumped Up By The Pandemic, TeleHealth is Huge/Here to Stay

In the 2002 movie “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” the bride’s father, Gus Portokalos, would choose a word from just about every conversation and point out its Greek origin — even if it didn’t have one. “Kimono is come from Greek word himona, is mean winter. What do you wear …

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Has Marketing Gone Too Mainstream to Be Effective?

Magicians have an unofficial code that prevents them from telling the public how a trick works. But the prestidigitators who stick to the code are not doing so out of some sense of honor or duty. They keep “how it’s done” under wraps because it makes good economic sense. After …

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Some People Hate Advertising, But Don’t Let That Stop You

Remember waiting for a commercial break in a TV show? You could count on it hitting at a certain time in your favorite show every week. When it did, you sprinted for that snack or drink or bathroom. Sure, Clara asking “Where’s the beef?” was funny the first dozen times …

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Why Business Owners Hate Social Media Marketing

Social Media Marketing — one more marketing panacea that isn’t. Ask most small-business owners what they really think about handling their social media marketing themselves, and most will tell you they would rather do something else — anything else. Social media takes tons of time. It’s aggravating when customers complain …

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The Overvalued, Misunderstood and Misused TAGLINE

“I took a marketing class when I was in college,” said the newly promoted CEO of a small Ohio-based bank. “Uh-oh,” I think, “here it comes.” He’s spent the last 21 years working on spreadsheets, payroll and policy — but he believes that one marketing class made him an expert. …

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Increase Online Reviews to Boost Business

It’s time to deal with that monster hiding under your bed — online reviews. It seems like a monster because it’s powerful, unpredictable and can occasionally attack. But according to BrightLocal.com: Reviews will happen whether or not you make them a priority for your business. We live in an age …

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Only the Strong, Smart and Lucky Win the Business Wars

Political divisiveness is sure getting nasty, isn’t it? American political parties punch it out on every issue — lying, cheating and seeking to cripple the competition. Well let me tell you, American politics are child’s play compared to American business. Some of America’s most recognized companies have surprising back stories. …

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Marketing Sends $31 Billion of TP Down the Drain

The recent pandemic stirred a surge of panic buying of toilet paper, resulting in empty store shelves and even a few fistfights over the few rolls that were available immediately after that. Some people called it a “shortage,” but that’s a misnomer. Americans use about three rolls a week, and …

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I Screen, You Screen…We All Watch TV Screens

Have you ever known someone who appeared to be very normal, but was involved in a very serious criminal activity? I can tell you, it’s shocking and upsetting. At least that’s how I felt when my friend Marty got involved with laundering money for a drug cartel. It seemed so …

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What Will Your Message Be When You Reopen?

Are you ready to watch a movie and eat some popcorn someplace other than your couch? Believe it or not, under the guidelines recently released by the White House, cinemas would be allowed to reopen in the first of three phases. As expected, it will be left largely up to governors to …

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Be Happy for Businesses Thriving During Coronavirus

When I was 10 or 11 years old, my cousin won a local radio contest and was chosen to take a coveted ride on an elephant during the Ringling Brothers circus show at a local venue. “Why can’t I ever win a contest like that?” I complained to my mother. …

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