This is the golden age of content marketing and nowhere is this more evident than in digital. Content marketing allows brands to go beyond the product push to entertain, enlighten and seduce audiences with useful information aligned with the brand's strategy and target market. But chances are if everyone in the room is singing, a large number will be off-key. So here are some important points to ensure your content marketing is on-point. 21 Jul 2016 Read more In the current great creative explosion of our time, I'm all for freedom, bucking the system and doing the unconventional. When it comes to the really big things though, one quickly realises that unbridled freedom can be a major bugbear in getting even the simplest things done. 20 Apr 2016 Read more Public Relations has undergone a massive shift in the past two years with the digital landscape opening up far more opportunities for brand exposure. Everything and everyone is online, and media (in the traditional sense) are no longer the primary conveyors of information. 18 Feb 2016 Read more At a time when sugar's global reputation is at an all-time low as its negative health effects come under increasing scrutiny, leading sweetener brand, Canderel, pounced with an innovative launch of its new sugar alternative, Canderel Crunch to the South African market. 17 Nov 2015 Read more Social media is nothing more than an ongoing, ever-changing conversation. The discussion topics are varied - sometimes obscure - and the tone and landscape changes quicker than you can hit refresh. 2 Nov 2015 Read more In the midst of the content marketing rush, great content is becoming increasingly elusive. We can't all be Red Bull overnight, but while everyone tries to become a content publisher, let's take a step back and look at what we're doing. 25 Aug 2015 Read more From a two-man start-up in a coffee shop to the fastest growing digital agency in SA 12 Jun 2015 Read more In South Africa, brand pages on social networks are undergoing an evolution. What began as me-too mania as they all flocked to platforms like Facebook and Twitter simply because everyone was doing it, is now slowly becoming a far more nuanced and strategic understanding of the role these platforms can play in a broader communications strategy. 24 Nov 2014 Read more How many brands can you think of that are truly rocking the social media party? And by rocking we don't mean posting beautiful images with meaningless quotes that get the perfunctory likes and shares. We're talking about brands that are sparking new conversations, adding real value and seeing results. 25 Sep 2014 Read more For many brands, Facebook has become about acquiring fans, maintaining high engagement rates and, of course, doing one up on competitors to secure bragging rights. 28 Aug 2014 Read more At the social media party, is your brand engaging in sparkling conversation or just muttering random facts to itself in the corner? Figure out where your brand fits in to the mix and how to climb the social ladder. 29 Jul 2014 Read more Behind every successful Facebook fan acquisition strategy you'll usually find an iFrame. Be it a game, a competition or a landing page to direct fans to your other online properties. When done right, an iFrame can take a campaign to the next level, keep your fans engaged and keep your community growing. 27 Jun 2014 Read more This is an intervention. There are too many brands on YouTube posting bland marketing content in the hope of getting a 'viral hit'. It's painful to see. And it's time for them to hear the hard truth. 27 May 2014 Read more If Michael Kors declares denim the new black on Twitter, trends will transform overnight. But, if Barack Obama were to make the same claim, social media would erupt in memes of Obama clad in denim suits before anyone can say 'Lee Cooper'. This comes down to the longstanding principle: what is said is just as important as who is saying it. 2 May 2014 Read more As user engagement increasingly becomes the holy grail of social and digital marketing, gamification and understanding what motivates people is integral. The runaway success of addictive games like Flappy Bird and Candy Crush are prime examples of human-based design at work. 8 Apr 2014 Read more If entertaining an increasingly attention-divided online audience wasn't already difficult enough, Facebook has made a strategic move that forces brands to invest in advertising. Brands, it's time to pay up or get lost in the digital noise. 26 Feb 2014 Read more As 2014 gets into full swing, here are five of the top trends that should inform your digital marketing strategy for the year ahead: 24 Jan 2014 Read more Reputation management has become a buzzword in the communication industry with public relations practitioners around the world selling it as a service to clients. Reputation management undoubtedly remains one of the most important tools in any communication strategy - especially as digital continues to become a preferred method of communication. Peer recommendation also adds to the need for strong, professional reputation management in both the online and offline spaces. 20 Jun 2013 Read more Gullan&Gullan has hit the ground running in 2013 and notched up three prominent account wins across various industries including Pritt, All Gold and Mitsubishi Motors, in the first three months of the year. 22 May 2013 Read more Gullan&Gullan recently made the strategic decision to expand its public relations offering bringing new depth to web PR. As part of the offering the agency is focussing on building and expanding its skill set in order to ensure maximum return for their clients. 21 May 2013 Read more For the first time in human history more than 50% of people live in cities. It follows then that many new and established brands are targeting this urban market, and are doing so with a "cool" brand positioning. How does a big corporate brand reinvent its image to pique the interest of what marketing professionals are calling the "creative class"? 20 May 2013 Read more What is gamification?
Gamification is a digital term that means bringing some of the mechanics and concepts of gaming into brand content. Foursquare is a good example of the use of gamification where users can earn badges and unlock specials by checking in. Gamification used for marketing brands usually involves incentivising users with rewards and exclusive offers, similar to traditional loyalty programmes. 17 May 2013 Read more
With the myriad of brand messages attempting to engage with consumers on a daily basis, it's becoming more difficult for brands to break through. Which is why selecting a communications agency that has the ability to strategically innovate and the skills to execute break-through campaigns across all 360º channels has never been more vital. Gullan&Gullan is proving to be such an agency, offering a truly integrated 360º communication service. Gullan&Gullan is committed to being brand ambassadors for its clients. And is pleased to have acquired four new clients. 23 Aug 2012 Read more While the agency scene in South Africa is rife with specialised large agencies, many of which are affiliated to global agency networks, the trend amongst small and medium independent agencies is to also specialise. This model certainly has its pros, as it requires fewer people who can concentrate on doing one thing well. 15 Aug 2012 Read more With the property market still in a rut, foreign investment not positive and the ailing Eurozone, South African brands continue to tighten their budgets and put the squeeze on their communications agencies to do more with less. Luckily for marketers, agencies are by nature creative problem solvers - bring us a challenge and we'll find a solution. 2 Aug 2012 Read more Gullan&Gullan, which represents the ICOM ad agency network in South Africa, is now a member of the world's biggest and broadest independent advertising and marketing communications network, called ICOM+IN, as two leading global indie networks join forces to form a stronger international resource for clients. 18 Jul 2012 Read more As marketing professionals you know by now that your brand has to have an active social life. After all, consumers are certainly investing a lot of their time in the social space. According to research conducted by comScore in 2011, social networking accounted for 16.6% of all online minutes and of that Facebook snagged a staggering 14.6%. That said, this article is not to convince you of the importance of ensuring your brand joins the conversation, but to give you some tools on how to ensure you push your brand forward in the social space. 12 Jun 2012 Read more According to the 2010 Social Media Marketing Report, 67% of marketers planned to increase their use of social media channels including blogs, Twitter, and Facebook. As more brands integrate social media into their marketing and communications plans, a social media strategy has never been more vital. 18 May 2012 Read more At Gullan&Gullan it's been our experience that some clients are inviting their digital, advertising and PR agencies to collaborate in working on one big idea for a brand. At other times, when we are the 360º agency of record we are required to conceive and produce a big idea and apply it across 360º. It's been our learning with both scenarios that what's important is not who comes up with the big idea but rather the quality of the idea and its ability to be applied to above- and below-the-line mediums, online PR, offline and social spaces. 18 Apr 2012 Read more As PR and social media agencies such as Gullan&Gullan work with our clients to plan for 2012, we're finding some interesting trends coming through, both from our local initiatives and from our global ICOM partners. Here are some of our findings... 13 Mar 2012 Read more Every marketer should be eager to get "earned media" to build their brands online. For those who don't know, earned media, is when your branded content is shared via social media and online influencers. While on the surface it may seem easy - and free - simply create some great content and watch it spread online. Right? 12 Mar 2012 Read more As we approach Christmas and New Year, marketers should be looking for opportunities to harness the "season of gifting". However, with the economy not fully recovered and with consumer's interest in all things "green" and "social", we're anticipating that consumers are being more innovative in how they can spend less but actually give more. 16 Sep 2011 Read more With more and more clients turning their focus to PR as a communications tool on its own and as an important part of the overall mix for marketing their brands and businesses, I thought it's about time to share with you the latest PR strategies we're making use of in the PR space at Gullan&Gullan. 24 Aug 2011 Read more As the Managing Director of a full 360º agency I am always fascinated to see how the various communication disciplines fit into the mix and the virtues of each for different brands and campaigns. With today's empowered consumer and cluttered ad environment it is staggering to see how powerful Public Relations can be for consumer brands - both as a communications tool on its own and as part of the full 360º communications mix. 25 Jul 2011 Read more Advertising agencies are supposed to create ideas for their clients' brands right? Right. However it seems that some entrepreneurial agencies around the world are starting to create their own brands as well - and in so doing becoming their own clients. 27 Jun 2011 Read more If you're trying to find break-through marketing for your brand in the digital and social space you may have to resort to more traditional analogue methods, such as creativity. I realise this will frustrate the bean counters and process people who have been celebrating the measurability of online marketing, but the harsh reality is that replicating what other brands are doing (even if you do it a little bit better) is not a formula for success anymore. 23 Mar 2011 Read more Clients often comment that the team at Gullan&Gullan is very young. I always thank them for the compliment because I believe the tender age of our creatives is what affords them their passion, enthusiasm and fresh ideas. 11 Mar 2011 Read more I'm no futurist, but the more Gullan&Gullan offers its clients digital and social media services the more we have to be at the cutting edge of online communication strategies and trends. Here are some online trends to look out for in 2011. 22 Feb 2011 Read more I love this industry. There is always something new to be learnt and being on the agency side of the business I am always learning about diverse sectors, brands and consumer segments and buying behaviours. The truth is that our clients are also always teaching me new things. The most poignant of late is that the most important customer is the second purchase. 15 Feb 2011 Read more Even though my agency specialises in the full 360º communication services, offering above, below, digital and PR services, we're finding that many of our current clients and new clients are coming to us for our social media expertise. We have proven it to be a real hardworking tool for generating new business leads and increasing growth - for both business to business and business to consumer organisations, no matter how great or small. 19 Jan 2011 Read more It's never easy to fervently disagree with a client. But when a brand manager from one of our biggest clients insisted that rational rather than emotional messaging should be our strategy for the next fiscal, I was forced to differ. The purely rational brand communications of recession is over. Today's consumers are seeking to reconnect with brands on a much more emotional platform, which means the rational functional forms of persuasion are no longer enough. 1 Dec 2010 Read more Bet you didn't know that the Internet is responsible for as much CO2 as air travel? And about two percent of total global emissions? 25 Nov 2010 Read more There's so much discussion about the changes and related challenges marketers are facing in this highly connected, post-recessionary, networked age. What follows is a summary of an interesting book called "Marketing 3.0, From Products to Customers to the Human Spirit" by Philip Kotler, Hermawan Kartajaya, Iwan Setiawan. It basically explains that the history of marketing has followed three main stages and I will attempt to summarise my learnings. Sincere apologies to the authors for any misrepresentation. 22 Nov 2010 Read more With Gullan&Gullan's focus on 360º communications - that includes a strong focus on digital - we're seeing an insane amount of data as a result of the many metrics available for the online space. And with all these facts and stats at our fingertips, it's tempting to forget about the people behind the stats. Performance metrics can't tell you what motivates your audience to start a blog, share a video or post about your brand on Facebook. 7 Oct 2010 Read more When it comes to brands, emotions mean business. While this is easy to sit at my apple computer and write, it's not always easy to convince some of our clients at Gullan&Gullan to invest in emotion rich above the line and below the line communications, when all they're looking for is to convey their brand's features and benefits, facts and stats on television, outdoor and in print. 22 Sep 2010 Read more Recently a client of Gullan&Gullan's asked the question - When should a brand make use of PR and when should it use paid for advertising? On my quest to find the right answer I happened upon some research conducted by Context Analytics last year. The project's aim was to assess how unpaid media publicity and paid for advertising contributes to brand value. 25 Aug 2010 Read more Be warned. Creativity can go into a recession following an economic nosedive. I've noticed this happen to some of our clients at Gullan&Gullan. The reason for this is that marketing professionals, whether brand managers or their advertising agencies, tend to stop approving creative ideas and start staring at numbers. 16 Aug 2010 Read more If you think word of mouth (WOM) marketing is last season, you may be surprised to know that this powerful marketing tool has become even more important and turbo-enhanced by the latest technology trends. 2 Aug 2010 Read more Brand value is a term hot on the lips of most ad people and marketing professionals but unfortunately it does not get the same share of mind by financial suits. So why then is the gap between an organisation's market value and its tangible assets often so great? The answer: brand value. 21 Jul 2010 Read more Experiential marketing has been used for decades now, and is increasingly becoming the channel of choice for sectors that have to rely on dark marketing to get their brand messages out there. So why are marketers still talking about brand experiences as the new frontier for marketing innovation? 8 Jul 2010 Read more As you know, your brand's price-point is a powerful vehicle in the marketing mix to harness sales and meet your marketing objectives. Undercut your competitors and you will gain market share. Right? While this may be true in some instances, in others the opposite is true. I found this out recently when researching a subject called "Behavioural Economics" for one of our clients at Gullan&Gullan, and would like to share some of my findings with you. 15 Jun 2010 Read more You don't have to be a fan of their music - or their positioning - but as far as debut musicians go, few artists have had quite the zero-to-hero ascent as South Africa's newest anarchic hip-hop trio, Die Antwoord. And as far as South African brands go, few marketers have leveraged social media the way Die Antwoord has to entice fans. 3 Jun 2010 Read more The argument for social media as a highly effective marketing tool is not new and I'm certain I don't need to waste energy or bandwidth defending it. The prediction that Facebook will be the most dominant online property of the 20-teens - even more pervasive than Google - should tip you over the edge, if you're still pessimistic. 5 May 2010 Read more Gullan&Gullan Advertising ruffled a few feathers with a recent print campaign for Radisson Blu Gautrain Hotel. 4 May 2010 Read more Micaela Soliani joins Gullan&Gullan Advertising as General Manager of the PR division. 1 Apr 2010 Read more Forrester's 2009 Global Marketing Recession Survey showed that 71% of marketing budgets were reduced in 2009 and more than half reported reductions greater than 20%. 11 Mar 2010 Read more Botox - the world's leading non-invasive, anti-ageing treatment - entrusted Gullan&Gullan Advertising with designing a logo to celebrate its 20-year anniversary. 3 Mar 2010 Read more The launch of Women's Health SA in 2009 caused a stir in the publishing industry. Not only because magazine titles were getting skinnier, or worse closing down, with ad budgets being slashed in the wake of the recession, but also because Touchline Media launched the first multi-platform brand. Women's Health is much more than a magazine. 1 Mar 2010 Read more Leading Pharmacy - a network of South African pharmacies - looked to Gullan&Gullan Advertising to assist them with a brand strategy and corporate identity for the Leading Pharmacy brand. 25 Feb 2010 Read more Integration is not a new concept. Throughout time, industries with similar formats, products or systems have grown by bringing their offerings together. For example, once-separate grocery stores and pharmacies are now commonly housed together in one supermarket. More recently, Facebook has incorporated Twitter-like status updates into its news feed. The same should apply to PR and other communications channels. However, the opposite is happening. The media landscape is becoming more fragmented while communications agencies are becoming more specialised. The result? A greater rift between disciplines. 10 Dec 2009 Read more How often has your ad agency promised that their concepts will "cut through the clutter" only to blast out more of the same brand messages placed on new urban surfaces, media channels and emerging digital platforms. Unfortunately clutter is leading to more clutter. 2 Nov 2009 Read more The role of the communications agency is changing. Marketers no longer expect their agencies to conceptualise creative communications and be their media and production brokers. Today's agency should be taking a good look at their clients' business issues. 8 Oct 2009 Read more Al Ries in his book “The fall of advertising and the rise of PR” observed that public relations may be more effective today than advertising because it engenders both attention and trust. 7 Sep 2009 Read more Marketing heavyweights around the world are coming to terms with the fact that consumers control their brands and that this power shift has far-reaching implications. As Procter & Gamble CEO A.G. Lafley noted, "We now have a greater opportunity to move beyond transactions to relationships, but to do so requires that we strike the right balance between being in control and being in touch. Ironically, the more in control we are, the more out of touch we become. But the more we're willing to let go, the more we're able to get in touch with consumers." 11 Aug 2009 Read more Marketing heavyweights around the world are coming to terms with the fact that consumers are taking as much control of their brands as their brand teams. 22 Jul 2009 Read more If you're in the business of marketing a product or service, you're probably trying to do both. For some, your business is your brand. For others, your organisation produces and markets many brands. Current thinking suggests that what's good for the business is not always good for the brand. And vice versa. The following explores this, to ensure that your business objectives do not dilute your brand objectives and importantly, to ensure that your brand adds value to your business in terms of real profit. 2 Jul 2009 Read more Marketers who want to grow their brands in these challenging times are looking to public relations to do more of the work and many are expanding their use of grassroots promotion, PR, events and multimedia marketing. 18 Jun 2009 Read more We're talking about your consumers, not your spouse. Decades ago Walt Disney said, “People spend when they feel good.” This was true then and is still true today. Emotional branding has progressed from fad to requirement in creating longevity for brands. 26 May 2009 Read more Property prices are tricky. Share portfolios are not to be trusted. Starting a business right now is not for the fainthearted. The one thing you can rely on today is your steady paycheck. Provided you look after and nurture your job. 2 Apr 2009 Read more Too often when reviewing clients' marketing plans, I notice incongruence between their brand strategy and their marketing plans. Not only that, I see so many businesses marketing their brands without a real understanding of just what their brand stands for and what it promises to consumers. 17 Mar 2009 Read more