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By Randy Mitchell   Every spring, my pushy Aunt Captious corners me with the same question: “Do you have any Super Bowl commercials in the works, hotshot?”   Every spring, I sheepishly give the same answer: “Well, no. You see, I work at a B2B agency, and our clients don’t waste millions of dollars on a single commercial. But we do create a lot of great videos for them.”   “Videos?” she laughs. “Who cares about videos?”   That usually ends the conversation, and I slip quickly away. But just once, I want to boldly proclaim: “Listen Auntie dear, the last multimillion dollar spot I worked on took eleven months to produce. And when it was finished, it

By Randy Mitchell If you were a student in my marketing class back in 2009, I am deeply sorry. Like a fool I stood in front of you and babbled on about strategy, concepting, workflows, tactics and the emerging role of social. And somewhere in that caffeinated wall of words, I devoted 30 seconds to the creative brief. Wait, what?  It may provide little consolation now, but please know that I have learned my lesson. Over and over again. The creative brief is a topic that everyone wants to discuss in depth. In fact, it has become a focal point in every class I teach, from MBA level marketing down to creative basics. We debate the creative

By Randy Mitchell   The place: Prehistoric Los Angeles   The event: The very first marketing meeting   A small group of Paleoindians is gathered around a rock. They are locked in a heated debate over a timeless marketing question: “What should our tagline be?”   The meeting drags on and on. It’s an epic decision and consensus seems eons away.   Before they realize it, the meeting’s momentum begins to fossilize. Literally. Our intrepid marketing ancestors have been entirely engulfed by thick, black goo.   I cannot confirm that this actually happened in ancient La Brea. However, I have empirical evidence to prove that the tagline tar pit is real.   Agencies and clients frequently disappear into the primordial ooze of trying to

By Randy Mitchell   You’re a reasonable marketing professional: smart, productive, and you have great taste in blogs.   You work for a reasonable company: they have important programs, big plans, and they were wise enough to hire you.   So, when your company’s leadership team makes the all-important decision to bring in a marketing firm, it’s only reasonable to expect the agency’s best work.   But will that expectation truly materialize? Far too often the answer is no, particularly when it comes to B2B marketing.   The relationship starts well enough. Everyone seems to connect, and the agency promises a quick ramp up and real progress. “They actually get it,” growls the company’s tough CEO, and everyone is smiling.   Then

By Randy Mitchell   For many years, my title included the word “producer.” I quickly learned that the unwritten rule for any successful B2B video producer was “be prepared.”   When you are prepared in advance for any eventuality, the production should be seamless. The cast, crew, creatives and client will all appreciate the extra effort. You might even come in under budget. In short, you will feel like a hero, and deservedly so.   However, if there are any unresolved issues going into production, your B2B video could quickly spiral out of control and infuriate everyone involved. And the budget will balloon with every revision and retake.   How do you avoid that scenario? Ask the right

By Randy Mitchell   Boomm works with many diverse technology companies.   Some are clients others are partners. They come from multiple practice areas, including data management and marketing automation. And they range in size from startups to industry leaders.   However, despite their many nuanced differences, these technology companies have one trait in common. They all dream about getting their platforms into the Gartner Magic Quadrant.   If you’re not familiar with the Gartner Magic Quadrant, let me do my best to give you a creative person’s rudimentary definition. The Quadrant provides a graphical representation of where companies and their tools rank on a simple Cartesian grid. The Quadrant is influenced by key criteria such as “ability to

By Randy Mitchell   The question still haunts me.   It was the 4A’s annual Career Day, an event that brought hundreds of aspiring advertising professionals into Chicago.   I was on the portfolio panel with three other agency creatives. Surrounding us was a wall of eager college seniors, all ready to shove their portfolios into our chests. (Remember physical portfolios? They could do some serious damage.)   Just before the eagerly anticipated Portfolio Review, the floor was opened for questions from the students. Most of the inquiries were directly related to finding a job: where to look, who to contact, what to say, what to show in the portfolio.   Then, a quiet student from Indiana University asked us

By Randy Mitchell   Driverless delivery. Ghost kitchens. Takeout everything.   What in the name of Ray Kroc has happened to the world of foodservice?   The industry is emerging from its most challenging year with remarkable resilience and some amazing innovations. An operator friend who owns a neighborhood café put it best: “Foodservice had a full-on freak out. But we found ways to make it work. We always do.”   Here are a few quick content bites that illustrate her point.    Bite #1: Driverless delivery   Houston is famous for launching astonishing technology into the heavens. Recently, it also became the test site for rocketing pizzas to hungry Earthlings via driverless vehicles. Who is behind this stellar idea? A technology

By Randy Mitchell   There are far too many webinars in the world right now.   In the last year alone, the use of webinars grew by 69% according to HubSpot. Chances are, you have two or three B2B webinar invitation emails in your inbox right now.   On the flip side, there are far too few excellent webinars to satisfy our content-hungry world.   We don’t need a data point to prove that one. If you recently wasted an hour enduring a bad B2B webinar, I’m afraid you will never get that time back.   Which brings us to the question marketers everywhere are asking: How can we rise above the noise and create a webinar that people will

By Randy Mitchell   “See you back here in a couple of weeks.” That was what we said to each other as we left the office on the morning of March 16, 2020. And we sincerely meant it. That “quick return” theory was the first wrong belief in a year that was full of them. But it was also a rather small miscalculation in the grand scheme of things. Thinking back on the last twelve months, I am still astonished at how many longstanding professional marketing beliefs were challenged and ultimately changed. These were the rocks of our profession, and they were rocked to their foundations. Let’s consider some of those long-held beliefs and how a better