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Season 4 Episode 30: Marketing in a (Semi) Post-COVID World with Gee Ranasinha from Kexino

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What’s the best way to market amid how crazy the world is at the moment?

How should you tap into your buyer’s decision-making? 

Learn more from Kexino CEO Gee Ranasinha in this week’s talk.

3:28 how Gee started with Marketing

18:34 how to market in today’s world

32:18 rebuilding your marketing strategy

More Gee:


IG: @wearekexino


Generally, you and also you’re too far away for me to hit you.

So could post it.

All right, that’s fair.

Vehicle two boxes, one with a boxing glove, comes out on the end of a spring. You know those things?

Yes, yes, yes. I’ll have to get my Acme membership started again.

Yeah, that’s it. Wiley Coyote. I think you can use his log-in.

Well, for those who are joining me and wondering what the fuck is happening right now, you are right in the middle of me meeting my new best friend and falling in love with G from Casino G. So you just awesome, and I’m so excited to talk to you.

I am you’re quite right. I’m also extremely humble, thus letting people fall in love with.

I think so. I think it’s that. And just you’re so quiet and shy and introverted. I don’t know how this is going to work out.

Trying to coax me out of my show. Megan can you do that? That’s my job.

That is my job. Well, we don’t have the alcohol, so we’ll try our best. But Gee, is the CEO of Casino, an award winning marketing agency that helps startups and small businesses grow awareness, reputation, trust and as needed sales. A fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, which sounds very, very fancy, T is also, even if I do, you have like a crest.

I do, it’s tattooed, but I can’t show you because of it.

All right, well, maybe that’ll be like stop sucking at business nights after we do after the watershed or something. You have watershed’s the then, you know, once once again, once the kids are constantly thinking we can do, you know, all rated stuff, a fantastic gee, I can’t even get through your bio because I’m having so much fun with you.

Come on.

What you’re doing is comparable. I’m a I know I’m a terrible host, but can I just tell everybody you’re visiting professor at the European Business School teaching final year MBA students on marketing and behavioral economics. Please help us figure out how to market in a world that is. Beyond fucked, thanks to covid and just life covid climate change, the world geat, you’re here to impart your amazing wisdom onto us and I am so thankful for that.

Well, with that sort of build up, where do we go from here? I think it’s downhill all the way, really, isn’t it?

I’ve said it. I know. Well, thank you. Thank you for watching the show.

Yes. Yeah, it was great. Yeah. I hope you enjoyed it. Everyone, please like us on whatever podcasting application that you use. This pocket casted my favorite. Can I plug pocket costs? I don’t get any money for them, but I think pocket cost is awesome. They’ve just been bought by Mullenweg, you know, the automatic guys WordPress. Oh yeah. The work has nothing to do with anything. I’m sorry, I’m going off on tangents already.

This is either the best episode or the worst episode. I can’t quite decide, but I hope it’s best two sides of the same coin.

That’s true. G tell me how you got started in this crazy, crazy world of marketing.

What a question. Well, I used to be the CMO for a software company in Europe and I was there for seven years. And what happened really was that I got to the point where I was we we we’ve done a lot of work in a very short space of time. But the company was growing at a certain rate and was restricting us as a T me as an individual in what we could do next, because obviously revenue had to sort of catch up with what we were doing.

At the same time, I was looking around and I was seeing this thing called the Internet. I don’t know if you’ve heard of it right. But, you know, it was vaguely nerds are on it, I think, right? Yeah, yeah. It’s all Gosset is I mean, you may have heard of it.

Oh, it’s still my heart. My two years. It is age.

Yeah. So the the Internet was was coming on board and actually getting a little bit more prevalent within our daily lives because, you know, we weren’t necessarily using dial up as much. You you know, you have the advent of broadband. You know, this was still pre smartphone era. But we could already see that the big brands, the big guys were taking over, monopolizing to a certain extent the commercial possibilities of the Internet because they had the wherewithal, they had the deep pockets and the resources to do that.

And that same time. Small to medium sized businesses who wear the Internet as a communications and commercial channel could revolutionize the way that they do business. What really? Getting a look in. All right. And there wasn’t really the provision of a a a service or a outlet to enable them to empower them to leverage the power of the Internet in their daily business lives. So I figured, hmm, opportunity there, OK. And so at the beginning of 2008, me and two others.

I left the plush, cocooned world of corporate CMO ship and, you know, the company BMW and the expense accounts and the international travel and the hot and cold running room service and all that sort of good stuff. Right. And we started the agency and like I said in 2008, which, as you remember, was not exactly the best year to start a marketing agency.

Yeah, I think that that was probably a good idea to get started right then. Right when we’re about to just burst the bubble.

Not my best business decision ever. Megan, I have to tell you, I’m quite open to admit it, but. You know, thanks to a prevailing wind and some extremely wonderful clients, we weathered the storm and we came out the other end. And at the beginning, as I said at the beginning, there were three of us 14 years later down the road where 19 people in nine countries, nine of us are in the US, the rest are in Europe, South Africa.

And I have two people in Australia. And that is us in terms of clients, even though the headquarters is based in in Europe. Around 90 percent of our clients are in the US. Hmm. Boy. I don’t know this, like I said, this interweb thing is pretty darn awesome and primarily startups and small businesses, so small businesses under around 30 people, headcount, something like that, that sort of size, because we’re a small agency and we we don’t want to put all our eggs in one basket, you know, so we try we try to spread the love, you know, we just sort of go all in ruban and yeah, we love it.

It’s absolutely awesome.

That’s fine. I love that, I love the passion that you have behind it. I think that that is. The people who help small businesses, I think some do it as a means to an end and they usually burn out, but the ones who love it are just you hear it and you see it, you know, and so it it’s nice to see you light up when you’re talking about it.

Well, I’m a small business myself, Megan. Right. So, you know, we need to look after our own Dantley because nobody else right now. And that’s what we’re all on the same side. So, you know, if I can help, I will. Get paid as well. Then all the better.

I know, but if I can, I will, because, you know, I think especially if you’re a small business owner to a very lonely place to be, OK, if you’ve got a team, there are certain things that you can share with that team, but there are certain things you can’t share with that team for various reasons. And if you’re a sole proprietor and you don’t have a business partner that you can confide in. Sometimes you just need to have A soundboard, you know, not talking about mentorship and coaching and that sort of stuff, but just somebody who’s been there done that.

I’ve started I’ve started three startups myself right in my career. So I’ve been where these people are. I don’t have all the answers. But if I can. You know, in part, some of the experiences that I’ve had along the way that, you know, maybe help clarify the situation to somebody, that the great you know, it’s like I said, it’s a it’s a soundboard.

It’s a it’s a consiglieri. You know, it’s like Robert Duvall in The Godfather, right. That’s me. Right. Apart from the ending of it, obviously.

And you’re not really holding any kind of cue cards on your stomach for me to read. So that’s another part.

No, no. But yeah, that you know, if if you sense the passion and, you know, very perceptive of you that you did it is. It is. It’s true. We live it and we breathe it. We do it every day. And this is why I get so frustrated very easily, unfortunately, by the disinformation, misinformation and outright horseshit that is spouted by so-called marketing expert gurus not mentioning any names. All I really want to mention some names now what I want.

And if you carry that out, that’s me biting my tongue for just get get in touch and we will talk. And who will just spouting just so much crap. Mm hmm. And. The two sides of the coin, obviously, right? So, you know, post-Soviet there’s an opportunity for marketers to rethink the way they’ve been doing things up until now. OK, and perhaps because we as marketers were we’re looking at everything from, you know, two inches away from our nose and we were too close to the problem to be able to see.

What was going wrong, and I think there has been stuff going wrong because I think a great many marketing and sales efforts have been generating smaller and smaller results for a very, very simple and I think obvious reason, which is that most marketing sucks. It just absolutely sucks. It blows chunks. And worse than that, many marketers and indeed many agencies. I’ve become lazy. And as an agency, I would contend that these agencies haven’t been doing their jobs properly because for far too long many marketers have been hiding behind data in an effort to excuse the poor results they get.

Hmm. Now, just so diminished responsibility through plausible deniability is the phrase that my friend Graham uses a lot, which is great, because as it seems to be, especially within a corporate environment, as long as you can show the numbers to support your decision. You can’t really be held accountable for the results. You can say, well, this is the data, the data has led us this way. This is why we did this. And if it all went mammaries vertical, if you take my meaning, then no one gets fired.

And I just think that’s absolute lunacy. Mm hmm. So over recent years, certainly the last five, 10 years. Effective marketing has been eroded more and more by the overreliance of people who call themselves marketers, because I don’t think I could call the marketers people who call themselves marketers. Because overreliance on the overreliance of data to the exclusion. Of of extracting sensible insights of that data. And try translating that into buying behavior. Right. So I’m not saying please don’t get me wrong here.

I’m not saying data driven marketing is a load of. OK, thank you. All right, you’re welcome, not because it isn’t, it very much isn’t. I mean, our agency uses data every all day, every day. But what I’m saying is that data driven marketing assumes a consistent action reaction model. For the audience, this we have to go into economics a little bit here. OK. All right, here we go. Strapping Fastforward this bit.

So sorry, guys. Now, so the standard economic theory of how customers make buying decisions, how they think, how they decide how they act. It bears very little relationship to what goes on in people’s minds in the real world. And yet as an industry, we reach the point where making a marketing decision based on assumptions of the emotional reasoning of the client. Is somehow seen as being less valid. Then assumptions which are based on.

Logic, OK, we analyzing.

Yeah, mm, but we’re applying rational thought, rational reasoning, rational sequential logic to a target, to an audience, to a human being. Who is anything but rational? We are not rational beings. And and this is why I get a of the state of things, you know, hiding behind the data, you know, if you try something based upon logic and it doesn’t work, you can blame the data and everybody will forgive you. Right.

But if you start looking at customer behavior and you look upon, like, psychological reasoning for why customers buy things, why customers choose things, how they even select things, pricing, context and differentiation, all of this sort of stuff, if you make assumptions based on that psychological reasoning and it doesn’t work, you’ll get the blame game.

And I think that there’s a there’s a there’s a a growing disconnect between what? Martek is doing and what marketing capitalism is doing. Because again. These people who call themselves marketers don’t seem to bother with the basics of marketing and they move straight to tactical execution, right. So there is no strategy. As a strategist, you know, you must be crying into your beer every night.

It’s a margarita. But, yes, I agree. Well, I want to talk to I want to talk to you. OK, go ahead. Sorry. Go.

No, I was just going to say this. There’s little thought or foresight about. The only thing that actually matters in the grand scheme of things, which is the customer. Yeah. That’s all I can say well, into the point, I think that, you know, we’re talking post covered marketing, but also we’re talking about marketing in an era where people are especially. Critical of the ways that a business is run and the E throws or the the stands that these businesses take regards to Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ, you, these kind of things.

So for, let’s say, a sole proprietor or someone who is either just getting started or have a very limited. Budget, both time and money, how do you start thinking about marketing in today’s world? That is effective and helps you stand out in this kind of just cluster fuck of social media and content and things.

Well, I think it goes back to what I just said, it goes back to what’s missing from most marketers toolkits. Is an implicit and fundamental understanding of human behavior of the customer. OK, what drives the customer? Now, some people call this behavioral economics or behavioral science, but at the end of the day, it’s nothing more than psychology. A was just the new name, right? It’s Psychology 2.0, but it’s the same thing inside. Right.

And I think the the the the the post covid world. Gives us such an opportunity to throw away all of this assumptions and cruise control type marketing process, book busy work and actually focus a lot more. On what’s driving the customer. OK. And I mean, if we just take if we just take pricing, OK? And lots of small businesses and start ups and small businesses. Are automatically looking to discount their product even before they’ve finished their sales pitch half the time because that they think that the road to growth is through discounting.

The problem is. As soon as you discount it’s expected, right? So once you get 10 percent off, I want 10 percent of everything. So what are you going to do, put the prices up 10 percent? Right. So, you know, instead of focusing on prices, focusing on value, I mean, you know, it’s tried and tested marketing theory, right? I mean, it’s I’m not rewriting any rule books here, you know, instead of instead of looking at trying to make your products cheaper, look at ways to make your products seem cheaper.

Hmm. Right. Let me give you an example. Right. Some 20 years ago, if I was Howard Schultz and I said to you, I’m going to start a chain of coffee shops and I want you to come into my coffee shop and spend seven bucks on a cup of coffee, which you’ll get in a paper cup. When you could make a perfectly decent cup of coffee at home for maybe thirty five cents, right. You’d look at me and say I was off my head.

Right. SEO barking mad, but contextually, clearly, if you look at Starbucks’s share price, they’re doing thank you very well. Right, right. And another example, if you look at coffee capsule’s Keurig capsule’s Nespresso capsules, these are things, right? And sorry, I’ve got a coffee fixation at the moment, so maybe there’s something going on. So those those those capsules are about forty, forty five cents each, something like that. But that’s seen by buyers as being reasonable.

Right. But if if you if you had a jar of whatever’s inside those capsules and you filled up that jar with like one hundred and espresso capsules. Right. No one is going to pay 40 bucks for it. All right. I mean, so the perception of everything, including price, is hugely context dependent. And it’s worth noting that. As human beings, we’re often not aware of our deep set motivations because from an evolutionary standpoint. It pays to have those sorts of evolutionary motivations opaque to introspection.

It’s very important from evolutionary theory, but it’s also important to remember we do not perceive the world objectively. OK, so you can you can change the perceived value of something, not by changing the thing itself, but by changing the context to which is perceived. OK, I mean, take what we’re doing now, right at the moment, we’re doing a video conference. OK. Now, video conferencing isn’t new, right? Skype has been around for like 20 years, right?

Zoom’s been around for like 10 years. Right, but if if two years ago you were at a company and you had a big presentation to give to a potential client in Hong Kong. Right. If somebody in your team said, I know, instead of all of us jumping on a plane, going over to Hong Kong, spending three days in a hotel, doing the dog and pony show, coming back again. Right. Why don’t we do a whole thing on Zoome instead?

Right. You have been laughed out of the office. Yeah, right. Now. In that same example. The person who suggest to jump on a plane to go over to Hong Kong for three days would be the one who’d be laughed out of the office, right. So the technology hasn’t changed. Simply, the context has changed, right? So I think society doesn’t change when it adopts new technologies. I think society only changes when it adopts do behaviors.

And as marketers, we can only develop as fast as society is developing, right? Zoom was in the right place at the right time, but we were all using Skype go to meeting WebEx. I mean, we’ve there’s a whole list of these ones which were, you know, fit for purpose. There was nothing wrong with them. Right. And, you know, if I was like WebEx or go to meeting or one of these other guys looking at zoom share price, I’d be I’d be kicking the cat.

I mean, I wouldn’t be a happy person. Right? Right. And so covid gives us the opportunity, reimagine what marketing actually is so we can get rid of all that crud that was holding us back and create customer experience that are more resonant. More resilient and at the same time, us as marketers, we need to be more accountable along the way instead of hiding behind the data, which I was talking about before, right? Mm hmm.

Because I think no matter what your what you’re selling, whatever product or service you’re selling, whatever industry, whatever category at the beginning of that customer engagement, everybody is selling the same thing. You’re selling trust, right, because they don’t trust you, they’re not going to buy you, you can have the greatest widget in the world, right? But if I can, something smells something a little fishy. I’m going getting my money right. So instead of focusing on customer access.

Instead of focusing on customer attention. Imagine if we focused on customer trust. Customer advocacy. And. Even customer empathy. Because it’s empathy, the a part of any valued relationship is an empathy part of the road that we must travel to truly understand the customer. I mean, how can you understand their problems, concerns, hopes, dreams, goals, unless you can empathize, right? Right. How can you create marketing that resonates at an emotional level?

Which is more in line with customers expectations, unless you have empathy, I mean, that’s what a partner actually is, right? Striving for connection at an emotional level and creating messages that resonate with the heart more than the head, because that’s how we buy, right? We buy emotionally. And then we post rationalize, that’s the way we do it, right? If I’m if I’m going to the shop and I want to buy a pair of snazzy new shoes, OK, I’m a bit of a shoe person, I have to say.

And I do love my handmade Italians. Right. And I do. What can I say?

All right. They sound lovely. Yes.

So you go to the store and you see these shoes in the window and there are a ton of money and you just. Oh, my God, sticker shock. No, no, no. Can’t be done. Right. And then what do you do? You justify it to yourself. You say you are. Yeah, but look how soft that leather is. Oh, my goodness me. It’s it’s a soft as a baby’s toshie, look how great this leather is, it’s been handcrafted by old Italian men in this tiny little workshop on the outskirts of Turin, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

Right. You buy into the brand’s narrative. You love all of this stuff. Right. And then you say you have a look at the design. It’s so classic. It’s just going to go with so many different things that I wear. And look how well-made it is. It’s going to last so much longer than those cheap pairs of other shoes that I was going to get. So, you know, if I buy like three or four pairs of the other shoes of of basically spent one, I’m to spend on these ones.

Right. And we’re working really hard. And I deserve this.

I need a treat right now. So we buy. We buy here. You can’t see it, but we buy here. We buy, we buy with the heart. OK, well actually we don’t even buy with the heart. We we buy. I don’t know how much you know about brain physiology, but if you’ve heard about the amygdala, the most primitive part of the brain, OK, some people call it the lizard brain brain. Yeah, right.

So I contend that marketing should be less data driven and more amygdala driven. More emotional driven because that’s how we buy. Afterwards, we post rationalize. It’s interesting because the amygdala is a part of the brain, it’s a very it’s the oldest part of the brain, right. And it doesn’t actually understand speech, because if you go if you go back and from an evolutionary perspective, you know, we didn’t you know, we’re operating at a more primitive level.

There wasn’t speech in the way that you and I would refer to it. But but it’s involved in the fight or flight response. OK. And it’s it’s it’s it’s the thing that flashes that gives you that sinking feeling in your stomach when you think you’ve lost your phone, right? That’s right. Or if you think you’re being you get up and doing some public speaking or something, which puts you in a position which you’re not particularly comfortable with, that feeling is your amygdala going, oh, my God, we’ve got to get out of here.

This is not good. Right? Because it is interesting to note that when you speak to people and you say, well, you are going to buy this product, but then you changed your mind or you were going to buy from this person and then you changed your mind, why did you change your mind? What they say is. Well, yeah, it didn’t feel right. So odd choice of words that feel right. It’s a feeling they aren’t saying, well, I weighed up the pros and cons and I looked at the bar charts and the pie charts and I looked, you know, I did a nice pivot table on this Excel spreadsheet.

And I can’t. No, no, you didn’t do any of that. You went with your gut. You went with your feeling. So as marketers, we need to tap into the feeling because that’s what’s driving everything. And data doesn’t talk about data, doesn’t do feeling right, there is there is no algorithm in all of this stuff. And this is where the disconnect lies. I’ve been talking a lot. Why do you ask a question?

I’m taking it all in. And the thing that comes to mind is, one, this is all so I know. If you’re so fucking smart, it’s that’s the worst. Like, it’s painful how smart you are. But I want to talk about how to talk this in how to put this into actionable things for someone who is so fucking overwhelmed as an entrepreneur or a coach or, you know, if you have a small team and this is all resonating, but you don’t know what to do, you don’t know even where to start, how to rebuild your marketing strategy, how do you recommend people start taking this information in and turning it actionable?

Well, there is no magic bullet, there is no single solution, there is no magic recipe, there is no. Elixir to drink and. There is no yeah, it doesn’t exist, it’s totally different for every business, for every size of business, for every industry, for every category and for every budget. And also it depends on the prospect, protracted business result over specific time frame. So let me expand on that. So from our perspective as an agency, if we are looking to on board a new client, which is actually quite hard because we actually turned down about 70 percent of the inquiries that we get.

No one, because I don’t like people know it’s not true. But we we we are not so. Basically, there are three elements, three legs to the stool, right, there’s the business result, the business results that you’re looking to achieve. The time frame that you need to achieve that result. And the budget that you can apportion to it. Quite often. A business owner comes up short. On at least one of those three legs of the stool, and I think you can guess which one is the most prevalent.

Yes, yes, that doesn’t take a Mensa member to work it out, does it? Like a railing.

Now, I hope I got it right. That’s a lot of pressure. I have to say budget.

Yeah, you’re right. OK, you win. OK, I get a you win. Yeah. I tell you what, you win Friday. That’s what you win.

I can write any. So. So if if you’re an entrepreneur, if you’re a solo partner, if you’re a small business owner and you don’t have the marketing. Creds within the organization. It’s very difficult to be able to sort out the wood for the trees because like I mentioned before, you look at everything far too closely to be able to see the wood for the trees. What I’d suggest is you start with your customers, existing customers, if you can get hold of customers that didn’t buy from you.

They can and are quite willing to speak with you without screaming expletives at you. They can often offer the greatest insights because what usually happens in these sorts of situations is that. What do you think you’re selling is not what they think they’re buying.

Mm hmm.

And that’s where the disconnect starts at a very grassroots level. And spending time listening to how they describe how they articulate the problem that they think thought your product or service solves and using that as the basis. Of your messaging, positioning lead generation. Work moving forward may also. Aligned with that. It’s being able to be distinctive in your market category, so if, like pretty much every business you have. A great deal of competition. You need to stand out.

And there are many business owners or marketing managers. Who just too darn scared to stand out, right? And. You know, everybody everybody wants a single, but nobody wants to buy the album. So they watch what they end up doing is going. Half at it and just falling between two stools, right? It’s all or nothing, right? You can’t be half pregnant, right? It’s it’s it’s it’s it’s a it’s a binary position. Right.

So it’s a SEO as part of this messaging, as part of this positioning stuff. It’s about finding. A a particular dimension where you can be totally irrational from the point of the consumer in that way, nothing makes sense where it’s just totally bizarre. OK. Now, I’ve got loads of examples of that in Europe, which none of you have heard of, the only one I can think of that comes from the top of my head in the States.

Is the Geico lizard and. Is a lizard or a chameleon? I don’t know.

I think he’s a gecko, like a gecko, right. So apart from Geico sounding a little bit like gecko, especially if you’ve had too much beer, why? What on earth? Does an amphibian have to do with an insurance company? Absolutely nothing. But it’s one particular measurement dimension. That that organization uses to stand out and differentiate from its competition. Right now, it doesn’t make any sense, but it works. And you can find examples of that in any industry, and it’s only by standing out.

In fact, by by blending in, that’s far more risky than being scared you’re going to alienate some of your target market by stamping out, I think and to your point, just specifically with Geico talking about, you know, they’ve had the get go, but they’ve had so many different versions of their marketing strategy. And I think a really good example of catching lightning in a bottle like this is with their caveman. I don’t know if you saw a couple of years ago, like they had two cavemen that we’re talking about insurance.

And for some reason it went off like gangbusters to the point that that they started doing a caveman sitcom like a 30 minute long sitcom that bombed it bombed spectacularly. And so just thinking about like irrationality and how nothing ever makes sense like this. Marketing with this caveman worked so well, but then they tried to take it to something else and it bombed spectacularly. There’s no, like, algorithm that says that, well, statistically, this would happen. It just that’s just how it worked.

Right, because there was no punch line, there was no hook, right, right, right. For for marketing to be remembered to have any saliency, there needs to be. Ay ay, ay, ay hook, there needs to be some kind of visual textual audio, whatever disconnect and. To, you know, will tolerate marketing if it educates us, entertains us, informs us. And so, you know, the cavemen ads went gangbusters because, OK, if I’ve got to tolerate them and I’ll tolerate a caveman ad.

Right. But once you separate the ad bit from the caveman bit. The. Irrational dimension is gone, right, right, when it was caveman’s Geico talking with with cavemen, it made sense kind of where it made more sense. Because of the nonsensical ness of it, I’ve just made that word up by the word nonsensical, miss. Do you see what I mean? Yes, I do. You separate, you’ve basically you’ve it’s like any joke.

You’ve pulled the part, the joke to explain it. And now it’s not funny anymore. Mm hmm.

I’d love to talk about the top of your head, what has been your favorite marketing campaign that the top of your head is lovely.

Thank you.

Yeah, yeah. What has been your favorite marketing campaign? Not necessarily one that you’ve done. Just one that you’ve seen like. Holy shit, that is brilliant.

I think, you know, with all that I’ve said about how so much marketing is shit, right? Yeah, I think the. The ones that stand out stand out even more. OK, I think some of the work that I always have done over the years has been great. I think some of the work that Rigley has done over the years has been great. I think some of the work that Audy, the car manufacturer has done, both those those guys, those I can’t remember which agency they use, but some of the ads for Audi have just been absolutely jaw droppingly awesome.

I mean, I don’t know from a I’m looking at it with a marketing hat on with an advertising at home. Right. So, yeah, it’s tainted Guinness. You know, that that that’s another one which which has done some amazing stuff. You know, I even like some of the more daring work that Burger King has done over the years, especially in the recent is right. I mean, they’ve really pushed stuff out, KFC, too, and they’ve really tested and questioned our assumptions about what advertising is.

Which I think is very healthy. That, again, it’s very difficult to give you examples, because I need to give you examples which are sort of globally relevant. Sure and quite sure. And quite often, you know, especially at an agency level, that they’re marked by territory. So it’s it’s very difficult. But, you know, if you go on YouTube and you look at some of the Audi ads from from the past, there’s there’s one called Klown, which I think is absolute genius and.

That’s the one that just comes to the top of my head because, you know, we didn’t prepare any of this Megan to do any of this.

So now they’re they’re well aware that I, I, I am unprepared for everything they’re well aware of. OK, well enough.

Yeah, those are the ones that stand out, but there are you know, there are plenty examples that are at a small business level as well and, you know, nothing to do with us. And I’ve got a call with a company in Asia next week. Oh, I can’t say too much about it’s still a big secret squirrel, but what they’re doing. And the products that they have, which are about to launch and you know where we’re pitching for the account is absolutely stunning.

And I don’t just I don’t just want to have them as a client. I want to work for these guys. Right. It’s unbelievably sexy stuff that these are doing. And it’s a. It’s a it’s a cultural and a social. Revolution of what these guys do. And they’re looking at us to help them launch in North America.

I love Lee and I’d love to I’d love to tell you all about it. But I’ll have to kill you, but it doesn’t mean you have to, then you’ll come back on your own again. Oh my goodness. Well, then I’ll be alive and that’s the best part of for punishment.

Good grief.

May I tell you my favorite campaign of all time?

Tell me your favorite campaign of all time, the Blair Witch Project. Do you remember that movie? I loved it because it was cheap. It was very just ahead of its time with the use of the Internet and websites and things like that. And it’s nearly impossible to replicate that ever again.

Right place, right time, yeah, and having somebody with the forethought and foresight to bring all those. Seen as disparate channels together, because that’s how consumers work, right? Right. You know the reason why I buy. A can of coke, which I don’t because I am not a Coca-Cola person, but I love you, Coca-Cola, I love you, Pepsi. But the reason why the reason why I buy a can of Coke today is not because of the ad I saw yesterday or the ad that I saw in the bus shelter last week.

The reason why I buy a can of Coke is for the ads that I’ve seen for the last 20 years.

Right, right. The Santa Claus and the polar bears, whatever the exact thing, you know, I’m old enough to remember, I like to teach the world to sing, right. I like to buy the world a Coke. Right. That’s how old I am. So it’s it’s taking those channels. The point is, we remember those ads on TV, but we also see them, you know, on on the metro, on the bus as pop ups.

Right. You know, various other places. And it’s you know, it’s not doubling down on one particular channel. And it’s about being on the relevant channels, right, you know, just because you can doesn’t mean you should if you’re selling into a B2B space and you’re selling some really complicated widget making machine. Right. Just because you know that the chief widget making machine buyer happens to be on Facebook, it doesn’t necessarily follow that he or she wants to see an ad for your widget making machine in their Facebook timeline.

Timeline. Right. All right. So you need to be where customers expect you to be, right? Know, it’s just like all of these people. You know, we when we do audits for people, you know, they’ve subscribed to like twenty seven social media channels and it’s like, why? And you’re posting me posting the same crap to all of them, like once every three months. And it’s like, well, how’s that working for you.

I didn’t know. Right.

Well, I think that that is the perfect Segway talking about on it, gee, when do you recommend people start coming to you for help and what kind of work should they do ahead of time?

They need to come to me right now Megan like this, very strict. As soon as soon as they finish this podcast, they need to stop everything. They don’t even have time to go to the bathroom. They need to get in touch with us instantly. Every second counts, you know, you snooze, you lose. That’s what they sell you, right? No, seriously. Talk talking is free, right? What we need to do is understand the business problem, the problem, the issue with many businesses is they don’t have a sufficiently granular business plan to be able to know what doesn’t work.

Right, so that there’s sort of a bit like a pinball in a pinball machine and they’re bouncing around and hoping that, you know, they’ll they’ll get to where they want to get to, but. At the end of the day, they don’t really know they don’t really have that level of transparency and granularity, which is why we insist on them. We insist on seeing a business plan before we accept any client, because if I if I can’t see a sustainable business there, I don’t want you as a client because when it all goes.

Is political, right? You said I didn’t write it.

I said it.

Yeah, when it when it all goes to shit, I don’t want to get the blame. Right. Because I will they’ll throw they’ll throw us under the bus. Right. This is why I need to see a business plan, because I need to see that the level of marketing that they’re telling me they can afford is. Legitimately sustainable for the business, because otherwise all they’re doing is looking over their shoulder every month about how much we’re costing them rather than getting on with the business side of things.

Right. And we’re not the cheapest in town. And I’m very proud of that. Because I don’t want to be the cheapest in town, but just like the McKenzie. I mean, we have like three rules that you can see on my website, which are ripped off from McKinsey. And I hold my hand up. I even say on the website. Right. And that the big one, the McKinsey one that I love is that if we can’t bring more value to the business, then the business is actually paying to us.

Then we walk away, we’re just not interested in looking at that opportunity. OK, a good marketization say shouldn’t cost you a dime. A good marketing agency shouldn’t cost you any money, a good marketing agency should be making you money, right? It’s like an accountant, right? You can you can get the, um, the strip mall accountants. We can get a good accountant. Right. And a good accountant. Earns his or her money.

By saving you money, usually more than you’re actually paying them. And that’s that’s the sort of relationship that you want to have with the provider for your business. Because, you know, this has to be some longevity in the relationship, right? And if the whole thing is transient, then you’re reinventing yourself every. Or whatever period of time to get somebody new on board.

I agree, completely agree, and I love that you are so open with. We’re here to help you make money. And that’s why we’re going to charge you, because you were going to make the most money with us. It makes sense to you is what the guy says, right? Help me to help you. Right.

Well, see if people have more questions, which I’m sure they will. And they are going to want to hear which marketing gurus you hate. How can they get in touch with you?

You can Google me, but the easiest way you can you can find me on Twitter, which is a dot com slash Kexin. OK, and you can go to the website, which is Kexin Dotcom. And we’re on Facebook and Instagram and LinkedIn. LinkedIn is another good one that you can find us and get in touch and and we’ll have a chat. And if I can help, let’s help. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll encourage money and any engagement or else.

But if you have any questions, just need a soundbite, some tips, whatever else. I’m here to help because like I said, we’re all small businesses. We need we just scratch each other’s backs.

And is there anything we haven’t covered that you want people to know before we go?

Absolutely nothing you’ve done. Absolutely.

Thank you, I appreciate it. I appreciate you.

Thank you for having me on.

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