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membership Archives - Syneka Marketing

NGV Members Summer Party – Andy Warhol and Ai Weiwei

By | Advice for Businesses | No Comments

Syneka Marketing is a proud patron of the arts and we are a supporter of the National Gallery of Victoria, through membership and event participation.

Each year the National Gallery of Victoria hosts its Summer Party, highlighting its current exhibition and providing a lively atmosphere, through music and festivities. This year, the Summer Party coincided with the premier exhibition featuring Andy Warhol and Ai Weiwei.

Andy Warhol, as a leading figure in pop art, blurred the lines between celebrity and artist, using a combination of mediums to convey his artist intent. Andy Warhol had a background in commercial illustration and advertising, which carried through to his artistic work where he often explored the impact of icons.

Andy Warhol's Campbell's Soup Cans (1962)

Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans (1962)

Ai Weiwei extends many of Andy Warhol’s concepts, juxtaposing modern icons with a political overlay and historic context. In particular, Ai Weiwei has extended the interaction between artist and community, incorporating active social media engagement, while maintaining a focus on human rights.

The Andy Warhol and Ai Weiwei exhibition demonstrates the evolving nature of art. The National Gallery of Victoria’s Summer Party was the ideal occasion to see the unfolding narrative of these works.

The Andy Warhol and Ai Weiwei Exhibition concludes on the 24th of April.

Asking the wrong question: The Taxi Industry receives feedback via Twitter

Ask the wrong questions, get the wrong answers – Exploring the YourTaxis Campaign

By | Advice, Advice for Businesses, News | 2 Comments

It is unfortunately for too common for businesses to ask the wrong questions when seeking marketing support. This perpetuates the ineffective tactics led approach to marketing, which ultimately diminishes returns due to a lack of consistency with the desired strategic direction.

We often see this when a business is seeking website modifications, social media content or a branding refresh. There is the assumption that these isolated tactics will result in business growth, rather than the question being ‘how do we ensure consistency across the marketing experience and throughout each stage of the customer journey’.

Social media in itself will not foster customer loyalty or engagement if the customer base is not receptive to this medium. Similarly, a website will not result in new business if the processes behind the site are cumbersome or unwieldy.

Often there is need to dig beyond tactics to discover the broader marketing questions that need to be answered. Specifically, there the need to consider how each tactic should reinforce the customer journey to culminate in an experience that fosters outcomes.

We saw this earlier this year with Woolworths failing to consider the ramifications of its Fresh in Our Memories Campaign, and more recently with @YourTaxis, a social media campaign that failed in its attempt to shift public perceptions of the taxi industry.

Woolworths asking the wrong questions: The Fresh in Our Memories Campaign

Woolworths asking the wrong questions: The Fresh in Our Memories Campaign

While Woolworths should have had the resources, foresight and capability to think through the ramifications. The client of the YourTaxis campaign was a not-for-profit membership organisation that would have limited resources and failed to ask the right questions.

The Taxi industry, which has traditionally had few direct competitors, is now under significant pressure from Uber, despite the ride sharing service being somewhat legally ambiguous under current Victorian legislation. The Taxi Industry has responded by been undertaking advocacy efforts to review Uber given current legislation.

Uber has significant strengths in social media and strong online loyalty, aspects that are not shared by the taxi industry. A tactics based approach resulted in the YourTaxis campaign simply replicating what had worked for Uber, despite the high element of risk. The campaign failed on any discernible metric, with Twitter users complaining about Taxis and many complementing Uber within the same Tweet.

Asking the wrong question: The Taxi Industry receives feedback via Twitter

Asking the wrong question: The Taxi Industry receives feedback via Twitter

The question that should have been asked was ‘how do we improve the perception of taxis to assist in influencing the political debate?’ Had this question been asked, a social media campaign focused on soliciting public views would have never been considered.

A strategic marketing approach would have asked the right questions: focusing on all elements rather than just promotions

A strategic marketing approach would have asked the right questions: focusing on all elements of the marketing mix rather than just promotions

Answering the right question would resulted in a substantially different campaign:

  • There would be a focus on service delivery, highlighting improvements, such as driver training and standards, as well as streamlining the complaints process.
  • Promotional campaigns would have focused on the role of taxis as a form of transport to an audience of State MPs and other decision makers, rather than end users.
  • A public component could have been explored through the hopes and aspirations of taxi drivers, with the aim of building personal rapport with the sector.

Answering the right question would have resulted in a campaign focused on the entire marketing mix, with stakeholders including passengers and policy makers. Alignment between each element in the marketing mix, particularly the service, processes and people elements would have enhanced the industry’s standing.

A strategic approach to marketing ensures the right questions are being asked, so you can reach the right answers. Unfortunately in this case, the wrong question was asked twice, with a second campaign on Remembrance Day resulting in further criticism through social media.

Asking the wrong question twice: The YourTaxis Tweet on remembrance Day

Asking the wrong question twice: The YourTaxis Tweet on Remembrance (not Rememberance) Day

The end result is an industry that now has a harder time influencing debate and decision makers, as well as a not-for-profit membership based association that most likely has diminished standing with its members. It is a shame when time, money and reputation is thrown away simply because the wrong questions were asked.

PS We attempted to reach out to the Agency that initiated the YourTaxis campaign to explore their perspective. We received no response.

Re-defining Marketing for Associations and Not-for-profit organisations

By | Advice for Businesses, Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities, Presentations, Resources | 2 Comments

The Associations Forum shares best practices and knowledge within not-for-profit associations and organisations. This afternoon we delivered our Re-defining Marketing Workshop through the Associations Forum, working with participants on how to strengthen the role of marketing so they can build organisational capacity.

We guided participants through the vision they bring as individual associations. We explored the traditional model of membership, events and sponsorship and transformed this into a platform that engages stakeholders around the notion of value.

We explored organisational strengths and how these could be positioned into opportunities that can be leveraged and delivered as value to stakeholders. Similarly, we discussed how weaknesses can be mitigated, through collaboration and differentiation within the marketplace.

Alex hosting the Re-defining Marketing workshop

Alex hosting the Re-defining Marketing workshop

We looked at the diverse range of stakeholders and how organisations can align desired outcomes with their interests to foster ongoing engagement. In particular, we discussed advocacy and the need to ensure a cohesive approach when seeking to influence policies, as well as working with other organisations around common interests.

This is the premise of effective marketing. As marketers we need to be the conduit between various departments or perspectives, so that outcomes can be created and measured. Marketing is based on the notion of value exchange and it is through this approach that you can build capacity that delivers sustainable growth.

Far too much marketing is execution led, which has resulted in questionable results. Instead, marketing needs to be led through strategy, ensuring that your strategic marketing plan sets your direction.

The workshop explored our marketing framework, which fosters continuous improvement by ensuring that metrics are embedded through a cohesive strategic direction that is delivered through the execution of marketing initiatives.

Ultimately, we re-defined marketing to ensure it is aligned with business goals, to reinforce your value proposition and to guide ongoing growth.

Australian Computer Society

Australian Computer Society’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation SIG: The Entrepreneurial Journey – Challenges and Rewards

By | Advice for Businesses, Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities | No Comments

The Australian Computer Society is the professional body representing the IT profession. This evening I was invited to the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Special Interest Group, to discuss the role of marketing in enabling an entrepreneurial journey.

Marketing and IT are more closely related than they first appear. Both perform a support function for many organisations, enabling them in turn to deliver their core products or services. In addition, marketing insights are enhanced through IT’s role in data collection and analysis.

With a growing emphasis on tech startups there is a tendency to romanticise the industry, with people forgetting that companies such as Microsoft, Apple, Google or Facebook were not overnight sensations. While their products were part of their success, it was the execution of their marketing plans and direction that made these products relevant.

Developing a new App or IT based innovation is the first stage of the entrepreneurial journey, getting it to market and maintaining relevancy is what leads to ongoing success.  During my presentation, I outlined the role of marketing and highlighted a number of areas that are often overlooked by entrepreneurs.

In particular, there is a need to understand market segments and the potential userbase.  No product is relevant to everyone and it is important that you take the time to understand your key target markets.  In addition, you should consider your supply chain, investors and business partners, so you have a strategy that considers the value they receive from your innovation.

Furthermore, competitors are another area that is often overlooked.  It is factually incorrect to assume that a new product has no competitors. While there may not be other direct competitors (those offering the same product or service), there will be indirect competitors (who offer similar products) and other forms of competition that will compete for your target market’s time and money. Understanding the competitive landscape is essential to developing a successful innovation.

One of my aims is to educate communities on the importance of undertaking a strategic approach to marketing. The presentation at the Australian Computer Society’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Special Interest Group works towards this vision.

From experience into engagement – how do we measure outcomes?

By | Advice for Businesses, Resources | No Comments

Last week, we featured feedback from Janet of Port Places, highlighting how the Royal Botanical Garden was utilising Twitter to manage experiences around TitanArum, one of its key exhibits.

This week Walter from Kinship, has offered his views, particularly in the need to link the social media presence to broader outcomes:

  1. What now happens to the Twitter feed – it has to be managed into a coma or in some way resources directed to it to manage it while the flower is dead.
  2. What happens to the followers of the flower? Are they now encouraged to move to @RBG_Melbourne – are they the same, are they different – what resources now need to be put into maintaining a relationship with the flower followers?

The better alternative would have been to simply use a #titanarum hashtag on the main feed which would have avoided all these issues and maintained continuity with the subscriber base with no extra effort.

People always have bright ideas about starting new campaigns, but rarely think about what happens after the campaign and how the results will be harvested and relationships continued.

Walter raises some valid points. Firstly, there is a need to understand the desired outcomes from the campaign. One aspect is engagement over TitanArum, but the broader focus should be on fostering ongoing interest and participation with the Royal Botanical Gardens. As a result, there is a need to measure conversions between followers of @TitanArum through to @RBG_Melbourne. Secondly how many of these become attendees of the Gardens, or promote the activities more broadly? Furthermore, how many commit to a membership or ongoing participation?

Following a theme or campaign is often the first stage to broader engagement and should not be seen as the end result.

Walter’s comments provide a brilliant introduction to the theme we will be exploring this month. Specifically, how you should be measuring marketing outcomes.

Membership Growth

Strengthen your membership programs for 2015 and beyond

By | Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities, News | No Comments

The most significant challenge facing the not-for-profit sector is the need to diversify income beyond a reliance on government grants. Membership is often is an area that can be developed to increase engagement and provide a sustainable revenue stream.

Syneka Marketing in partnership with Membership Growth has developed the Membership Growth Toolkit. The Complete Toolkit includes nine chapters, covering all aspects of developing membership programs, recruiting members and member retention.

The Membership Growth Toolkit explores the following topics, across nine chapters:

  • Marketing Planning Strategies
  • Member Recruitment Strategies
  • Member Retention Strategies
  • Member Renewal/Reactivation
  • Revenue Earning
  • Recession Busting Strategies for Sustainable Growth
  • Design and Copywriting
  • Online Marketing


Each chapter includes worksheets to help you develop your membership strategies. The Membership Growth Toolkit is available for purchase at www.membershipgrowthtoolkit.com.