Taglines matter. What is Coca-Cola? It’s the real thing. How do we know that? Because Coke has been telling us, singing to us, showing us that tagline for years: Coke is… the real thing. What are Dodge trucks? You know the answer! They’re “ram tough.”

The tagline at the Mom 2.0 Summit is “an open conversation between moms and marketers.”  And because taglines matter, the open conversation between moms and marketers is a crucial insight into not only the Summit but a best practice for marketing.

One of the first lessons demonstrated at Mom 2.0 is that marketing at moms is so last year, so “Mom 1.0.” Marketing through moms, marketing with moms as partners — that is 2.0.

The kickoff keynote speakers this morning are Heloise (yes, that Heloise, as in hints from) and Gretchen from the Happiness Project. They’re both making the point that successful, innovative companies aren’t just throwing messages “at” their audiences, but engaging their audience members in important conversations about needs, products and services.

Marketing used to be a one-way stream of ideas, instructions and promises. Marketers decided the values important to wives and mothers, assigned those values to the products they were selling to wives and moms, and created advertising campaigns that talked at, not with, the moms.

Smart marketing today involves the audience in the conversation to the point that in some ways the audience leads the marketing process. MMI believes in and practices marketing conversations, we advise our clients to do the same, and I’m happy to report that this is a Hint from Heloise, too.

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