Marketing

Is Pot-Related Marketing the Next Big Gold Rush?

Is Pot-Related Marketing the Next Big Gold Rush?

[Originally posted on Forbes.com.] On the high holiday yesterday—4/20, that is—my friend and PR client Jason Hairston, the young entrepreneur behind the übersuccessful Nugget Spot in New York City, happily shared an article on Facebook. It was a Thrillist roundup of the city’s top 32 places to cure the holiday munchies. Turns out Hairston—whose deep-fried [...]


Can Capitalism Afford a Conscience?

Can Capitalism Afford a Conscience?

[Originally posted on the Huffington Post.] At first glance, capitalism circa 2014 looks like a pretty soulless endeavor: massive piles of fast money, no wider context of conscience involved. Just look at how Hollywood’s depictions of finance guys have evolved. In 1946, in “It’s a Wonderful Life,” the softhearted banker wins out. In 1987, we [...]


How Metrosexuality Has Made Over the Men of Connecticut

How Metrosexuality Has Made Over the Men of Connecticut

[Originally published by the Stamford Advocate.] Connecticut: birthplace of the metrosexual? Almost 11 years ago, when metrosexual was the hot new word on everyone’s lips—thanks largely to work my colleagues and I were doing at the ad agency that is now Havas; I’m CEO of Havas PR—it was a uniquely urban phenomenon. In time, it [...]


Relaunching The Sisterhood

Spring break hasn’t even arrived, but with our eyes ever on the future, Havas PR is thinking about the back-to-school season this fall. To get ready, we will soon relaunch The Sisterhood, our award-winning agency-within-an-agency that’s by, for and about teen girls. Based on our study and paper called “The Teenage Girl as Consumer and [...]


The Super Bowl Ads That Should Have Run

The Super Bowl Ads That Should Have Run

[Originally posted on Forbes.com.] I suspect 2014 will be one of the last years that Super Bowl commercials have the cultural power they do. As our consumption patterns move away from must-see TV and all-uniting cultural events toward streaming, digital, on-demand entertainment, there’s not much left that everyone is going to tune in to en [...]


What Will Branding Look Like In 2014?

What Will Branding Look Like In 2014?

[Originally posted on Forbes.com.] Among the trends that will reshape the U.S. and the world in 2014 and beyond—including guilt money, secession, hacking, even gut bacteria—one thread tying them all together is their strong implication for branding. Whether it’s personal, product, company or country branding, it all comes down to stories, those that marketers tell [...]


Truth and Lies of Social Media ROI

Truth and Lies of Social Media ROI

[Originally posted on the Huffington Post.] ROI (return on investment) is probably the most commonly used and most misunderstood word in social media marketing today. It seems to have emerged as the go-to buzzword that social media marketers throw at the finance department when they want to relate to them. But two problems exist: Given [...]


Snapchat: What It Can Do for Your Brand

Snapchat: What It Can Do for Your Brand

[Originally posted on the Huffington Post.] What started as a way to send funny, sexy or other silly quick pictures or videos to friends has turned into the next big thing for marketing teams. Snapchat, the multimedia messaging app where content can be viewed for up to 10 seconds before it is deleted, is prime [...]


Size Doesn’t Matter

There has been immense hoopla in the marketing communications business this weekend about the coming merger of two giants to make the world’s biggest whatever-it-will-be. And yet, says trendspotter Marian Salzman, CEO of @havaspr, small is the new big. Couple that with Rupert Murdoch’s sighting (he might still be under fire for the telephone ethics [...]


Introducing @havaspr’s Social Startup

At our new SocialProvidence venture, we don’t incubate ideas, we conceive them. Working as part of Venture for America, a program for future entrepreneurs modeled after Teach for America, SocialProvidence is what’s next in social. It’s not about just acquiring Facebook fans or gathering Twitter followers. Social is the manifestation of all things possible in [...]


Five Steps to a New Brand

Five Steps to a New Brand

Brand strategist Karen Kang puts the importance of personal reinvention bluntly: “Consider yourself a free agent—no one else is looking out for your best interests but yourself. You need to be crystal clear about who you are and the value you bring to a world where constant change is the only norm.” That’s the premise [...]


Our Not-So-Common Cause Work

Havas PR North America is passionate about cause work—and we think that’s an understatement. In January, we were named to PR News’ CSR A-List for the second year in a row, for our long-term commitment to doing good work, especially our research into causes, our Baker’s Dozen initiative (donating $1 million in time for every [...]


Why Are Entrepreneurs Nearly Always Sexier Than CEOs?

Why Are Entrepreneurs Nearly Always Sexier Than CEOs?

[Originally posted on Forbes.com.] It used to be that receiving a CEO title—and the corner office and tufted-leather sofa that came with it—was the acme of professional success. It was the recognition of a lifetime of hard work, of moving up the ranks, of following the path to its pinnacle. Once you’d arrived there, where [...]



Luxury Is Going to the Dogs

With the rise of DogTV and gourmet pet chow, it was just a matter of time before we extended canine luxury to living quarters. High-end doggie daycare has been around for a while, but only recently have the offerings become so numerous. In Manhattan, there’s the Ruff Club, which prides itself on being both exclusive [...]


Trendspotting: From Genghis Khan to Louis Vuitton

When you think of Mongolia, you probably don’t think of luxury retail, but thanks to an extremely lucrative and quickly expanding mining industry, perhaps you should. The sudden increase in wealth in the historically nomadic country has brought the likes of Burberry and Hugo Boss to the Mongolian capital of Ulan Bator, and the local [...]


Personal Branding Around Communities and Political Beliefs

Personal Branding Around Communities and Political Beliefs

[Originally posted on Forbes.com.] I recently got a humorous pitch from a real estate agent in New Hampshire, where, he wrote in his email, “there is a theme-branding wave that is part capricious, part serious business.” At first his proposal made me giggle, but then I saw how it reflects the ways in which personal branding [...]


Reconnecting to Reality with Native Cultures

Reconnecting to Reality with Native Cultures

[Originally posted on the Huffington Post.] This is the 12th in a series of 14 posts expanding on Salzman’s forecasts for 2013 in her annual trends report, a program of global communications group Havas Worldwide. This year’s book, What’s Next? What to Expect in 2013, was published on 12/12/12 and is available at 120MBooks.com. Salzman [...]


Trendspotting: Not Just for Oil Anymore

Despite the roiling climate of an Arab Spring, two Middle Eastern countries still managed to make A.T. Kearney’s annual Global Retail Development Index. Boasting some remarkable retail and tourist attractions, such as the 1,200-store Dubai Mall that includes Michael Kors and Tom Ford, the United Arab Emirates’ seventh place on the index might not be [...]


What’s Next for Places?

What’s Next for Places?

[Originally posted on the Huffington Post.] This is the ninth in a series of 14 posts expanding on Salzman’s forecasts for 2013 in her annual trends report, a program of global communications group Havas Worldwide. This year’s book, What’s Next? What to Expect in 2013, was published on 12/12/12 and is available at 120MBooks.com. Salzman [...]


Reinvention: The American Way

Reinvention: The American Way

[Originally posted on Forbes.com.] Reboots are the new New Year’s resolutions. And without question, the second decade of the 21st century will be the era of the reboot. The years from 2000 to 2010 saw cataclysmic shifts in everything from digital communication to the state of the economy to beliefs in American invulnerability. As we [...]


Turning Your Name into a Brand

Turning Your Name into a Brand

[Originally posted on Forbes.com.] To a certain extent—in this age of marketing ourselves, finding our niches and explaining how our distinctive personal backstories make for unique selling propositions—all our names are brand names. But some have gone above and way beyond. That’s especially true in the world of fashion, where some of the most iconic [...]


Get Savvy About What’s Next

Get Savvy About What’s Next

[Originally published on the blog of the Council of Public Relations Firms.] Great trendspotting creates great consumer marketing campaigns, terrific innovative new products and savvy newscrafting. I know: The most famous brands in the world have hired me over and over for my trendspotting methodology, ensuring that their multimillion-dollar (sometimes billion-dollar) ideas, products or services [...]


Trendspotting: Cracking the Code

With all the noise about mobile ads, it would be hard to blame you for just assuming print ads had died and gone to marketing heaven. But smartphone-interactive codes, specifically QR codes, have taken the traditional ad market by storm; more than 10 percent of ads in the top 100 magazines in the U.S. now [...]