Monday, September 24, 2018

Kevin Hart Social Media Branding?


Kevin Hart just might be the hardest-working man in branding. And he's redefining the celebrity endorsement along the way..

In fact, he’s pumped. On this particular morning in early September, Hart’s about to plug the hell out of his new movie, Night School, on morning radio and television in Atlanta.



The comedy, which he cowrote and stars in opposite Tiffany Haddish, is about to kick off its promotional tour in earnest ahead of its Sept. 28 release but Hart is getting a head start right now with a post to Instagram Stories, speaking directly to his 62.4 million followers. “You know nobody does the promo like your boy K-Hart,” he says into his phone, his voice equal parts gruff and velvety.

It would be an outright boast if it weren’t completely true. The 39-year-old comedian-actor-producer-athlete-CEO has achieved success far beyond the bounds of ratings or the box office, in large part by putting his own savvy twist on even the most ordinary forms of promotion. And this time he's not just promoting any film but the first theatrical release from his production company, Hartbeat Productions, so it has to go not just well but off-the-charts amazing.

He should be comforted, though, knowing he's on a hot streak. For example, with Cold as Balls, a comedy interview series for Old Spice that's now in its second season. Hart and his team at his comedy platform, Laugh Out Loud (LOL), had cooked up the concept of hosting a talk show featuring sports stars being interviewed in a locker room, but with him and his subjects sitting in side-by-side ice baths, as if they’ve just played a big game, for the duration of the conversation.



Seeing the sponsorship opportunities the concept presented, he and his team reached out to Wieden + Kennedy and Old Spice, and an ongoing relationship was born.

(Check out 3 Brands That Enjoyed a Huge Bump on Social Thanks to the Kevin Hart Effect.) You watch the interviews not only to see Hart ask your favorite athletes the tough questions—he’s a surprisingly great interviewer—but also to see how long he could possibly handle sitting in the freezing water. Hart also has a hit on his hands with Lyft Legend, in which he dons an old-man disguise to trick passengers into crass yet intimate conversations (it too is on Season 2).

What sounds like a lot of extra work for an endorsement deal is actually a strategy. Hart is angling for more than one-off deals; he wants to establish true relationships, and not just with one brand. Hart’s ambition is for all of the endorsements to amplify each other and ultimately himself. Because Kevin Hart is a brand, and he knows it.

“I have the talent to make other people feel very comfortable in any environment that I’m in,” says Hart. It’s late August and Hart has phoned from Paris, where he’s getting ready to perform in front of thousands, one of the many European dates on his “Irresponsible” comedy tour.



“I’m not threatening, and that’s how I’m able to put myself in front of all audiences, all ages.

It doesn’t matter your race, your size, ethnicity, age. I’m comfortable in all of those environments because of the person that I am, which allows me to build my brand even more. That’s the talent of being a likable personality.”

From a business standpoint, there’s definitely a lot to like. During its first season, Lyft Legend garnered more than 50 million views across LOL’s multiplatform network, with over 1.4 million social engagements, and Lyft scored a 33 percent increase in fan growth on social during the series, according to LOL’s numbers. As for Cold as Balls, the first season nabbed over 80 million views, 2.7 million social engagements and 219 million media impressions, per LOL. Meanwhile, Old Spice’s digital engagement went up 86 percent, and its organic conversations saw a 250 percent increase.

“Today, brands want to tap into existing culture and conversations that can propel them forward,” says Valerie Aurilio, executive creative director of brand consulting firm Landor. “Kevin is infectious, and he offers up a powerful fan base that’s already talking. It’s Kevin’s conversation, and it’s funny. If Kevin invites your brand into the conversation, people know it’s authentic and that he genuinely loves the brand.”






Being authentic is key to Hart’s success and something you’ll hear him mention often. But what does it actually mean?

“If you can’t believe it and you don’t see me actually in the situation that I’m putting myself in, then I shouldn’t be doing it,” says Hart matter-of-factly. “If anything ever comes off forced or like I’m trying to get a check, then that’s against my brand and that’s against what I do and how I move. That’s how I learn. I learned to do things that literally go hand in hand with what I do, with what I believe. That’s how you make your brand strong.”

“There’s something about quality that comes with him and a reach guarantee that comes with him,” notes Thai Randolph, evp and general manager of LOL, which is a joint venture between Hart and Lionsgate.

As with most success stories, having a role model has been essential to Hart's rise as a deft brander. He cultivated his business skills by studying Ice Cube’s approach to developing, producing and starring in the Ride Along films. “A lot of entertainers have the opportunities to become business partners, producing partners, developing partners,” says Hart.



“[But they just put their] name on a piece of paper, and other people do the work. … Ice Cube really busts his ass to do the work within the development of these projects.

I saw him understand everything that went on, and I understood that he understood those things because of how long he’d been a producer, a star. He knows every single lane. I said, that’s what I should be understanding and doing. So I took information in from what was shown in front of me. I was a sponge, and I soaked it up.”

Even producer extraordinaire DJ Khaled, who’s known for his work ethic, if not his modesty, admires Hart’s commitment. “Kevin Hart inspires you,” says Khaled, who costars with Hart in a three-part Apple Music spot in which the comedian voices Khaled’s young son Asahd. (The first spot was revealed earlier this year; the other two have yet to be released.) “I haven’t met anybody who works harder than me, and I feel Kevin Hart is one of those people who works the hardest.”



But as focused as he is on his brand, Hart is also intent on pushing others to learn the business like he has.

Haddish, Hart’s Night School costar, notes that on set, Hart would multitask between performing for the camera, making deals on the phone—“Kevin is always on the phone,” she says—and coaching her on brand building. “In between takes, they’ll be like ‘Cut,’ and then he’ll be on the phone working out a deal. Then ‘Action,’ and he does the scene. Then ‘Cut,’ and he’ll be back on the phone again, emailing, sending messages. He’s always knocking stuff out,” says Haddish. “He’s like, ‘See, Tiffany? Just made half a million dollars right there. See that? That’s $100,000.’ He’s constantly, constantly in communication with his team and building his brand.”

Haddish wouldn’t go into detail about the lessons she’s learned from Hart, other than to say he’s given her advice on how to procure endorsements and pushed her to post more on social media. “He’s always giving me advice about marketing,” she says. “There’s a bunch of stuff that comes to mind, but I’m not telling. I learned my lesson. You can’t tell everybody everything. He gave me those tips. I would rather save it for my book. He taught me that too: Don’t tell everybody everything unless they’re paying you for it. Hello!



Hart doesn’t want to be paid by just anyone, though. And he’s certainly not willing to become a caricature of himself just for a paycheck.

“I’m at a point in my career where I don’t have to do that,” says Hart. “I’m financially OK. So these things that I’m doing now are all business maneuvers, you know. In order to be successful in business, you need great partners.”




One of those partners is Tommy John. Hart not only stars in campaigns and designs underwear for the brand but has also invested in it.

“One of the things he said, he was like, ‘Tom, I don’t want to be a Nascar. I don’t want to have 35 brands plastered all over the hood of my car. I only want to work with a handful of brands I believe in, wear or use,’” says Tommy John CEO and founder Tom Patterson, adding that this selectivity made him much more comfortable with allowing Hart to invest in the brand. The trust has paid off: Hart has starred in three films for Tommy John, delivering over 6.5 million views via Hart’s and Tommy John’s digital channels. The videos also yielded a 270 percent lift and recall on YouTube and an almost 100 percent lift in brand awareness, notes Patterson.

“What I’ve learned about Kevin is how much he understands consumers, how much he understands his audience and what makes his audience tick,” notes Chauncey Hamlett, head of marketing for Mountain Dew. The beverage brand has what Hamlett calls a 360-degree partnership with Hart, sponsoring his tour and LOL content, featuring him in commercials and finding ways to integrate the brand into Hart’s films.



“The greatest part about working with Kevin is that you actually do work with him,” says Hamlett.

“So it’s not like he sends a representative to go talk to you and then they go talk to him. We actually collaborate with Kevin on all aspects of the partnership.”

“Kevin thinks strategically about how he can help grow the brand,” notes Aurilio. “He’s not just a face; he’s involved and working to build culture and entertainment around the brand, which is imperative for brand growth. The range of relevance he brings to the table cannot be ignored. A celeb that is edgy and unpredictable enough to feel niche but, in reality, brings with him a huge following and opens up diverse demographics is a very desirable partner.”

Still, there have been some serious bumps along the way, like last year's scandal surrounding the revelation that Hart cheated on his then-pregnant wife, Eniko Parrish. Soon after, another woman came forward in what Hart described at the time as an extortion attempt designed to capitalize on his infidelity.



The way that Hart dealt with that very public—and potentially brand-killing—crisis might be the key to his seemingly unstoppable success: He was honest.

In October 2017, he took to Instagram to apologize to his family and his fans, letting them know that he had messed up. He even named his next comedy tour after it (“Irresponsible”) and worked with J. Cole on a meta music video that gave viewers a fictionalized look at what his life was like post-scandal.

“You don’t want to fuck up your opportunity, and as a guy that fucked up before, as a guy that, you know, fucked up before and stepped in shit, I know what it smells like,” says Hart. “So right now, it’s literally about me making sure that I don’t do that again. Taking advantage of the opportunity that I have but also taking it seriously. Not taking it for granted.”

Guest Authored By Kristina Monllos. Kristina is a senior editor for Adweek, where she specializes in covering brands, marketing innovation, customers trends and marketing culture. Follow Kristina on Twitter.





"Kevin Hart just might be the hardest-working man in branding. And he's redefining the celebrity endorsement along the way.." -Kristina Monllos


    • Post Crafted By:
      Fred Hansen Pied Piper of Social Media Marketing at GetMoreHere.com & CEO of Millennium 7 Publishing Co. in Salt Lake City, UT. where I work deep in the trenches of social media strategy, community management and trends.  My interests include; online business educator, social media marketing, new marketing technology, skiing, hunting, fishing and The Rolling Stones..-Not necessarily in that order ;)
    Follow Me Yonder..                     Instagram

    Friday, September 21, 2018

    YOUR Video Content Is King?


    6 Social media marketing trends you need to implement, stat!

    The world of social media marketing is a fast-paced one. Trends come and go, and if you want to stay on top of your game you need to apply strategies that are up-to-the-minute. Here are six of those marketing trends that really make a significant impact – penetration-wise – this 2018.

    We still have one quarter to go this year, and that’s still plenty of time for you to implement these marketing trends and tactics to create better brand impact!



    1. Video Content Is King

    There’s never been a more effective time to utilize video as one of your premiere marketing tools – especially since businesses and brands that utilized it are up 63% from the previous year. And with over 1.5 billion users logged in to YouTube every month, social networking sites have launched all sorts of new features that will encourage the use and creation of video content. You have Live Videos, 360-videos, instant stories, etc.

    Apart from being an enjoyable aspect of consuming social media content, these videos are also high on value. Ad recall is achievable within your video’s first 10 seconds. Video pros suggest creating animated videos as these are more popular than mere explainer videos.



    2. Mobile Solutions Count

    Smartphone users now number 2.53 billion as of 2018. According to Facebook data, their number of monthly active users on the mobile platform is nearing 2 billion. It’s safe to say that mobile traffic now surpasses desktop, which is why it’s important to tap into the consciousness of these digital natives through prioritizing mobile.

    In particular, you can study how you can better take advantage of the call-to-action button on social network mobile apps. These are more able to generate better conversions than their web platform counterpart. Thus, your marketing strategies should be tailor-fit to attract all of these mobile users.



    3. Chatbots Are Crucial For CRM Success

    Customer Relation Management, or CRM, is an essential element of business success. This is especially true when addressing the social media aspect of your business. On this platform, Chatbots have proven itself to be very capable in creating real-time engagement to address your customers’ needs. Social media sites have already announced chatbot functions on their platform, so its effectiveness has already been measured and deemed worthy of use.

    With a Chatbot deployed to deal with your customers’ first line or level of concerns, you have something that works 24/7 without using real-time human effort for customer service. It’s also a cost-effective way to manage some aspects of your marketing strategy. Since chatbots seem to be in its infancy stage, you can surely expect more out of it in the coming years with improvements in AI research.



    4. Investing In Influencer Marketing

    Influencers have varied backgrounds – celebrities, fashionistas, savvy moms, articulate and engaging children and everyone in between. What they have in common is their amazing ability to convince people to try a particular product or service. Thus, investing in influencer marketing should definitely be something you should consider to generate significant returns out of your social media marketing efforts. The key is in finding that perfect influencer that hits the target for your niche.

    The choice isn’t based on popularity alone. Rather, you want someone who has a wide reach and has developed his/her audience’s trust when it comes to things that he/she patronizes. Social media influencers might seem like a steep investment, but the dividends will pay off in the long run. Brands that count on influencers to get the word across enjoy up to 10x more in their conversion rates – a number that’s pretty hard to beat, strategy-wise.



    5. Paid Content That's Also Personalized

    Paid content such as sponsored ads is a worthy investment if you want your business to have a wider reach on social media. It’s a good way to be better noticed on social media, especially since there are a million other businesses that create a lot of noise on the same platform. However, it is important to factor in personalization to your paid content. People are generally resistant to random ads on social media, and platforms have responded with new algorithms that match ads to the users who are more likely to appreciate seeing it on their feed. This goes for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. With this in place, your task is to personalize your content in such a way that your audience immediately sees its relevance in their lives. Social media platforms are already doing you a favor with these new algorithms that bring your target market closer to you, so you’d best focus on crafting your content to capture their attention and create conversions as a result. As a tip, you can also apply the use of analytics to truly understand your data and therefore find out how you can better apply what you know to reach your target users.



    6. Automation = Real And Lasting Solutions

    With so many competitors all vying for the attention of users numbering in the billions, working smarter is more effective compared to working harder.

    In this line, automation presents itself as strategy that does away with manual effort so you can spend more time concentrating on other more important aspects of your business as a digital marketer.

    The good thing about automation being so prevalent these days is the cost has gone down significantly. Having said that, you really have no excuse to avail of it for better success in social media marketing.



    Variety Wins in Social Media Marketing

    With all these new trends coming out, it is safe to say that a general rule to follow when drafting a solid social media marketing strategy is to have a focus on variety. Nowadays, it is never enough to focus all of your efforts on just one strategy. The gains you can generate by casting a much wider net is hard to ignore, especially in a digital platform wherein all the tools are right there in front of you for you to take advantage of. At the same time, it pays to remember that while everything is about technology these days, the heart of your marketing strategy should be the people you want to reach. Trends come and go, but the people – your target market – will constantly remain the same for the most part.

    Guest Authored By Mike Johnston. Mike is the founder and editor of CMS Critic. He consults with vendors and the public to help them find the right products for their websites and businesses. When he's not working here, he's off mixing cocktails for his wife's website, The Kitchen Magpie. You can check out some of his great cocktail shots over on Instagram.





    "The world of social media marketing is a fast-paced one. Trends come and go, and if you want to stay on top of your game you need to apply strategies that are up-to-the-minute. Here are six of those marketing trends that really make a significant impact – penetration-wise – this 2018. We still have one quarter to go this year, and that’s still plenty of time for you to implement these marketing trends and tactics to create better brand impact! Video content is king. There’s never been a more effective time to utilize video as one of your premiere marketing.." -MikeJohnston


      • Post Crafted By:
        Fred Hansen Pied Piper of Social Media Marketing at GetMoreHere.com & CEO of Millennium 7 Publishing Co. in Salt Lake City, UT. where I work deep in the trenches of social media strategy, community management and trends.  My interests include; online business educator, social media marketing, new marketing technology, skiing, hunting, fishing and The Rolling Stones..-Not necessarily in that order ;)
      Follow Me Yonder..                     Instagram

      Thursday, September 20, 2018

      The Future Of YOUR Social Media Marketing?


      What is the future of social media marketing?

      The games of the rule might change, the players might change, but the game is here to stay.



      Isn’t social media a recent buzzword?

      Or is the social media era waning off?

      Technically the buzzword social media or social media marketing is the most hyped ‘in’ thing. A career in this field is yet the most sought after one. Even today a new brand or product needs extensive social media marketing to show its existence to maximum potential consumers. But hold on! Is the fad of social media plummeting? Do you feel the world of social media is a thing of past?

      If you reach a conclusion now, it will be invalid as the future is highly unpredictable. With the volatility in the market structure and the ease of promoting content, social media apps- Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Ello, Instagram are the rage among youngsters and entrepreneurs alike. Rajat Bhatia, the founder of Geekay Bikes, quotes, “When I had to launch the new E-Bikes, all that was needed was the right social media channel to create awareness among the youth and bike-enthusiasts. Instagram and Facebook publicity along with the services of a social media marketer helped in building a good market for the bikes in its first year.”



      Yes, entrepreneurs do swear by the name of social media. Even for the youth of today, who clamours for instant publicity and fame, social media is an integral part of their life.

      From the morning gym to what they eat and whom they meet, all is judiciously posted to stay swanky and reaching out to the social network. Khushi Dawar, MD of Bright India Corp. Pvt. Ltd. says, “I have been learning video making and editing to establish my own Youtube Channel. It would be a boost to my product as well as a boost to my own creativity.” Who wouldn’t want those 10 minutes of fame, when it is so easily possible with social media!

      “Social media has become a steady source of income for millions of bloggers and marketers and a blessing in particular for those who wish to opt for work from home. With the new revenue streams social media is here to stay,” adds Ashish Gupta, CEO of Reva Enterprises.



      The Flip-Side Of The Coin

      Another school of thought says the era of social media is gradually retrograding. With stringent privacy policies and laws regarding safety, the craze and ease of accessing social media are dwindling. “Whenever I surf on Google, what irks me the most is the influx of unwanted advertisements flashing in the forefront. With the technology getting smarter, the ads of my recent surfing start popping up, which gives me a feeling of being spied on,” says Ankur Gupta, CEO of Shori Chemicals.

      Millennials and Gen-X are gradually deleting their Facebook and SnapChat accounts to stay grounded and focus on work. Dhruv Trehan, MD at Shree Ram Wood Industries says, “I was too overwhelmed with whatever was posted by my peers. It was intriguing as well as time-consuming to keep a track of latest updates. I felt like I was being pushed into a rat race. So deleting my FB account saves a lot of constructive time to focus on my work.”



      Moreover, with pro-privacy policies, the social media is restricting the incessant promotions.

      Clients who do not wish to receive random advertisements and unrequisite e-mails are being paid a heed to and the norms of promotions are getting stricter. WhatsApp, restricting the forwards to maximum five people, is a step in this direction. You can easily streamline the notification settings of your phone and e-mail to prohibit mails gatecrashing through.

      The games of the rule might change, the players might change, but the game is here to stay. Social media is the buzzword and is a table-turning game of future. You need a channel to showcase your work to customers, you need a channel to create demand and you definitely need a channel to prove your mettle. This media will serve it all on a single platter.

      Guest Authored By Sania Gupta. Sania is Founder and CEO of Digital Kangaroos, an author, entrepreneur, marketer and blogger. And as a career coach at My Study Destination, she has helped thousands of students realize their dreams. Follow Sania on Twitter.





      "The games of the rule might change, the players might change, but the game is here to stay. Social media is the buzzword and is a table-turning game of future.

      You need a channel to showcase your work to customers, you need a channel to create demand and you definitely need a channel to prove your mettle. This media will serve it all on a single platter.." -SaniaGupta


        • Post Crafted By:
          Fred Hansen Pied Piper of Social Media Marketing at GetMoreHere.com & CEO of Millennium 7 Publishing Co. in Salt Lake City, UT. where I work deep in the trenches of social media strategy, community management and trends.  My interests include; online business educator, social media marketing, new marketing technology, skiing, hunting, fishing and The Rolling Stones..-Not necessarily in that order ;)
        Follow Me Yonder..                     Instagram