023 Trendjacking Marketing and Public Relations w/ Paul Maher


Thanks for pressing play. This is Christopher lockhead and we have a very special episode for you today from time to time on lockhead on marketing we will bring on a guest just to go deep on a critical topic today. My friend Palmar founder of positive marketing in the UK and we pop the hood on a secret black black art of marketing PR communications and media called a trend jacking. And it's predicated on the on the insight that the news loses happening anyway so you might as well be in it and so we talk about how to hijack a trend in the media so that you and your company can be part of the news. Paul and I have been friends and worked on and off together for over twenty years and his firm positive is the winner of the Sabre Award for the best. I earned media agency all of the Europe Middle East and Africa. So He's no joke and I would say he's the category King of trend jacking being as an idea as a category of marketing execution. NPR execution now. Our friends at spunk. Are The category Queens and kings of big data. Data and spunk. Helps you bring data to everything every question every decision and every action checkout S- plunk SP L. U. N. K. DOT dot com slash D to e as in data to everything. That's spunk dot com slash D to e and my dear friends at Oracle Nets. We'd want to help you. turbocharged charged the growth of your business. Go to net sweet dot com slash different. And while you're there you'll be able to set up a free one hour growth review with an expert in your industry history that's net sweet dot com slash different as well While you're br breeze reason while you're breezing around the Internet checkout lockhead Dot Com to ages no K for the show notes from this episode and you'll also find the show notes. Paul Mars seven secrets of trend. Jacking now now. Hey Ho. Let's go. This is long head on marketing. The podcast that helps you develop a lens for what makes legendary marketing legendary posted by Christopher lockhead three times. CMO Godfather category designed and a high school dropout. The Marketing Journal calls and one of the best minds in marketing and the economist calls off putting to some alright search is a special toolkit that those of us who spent a little bit of time doing media relations in content needs to deploy critical times trying to build categories. And the thing I love about this idea is it's kind of a secret black art right because most people when they do. Pr They're trying to create news all by themselves and trend. Jacking is all all about. How do we take what's happening in the news and use that attach ourselves to that and use that as an advantage to become an expert to become? I'm known to position ourselves effectively. Yeah that's right so all of you is. The News happens anyway. Wanted you make it. Yeah why not be attached to it right. It's it's very very powerful idea and I I remember distinctly the first time you and I had this idea. Yeah we were in London. A starbucks are not open to long ago his early chains and you and I were in a Radi London starbucks fuming because there was a merger acquisition in space that we needed to react to you and we really seriously worried that we were going to be out after and I'll never forget You and I came up with a point of view about the acquisition and you and your pr team got on the phone and we found the reporters who were writing about the acquisition and we took time to educate them on in our our category in space. And before you knew it. The media was writing stories like this acquisition happened because of thus. Because you're afraid of US exactly to annoyed guys. It eleven starbucks changed the strategy of multi not billion dollar management consultancy. How likely is that? Yeah we literally hijacked their acquisition news. And that's why we call it tragic thing right And it all. It is now becoming attendance this widely used. I just said some on Germany that Issues jumping the idea is to take a trend. That's GONNA is happening anyway. Senate your involved role that like a car Jack. Whatever you WANNA call it? So that's why it's told transacting. Yeah and the the fun thing for me is a side. Note is a lot of ways. You become the godfather of trend jacking because that day you and I had an the idea for how do we. How do we attach ourselves to this news and make sure that you know we're not being out positioned in the media and now It's it's it's a practice area. NPR In media relations in. You're the godfather of it. Thank you so so I think positive tape. which is the the the the these days than the company I found it? We are known in the market for being aggressive trackers. This is not something you can have a Play around with you need to be on your game. And they're all certain rules the shopping up. If you tested and practice an unequally if you want to be a scattered out early life you know goby a lawyer all right. Let's get into the seven secrets of Chen trend. Jacking number one be positive. So what what do you mean by this all right. So like having a view that you not. Newsworthy is the antithesis assist trend checking the news happens anyway. Why not be in it and if you WanNa Lita category you'd better be making the news because every single news story got is directing getting tools a future state that you want Degree today and if you let other people do that for you. I don't awesome number to Be Proactive what do you. What do you do provoke insist? It'd be proactive. Balking dyslexic can't read the list. He provocative you're the king. So what do you mean by provocative ball so like the definition of nervous Randall. For somebody they also came up with this is the definition used is while someone else does not want you to know right so clearly. There's a lot of vested interests management consultancy famished remained nameless. A little bit sort of Frenchie guessing that these guys didn't want anybody raining on that big day in the sun when they had a massive acquisition guard. So you have to say to you. So how am I going to get the attention of the media. And the way that the media doesn't make it. It's a blessing I'm here in London is is particularly British. NEATER is they liked flood these days. They like tech clash. You need to get creative and find out what it is. Somebody else does not want you to tell the media. That's one of the books and the media loves controversy And so you you sort of have to be willing to mix it up a little if you're gonNA hijack a train don't you. You really do some of the examples that we use You know mergers and acquisitions as we said that didn't work out you know Outages is but there's also that this is an accounting piece. The the goes there a little bit more obvious so when it's more obvious. You need to be more provocative right. There's no point unsigned. We've got a great black Friday story flea gives a shit right. You need to be the most provocative yukons so it might be the black Friday since the donut man or it might be the time when you want it takes over another and you need to be provocative because Orienting US just cut it. Yeah I remember back in the day. You and I did a little bit of work for Check the the The Book Rental Company for College Students. That's now expanded much beyond that category and and we came up with this idea. I remember you and I are brainstorming about it. which was they were going to do? A big back to School campaign and of course there's lots of PR around back to school every career and you had this awesome idea. How do we hijack back to school? and You created a day called textbook Tuesday. which was the day that that you needed to get your text? Books rented by and so they hijacked back to school press by Inventing Day called textbook Tuesday and it made a huge difference difference in the launch of the business. Nothing another great example. Chris and we do use specific trend Jack Technique several times so for instance we have the GPO coming over here which is a data regulation We would for company WHO's doing a anti anti malware still getting exfiltrated so we knew do. How long did average zero day exploit means out on your hats before you actually find out is and then we backed up from when the GDP wasn't said if you we do not know on this specific day whether or not you've been hacked you'll scrutiny gonna be in for a big fine we call? 'cause he was exfiltration recall that X. Day things like that were very well with the media. Yes there you're hijacking You know the change in the regulations in our privacy in Europe exactly which would turn out to be a big thing but the only thing he can the only way you do that is to become a bit of a unused junkie. Yeah that's the next part of the the next part of the process right predict predict. It's called a news cycle for reason. Of course you used to be a journalist so so what do you mean by a predict and sort of grab hold of the news cycle so you can have the best friend in the world and the most talented bunch should feel professionals that you can afford ready to go but timing is everything. It's called a new cycle for a reason. There are limits in time and you can inject yourself is the conversation a moment in time we will just get a lot of media. Thank you dumps yesterday. All these days. That was two hours ago. You need to to be ready to go but you need to get into the story at the right time and that means looking at where the story developing find out who's places where the stories bubble up. You know we talk about ready earlier and twitter and places like that and some of the sort of citizen Genu- general isn't that you see these days you can see the stories developed before they go mainstream just just as they go mainstream. That's when you WanNa hit it. That's the top of the news cycle. It you need to know that by observing your target so to speak and hitting the Roy yeah fascinating and I also there's some pattern recognition. We can use here right. Typically when a story breaks there's there's just the the facts about it. XYZ happened right. And there's there's little color background and so the press does the the breaking news piece but then they go looking for depth right they go looking for commentary from people in the industry are associated with it and they want to do some more backstories stuff and so the story begins to unfold. And so what I love but what you're saying is your journalists. Soon as story breaks. They're going to write something but then they want background and commentary in these kinds of things and if you're the executive team that's right there as the story is developing that NEWSCORP. aww cycle is evolving. You actually play right into what they need at that point in time. Yeah I'm thinking about it right here in the UK. There's a single today's program that leads the news. Everybody in the in the news media listened to back up to die. The guy's the newspaper stopped figuring out what they're going to produce a Dan US meeting thing which is going to go in the evening papers which time the lunchtime as is developed stories. Drop some stories around other stories. Just gotTa figure out when the right time to do. That is an as a- friends in the hedge funds of hedge funds. Recite all the time. Look for that. Next ounce of the bull see that's the prediction addictions skill that you need and be done. Have it in house or you know have any DNA you know. There's lots of out near the will of agencies insolvency who do Yep all right the next step prepare prepare prepare and so Maybe explore that a little bit. What are we preparing to do as we get ready to trend Jack here right soon so you WANNA do? Is You want to be like done a little bit of game playing about that bounce of the ball so you know often stories can break two ways when you get to like advance level transacting equally prepared for both eventualities. Let me give you an example so we have apprenticed currently the Medical Boris Johnson controversial figure. And nothing you guys in the states about about controversial leaders but he recently had a newspaper to two zero t versions of an opinion because he has a regular column. And this was about whether or not we're GONNA leave your like not an insignificant piece in you supposed to joining he hedged his bats and he wrote one piece that was he's very pro brexit as we call it a one piece which is very negative just so when the news broke he was ready to drop the piece out was was brexit. And if you haven't got found out for his technique you would've looked like a era but he's Sorta gave the game away a little. That's what I mean by. Prepare his look at the eventualities. CARLOTTI's get you figure out your angles spokespeople out channels. You can bring to the policy on. Just get ready to go and you said a very important thing in their. Get Your quotes ready to go right. Yeah sounded like ready totally an and so you know what you're looking for their with their spokespeople folks who've you can like give good quotes as we say But also you the sort of people that will give a range inch of quotes because we said On many ways so you need to be ready for that and you need to have like other materials may have articles that you you WanNa do another great one at the open letter that you want to send out like Google does something you want to address them seed you send them in Atlanta which lunches entirely is money some techniques to the guests you so ready prepared to strike I remember years ago We were a trend jacking an acquisition in the industry that had taken a long time and it was a little bit Sort of Problematic and it was playing out over time in the media. And I don't know if you remember this so you created this quote for me to tell the the press that watching this acquisition was like watching two porcupines mate. Okay okay well you kind of the beautiful things they need to be memorable. Well it was highly quotable right and so it ended up. I don't know several hundred papers because the other beauty not of this of course is if you can talk to a wire service Reuters Bloomberg associates. AP things along those lines you might talk to one reporter. One pithy quote like that could end up in several hundred newspapers around the globe. Absolutely those those why. Why says his are amazing? And they're all sort over here in Europe they are country specific. And you bring on another interesting based friend of mine's got a company that deploys freelance writes likes to citizen journalists in places like Wolfson's and these these days the newsdesks need that comment quick. So you need to be both very provocative and in the case of those guys that are on the ground you need to be in the right place at the right time and be crowds. Timing is not just a quote as the Chinese the Combo the brings the goodness well. And this is something I find a lot of executive. CEO's don't understand right if if there's news happening and we WANNA trend Jack it and there's a writer on deadline in the news broke three hours ago and were in this example maybe using our CEO Our CEO has to be willing to a come out of her meeting and re swizzle her counter a little bit to talk to the press that day because their need for people to comment is going to be over in six hours and so You know it's it's not like a standard press briefing where you can schedule it. A few weeks out when the news breaks if you're trying to be in in it executives were being spokes. People have to be willing to be highly accessible highly accessible to think about the And yet the natural time delays in news breaking in America visits the An you're by if we're speaking up four o'clock doc. In the afternoon in Newsday we've got a story and we can't get the exactly as o'clock in the morning California time. We have a problem because the first time he has a foam agendas Dennis you with hundreds of inbound calls a day. I know what's going on with the news. The first person he hits me with something credible. I'm GONNA use that and the very next I. It hits me okay. No matter how good the quote is useless as yesterday's fish and chip paper so you really need to be on it. And so that's why. That's that's why we're saying before about having this free kind payrolls and being predictive way where the news is gonNA bounce stocks to secret now number six six be pragmatic original but ready to flex your angles What is happening? Paul right so Even with so you know the the best and most talented Consulting Agency folks on handed the most talented in house team and thinking through everything you want to think through. It's it's it's not like science right. It's still a little bit of It may be that a story breaks and people turning it in a way that you didn't see. Yeah I like it might be that. There's a on an issue with the with the retailer and then it all goes from being a piece of the problem with the supply chain into something consumer you have to be able to flip your angle and be even walk That he stopped he started with so in other words would as well has being in the moment. You need to stop flexing pretty quickly and that probably will live interaction between the wheels prisoners and who was bringing that news to the the media So one of the things that we that we do is editor open license. So you can plant something like a time bomb. If you will that will blow when needed so in other words you can say to any company wants to you disagree with what you said just putting this on recco. Oh and the whole reason we do that is so we can go back and pick it up late. So an example. Would you be would be Ashley Madison. database the adult dating site that blew up and we mentioned that is one of our clients and settler this story we think the fat. You're inside the security. Not very good for you to come on this and for reasons that were pretty obvious. They said nuanced talk. Say we don't want anything to do with this so we said okay. Would you told the soul. We went away and wrote something up is we were conscious of this second bounce of the ball and the second bounce of the bull was yes. It's been hot and now the databases for free on the incident at that point once only original analysis going out we could rid ourselves instance stories insight okay. Would you like to know how this is actually done. And then it becomes an analysis piece and be ready and we have flex when we were going we would. It has been some fascinating so even a story like that where it's a super hot story but its potentially negative to your brand hold back ACA little let the first one or two news cycles go and then come in in this case with a how they might have sort of a Dan protected themselves. So this didn't happen exactly Yeah so you. There's a lot of this is why enjoy the game so much. And why are you interested in tragic in an feel that it's a good weapon for them to deploy for that category. Spend a lot of time in the news cycle cool and figuring out probabilities of other stories breaking out of it. Yeah fascinating and then number seven be persistent. So what does does it mean to be persistent to persistent trend jacker Yup com emphasize. This enough like the likelihood you're GonNa hit with your first one or two attempts Very very low. There is a skill. Set that you build up from it but there are also some if you will evergreens that you can use took practice because these stories perennial. They're not going away. So if you have the right level of assistance it's the same. It's upton safer just to go for one of these stories and try things out because they're gonNA come around anyway. What I mean specifically about assist is done gave up on the first one or two places? This is don't expect you know the the The New York Times or the Wall Street of the Times of London Financial Times. It's GONNA take time. You may ninety two to three or four different folks may need to flex your angle as we said before he may even needs a timeout. Come back again but certain stories unknow going away we talked to you. Know the the record good slash holiday sales and be titled You Name The commodity that you're talking about classic is CEO to pressure. Now be flagged recently so we were until recently we were we were attendance sliding but dash asteroid Eros on by many times. Can you insert yourself into that story. you know great new Hot New trends. You know things that think of things like toys will. Oh I phones or whatever anything new. That's coming out. You could predict they have to have a loan state for that. You can get all over that this is what we'd start to prepare and another great one especially with you guys in the states and the Abbey's nonfarm wages the tonight's government statistics. That like it or not. You're has to release those things on entirely highly predictable and you can just practice away and keep assistant. You hit the trend. Jack that gets you WANNA get too. Yep I I love of it and the other thing too about persistency is maybe you're not gonNA get in the Wall Street Journal the first time pro probably not but you might get in some respected Ed but much smaller lesser known industry blog. And so. That's okay right. Starting small building a bit of a reputation Getting a name amongst the journalists you know building up overtime then. Maybe you get in the Times of London absolutely and don't forget as well. These guys. On The Times of London on the baby specifically we actually know which titles which are often sex titles they read themselves to research their stories so we know that there are seed titles from which the major titles take the news so yeah and one of the things you can do and this is something laxity asclepius. You can read feed those stories from the less finals. Enter the bigger titles explaining why you think it's relevant to Sun. High pollution listen journalists to pay attention to this trend is clearly being recognized down in the trades. Let's say And so you can if you like. Recycle the tragic. That's yeah pretty involved. But it's something that we sit here and it's nothing so gratifying to see that the story developed the other thing. I love about trend. Jacking is because of what it is the seven steps you just outlined. There's a lot of companies that aren't going to do do this and so it is very rare in marketing in PR and communications where you can develop a strategic skill set that you know l. for the most part most of your competition either won't or can't pull it off. It's really gratifying. Actually I mean it's terrible analogy but there are certain sports weather positions where you'd be useless any of the position but the position but trend jacking posited. That is what we are about what was have about it. People come to us for now if you don't want that if you happy playing from game or you know facebook expurgated up leads so you don't have average bill that's acceptable but if you're GONNA we're GonNa work with you. We need a little bit of leverage to still shit and we're happy. I love that all right anything else on trend. Jacking Dr Mar.. I would just reemphasize the lowest point. Christopher I I love to systems you know God loves it. Try and you'd like a first time. You'll be amazing. Hit but if you keep going you will get an Taylor. Line silently what. He wants to look his Tokyo talking to you about it. 'cause I appreciate the auto bit I sure do and I really appreciate you and I. I'm so oh stoked that you've become the master sense of trend jacking. Thanks Dave my friend really appreciate. It's time all of that through the coast. You smashing it speak to you again soon. I hope thank you hope to have you back on a regular basis by by by by well there. It is trend jacking with the legendary Eh. Paul Maher sure. Hope you enjoyed that conversation and it makes a giant difference in your legendary marketing. All right we would like to thank the legendary Palmar arch checkout positive marketing dot com positive marketing dot com The good folks at one life live dot. Org

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