Welcome to “The Horse’s Mouth” with Tom McManus, a cool, unique talk show where guests belly up to the bar to discuss business, marketing, and life. No gossip, no hearsay, no BS, just the straight-up truth, right from the source.
Tom’s longtime love of bartending has come full circle since his days as a linebacker on the inaugural Jacksonville Jaguars football team—slinging drinks and talking shop with everyone from high-profile sports figures and entertainers to business leaders, journalists, and community leaders. Tom and guests trade insight and anecdotes, explore day-to-day topics and tackle the hard subjects, all with equal measures of energy, honesty, and laughter. Get the skinny on the real people behind the headlines, straight from the horse’s mouth.
This week, Tom spoke with Snyder Man from Snyder Heating and Air Conditioning, Norman Blum from First Coast Promotions, Daniel Burstein from MECLABS Institute, David Naughton from Acentria Insurance, and Mike White from BluHorn.
How do you do your branding?
We go to a lot of events where we have these Snyder Man capes that we’ve made. We go out and hand them out to kids everywhere. We do that and then, we go to visit the hospitals about once or twice a year, and we also go to the Alhambra Theater. We have a lot of places where we hang out in the community, putting smiles on faces and just doing good. I know that the capes themselves, they’re about three dollars each. We order a thousand at a time. So that’s just a small portion and then, of course, we have hats and koozies and things like that. I don’t have the exact percentage, but we spend a pretty great deal on marketing and branding, it’s important.
For our branding, we have started this online store campaign. I’ve been around the block a few years, it’s interesting to see all of the innovations that have come along since I’ve started.
We really want to understand how people make choices. Why did they choose one thing over another thing? When it comes to branding, one thing to consider is what is the unique value proposition of your company. Sometimes, there are these shiny brands out there that seem nice and people like. However, do they communicate that unique value proposition message every time? Is that message communicated to the customer?
It’s a tough call, as you said, the value of ad proposition is there but the problem with insurance is that it is a “look back” thing. You often won’t know that it’s wrong until it is too late. Where we try to do the value ad is upfront, making sure to ask questions and that everything is done correctly the first place so that you don’t have that bad phone call.
At BluHorn, hundreds of advertising agencies and marketing departments use us to purchase media. However it’s not just about where you’re placing the ads, it’s the message you’re delivering over and over and over again. You want to know who the audience will be and make sure to hit them with the right message.
We set up an online store for the J-Fund for a three-month period during the Google campaign ad. So, we put a link together. They sent out the link to their donors throughout the country. This, in turn, helped raise money for parents to stay in hotels so they can be with their child who is in the hospital with cancer. We created the online store for them.
What do you think is the best form of marketing out there?
Everyone wants to know, should I go digital or stay in print? We did a study and surveyed 2400 American consumers, and we asked when you’re making a purchase what do you trust the most. Number one wasn’t Google, wasn’t YouTube, it was print ads. Eighty-two-percent of Americans said print ads. You got to look who are my customers, don’t look at what other people are doing. You need to be seeing how you can serve your customers.
Face-to-face is a big one for us. We’re involved in a number of industry trade associations, and we travel around a lot to get our name out there.