Adding Meaningful Insights And Activating Data With Vincent Washington, VP Of CXM Best Practices Group At Sprinklr

Vincent Washington is the Vice President of the Customer Experience Management Best Practices Group at Sprinklr. With four years of experience at the company, Vincent has a diverse professional background, having worked previously at Amazon, UPS, LinkedIn, and BlackBerry. With his extensive experience in various roles and seeing technology come and go, he has learned that only authentic relationships built on mutual respect and genuine interest stand the test of time. When it comes to CMX, Vincent advocates for the inclusion of relevant insights related to existing conversations rather than forcefully inserting messages that do not align with the context, resulting in the best long-term outcomes.

In this episode, Alan and Vincent discuss the evolution of Sprinklr, which has transformed from a digital listening and social media management platform to a comprehensive CXM solution. Through breaking down data silos and gaining a deeper understanding of customers, Sprinklr, in collaboration with Adobe, can provide a holistic view of the customer and enable businesses to create personalized marketing and advertisements that are more targeted and relevant. Vincent also shares his valuable insights on CXM best practices, including warnings against common mistakes that brands make while attempting to remain relevant and ways AI can be incorporated into CMX strategies.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How Sprinklr has evolved
  • CXM Best Practices
  • How AI can be used in CMX strategies

Key Highlights:

  • [01:10] Introductions
  • [01:55] Sprinklr and Adobe partnership
  • [02:40] The latest and greatest at Sprinklr
  • [04:00] CXM Best Practices
  • [07:10] A better way to view the world to boost CMX
  • [08:00] Milk’s favorite cookie
  • [08:40] Adobe’s powerful partnerships and nostalgia
  • [10:25] Technology is going to change, but relationships will remain.
  • [11:30] Smiles are universal, and empowerment is paramount.

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Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Building Internal Marketing Foundations With Lara Krug, CMO At The Kansas City Chiefs

Lara Krug is the CMO of the Super Bowl-winning Kansas City Chiefs. Before entering the NFL, she worked at Avon, L’Oréal, and Anheuser-Busch, where she learned the GTMs for beauty and beer weren’t all that different. During the pandemic, Laura and her family moved back to her husband’s hometown, Kansas City, and it wasn’t long before she was contacted about being the Chiefs’ first-ever CMO. They had never had a formal marketing team, so she has been working hard to build foundations and help the organization understand the role of marketing. They are more than just a team; they are a brand.

In this episode, Alan and Lara discuss what it’s like to start and lead marketing efforts for an organization that isn’t just a business but a source of entertainment as well. Lara and her team don’t just market Mahomes and the boys; they also market the concerts and other events at the stadium, youth programs, and corporate partnerships. They are essentially an internal agency working to entertain fans at every touchpoint using personalization and content at scale.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • The role of the CMO of an NFL team
  • How Lara is building the foundation for “The World’s Team”
  • The power of personalization and content at scale

Key Highlights:

  • [01:15] What it feels like to win the Superbowl
  • [02:30] When you win or lose, everyone sees it.
  • [03:20] The road from Connecticut to KC
  • [05:25] Marketing focus: it’s more than just a team
  • [07:40] Personalization and content at scale
  • [09:30] A team, a venue, and a media company
  • [11:00] Setting up workflows
  • [12:30] Key Insights from the Summit
  • [14:00] “Believe in best intent” and “progress, not perfection.”
  • [15:10] Rewarding fandom
  • [16:00] Magic and mispronunciations

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Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

The Future Of Customer Data Platforms With Ryan Fleisch, Head Of Product Marketing, Real-Time CDP, And Audience Manager At Adobe

Ryan Fleisch is Adobe’s Head of Product Marketing and Real-Time CDP and Audience Manager. Being a lifelong chess player, it makes sense that he is passionate about looking beyond the immediate use cases of AI and trying to understand and anticipate ways the technology will impact workflows and the nature of marketing in the future. He learned from his dad that “the day you stop learning is the day your career becomes nothing more than a job.” This wisdom has kept him intellectually curious and lends itself perfectly to the cutting-edge work being done at Adobe.

In this episode, Ryan and I discuss customer data platforms, what makes Adobe’s CDP “real-time,” new features to help businesses operate effectively in the cookieless world, and how generative AI will transform how companies use data. At Adobe, “real-time” isn’t a buzzword; it’s a key component they have been optimizing since day one. They have built a globally distributed network of servers to be able to handle data and use it in milliseconds. This network allows Adobe’s Real-Time CDP users to collect data, manage it, process it, and immediately use it to understand customer intent and activate strategies. In addition to the immediacy of the tool, Adobe has launched a new open framework that allows them to work with data providers to compile consented, non-cookie-based data into their platform in a private, safe way. Once businesses effectively collect and manage their first-party data, many are unsure exactly what to do with it. This is where Adobe’s new use-case playbooks come in handy. These tools are built into the CDP and give businesses guided workflows based on their specific business objectives. Ryan tells us one of the many uses for generative AI in marketing is helping marketers understand and recognize missed opportunities hidden in the mass of data. He highlights Adobe Sensei GenAI as one such tool.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • The three critical components that make Adobe’s CDP “real-time”
  • The main things to consider when selecting a CDP
  • Use cases for generative AI with customer data

 Key Highlights

  • [01:25] What is Adobe Real-Time CDP?
  • [02:55] What new things are available?
  • [04:35] A 3D view of the customer
  • [05:20] Real-world applications and activations
  • [06:20] Use Case playbooks
  • [07:10] It’s all generative.
  • [08:00] What to think about when you are selecting your CDP
  • [09:40] Key takeaways from the Adobe Summit
  • [11:30] Advice from Dad
  • [12:20] Looking beyond the immediate use cases for AI
  • [12:55] Checkmate

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Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Teamwork, Perseverance, And Innovation With Bridget Esposito, Vice President, Group Creative Director At Prudential Financial

Bridget Esposito has been the Vice President and Global Creative Director at Prudential Financial for nine years. She is also a visual problem solver, a mother of two, a professor teaching design to non-designers, and a former D1 softball player and coach. Bridget still plays softball and credits the sport with her philosophy around leadership, team dynamics, and culture. The best piece of advice she has received is that “the game doesn’t know” anything about you. All it knows is your level of effort on that given day. This advice has helped her fight the fear of hierarchies in business and approach her career with a “why not me?” attitude.

In this episode, Bridget and I discuss the launch of Adobe Firefly and how it’s helping calm fears and answer questions about AI for marketers and creatives. She advises professionals not to be scared of AI replacing them but instead to use it as a tool and understand how it can support them. She also gives us insight into the marketing focus at Prudential and the benefits and challenges of being a 150-year-old company. Prudential is pushing for innovation with a customer-first mindset and a culture that empowers everyone to understand they have the responsibility and ability to solve problems and improve processes. Bridget finishes with advice about the necessity of failure to achieve innovation and the importance of having a holistic business understanding to facilitate effective creativity.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • Why AI isn’t a threat but rather a tool
  • Why innovation is so prudent for Prudential
  • Lessons learned from softball

 Key Highlights

  • [00:30] Introduction
  • [01:20] Lifelong athlete
  • [02:15] Takeaways from the summit
  • [03:15] AI copyright conversation
  • [04:10] Prudential’s marketing journey
  • [05:50] Culture at Prudential and accountability at the top
  • [06:45] Content Creation to Personalization
  • [08:25] Tips for marketers trying to change business lines and improve partnerships
  • [10:00] Her biggest lessons learned
  • [11:00] The best piece of advice she’s ever gotten
  • [12:25] Learn ALL aspects of marketing.
  • [13:25] The love of teamwork

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Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

The New American Audience: 3 Demographic Facts Marketers Should Be Aware Of

As marketers work on stretching their budgets to meet the ROI challenges of the future, many are rethinking the very concept of audience. Yet, according to a recent report by NielsenIQ, only 23 percent of global marketers believe that they have the quality audience data that they need to optimize the value of their marketing spend. In this post, we present some additional facts about American consumers drawn from the most recent U.S. Census data that marketers can use to enrich their marketing strategies.

Audience Fact #1: Biracial, multiracial, and other “unlisted” non-white audiences represent nearly 62 million consumers.

There’s a reason for the recent increase in the visibility of multi-racial people in advertising: Biracial audiences represent ten percent of the American population. According to the 2020 US Census, 33,848,943 identify as two or more races. In addition, 27,915,715 people identified as non-white and not Black, Hispanic or Latino, Asian, Native American, Hawaiian, or Pacific Islander.

Why It Matters: The visibility of ethnically or racially “ambiguous” people in ads and marketing content is becoming more common—but not, perhaps, at the pace of demographic changes. As Gen Z and Gen Alpha age—two of the most diverse generations in history—people who identify as multiracial or as “other” will likely expect representation in ads targeting their generation. 

Audience Fact #2: Only about half (47.3 percent) of American households are comprised of married couples.

While married couples are still standard sitcom fare, a significant slice of American households are helmed by single men (18.1 percent) or single women (27.3 percent). That’s a meaningful insight for brand marketers who may have to adjust their marketing strategy to target singles who may purchase differently than two-adult homes with or without children.

Why It Matters: While unmarried adults who live together and singles may purchase many of the same items as married couples, married couples are often two-income households—which may provide greater discretionary income if they do not have children. Marketers who deeply understand their audience’s demographics and how they shop can translate those insights into a more impactful marketing strategy.

Audience Fact #3: Older teens (15-17) represent just four percent of the population—5-14s are 14 percent.

Despite the high visibility of older teens in gaming ads and other campaigns targeting the younger set, children aged five to 14 represent 13 percent of the US population, while older teens aged 15-17 represent 3.9 percent. 

Why It Matters: Marketers selling products appropriate for everyone need to be aware that they should be targeting Millennial and Gen X parents, while marketers for 15 and up products should be aware that they are marketing to a very small market saturated with ads. Creativity and authenticity are critical for winning over the small 15-17 teen market who are ad skeptics and partial to influencer campaigns and short, engaging videos, such as those found on TikTok. 

Building Authentic Connections With A Skeptical Audience With Nate Burke, Chief Marketing Officer At Axonius

Nate Burke is the Chief Marketing Officer at cybersecurity solution provider Axonius. Axonius is Nate’s fifth startup and his third in cybersecurity. He was Axonius’ first US employee, starting before they had a product; this allowed him to develop relationships and lean into the “solve, don’t sell” mindset that really sets Axonius apart. Nate wanted to join a company that was simply solving a big problem that was getting worse and where he loved the founders. He found his perfect fit at Axonius and is now working to deliver on their promise of “controlling complexity.”

In this episode, Alan and Nate discuss Nate’s approach to marketing to one of the most skeptical audiences ever, cybersecurity professionals, and how Axonius is doing it differently. Axonius tackles one of the most fundamental problems in cybersecurity: understanding what businesses have. They aim to be the system of record for all the digital infrastructure in a company and refuse to use FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) to market to their clients. Although that is the typical cybersecurity marketing play, Nate and Axonius understand that no one likes buying based on fear, so they choose to lean into the novelty of honesty and delivering on their promises to stand out and build trust with their skeptical audience. In addition, they focus on building relationships with collaborators like Olympian Simone Biles and cross-fit athlete Amy Bream to differentiate themselves in the market.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How to build trust with a skeptical audience
  • What makes a great salesperson?
  • How Axonius is subverting the marketing norms in their industry

 Key Highlights

  • [01:40] RSA Tattoo Story
  • [04:40] How Nate became CMO at Axonius
  • [06:20] Why Nate left the marketing program in college
  • [09:00] What does Axonius do?
  • [11:40] Why the fundamentals are so complicated
  • [13:00] How to approach marketing to the most skeptical audience
  • [16:00] Where cybersecurity marketers fall short
  • [16:55] The benefits of joining Axonius early
  • [18:00] Solve, don’t sell.
  • [21:20] The opposite marketing approach Axonius is taking
  • [23:50] How Simone Biles and Amy Bream embody “controlling complexity”
  • [27:15] The importance of emotional appeal in B2B marketing
  • [29:45] Trust based on integrity
  • [31:15] It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you ask for help.
  • [34:05] What AI really means for marketing right now
  • [37:20] Brands to watch
  • [39:05] The opportunity to be unique and honest

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Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Gen Green: Brands Court Gen Z With Authenticity

An eco-aware lifestyle is an ideal that over 60 percent of Gen Z reported that they adhere to as a rule, per a recent survey of 16,000 Gen Z consumers, and it’s driving their purchasing decisions, even when it costs more.  In this post, we’ll look at how brands translate old themes for a new generation of consumers who actively seek opportunities to express their values through their purchasing decisions.

Promoting Authentic Change As The New Brand Differentiator

Gas-guzzling muscle cars don’t usually appear in ads targeting Gen Z, especially when they’re talking about sustainability—but as manufacturing brands like BF Goodrich target the next generation of consumers, they are focusing on ways that products can blend in with a sustainability-driven lifestyle. And that might mean highlighting how their brand works for electronic vehicles or how Gen Z car enthusiasts who rebuild muscle cars piece by piece rather than purchasing new ones off the lot are practicing a form of upcycling, as BF Goodrich does in its campaign promo short, “Your Next Starts Now.” 

That marketing push is rooted in a meaningful shift in how and why Gen Z and millennials purchase today. Unlike a generation ago, three-quarters of younger consumers care more about what a brand represents and does than the brand itself, per Nielsen. According to a recent report by Credit Suisse, Gen Z consumers in the world’s two largest consumer markets, India and China, are even more concerned about purchasing sustainable products than American and UK shoppers in the same demographic.

That kind of values-driven consumption has sparked new language in many brand campaigns and new public initiatives by brands to integrate sustainability programs into their branding narratives. Brands like Kering, Adidas, McCormick and Microsoft’s Xbox have woven details about their sustainability initiatives into their ad and PR campaigns, even when those efforts are well behind the scenes. For example, McCormick announced its 54th place on Barron’s 100 Most Sustainable Companies List and Fortune’s 2022 Change the World list of 50 global companies in a press release, even though many of their achievements have to do with backend work—like increasing the financial resilience of small hold farmers—that can’t fit neatly on a label. Microsoft’s Xbox, the first console to offer carbon-aware downloads and updates, followed a similar tactic, promoting its sustainability efforts with content that included video activations across social platforms.

It’s Not Easy Being (Or Claiming To Be) Green

There’s good reason for brands to trumpet their sustainability cred: Products that placed ESG-related claims in their branding or advertising averaged 28 percent cumulative growth over the past five-year period, compared to 20 percent for products that made no such claims, according to McKinsey. But there’s also the matter of authenticity to consider. With 78 percent of all consumers stating that sustainability is important to them, Gen Z is among the most sensitive to greenwashing—the practice of saying but not necessarily doing anything about sustainability. 

According to Deloitte, nearly 30 percent of Gen Z consumers have “canceled” a brand when claims in an ad campaign or a brand affiliation contradicted the company’s actions. As approximately 88 percent of Gen Z consumers in a recent survey stated that they don’t trust most brands’ claims regarding sustainability, a branding or campaign misstep that could be interpreted as greenwashing could be a costly mistake. With 40 percent of many brands’ sustainability claims likely to be exaggerated at best, per The International Consumer Protection Enforcement Network (ICPEN), brand marketers representing a company that can back up its green-leaning marketing themes with actions may find an edge in gaining Gen Z trust.

One way brands can connect with Gen Z and maintain a patina of trustworthiness as they begin the process of evolving towards greener operations or practices is to work with influencers. A survey by Unilever and the Behavioural Insights Team (BIT) of 6,000 consumers across the US, UK and Canada showed that 78% of consumers cited influencers as the most important reason why they made sustainable choices when shopping. That’s far more influential on buying choices than news reports touting green messaging (37 percent) or government campaigns (20 percent) doing the same.

The Takeaway: Influencers are the translators of Gen Z’s purchasing intent. While brands launch new sustainable products and many fail—research shows it’s not consumers who don’t want to purchase—it’s likely a marketing (or cost) issue. As savvy brands develop new lines and court Gen Z, marketers should be mindful not to overstate their brand’s commitment to sustainability and make sure that changes are meaningful, not cosmetic.

NewFronts: Streams Lean In On New Options For Brand Marketers

As leading streamers face revenue challenges, top platforms like Amazon Prime Video and Netflix are leaning into new ad strategies, offering new opportunities for brand marketers as competitor FAST channels see gains.

Amazon Brand Marketers With New Measurement Tools

“Advertisers are navigating a myriad of challenges—media fragmentation, ad identifier loss, incomplete insights, measurement complexity…” said Colleen Aubrey, SVP of Ad Products and Tech, Amazon Ads in a company press release. “Our NewFront illustrated how our premium content across a wide range of Amazon properties, combined with advanced campaign planning and measurement solutions, bridges content to commerce—so that customers can easily move from enjoying their favorite movie or music to buying their favorite product or service.”

Amazon’s new push to appeal to marketers includes the integration of geo-customizable and advanced audience targeting capabilities for advertisers during Thursday Night Football broadcasts. In addition, Amazon Live will now produce shoppable livestream content in collaboration with publishers and media brands, not just influencers. This represents Amazon’s deeper push towards shoppable entertainment, as customers with the integration of livestream shoppable content from Tastemade and REVOLT. 

Amazon also announced VideoAmp and iSpot were announced as new streaming TV measurement services available to advertisers seeking to measure cross-screen impressions in addition to the first-party measurement options available within Amazon Ads.

Amazon Marketing Cloud (AMC) Audiences also launched at NewFronts, a “clean room” based measurement option allowing advertisers to integrate their data with Amazon signals to review multichannel customer journey insights. From the clean room, advertisers can review and use them to adjust their Amazon Demand-Side Platform (DSP) audience-buying choices automatically.  

What It Means For Marketers:

Amazon’s new options mean that brands have greater control over ad choices but many of the new measurement capabilities will keep them rooted in the Amazon ecosystem, even when their data comes from external sources. Amazon is making its ecosystem more inviting for brands, but it faces pressure from competitors seeking to draw brands in with better audience management or ad targeting options. That means Amazon may continue to enhance its ad-targeting offerings to match competitors like Roku. 

Roku Launches AI-Powered Tools For Marketers

“Roku is not fighting for turf in the streaming wars,” said Charlie Collier, Roku’s president per Deadline. “Roku is the turf. The streaming wars are not happening to Roku. We’re not in the streaming wars. The streaming wars are playing out on our platform.”

Collier’s confidence is likely tied to Roku’s efforts to draw in brands with a guarantee: that advertisers with Roku will reach bigger primetime audiences with their service than through cable. While that promise might be hard actually to measure, since the idea of a “primetime” audience has been muddied due to streaming, there’s something there. Brands are looking to new players to reach audiences that are streaming much more than they are sitting in front of the TV at a set time. The TV ad market has been shrinking since 2021, and brands are looking for options that give them audiences—wherever they might be.

That may be why Roku has launched a context-focused ad product. Roku’s offering uses AI to automatically run relevant ads next to moments in TV shows and movies, allowing brand marketers to “iconic plot moments” that align with brand messaging. Adding to the sweetener, Roku is also offering brands real estate on its iconic homepage – ostensibly allowing them to offer links to content or retail experiences that brands on demand can customize.

What It Means For Marketers

Roku—with almost 72 million subscribers per Statista—has added more than $20 million subscribers over the last two years, but its revenue declined by $70 million in 2022 over 2021. That tracks with Roku’s effort to raise its profile and offer tools that make ad targeting more precise and customizable. As Roku ramps up its efforts to become more attractive to brands, new opportunities to leverage content-driven contextual marketing may arise.

The takeaway? It’s a buyer’s market. Brand marketers can easily create solutions that match their objectives with better audience analytics and ad targeting tools. With so many choices, marketers can afford to diversify their marketing strategies between major platforms as the streaming wars continue.

Banking On Buzz: How The Met Gala Unlocks Crucial ROI

With higher stakes than ever, the most recent Met Gala reportedly generated over $1 billion in earned media value (EMV) for brands—but how much did The Met itself, under pressure to boost its $329 million annual revenue to keep up with inflation, benefit from its signature event?

How The Met Leverages Likes To Drive Millions In Retail Sales

Until 2022, The Met was America’s most visited museum—in 2019, nearly 4.9 million visitors passed through its doors. Since 1948, The Met Gala has galvanized New York society, combining disparate celebrity culture segments with denizens of the City’s most rarified philanthropy circles. The goal to drive awareness of the institution and boost retail sales has become even more urgent post-pandemic since The Met’s visitor rates have dropped dramatically as New York City tourism fluctuated between 2020 and 2023. This tourism dip impacted every New York museum, but The Met is an institution with a global pop culture profile, synonymous with the marketing of New York as a city and a brand. For example, in 2015, just three exhibits generated $946 million in spending in New York City, per the museum. That power to draw tourists to Museum Mile means that the Met’s marketing success is heavily interdependent with New York City’s ability to market itself to tourists and keep them engaged.

Yet, as The Met faced the potential of inflationary concerns further depressing tourism in 2022, the brand’s retail push resulted in sales that far surpassed earnings from fluctuating visitor admissions. Although the Met saw fewer visitors in 2022 than before the pandemic, its retail sales and other paid activities far surpassed its membership and admissions earnings—moving the museum closer to addressing its pandemic-driven revenue shortfalls.

That means that brand awareness and earned media are critical for The Met, especially when retail sales are a significant portion of the institution’s revenue strategy. Fortunately for The Met, retail revenue has soared between 2020 and 2022, with retail and other auxiliary activities earnings going from $24.64 million in 2020 to $45.59 million in 2022, per Statista. That’s been accompanied by a surge in admissions and memberships post-pandemic, but retail remains the biggest source of income under endowments and grants.

That makes The Met Gala the institution’s biggest annual opportunity to leverage earned media to drive the kind of brand awareness that can lift retail sales and inspire tourism.

Per ComScore, this year’s gala generated 285 million total actions on content mentioning the event, with 916 million total video views across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok. On the night of the event, the hashtag #MetGala drove more than 3.4 million mentions.

But how much does that matter to The Met’s brand awareness?

Per Social Index, the most liked recent Instagram share from The Met’s Instagram account as of May 8 generated over $241K in earned media value (EMV) for The Met, even though actor Pedro Pascal cheekily wore Valentino (which gained 39K likes from a similar share) to the Karl Lagerfeld-themed event. Within one week, a search for “Pedro Pascal Met Gala” yielded 6,690 news items. While Pascal promoted The Met Gala’s event with just one post from his Instagram profile nearly a week after the event, the post featuring his Met Gala outfit earned 1.3 million likes, doubling the attention garnered for his post promoting his Mandalorian return this March. That suggests that Pascal may have benefited from his Met Gala appearance as much as The Met did— and that extra attention might also drive new fans to other platforms like Disney+ or HBO, where Pascal stars in The Mandalorian and The Last of Us.

The Met Gala’s star power was also evident on other platforms, like Facebook. A single Facebook Reel share highlighting Jeremy Pope’s homage to Karl Lagerfeld provided The Met with over $29K in EMV, with just 709 shares.

As with influencers— The Met’s brand profile can drive retail sales.

Per Statista, 2022’s retail earnings for the Met almost doubled 2020’s earnings after the return of live events, as consumers, fans, and locals bought Met-branded products from the on-site store and online, which ranges from prints to household décor to books, online and in-person.

The Met’s marketing prowess in promoting its Gala likely plays a significant role in driving ROI for the museum at a critical juncture in its history. And one simple way The Met may be stretching its marketing budget is by allowing influencers, actors, and controversy to fly free on its social channels, thereby boosting its earned media value without paying for a single display ad.

Last year’s Met Gala raised $17.4 million for the museum, and this year’s revenue has not yet been revealed. But whatever this year’s event earned the Met in ticket sales and donations, it will be enhanced by the value of the media attention generated by the celebs, the controversy, and the brands highlighted on the red carpet.

The Takeaway For Marketers:

The success of The Met’s powerful global brand depends on tourism and retail sales. Like any brand, its goal is to drive awareness, optimize conversions and keep fans engaged. One of the easiest ways to do that is to build earned media value: allowing the press, fans, and social platforms to share brand messaging, images, and user-generated content that bolsters brand recognition and drives clicks. Accurately measuring what’s working and comparing it against what’s not is key to building a cost-effective earned media strategy.

A Marketer’s Cheat Sheet For Reaching Gen Alpha

Gen Alpha. Depending on who you ask, they might be considered our best hope for the future or a real piece of work, but for marketers, they represent potentially billions in buying power in the next 5 years as they reach 18 and begin making adult brand choices.

Family First: Why Brands Have To Address The Values Of Millennials and Gen X To Win Gen Alpha

Luckily for marketers, Gen Alpha is a true digital native generation with strong brand identification. But marketers can’t connect with them directly via marketing due to COPPA—so that means winning the trust of Millennials, and in some cases, Gen X, their parents. In this article, we’ll look at Gen Alpha, how they are being reared and how marketers can win their parents’ engagement and trust.

Born between 2010 and 2023, Gen Alpha are most frequently the children of Millennials and Gen X. Diverse, urban and digitally brand aware, Gen Alpha is the first generation to spend hours interacting with digital media as toddlers—and holding brand awareness from kindergarten.

Source: McCrindle; Understanding Generation Alpha

The majority of Gen Alpha owns a tablet (54 percent), and over one-quarter lives in a household with a VR headset. That proximity to digital content goes well beyond exposure to older siblings’ or parents’ activities. For example, 46 percent of 5-7 year-olds spend 1-2 hours daily online.

In addition, well over 75 percent of children 4 and under showed brand recognition for groceries and snacks and asked for those brands specifically.

With their Millennial and Gen X parents guiding and approving their brand choices, brands that align with Gen Alpha parents’ values and priorities can forge lifelong relationships with Gen Alpha.

When attempting to connect with Millennial and Gen X parents, research suggests that brand marketers should be mindful to:

Highlight values. Articulate their alignment with values that Millennials and Gen X focus on when choosing brands. Millennials prioritize sustainability and other ESG concerns when choosing brands to purchase from, so if brand marketers have these values to showcase, this may provide a competitive edge when attempting to reach Gen Alpha through their parents’ purchasing choices. Millennial parents prioritize wellness, independence and a broad worldview. Brands that offer tools or pathways to help Gen Alpha children nurture these traits or experience moments to exercise these traits may win Millennial loyalty.

Be creative with social strategy. While Gen Alpha uses digital media frequently, 75 percent of Millennial parents want to keep their children off social media as long as possible, so marketers should not rely on traditional social marketing tactics to influence Gen Alpha. However, younger consumers are heavily invested in short-form video, so marketers should lean into video content—such as YouTube, the choice of 52 percent of Gen Alpha—that appeals to their targeted demographic on and off social platforms.

Understand that Millennial parents are often striving for “perfection” in lifestyle choices. While Millennials don’t believe they’re “the greatest generation,” a higher percentage of Millennial moms (80 percent) than Gen X (70 percent) think that being a “perfect” parent is a legitimate goal to work towards. That often translates into seeking advice from peers in addition to heavy research before every purchase. 

According to Weber Shandwick data, 55 percent of Millennial moms state that they frequently give advice to members of their social circle on which products to buy. So, influencer relationships and product and brand transparency are key to raising brand awareness and winning social circle trust that will drive conversion.