May 19, 2020

Discover the importance of creative marketing for your business

Leadership
Finance
Marketing
business tips
Cutter Slagle
3 min
Discover the importance of creative marketing for your business

You most likely only associate the fictional Harry Potter character with the book and film series. However, the famous brand is now venturing into new territories: the bar scene.

Originally reported by our sister brand Business Review Canada, In Toronto, a Harry Potter themed bar recently opened. The Lockhart (taken from a character’s name) offers drinks and appetizers based off of different elements of the book including spells, locations and more. The menu even offers more traditional items for those who aren’t fans of the book/film series.

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At the time of its release, Harry Potter garnered a huge following. And even though the series has officially ended, the fans haven’t gone anywhere. Therefore, the idea to create an establishment based on the boy wizard is a smart marketing technique. Not only will the bar stand out from other bars, but admirers of J.K. Rowling and her popular character will most likely want to visit the venue.

 To run a successful business, it’s not only important to market your company, but you must pursue techniques that are new and inventive. Therefore, we’ve put together a list of different ways in which thinking outside the box can be effective.

More creativity, more customers

When it comes to marketing, don’t think of the act as a chore—have fun with the process! After all, your efforts are supposed to get more people to become aware of your business. Therefore, don’t be afraid to be as creative as possible.

When thinking of new ideas, it’s not initially about quality, but quantity. You should try to get down as many ideas as possible. You can always go back later and sort through your list, determining which ideas you can and should actually pursue.

Diversity is key

When it comes to marketing, remember to be creative and diverse. You want your business to stand out from others in the industry. Therefore, encourage all workers and members of the team to come up with as many ideas as possible—you never know which over the top, innovating suggestion will take the company to new levels and a broader audience.

Be mindful of technology

It doesn’t matter what type of business you’re currently involved in, technology always seems to be changing. Therefore, it’s important to stay update on advances, whether they directly impact you or not; you may find a way to spin these technological changes in your favor.  

Always have an open mind and try to predict how new inventions can have a positive impact on your specific business.

Thinking outside the box is all about pushing boundaries. Sure, you don’t want to be so controversial that you’re potentially harming your business or turning customers away. However, you want to give clients something they’ve never seen before—you have to draw them in and peak their curiosity.

All marketing techniques have a chance of failing—it’s hard to determine which idea is going to be a definite hit. However, don’t forget that it’s alright to take risks. After all, you never know when one of those risks is going to eventually pay off and become a success.

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[SOURCE: Now Toronto and Entrepreneur.com

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Jun 18, 2021

Microsoft: Building a secure foundation to drive NASCAR

NASCAR
Microsoft
3 min
Racing fans can expect the ultimate virtual experience as a result of the partnership with Microsoft and NASCAR

Microsoft is a key partner of The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) and together they are driving ahead to create an inclusive and immersive new fan experience (FX).

These long-term partners have not only navigated the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic with the use of Microsoft Teams and Microsoft 365, but are now looking to a future packed with virtual events to enhance the FX, well beyond NASCAR’S famous Daytona racetrack. 

“Together, we've created a secure environment that's allowed for collaboration, but the future is all about the fans”, said Melinda Cook, General Manager for Microsoft South USA Commercial Business, who cited a culture of transparency, passion, adaptiveness, and a growth mindset as to why this alignment is so successful.”

“We've partnered to create a fluid, immersive experience for the users that is supported by a secure foundation with Microsoft in the background. We are focused on empowering and enabling customers and businesses, like NASCAR, to reach their full potential. We do this with our cloud platform which provides data insights and security.”

“Our cloud environment allows NASCAR to move forward with their digital transformation journey while we are in the background,” said Cook who highlights that Microsoft is helping NASCAR

  • Empower employees productivity and collaboration
  • Improve fan engagement and experience
  • Improve environment security and IT productivity
  • Improve racing operations

 

Microsoft Teams, which is part of the Microsoft 365 suite, enabled employees to work remotely, while staying productive, during the pandemic. “This allowed people to provide the same level of productivity with the use of video conference and instant messaging to collaborate on documents. Increased automation also allows the pit crews, IT, and the business to focus on safety, racing operations, and on the fan experience,” said Cook.

“We have started to innovate to create a more inclusive fanbase, this includes using Xbox to give people the experience of being a virtual racer or even leveraging some of the tools in Microsoft Teams to have a virtual ride along experience.”

“These environments are how we create a more inclusive and immersive experience for the fans. We're working on a virtual fan wall which allows people from new locations to participate in these events,” said Cook, who pointed out Microsoft was also helping bring legacy experiences alive from NASCAR’s archives. 

“At Microsoft we can take it one level further by letting fans know what it's like to see the pit crew experience, the data and all the behind-the-scenes action. We will continue to improve automation with machine learning and artificial intelligence, from marketing to IT operations to finance to racing operations,” said Cook.

Christine Stoffel-Moffett, Vice President of Enterprise Technology at NASCAR, said: “Microsoft is one of our key partners. They have been instrumental in helping the NASCAR enterprise technology team re-architect our Microsoft systems to ensure an advanced level of security across our environment, contribute to our business outcomes, and focus on fan experience.”

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