your monthly hit of marketing street knowledge


APRIL 2020

Firstly, we hope that you are safe and well.

This issue is being published from lockdown at the Rockstar CMO penthouse, we debated whether to publish and we delayed things a bit as we’ve checked with all our writers to make sure they are OK for us to go ahead. The nature of publishing a monthly magazine is that we set the topic a month in advance and some of these articles were written weeks ago.

So, despite the name, this issue is not themed around the virus. That’s not to say our writers are tone-deaf to what is happening, and I encourage you to check out their social media feeds to see how they and their companies are reacting to the pandemic, some really good stuff out there.

The actual theme for this issue is the balance marketers need in making decisions based on data and creativity.

This is pretty relevant right now as the human emotion of empathy is the watchword for communications as we sensitively navigate where our consumers are, their readiness to engage and how our brands, services, and products can help.

Perhaps something the data and the marketing robots would struggle with, and we’ve seen plenty of examples of automated campaigns causing embarrassment for brands over the last couple of weeks, as we continue to see push marketing for holidays, cars and eating out.

The title of the issue is a last-minute substitution, a nod to the crisis. It comes from the song by The Specials in the UK (and a later greatest hits album) released in 1981, an anthem for the closing of our pubs and social distancing and comes from a time of uncertainty we probably feel now.

So, welcome to THE GHOST TOWN ISSUE.

Thanks for reading, being part of our community, sharing the advice of all of the folks that generously contribute. I hope you, your families and colleagues are safe and well.


Ian Truscott / Founding editor. @iantruscott

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