Moving On Up...To The East Side

We launched the Razor Branding blog two years ago. Hard to believe the first post was back in 2007 and now over 200 posts later, we are moving on.

Although the Blogger platform served our early needs well, we have grown up and WordPress is the right fit for how we are growing and where we are going.

The functionality and integration with our website is very exciting. As our social media presence grows it is great to be able to unite all of our efforts around our website, keeping everything connected.

As a reader of Razor Branding Blog, we hope you will make the move with us.

Please click here, check out the new and improved blog location and subscribe via email or reader to continue receiving new posts as they happen.

We look forward to your thoughts and feedback. Thanks.

Brand Buzz: Ebay

Tune in at 5:20pm every Monday to FM 105.1 or online (www.kpel1051.com) to listen to Brand Buzz with Jaci Russo.

Each week we discuss a different social media application and how you can use it to enhance your brand.

This week's topic is Ebay.

Ebay is well known for the ability to buy and sell stuff, but it is also a true networking site. The feedback features allow consumers to share information about sellers and their products.

The Ebay community is a very large and very strong force in the world of retail sales.

If your company isn't a part of it, should you be?

Tune in to Brand Buzz to hear more discussion on the topic and be a part of the conversation.

For more information, you can download the Ebay 101 white paper.

Please join our Facebook page at
Or you can follow us on Twitter at

Please let us know what you think. Feel free to call or send your questions and we will answer live on the air.

5 Reasons Why Coupons Don't Work

Ahh, the good old days.

Manufacturers used traditional media, mainly newspaper, to advertise a coupon.

Stores went one step further and on certain days of the week the value of the coupon would double.

Times have sure changed.

Even during a recession people can't be counted on to redeem their coupons.


Why would anyone ignore the chance to save money?

1. Time: Gone are the days of housewives who can take time away from their bridge game to clip coupons. Even if someone doesn't have a full time job outside of the home they are way too busy with other commitments to keep track of $1 off coupons.

2. Memory: Often, with so many details to track in every day life, it is near impossible to remember that which is not the most important. If an ad drives a consumer into a store and they have to remember to "say you heard it here" the chances are slim and none they will remember unless they heard the ad in the parking lot, and even then it's doubtful.

3. Pride: The generation of the Great Depression and the one that followed were programmed to save. Save money, save leftovers, save used tinfoil if they could. Even in the depths of a recession there are scores of people that are too concerned with how people will perceive them. The pride from saving hasn't become popular again.

4. Embarrassment: Too often the clerks have not received the message correctly from corporate and don't know about the promotion. If the consumer has taken time to clip the coupon and remembered to use it and takes pride in saving money only to have the employee at the register hold up the line to check with a manager, they won't be too inclined to do it again later.

Each of those can be overcome, but the biggest reason why coupons fail:

5. Relational v Transactional: Consumers make decisions to purchase based on relational or transactional rationales. In some cases, they will drive across town to save a dollar yet in others, they will spend five figures with a company without any comparison research because they believe in the company and are total brand advocates.

If you have done your job right, then you have been attracting relational consumers, not transactional ones.

You have been engaging consumers and they have a true emotional connection with your company.

Brand advocates don't need a coupon.

Members of the tribe don't look to save $1.

Your marketing success should be based on total sales performance. Not the redemption of just one coupon.

Which would you prefer? Redemption of 30 coupons or an increase in same store sales of 10%?

Focus on your relational customers and let your competition deal with the $1 off transactional ones.

Jaci Russo
Sr. Partner/Brand Strategist

As a Teenager in the 80's

I was truly devastated to hear of John Hughes' death last week. Although we have lost a number of icons from my childhood recently, Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson come to mind first, it is John Hughes who spoke to me.

He was a storyteller. More than any other film maker at the time, John Hughes really seemed to understand what I was going through.

Maybe it's because we were both born in February, just 3 days apart..well 20 years and 3 days but I think the point is still valid.

I could find myself in the group of misfits in The Breakfast Club. I actually invested a considerable amount of time and effort getting in trouble with the hopes that my all girl catholic high school had a detention program that would be as much fun.

As a writer on Some Kind of Wonderful he captured perfectly the pain and angst of being in love with your best friend and then suffering through having to watch him fall in love with someone else. The story of my life through middle school and high school. Perhaps if I had just learned to play the drums like Mary Stuart Masterson then I could have won Eric Stoltz's heart at the end too.

Sixteen Candles...Pretty in Pink...Molly Ringwald was living my life, only with better hair, wardrobe, lighting and she always got the guy in the end.

Of course I can't leave off Ferris Bueller's Day Off and Weird Science. These are the movies that really defined my generation at the time, and provide a time capsule look into life in the 80's.

I felt like John Hughes truly understood the challenges, and at times misery, of my life better than anyone else on the planet. But it never occurred to me to write him a letter and thank him. It never occurred to me that he would want to hear from a lost teenager in Louisiana.

Alison Byrne Fields did. She wrote John Hughes a letter in 1985 and thanked him for The Breakfast Club. As she explains in her blog post, Sincerely John Hughes, he wrote her back, which was so much more than she expected. But he sent a form letter, which was so much less than she hoped for. Their pen pal relationship continued for two years and I think it probably benefited him as much as it touched her.

I have an entirely new level of respect for this great man and his capacity to touch people. That a very busy director at the top of his professional game would take time out of his schedule to write to a teenager, what a gift.

While I was reading her post, I realized how much social media unites us all. A number of media outlets, including The Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and the LA Times, just to name a few, picked up on the story of her pen pal relationship and featured it on their websites.

Beyond just the rapid fire ability to share information, the social media network unites us and our life experiences in the same way John Hughes' movies did. We can relate. We share a connection that develops an emotional bond.

How will you use this power today? Who will you touch?

Jaci Russo
Sr. Partner

KPEL Brand Buzz: MySpace

Tune in every Monday at 5:20pm on KPEL (www.kpel1051.com) for another weekly edition of Brand Buzz.

Today's topic is MySpace.

Each week Brand Buzz explores different applications that make up the social media network.

Today we are discussing MySpace.

Is it dead?

Was it replaced by Facebook?

Is there even any point to mentioning it at all?

MySpace still has a seat at the table and merits examination.

Tune in to KPEL at FM 105.1 or online www.kpel1051.com at 5:20 to learn more and to be a part of the conversation.

Please join our Facebook page at
Or you can follow us on Twitter at

Please let us know what you think. Feel free to call or send your questions and we will answer live on the air.

Jaci Russo
Sr. Partner/Brand Strategist

Vote Early, Vote Often

Fuel Lines, a leading resource for advertising agencies across the country, holds a monthly poll to determine the best ad agency blog. With almost 62,000 advertising agencies in America, we are honored to announce that Razor Branding Blog has been nominated as a Blog of the Month for July.

As a fifth time nominee, we are in it to win it, and starting to feel like we are always a bridesmaid and never the bride.

If you have been a faithful reader, and enjoy Razor Branding Blog, please vote for us now by clicking here.

If you are new to Razor Branding Blog, please review our previous blog posts, links are on the right side of the page, and then click here to vote.

As they say in politics, please vote early and vote often.

We appreciate your support.We are very honored that Razor Branding Blog was nominated as a blog of the month by Fuel Lines.

Please click here to vote for Razor Branding.

Jaci Russo
Sr. Partner/Brand Strategist

KPEL Brand Buzz: Slideshare

Tune in every Monday at 5:20pm on KPEL(www.kpel1051.com) for another weekly edition of Brand Buzz.

Today's topic is SlideShare.

Each week Brand Buzz explores different applications that make up the social media network.

Today we are going to look at a tool that might make your presentations and research a little bit easier.

SlideShare provides a place to post and review presenations in pdf or power point.

It's a great way to demonstrate your expertise. You can also share presentations amongst team members in different locations.

Sharing items of interest to you just got a whole lot easier.

Tune in to KPEL at FM 105.1 or onlinewww.kpel1051.com at 5:20 to learn more and to be a part of the conversation.

Please join our Facebook page at
Or you can follow us on Twitter at

Please let us know what you think. Feel free to call or send your questions and we will answer live on the air.

Jaci Russo
Sr. Partner/Brand Strategist

Who You Know or What You Know?

I am often asked about the difference between Twitter and Facebook.

Depending on the person doing the asking, there are a number of different answers that might make sense to them.

Facebook is for the people you already know and Twitter will help you reach the people you want to know.

Facebook is about who you know and Twitter is about what you know.

Facebook is all inclusive and Twitter is enhanced through third party apps.

Facebook is profitable and Twitter is still looking for a way to monetize.

Facebook is personal and Twitter is professional.

But I think the best way to differentiate...

Facebook is about sharing an emotional connection that encourages engagement (branding) and Twitter is about sharing information.

This study, by Social Media Today, illustrates the amount of time that users spend with a link whether they click through from Digg, Facebook or Twitter.

Both have a great benefit - how will you use them today?

Jaci Russo
Sr. Partner/Brand Strategist