Letter from the Editor
You can have whatever you want to drink. You can end up in a conversation, or a debate with a complete stranger. There are snacks, dodgy carpets and secret corners. You take your dad there, your team there, you meet for first dates there. And London – particularly Ingenuity’s locale Fitzrovia – is full of shining examples of the British institution that is the pub.
The Ingenuity team has a number of favourites (big shout out to The Grafton Arms) and there’s no doubt that the Ingenuity gang are missing their Thursday + Friday (let’s face it Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday + Friday) pub rituals as we enter our fourth week working from home.
Which is why some of our more precocious members of the Brand Partnerships team decided to launch The Marketer’s Tavern. A weekly virtual happy hour, hosted by our very own ex-pub landlord Edd Weller, which brings together marketers for a drink, gossip and some shop chat via Zoom. And the best part? No queue for your top up of G+T. Genius.
We’ve pulled together some of the best bits from the soft launch for your perusal.
The Taverners’ Talk
Though times are undeniably tough, with many of The Tavern’s patrons (The Taverners) admitting to difficult decisions, quick pivots and isolation madness, the tone was positive and constructive. Everyone wanted to share, see each other’s faces, support one and other and engage in some good-humoured joshing.
The main discussion points were:
Consumer shutdown: We’re getting to a point where people are turning off from the news. They’ve overdosed by the constant reminders and it’s too depressing. The consensus is that people know what’s going on, they don’t want to hear brand’s opinions on it but are starting to look for entertainment and distraction.
In tune: The Taverners agreed that there was a risk of missing the mark tonally as a brand at the moment (not naming names – giant sporting retailer) and postured that it was really important for marketers to ask yourself ‘what can you do to be socially responsible right now?’. They agreed that People want the normality of hearing from brands, but they want to be given back to. Brands definitely shouldn’t stop communicating, they just need to be aware and empathetic with their messaging.
Creative thinking: Many of our taverners talked about teams being temporarily downsized, plans being derailed and the need for creativity now more than ever. Many talked about thinking outside the box, hoping that this short-term challenge will eventually lead to long term gain. They’re thinking outside the box and temporarily switching partnerships to brands that are really coming into their own at the moment e.g. online publishers or subscription services etc. Again, the main takeaway here was being sensitive to the unsettled time everyone is going through.
Play the game: A lot of our Taverners at the soft launch were from the world of gaming or sports. There was a lot of chat about the opportunities for gaming as we know it, as well as new ones in the rapidly growing areas of virtual sports (such as the Virtual Grand National or Virtual F1) and eSports. The innovation and growth in this sector is really positive and rapid growth is bringing even the Wild West of eSports into the mainstream.
Having worked in the same industry and knowing of one another for many years, two members of the brand community finally met virtually in The Marketer’s Tavern. Maybe we will make even more accidental virtual matches in the coming weeks!
Join us for more next week.