What Can Scammers Teach Us About Online Marketing



I was reading an article on SmartCompany the other day about an email scam and it occurred to me that they pulled their scam off quite systematically and following some good business rules. The perpetrators swindled “millions” from at least a couple of law firms in Queensland.  Obviously, I am not endorsing this type of behaviour but I was intrigued by the process:

  • “The email scam involves cyber criminals approaching firms via email, posing as prospective clients and asking details about their services.
  • The scammer eventually agrees to sign on as a client, then sends through personal documents to the law firm.
  • These documents prompt the employee on the other end to enter the login details of their work email address, which the scammer harvests.
  • The next step of the scheme involves the scammer watching the inboxes of firms until they see details of a settlement or payment that needs to be made from the firm to another party.
  • The cyber criminal sends a reminder email to the firm about the payment, prompting them to pay this into their bank account instead of to the legitimate recipient, The Brisbane Times reports.”

We are all aware of the different types of customer cycles and paths to purchase. These scammers pretend to be a normal customer and they approach the firm with Awareness; they then move on to, and feign, Evaluation; and finally they move in for a Purchase (which doesn’t eventuate).

Here’s the beautiful part – at the same time that they are pulling the “job”, the firms themselves are also spiralling down the scammer’s funnel. They are approaching multiple top-level firms, making sure the firm is Aware of them and seeing if they are Interested in a new client (who wouldn’t), then move in for the Conversion. I am sure some skilled conmen and women would also like to achieve Retention but I’m guessing that’s a bit hard in their line of work.

As companies become savvier, these scams will work less and less but as the article suggests, some firms are able to escape the funnel at different points whether it’s the lack of a phone number early on, or two-way identification which foils the scam.

All in all, it’s a lesson to be vigilant against scammers but also a reminder that a well thought out user journey or customer experience can lead to a great conversion.




Written By: Rob

Why storytelling is so important to marketing your business



“Stories constitute the single most powerful weapon in a leader’s arsenal.”

Dr. Howard Gardner, professor Harvard University

For today’s lesson, let’s replace “leader” with “brand” or “marketer”.

Leaders have used stories throughout history – many ships have been launched for leaders, greedy for new land – and many boats have been stopped by leaders too (don’t worry I won’t let my point of view on the Stop The Boats political saga drown us before we begin).

You can tell your story once or over and over again, and you can tell it in a few words, or a few hundred thousand. Did you know: A Tale Of Two Cities has 135,000 words and is the most sold book of all time.

Notorious drinker and never one to waste words, Ernest Hemingway was in a bar three sheets to the wind when a fellow drinker who was green with envy over the attention he was getting from the ladies, challenged him to write a six word short story that could make you cry. The next day, hungover and bleary eyed, Hemingway typed up the below and won the bet:

“For Sale: Baby shoes. Never worn.”

What a great story! Not just the six words, but the fact that it was Hemingway, the famously simple worded pathos in his stories shines through in those six words – although the trouble is, Hemingway didn’t write it. Just like Newton was never hit on the head with an apple that lead to his thoughts on gravity (a story so great it led to the name of one the best known brands and great storytellers in their own right).

As a marketer, you might only have enough space for six words. Coca-Cola went from 6 words to 5 in the 90’s. “You can’t beat the feeling” to “You can’t beat the real thing.”

Coke owns words like life, feeling, real, enjoy and happiness.

These words are crucial to their story telling. Which is why those terms come to mind when you think of Coke, and not obesity, type 2 diabetes and tooth decay.

If you ask people to think of Coca-Cola advertising or marketing campaigns, most in Australia think of sky surfing, Christmas or the your name on a bottle campaigns. These all tell a story about Coke and the way it makes you feel. But my favorite is the story teller – it’s blatant, it’s obvious, and if it was set up in any other way, it would feel like a 1950s sponsored ad but it has stuck with me since I was 10.

In short, stories have staying power and can create an emotional response in the audience that linger in their hearts and minds for years.

You can use stories to:
• detail events
• make concepts accessible to a new audience
• change minds
• increase stronger memories
• create attachment to you and your brand through all of the above

You may have heard that there are only a handful of story types in the world, whether you subscribe to Joseph Campbell’s Monomyth, Kurt Vonnegut’s 6 story shapes (to see three of his shapes click, watch it, it’s five minutes, all gold), Christopher Bookers’ Seven basic plots or any other number of numbers (see, writers have been doing listicles* forever).

No matter how many types there are, it’s important to remember there is no end to the variances you can create. Variance is the key word here. You may have been told many times that there is a reason why your business exists and it’s because you are offering something different to your competitors. Find your difference/s and extrapolate. Tell your story, create a connection with your audience and let clients know that you offer an experience or product that will make their life easier, better and happier – like a relaxing squirrel massage.


In part 2, we will expand on the art of story telling by focussing on what makes content bad (clue: it’s not a misspent youth).

*not sure what a listicle is (you’ve been reading them for ever): it’s an article that forms a list, wholly or partly. Bustle has an awesome article on the subject.




Written By: Rob

Catcalling women – Is it just bad advertising?


Is catcalling bad advertising?

On my way into work this morning I was listening to two of my favourite podcasts (speaking of podcasts check out our first foray into the field of podcasts) and it got me thinking…

Is Advertising comparable to Catcalling?

Let me explain – a bit of background first and then we’ll delve into my totally unresearched, uneducated and over-generalised theory.

Podcast 1 Note to Self

A brilliant show that follows Manoush Zomorodi trying to decipher how we can live a human and humane existence in the digital age. This episode in particular was probing the depths of data analytics and ad targeting carried out by Cambridge Analytica (CA) during the Trump campaign for the US presidency. Manoush mentioned

The take away was that with all the data we freely give away when we agree willy-nilly to Ts and Cs for every app and social media platform is that we are giving an entry point into what makes us us and what can be motivators in buying or in this case voting a certain way.

Podcast 2 This American Life

Ira Glass hosts one of the most popular podcasts on the internet – in this particular episode we followed the story of Eleanor Gordon-Smith a Sydney Ethics professor who decided one day that she wanted to find out what motivated men to catcall women on the street by interviewing anyone she was catcalled by and then see if she can convince them as to why it might be a bad idea. You might be surprised how hard it is to persuade (one person in particular named Zac) that it may be upsetting, unwanted and unproductive to the catcallee.

So, there you have it, two fairly unrelated podcasts both filled with pathos for the human condition.

The gentleman (term used loosely) in podcast two refused to accept that women didn’t enjoy it when he slapped one of a group of women on the “arse”. This guy was talking about the compliment given to the female in question, when questioned if the slap had ever worked he said “no” but after some thought he did mention that on an Australia Day two years ago he ended up having a drink with a group of English girls but it didn’t lead anywhere but it’s all a bit of fun and he is a “bird of paradise” he is apparently more like a walrus.

Birds of Paradise are beautiful with colourful plumage that attract a mate by intricate dancers.

If we took all our cues from the animal kingdom life would be interesting – some dogs don’t take no for an answer.

Ok, Rob, get on with it.

Well, is Zac, the self-professed “entertainer”, embarking on a poorly targeted and clumsy advertising campaign? We advertise ourselves often – people often talk about how users of social media try to portray an air of sophistication and beauty that is not seen in their day to day lives, people on dating websites or in the early stages of dating project an image of their perfect selves – my girlfriend had no idea how bad my obsession with basketball was for at least two months.

“Is catcalling the refuge of the brand that isn’t confident enough to do something creative to get our attention?”

Psychometrics in advertising is not an exact science (yet), CA, with their deep data and psychometrics, suggest what type of ad they might use in certain situations for example for an insurance company they may target people who they believe are prone to anxiety or shyness with a lighter ad as opposed to a more stalwart person receiving an insurance ad that plays on the devastating issues of not being insured. The CA data scientist conceded that many are feeling it’s murky waters that they travel in but if psychometric targeting was used to convince people to give up smoking or lead a healthier lifestyle there would be less apprehension than prompting people to vote a certain way.

Zac believes that he is not doing anything wrong even after Eleanor tells him the statistics that a gross majority of women that hate catcalling. Perhaps Zac’s targeting is amazingly prolific and he only slaps girls that are truly in the mood to be slapped or “complimented” even before saying one word to them but the fact that his success rate of continuing a relationship, friendship or even dialogue with these women suggests that he may need to relook at the data. His data being that the females were on the street, on a Saturday night in Kings Cross…

Eleanor taped some females she met on the streets of The Cross as well – only one, of the many, said she was happy with catcalling in a specific instance – one time a man complimented her butt on the street and because she, herself, didn’t think she had a nice arse she was happy – NB no one agreed slapping was acceptable.

Perhaps one day this body conscious young lady could be targeted by psychometrics by a butt-slapping Don Juan but until then Zac’s just playing the numbers game.

So, there are many problems with Zac’s approach from an ethical and moral standpoint but from a marketing perspective he has erred quite considerably as well, in fact, we recently did an article on the Sins of Bad Content (NB. beeping your car horn at a girl is similar to bad content sin #8 how is a girl supposed to let you know that the beep was all she needed to start a loving relationship) if you have a read you can make a case that most catcalling would have you in marketing jail for all the sins that are being committed .

Advertisements often miss the mark – be it due to poor timing (preroll ads on youtube grr) or crossing the line due to ill thought out campaigns. If you are a big brand with lots of money you can play the numbers game like Zac and make a few conversions but it will be a horrible return on investment if the advertisement is bad. OR you can curate your ads for specific buyer personas to increase ROI. Many of the great advertisements and social content pieces nowadays encourage a dialogue between the company and the customer.

So our would be lothario is losing his advertising dollars in playing a bad numbers game but creating dialogue would also be key for the Zac needs a lady campaign – it’s something that has been noticeably lacking – If you listen to Zac he is adamant that the slap or any catcalling is a compliment (here’s Buzzfeed’s answer to this). Perhaps a simple, straight forward “Hi, I am Zac….” “can I buy you a drink?” or “are you having a good time tonight?” would work wonders in increasing the likely hood of a dialogue forming.

In general, catcalling is just lazy advertising – If you look at it from this standpoint, many men don’t want to offend or intimidate women they are trying to express something else but they are failing miserably – you can make yourself stand out from the crowd in any number of ways but catcalling is an easy choice because you know it has a low chance of succeeding so you can laugh off your failure because it was expected. Whereas if you truly put yourself out there with something you want to say and you get rejected… well, then that’s a pill that is harder to swallow. Just like advertising you can play the numbers game, you could do nothing and go home alone, you could do what everyone else does or you could do something special, surprising, something that opens up a positive dialogue.

So remember, if you aren’t a walrus… butt slap = bad. If you need advice on how to attract new customers with genuinely creative advertising drop us a line… not a pick up line.




Written By: Rob

10 TERRIBLE product names that never should have happened



Here’s a list of the most unfortunately named products in the history of humanity. How anyone ever thought these were a good idea, we’ll never know. But please enjoy our list nonetheless.

1. MasterFoods Creamy White Finishing Sauce – a childhood classic


2. Breast Munchies – immature


3. Cock Macaroni – contains Chicken?


4. Megapussi! – no comment


5. Urinal – and it’s a drink! C’mon.


6. Soup For Sluts – uncalled for


7. Cream Collon – pardon …


8. Fagottini – what did you just call me?


9. Vergina – great with a side of breast munchies


10. Cemem Dip – Accept no imitations.


Ok, enough … we’re done!

Planning to release a product as offensive as any of these, it’s probably worth shooting us an email first: info@remembercreative.com




Written By: Joshua Britt

Amazon is coming to Australia – Part 2


Amazon In Australia – How to keep your pants and sell them?

As you may have read, Amazon is here, having started work on their first leased warehouse in Australia on the outskirts of Melbourne, and the $12 billion dollar predicted revenue swing in its favour.

Well, there’s reason to be concerned if you own a bricks and mortar store or an online store but that doesn’t mean you need to be scared… just prepared.

It’s not a case of doomsday prepping more being a boy scout always be prepared.

  • Be omniscient with omnichannel marketing. We preach it often to our clients you must be multichanneled in your approach to business (any business) nowadays but not only must there be multiple channels they must work in unison. Your customers, clients, patrons all are spoilt for choice so give them a seamless experience that is the same, be it on the phone, in the store or conversing via a live chat. If you keep it consistent your customers will reward you with loyalty (obviously the product should be good as well).
  • Speaking of products… is your business’ reason for being in alignment with Amazon? If not, accentuate your point of difference.
  • Remember to be Creative – It’s our reason for being. The term Digital Disruptor is oft used for the likes of Uber and AirBnB but Amazon, a company that’s been around for over a decade, rarely gets that moniker. But disruption is actually it’s main aim. Continue to be creative in your messaging – it’s a great strategy – the reason that disruptor is able to rattle the cage is because they are doing things differently so why not do things a little differently yourself. Be it, as simple as new product or offer to keep things interesting all the way to reengaging your audience with carefully curated content or a new advertising campaign that will not only reengage your audience but perhaps even look to open new doors.

If you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em. That’s right join them set up shop in Amazon Marketplace continue to build your customer base right from the belly of the beast.

·       If you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em. That’s right join them set up shop in Amazon Marketplace continue to build your customer base right from the belly of the beast.

·       Don’t give them a reason to leave  – continue to provide the best possible service you can again loyalty is a massive thing even in today’s world of supposedly fickle minded consumerism we are still creatures of habit and will go with what we know more often than not.

·       Stand for something – Choose a cause, take up arms this ties into a couple of the above points. If you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything – I hate using clichés and I think I am at my limit for this article – but it’s high time to set yourself out from the pact by having a backbone.

 We can’t be there to offer your customers a hand with their goods to their car but we can help you with the rest. If you want to know more drop us a line @ info@remembercreative.com




Written By: Rob

Amazon is coming to Australia – Part 1



Amazon has staked it’s claim on Australian shores – How will this inevitable shift change the landscape of retail and ecommerce in Australia? We get out our crystal balls and prognosticate for the doomsayers and welcomers alike.

Many consumers are welcoming the news, economists are saying it could be a great thing for our economy to have third biggest in employer in the US employing Australians and selling Australian products to Australians from Australia for the first time. And of course there are many people worrying about an unstoppable corporate force coming in and ruining their livelihoods whether it’s a physical shopfront or ecommerce store.

Tim McKinnon, eBay CMO, is one of the doomsayers but not for Australia, it’s stores or for Amazon, itself. “It’s going to be difficult for them to match expectations” says Tim in an article from The Australian. The fact of the matter is that if it was easy Amazon would have done it years ago. Although eBay has the history a viewership of 11 million Australians a month and many strategic partnerships with vendors (small and major alike DidYouKnow that Bing Lee and Myer have eBay stores – it’s not just online auctions, imported gizmos and your sisters used clothes).

DidYouKnow that Bing Lee and Myer have eBay stores?

Another issue that will Amazon will be aware of and may just keep regional Australia at bay for a long time and might even afford opportunities for other Australian companies is the economy of scale, that we so often butt up against, required to deliver to a small population across vast space. They are used to a much denser population spread in the territories they are open for business in. It certainly won’t match the US where they have larger population centers right across the country. We have the same size and roughly a tenth of the population.

But all that, doesn’t mean that eBay isn’t shaking in it’s boots. There will be many nervous executives watching how Amazon touches down and the uptake of consumers to their offering.

People look to Netflix as proof that Amazon will kill retail in it’s bricks and mortar form, well, the writing was on the wall for Video Ezy was evident along time before Netflix landed. Other big chains to come to Australia like Costco have carved a nieche but hardly dominated the landscape of consumerism and some have even left with Chihuahua tail between their legs, I’m looking at you Taco Bell.

I’ll be honest, I think that it won’t happen like the groundswell that was Netflix in Australia but Amazon is a force to be reckoned with, with the worlds richest man at the helm, they will focus their energy and dollars in the targeted manner that has them as one of the most recognised brands in the world. Amazon will be here to stay and take a chunk out of the retail sector (a $12 billion dollar chunk from Morgan Stanley modelling) from nonconsumables to fresh fruit (eventually).


Which leaves us with the question, can small and big retailers online and bricks & mortar stores survive the bloodblath that is predicted by Amazon, and if so how?

Read about it in the follow up – Amazon, can I stop the eforrestation? (do you like the title? I came up with that myself)




Written By: Rob

A perfect Social Strategy in 6 easy steps


Are you a Socialite or a Social Heavy?

How to create the perfect Social Media Strategy in 6 easy steps

Whether you’ve had a go at social media in the past and it didn’t work for you or you are dipping your toe into the social waters for the first time: a social media strategy is key to unlocking a new audience to your brand.

Step 1: Learn from the Past

If you have previously tried your hand at social and didn’t hit the heights hoped for (or it’s just time to shake things up) you should conduct a complete audit of your social media accounts. This should entail finding all your accounts and logins; critiquing the posts for branding and messaging; taking note of what’s working and not working.

Step 2: Rhyme and Reason

Why you are doing this at all? How does it fit in the overall business strategy? This should be the first question asked and answered. An oft cited example in many B2B and B2C organisations building a social following is a top of the funnel process about building awareness around the brand in question and driving 2nd tier referrals. Then following on from answering the initial questions you must then create goals for your strategy. I have written about it before and I’ll write more times in the future but whether you are planning on running a marathon or setting up a social strategy SMART goals are essential (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely). Let’s say you are driving users to your website or a specific page your goal might be to have 50 hits on your landing page each week from each targeted social media platform – or you may be building brand awareness, in which case, your goal might be linked to new followers We will aim to increase our Facebook following to 15,000 by June.

“…or you may be building brand awareness, in which case, your goal might be linked to new followers ‘We will aim to increase our Facebook following to 15,000 by June’.”

Step 3: Who are these followers?

Creating targeted personas is a critical step in your social media strategy so much so that some people put this step before goal setting – especially seeing as S in SMART stands for specific your goals might look something like “I want 50 likes a week of persona A” and if you did the characterisation before the goal setting you would know that persona A is a female in her 50s with children thinking about retirement and keeping her well-off lifestyle. It’s a chicken/egg scenario for me because your goals will take on the form of the personas even if not specifically mentioned at the goal setting stage.

Also, be very clear about what the role of followers will be in terms of your business plan.

Step 4: Keeping up with the Joneses

Look at who is doing social well. It’s your industry so you already know who your main competitors are and grade them on their performance set a benchmark for yourself. Another area to scope out good social form is using your previous steps research of the personas – find out what content and who they are engaging with – take note. You will hopefully find this quite educational and inspiring as to how and what great content you will curate. Make sure to not only look at the great stuff but take note of the little things like times of day that people are engaging and language they are using. Also look out for things that are missing this may be things that don’t work or it could be your niche.

Step 5: Plan A

All this planning leads to, you guessed it, another plan… it’s time for your content plan & calendar

Frequency, Content creators/owners, types of content. All these things need to be decided on. Remember social is a selling tool but a different type rather than salesman propping the door open with their foot it’s an open forum where you are giving a talk about the importance of your area of expertise. So, don’t ram the sell and offers constantly down your follower’s throats or they won’t be followers for long. Instead educate and inform your audience, answer questions, share content from followers or other great sources, drive people to your site. And then make great offers (in fact, sometimes even social specific). Many marketers like to use the 80/20 rules i.e. offers/sell should make up 20% of your posts. But you will figure out what the right balance is in the next step.

Step 6: Lather, Rinse, Repeat… Always Repeat

The lather is putting the content out there for all to see; the rinsing, or seeing what came out in the wash, is reviewing the response to the content in relation to the goals and make note of successes and failures; and repeat is the whole process over again implementing the tweaks needed from the review in the previous step. Audiences tastes are always changing so this is a contestant process.

There your have it… easy as ABC… of course, if you want some more help/have any questions drop me a line @ info@remembercreative.com.




Written By: Rob