Lunchtime Links: Good Timing is Everything

Lunchtime Links: Good Timing is Everything

How one brand took a moment of Super Bowl weirdness and turned it into an opportunity. Also: Don't focus on winning the pricing game.

When the lights go off, sometimes you just have to roll with it.

In case you were living under a rock, last night’s Super Bowl featured a moment of oddness that can only be described as surreal: The lights went out. Here’s what it looked like, via The Daily Dot:


Some people saw this as an inconvenience, but brands that spent millions to latch onto the evening knew an opportunity when they saw it. That and more in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Embrace the weirdness: Last night, the Super Bowl went dark. For more than half an hour, play was put on hold as impatient fans waited for the lights to go back on. But the real winners in this situation? Smart brands. Oreo, for example, put up an image on its Twitter page with the phrase “You can still dunk in the dark,” which got more than 14,000 retweets—an impressive number, especially considering the account has 70,000 followers. (See the image, above.) And they weren’t alone in taking advantage of the darkness. The lesson here? A little quick thinking in an odd situation takes you a long way from a branding perspective.

Focus on good service, not low prices: Think that the way to build your organization is having a lower price than the other guy? Don’t fall into that trap, the National Fluid Power Association’s Eric Lanke warns. “There are many different kinds of associations with many different kinds of products and services, but first and foremost, they are all in the loyalty business,” he writes. “Trying to compete with another provider on price is the surest way to destroy the loyalty members might have for an association and transform their thinking into that of the disinterested consumer.” (For another viewpoint on pricing, check out how Erin Fuller, FASAE, CAE, of the Alliance for Women in Media, made her association’s membership free—and brought new energy to her organization in the process. She’s one of our 2013 association innovators.)

Start a conference, build a movement: Adrian Segar is always dropping brilliant conference ideas on his Conferences That Work blog, and his latest is no exception. During a recent consulting project with the U.S. Green Building Council, Segar explains how the working group posed questions about success to attendees of a “turning-point summit,” allowed attendees to put answers on a sticky board, then used this information to build some key points that were shared with the group at the end of the meeting. “Providing summary feedback at the close of a ‘turning point’ event is very important,” Segar explains. “Participants have put a lot of time and effort into their work together, and they need to feel heard and receive assurance that what has happened will lead to significant next steps.”

What sort of fun things have you seen online today? Tell us all about them in the comments.

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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