A perfect storm is coming that will rock the media world to its core, but there is a way to navigate this change. It's called Z.E.R.O.
The world has changed. The consumer has changed. Marketing has not.
How is this possible? Why do we resist change? Why does it take us so long to change? What if time runs out?
Q. How do you kill a dinosaur?
A. You don't. Evolution does.
We believe that a perfect storm is coming in the media world and it is entirely possible the bottom will fall out of the entire model. As former brand marketers and agency executives, we've come together to make a case for this Armageddon, the implications on our businesses and how we can prepare ourselves accordingly - not only to survive, but indeed to thrive.
Z.E.R.O. is both Part 4 to my trilogy of existing books, and an endorsement and follow up to the points raised in my best-selling book, Life after the 30-second spot. In all of my books, I introduced a concept which I call "Use New Marketing to Prove New Marketing" or UNM2PNM. In other words, practice my principles (walk the talk) by executing against the ideas in the book(s) itself.
The Kickstarter version of Z.E.R.O. is just that: A 1-2 punch of demonstrating the power shift from top-down traditional publishing to the bottom-up world of self-publishing, PLUS the power of crowd- or community-sourcing the funding for the book itself.
If you think about it, it's a modern-day application of bulk or corporate sales. In some cases, it's a barter deal packaged experientially.
Either way, I'm thrilled to put my community, reputation and thought-leadership to the test, with the full knowledge - as an entrepreneur and innovation junkie, that failure is ok too :)
Plus Seth Godin told me to do it!
Z.E.R.O. is proof positive that you don't need to "pay" for customers or media if you have enough to start off with and/or a core of passionate advocates who would go to bat for you. It's a powerful message that you get to help me demonstrate first hand.
Writing a book is not easy, certainly if it is your first. But a few things made it easier. Writing it with my friend Joseph Jaffe, as well as having some quality time to devote to it helped a lot. But first and foremost, the topic made it easier, as I believe in it very much.
The 1950’s to the 1990’s was probably the era of the Account Man (“Mad Men”), which was followed by the late 90’s and early 2000’s with the era of the Media Man. Then followed the ballooning of the Digital Man, which some believe still continues today. I however believe it is now time for ZERO Man: the era of the truly consumer centric, media neutral Connections Planner. Welcome to my world. (By the way, the art and craft of Creative Man was and continues to be critical to craft the messages for the brands that want to connect with consumers. And when I say “man” I mean this in a non-sexist way!).
When we started playing around with the Z.E.R.O. idea the pieces came together relatively quickly. And when I started writing “my bits,” the words flowed relatively easily as well. This was proof to me that Z.E.R.O. as a concept, a platform, a destination for marketers is an idea whose time has come.
So here it is, Joe’s fourth and my first. We look forward to sharing it with you!
We've named our rewards after famous misers (real or fictional.) After all, this book is about spending less; not more. When you go through them, please note that most of them are additive, i.e. build on the previous rewards, as well as including the incremental one. If the reward does not state, "as above," then it is a standalone one.
Chapter Outline / Table of Contents: (proposed)
I. Foreword – Chris Burggraeve
II. Preface – The obesity epidemic
Section 1: The Problem
1. Madison Avenue, we have a problem
2. The Model is Broken and a Perfect Storm is coming
3. The Economic Case
4. The Business Case
5. The Media Case
6. The Consumer Case
7. The Creative Case
Section 2: The Z.E.R.O. vision
8. Is it Time to blow up the entire model?
9. Introducing Z.E.R.O.
Section 3: The Z.E.R.O. Action Plan
10. Culture and Talent
11. Tenure and Career Planning
12. Compensation (yourself, your team, your agencies)
13. Budget setting
15. Flip the Funnel: Use existing customers to gain new ones
16. Customer Experience as the True Differentiator
18. Become a Data Junkie
19. From Campaigns to Commitments to Ecosystems
20. That’s great…now what the hell do I do next (and conclusion)
Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Our risks and challenges are negligible and somewhat mitigated. Our book is mostly written, however we want to make sure we have enough visibility and marketing clout to maximize our promotion and distribution - in other words, investing in our "owned assets" (part of the book's premise)
With self-publishing, there is no in-store distribution...so you won't find Z.E.R.O. at your local bookstore, HOWEVER with enough support via Kickstarter and our communities in general, it is always possible that the stores would elect to carry our book...and wouldn't that be an awesome case study in of itself?
We hope this book becomes a model for future authors to be able to go to market through a 1-2 punch of self publishing and crowdsourcing. Our hope is to be very transparent to walk our audience through this process and build this journey into the book, which in and of itself shows the flexibility and vibrancy of this new model.
We are artists at heart and long form content in the form of books is alive and kicking, but we can't rely on the mainstream publishing industry to save the book. We have to do it ourselves.
Kickstarter does not allow you to back the same reward more than once or to offer more than 10 items of the same in a single reward. Once the book is out of course, you'll be able to purchase as many as you like through the various online bookstores and selling channels. Of course, you can always contact the authors for any bulk sales outside of this project.
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Pay it forward (from Joe): If you’ve read my blog, one of my three books, listened to my podcast, viewed my videos, read my articles in MediaPost, heard me speak...this is a small thanks for all the content. You have my eternal gratitude and you're welcome :) PS You'll also get backer updates and content nuggets.Estimated delivery:
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The Hetty Green: Pre-order a digital copy of the book. You'll be one of the first to receive the book (oh, and we'll also share the first chapter with you...)Estimated delivery:
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The Warren Buffet: Pre-order a hardcover copy of the book. You'll be one of the first to receive the physical specimen. You'll also receive a digital copy of the first chapter. PS Stock tips not includedEstimated delivery:Add $5 USD to ship outside the US
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The Charles Montgomery Burns: Time to ratchet it up a few notches. With this reward, you'll receive three autographed hardcover (or digital) copies of the book PLUS an acknowledgment in the book (140 characters or less plus your Twitter handle OR website URL) This is the no brainer reward in our opinion.Estimated delivery:Add $15 USD to ship outside the US
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The Mr Krabs: As above (see Mr Burns), but now you'll receive 10 autographed copies of the hardcover edition. You'll also be invited to an exclusive release group conference call where Maarten & Joseph will walk you through the book and its central themes. You'll also be invited to participate in a Q&A on the call. This is the value reward of the bunch in our opinion.Estimated delivery:Add $50 USD to ship outside the US
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The Grunkle Stan: As above (see Mr Krabs), but we're adding in a private 60-minute Q&A conference call with just you/r company where you'll get to pick our brains and lead the call.Estimated delivery:Add $50 USD to ship outside the US
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The John Elwes: As above (see Grunkle Stan), PLUS this time Maarten or Joseph will lead a brainstorm on the phone to walk you through the action plan and recommend specific ideas.Estimated delivery:Add $50 USD to ship outside the US
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The Scrooge McDuck: As above (see John Elwes) PLUS we're including a private webinar (60 minute keynote plus 30 minute Q&A) where we'll present the book to you/r company.Estimated delivery:Add $50 USD to ship outside the US
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The Andrew Carnegie: As above (see Scrooge McDuck), PLUS now we're adding in breakfast, lunch or dinner in the greater Tri-state area for up to 3 of your colleagues. Break bread and brainstorm with the authors. Schedule dependent. Carnegie only ate when he was very hungry. We just ask you come with a hungry mind.Estimated delivery:Add $50 USD to ship outside the US
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The Ebenezer Scrooge: 10 autographed copies of the book, acknowledgement and pre-release chapter 1...PLUS Joseph Jaffe in person to present Z.E.R.O. to you/r team. Note: T&E is not included and needs to be negotiated separately.Estimated delivery:
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The Ebenezer Balfour: 10 autographed copies of the book, acknowledgement and pre-release chapter 1...PLUS Maarten Albarda in person to present Z.E.R.O. to you/r team. Note: T&E is not included and needs to be negotiated separately.Estimated delivery:
- (60 days)