Super Mario Teaches a New Generation

Imagine the scenario – your child is devoted to his Nintendo DS XL.  He is allowed 1 hour per day to play it, and Legos Star Wars and Mario Kart are in constant rotation.  One afternoon he is allowed to recharge it himself, and in a moment of frustration, forces the connection and bends all of the pins.  There is no way to straighten them, there is no way to fix the unit.  What does a loving parent who believes in teaching the consequences of ones actions do?

First we explained to our 7-year old that he had to be more careful and would be responsible for helping to pay for repairs.  Then we went out to the internet to find solutions.  Ultimately, the blog and tech consensus was to send the device back to Nintendo.  Which we did.  Two weeks later it came back, fixed, no charge!  Nintendo actually enclosed a letter tailor-made for parents of young children that explained that this was the ONLY time the company would perform such a service.  Next time . . . .  I love Nintendo.

Nintendo’s snail mail customer service, however, is not duplicated by its online services.  This seems odd for a company devoted to plugged-in customers.  First of all, Nintendo needs to have a parents’ site available.  Clearly they understand that at least part of their audience is under 10 (or acts like someone under 10 years old).  Why not create a dedicated parent’s site?  How about a parents’ Twitter feed that would allow us to be up to date on releases and issues that arise?  Why do we have to be nagged by our children – companies should reach out to us and give us the good information we can use to decide on the best birthday and holiday gifts.  Currently I go to Amazon.com to read reviews.  However, given Nintendo’s market share, I would like to know how they could empower us, parents, to partner with them to offer better information to the pocketbooks that pay for the games.

Nintendo – please create a parent site.  Give us information and help us create the conscientious consumers that your form letter indicates is important to you as a company.Help us Nintendo

Nintendo – Please allow us to have easy access to releases and new versions in a forum for parents.  MyNintendoNews on Twitter is not tailored enough.

Nintendo FacebookNintendo – Facebook would be a great place for a parents’ page.  Let us interact, comment, and help you create a friendly marketing environment for our children.  We know they love it – we just want to know more about it.

Parents want to be involved in their children’s lives, and the old model of advertising sugar cereals and junk food on Saturday morning during Scooby Doo and the Laugh Olympics doesn’t work in the age of computers and social media.  DeadMau5 ensures that Super Mario will remain in my child’s lexicon for at least another 10 years.  Nintendo – help us help our children understand the responsiblity that comes with expensive game units and negotiating techno!

Sources:

Laugh Olympics Intro.  You Tube.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EC4l-P20V-Q

Nintendo.  Homepage. http://www.nintendo.com/?country=US&lang=en

Nintendo.  New Super Mario Bros Walkthrough, Part 1.  You Tube, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srpkwSB8SnY&feature=player_detailpage

Schulman, J. (2011, March 29).  A day with deadmau5:  LEDs, Super Mario, and techno.  Engadget, http://www.engadget.com/2011/03/29/a-day-with-deadmau5-leds-super-mario-and-techno/

Scooby Doo Introduction.  You Tube.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_C2HJvtRDY

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“It can’t be just ROI. It’s relevancy!”

Never have truer words been written about the shifting sands of marketing in the second decade of the 21st century.  As Mark Schaefer points out in a recent blog, companies need to understand that innovating within the social media sphere is simply part of doing business these days.  Furthermore, a website alone won’t cut it:  “68 percent of the Fortune 100 companies had a year-over-year decline in their website page views” because people want the relevant information parsed out and provided as needed (Schaefer).  Who wants to read a website when a twitter posting has the information required?

For mid-sized businesses, however, websites offer safety and ease of administration.  The also offer a marketing team a centralized location for coherent messaging.  One marketing person can monitor web traffic, add content through administrator panels, and send out emailed newsletters with embedded weblinks on a regular basis.  However, building out the website into a hub for Facebook, Twitter, and Linked In becomes a full-time social media job, particularly when “listening” to the echoes and responses is added to the responsibility list.

As mid-sized firms, such as financial services, law firms, banks, and insurance companies look to the daunting world of social media, they should take heart that they are getting involved in a maturing industry.  No longer will they need to wade into the weeds alone – there are many third-party and consulting firms that offer management tools that help to format and place content across the social media stratum.  Layla Revis, VP at Ogilvy describes six of these tools that she feels will gain adoption in 2012:  Buddy Media, Vitrue, Context Optional, Involver, Shoutlet, and Sprout Publisher.  The great thing about the management software she describes is that it packages the posting abilities with analytic tools that help assess the impact that postings are making.  These tools allow businesses to use their resources wisely to become relevant.  By investing in a dedicated social media team to listen and produce content, businesses can ensure their own future through monitoring their efforts.  As Schaefer points out in his blog, longevity depends on engaging in social media.  Customers and clients expect to find their goods and services on their phones, GPS devices, and by 2014, in their eye-glasses.

Sources:

Manjoo, F. (2012).  You Will Want Google Goggles.  Technology Review.  http://www.technologyreview.com/review/428212/you-will-want-google-goggles/

Revis, L. (2012, July 6).  The Best Social Media Management Tools for 2012.  The Huffington Post Blog.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/layla-revis/social-media-management_b_1648177.html

Schaefer, M. (2012, July 12).  It’s not just ROI.  It’s Relevance!  Business Grow.com @markwschaefer.  http://www.businessesgrow.com/2012/07/12/its-not-just-roi-its-relevance/