(Note: CMO Radio has a new name--Marketing Superstars--to mark an expansion of the show across the marketing spectrum. CMO.com listeners will be privy to even more strategic insight from the best and brightest minds in the marketing community.)
For nearly 170 years, A.T. Cross has been a symbol of luxury, achievement, and societal excellence. But, now, as technology takes over, could the days of the written word be numbered? Not a chance, said CMO Magnus Jonsson, who is focused on maintaining Cross Pens’ relevance in the digital age.
The brand is built on a strong foundation of four pillars, Johnsson said: the penholders personal success, the brand’s entrepreneurial spirit, the usable luxury of their writing instruments, and a history of inspired ingenuity. Among its jewel-encrusted original pens and a limited-edition Star Wars-themed collection, Cross also offers an assortment of styluses for tablets and smartphones--a clear nod to the digital world that Jonsson said accounts for 12% of the brand’s profit.
With those tools at its disposal, Cross, with Jonsson leading the marketing charge, is focused on bridging the gap between the generation who already appreciates its pens and the younger group of Millennials, who may not have heard of the brand but can appreciate a luxurious, contemporary experience that allows for personal expression.
As CMO, Jonsson said he places heavy importance on bringing consumers an authentic experience, one they can see themselves in and relate to. To that end, he tapped influencers with a love for writing--songwriters, essayists, street artists, and screenwriters--to help Cross get the message across to consumers on social media.
“Instead of just having the brand talk about how it would like to be perceived in the marketplace, it’s more important to have these influencers portray us in the right way because that’s more believable for the target consumer and certainly more authentic for the brand,” Jonsson said. “These are real people in their craft, all people in pursuit of greatness.”
Other highlights from this week’s episode of Marketing Superstars include:
- Surveying your brand landscape through a demand perspective (9:33)
- Advertising across different platforms (19:00)
- Leveraging your consumers as spokespeople (23:15)