Kym Illman

Save The Date!

Ever wonder what happens when you give a one-man-marketing-machine a camera and some editing software? The answer is Kym Illman’s Mastering Marketing online videos!

This short video series Kym will focus on emerging trends for new ideas, dissect clever and innovative marketing strategies and offer you hints & tips that you can implement in your business right away. The first of this video series will be uploaded soon so check back here next Friday to find out more.

Coming Back For MOH

Targa events are full of thrills and spills – I should know! I misread a corner during Targa Tasmania at 190km/hr and flew 35 meters into a paddock and copped a slap on the wrist for some colourful decals. Both of these events made for some great PR and set tongues wagging.

Despite not finishing Targa Tasmania and torturing the poor Messages On Hold Evo, the paddock crash was by far the most successful. At least in terms of brand awareness it was. To date, the video of the crash has had 130,000+ views! It also boosted the number of subscribers to my YouTube Channel.

kymTarga West, I hope to achieve the same success. Obviously I can’t keep crashing out and wrecking the Evo – that’d be lunacy! So what I have planned is something very special for subscribers to my YouTube Channel… something that will keep them coming back. Curious? Well, I can’t tell you much about it because I’ve been sworn to secrecy but what I can say is that it’ll happen in the first 8 seconds of each video and the first one will involve a distinct lack of clothing.

Why am I doing this? To increase sales at Messages On Hold. It’s small ideas like this that cost next to nothing to do but keep our company name at the forefront of people’s minds and that always translates into dollars.

I’ll be uploading footage onto our YouTube Channel after each day of Targa West. Click here to subscribe – even if it’s only to view the first 8 seconds of each video – the fun part.

Up, up and press play!

To get any media exposure in the world of motorsport you need to either win or crash!

At the recent Targa Tasmania tarmac rally I’m proud to say I secured some sensational exposure – unfortunately it was for the latter not the former reason.

Why am I proud of crashing out, you ask? At the end of the day, I’m a business person – rallying is only a hobby of mine. So rather than beat myself up over not finishing the gruelling 5-day rally, or the money I’d have to hand over to get the car back into racing condition, I set to work turning a seemingly bad situation into a profitable one.

First up, watch the 190km/hr crash here.

The Messages On Hold EVO 9 is fitted with several HD cameras, recording every kilometre of the event. I edit and upload the content to my YouTube channel here for all to see.

After the accident I grabbed one of the in-car cameras and recorded vision of the wreck, comments from the locals who arrived on scene to assist and a short piece to camera explaining what had happened. I edited the vision on a laptop while “passengering” back to the Strahan hotel.

On arrival in Strahan I found the video crew and presented them with a perfectly edited package complete with superimposed Messages On Hold logos. A short time later, it was being viewed on YouTube (at last count it had been viewed more than 110,000 times). You can see the full stage on which we crashed here.

Of course, I don’t recommend implementing this particular strategy into your promotional mix too often but if you’re faced with an adverse situation like I was, don’t be frightened to take full advantage of it.

Point In The Right Direction

Marketing opportunities are almost everywhere; you just have to look for them. If you can’t find one – make one.

By now you should know I’m a keen tarmac rally driver and that I’ve competed in more than a few targa rallies. The most recent of which was the Targa Wrest Point rally in Tasmania.

It was the perfect opportunity to market my company and reinforce our brand to a band of business owners out having fun. Always one to be prepared to take full advantage of any marketing exposure, I kept several hundred Messages On Hold “big hands” in the car. During the liaison stages (where normal road rules are observed) we would slow down whenever we saw youngsters and give them a hand each.

These children, now armed with our big yellow hands, would wave them like crazy at every following rally car!  Some of these drivers were impacted up to 800 times a day and all for the price of some printed cardboard.

A little creativity and a gut full of determination goes a long way; so how are you going to get your company name out to the masses without spending a fortune?

The Spin King and I

As the owner of a marketing company I attend a range of conferences, seminars, social and client functions every year. If you were to pick any one of those events, I can guarantee that after the formalities, one of the first question asked of me is “What made you pick Shane Warne as your company’s ambassador?”

Shane Warne is arguably the most recognised sports personality in Australia, but he’s also been one of the most controversial. So why would any company choose to sponsor a sporting personality/renegade/rule-breaker to raise brand awareness? It’s simple really, when Warnie talks, people listen.

It was 2005 when I began searching for a prominent sporting personality to sponsor and by the end of my search I had narrowed it down to two: Ben Cousins and Shane Warne. Shane was embroiled in controversy at the time and a number of marketing people told me to go with the safe choice – Ben Cousins. I approached Ben and asked him what he’d want to be the face and voice of Messages On Hold, but never heard back from him. A few weeks later I attended a Test Match dinner at Perth’s Hyatt Hotel where I collared Shane on the way to the men’s toilets and gave him a note offering him some cash to do some voice recordings.

I knew we’d put some people off-side by sponsoring Shane, but I figured I’m never going to do business with every organisation or person in the country, so what’s the point in trying to please everyone? This is where, I believe, most businesses fall short – they’re simply too frightened to try things that might alienate people.

We secured $1.8m of media exposure the day we launched with Warnie. It was like winning the “marketing lottery”. Since then we’ve used Shane in numerous unorthodox and creative ways – e.g. “Warnie’s Words of Wisdom“. Messages On Hold clients and prospects sometimes receive a personalised voicemail message from the great man. They hear Shane greet them by name and play the entire message to their friends and associates, at the same time promoting our brand – bless them for that!