Providing ‘Youtility’ w/ Mobile Apps

One of the most powerful emerging media types is not a shared platform, but rather the ability to create a mobile application that consumers want to download and use. I had the good fortune to attend a conference in which Jay Baer, the CEO of Convince and Convert, was the keynote speaker. When discussing content and content rich campaigns, Jay uses a term that he coined called “Youtility.” He defines Youtility as “content that is so useful, people would pay for it.” He believes that if you create content to market your company or your products, you may sell whatever you are pitching and gain a customer for that day, but if you create content that is useful, and if you genuinely help someone with your content, you will create a customer for life.”

The premise is that if you create a useful mobile application, consumers will download the application to their phones and you will have the ability to market your brand and products.

Kleenex created a content rich mobile application that is extremely useful to customers and potential customers. They developed an app called “achoo” that leverages search data and crowdsourcing to predict whether or not you will catch a cold within the next few weeks based on your zip code (and presumable buy more tissues ahead of time). They also have a feature on their website where you can send a Kleenex Care Pack to a sick friend with a personalized message or with a selected message from a dropdown menu such as “You may be sneezy, but you still look great!” This useful content is all part of Kleenex’s campaign around the tagline “Someone needs one” and the idea of making “caring contagious,” which is also a clever pun that plays of off illnesses being contagious, so tissues should too.

The campaign has run on both digital and tradition media with television spots and billboard placements; however, it is Kleenex’s mobile application that gives them direct access to their consumers.


Jay Baer: Convince and Convert

Kleenex: “Achoo” (a YouTube video)

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