Marketing is the most fun facet of a business
Full house for all the presentations on the main stage of the BAM Marketing Congress. One speaker went the extra mile and redefined the term "full house": none of the attendees would deny that Average Rob was the perfect person to bring the congress to a fitting close. Afterwards, the wildly popular influencer and content creator, who incidentally has a marketing degree himself, made time for a chat ... about marketing.
Did it work out, presenting without your brother by your side, with whom you form an inseparable duo on YouTube?
Yes, it went pretty well. I'm usually also the one who arranges everything, where Arno provides more for the comic note: he would have probably made a lot of jokes on stage especially (laughs). I don't do this kind of thing very often, but entertaining people is always my goal and so I pay attention to that in a keynote. Even a serious topic is best kept fun, I know from past classes.
The title of your presentation was "Stop working, start creating”. Can you explain that slogan?
That's a nod to my Friday slogan, "Stop working, start drinking. Those videos often go viral among people in the work environment who deploy over the weekend, and I think most attendees at the marketing congress will have come across one of those as well.
Right away the most difficult question: what is marketing to you?
For me, marketing is about promoting a product, preferably by stirring emotions. Marketing is the nicest facet of a company. Of course management and sales are no less important, but marketing is often at the basis of the success of those departments.
In your opinion, are brands doing certain things completely wrong in terms of marketing?
I don't think they are necessarily doing it badly or wrong. It's just that sometimes brands are still a bit old-fashioned. Some companies are so big that necessary innovations are omitted and their operations evolve too slowly in a rapidly changing media landscape. You should never blame individuals for this, because it always takes a lot of effort to get a company on board.
Moreover, there is often too little courage. In marketing, you sometimes have to dare to walk a gray zone and take risks to try something new. For smaller brands this is usually a little easier, at large companies the creative staff for a simple Instagram post soon run into 50 pages of guidelines.
What lessons do marketers learn best from your approach?
That it's important to have fun. It's a creative industry, marketing should be something fun. And if you can convey that well to the consumer, you will reap the benefits. I myself am good at arousing emotions in my target audience, but of course that is not the only right approach.
What I really emphasized in my presentation was the message that it's okay to fail. This is important for marketers, but equally important in everyday life. Many want to keep the risks to an absolute minimum and therefore often don't take the step to actually realize their good ideas. The fear of getting the ball wrong is understandable, but if you accept AND take those risks, you are so much further ahead in life. I prefer a timeline like a yo-yo with both failures and successes.
You have a clothing brand and with Tout Bien even own beer: do those commercial initiatives make it possible to create top content on YouTube for free?
My YouTube channel is not a project I want to commercialize. YouTube is my archive of experiences that I want to share with my children later. I worked hard on every published video. I am very proud of that content. I never jump on a trend to go viral, but focus on my own preferences and desires: I can then look back on that with pleasure in twenty years.
The production of that video content is of course quite expensive, so my other activities are indeed very useful in compensation. Both elements also reinforce each other. I am fortunate that my clothing sells well, that I form a DJ-duo with Omdat Het Kan Soundsystem and we can be at Tomorrowland and Pukkelpop, that I can give presentations like the one at the BAM Marketing Congress, ... This way I am in a position of luxury and can invest a lot in my passion.
You are clearly marketing the Average Rob brand well: to what extent is this done based on a plan, and to what extent organically?
This is largely organic: I never really know what my next step will be and see what comes my way. On the other hand, I definitely also think strategically, for example, about launching Tout Bien. I have a master's degree in marketing myself, so identifying opportunities and working out an approach to do something with them goes pretty well for me.