Trade secret: We do a lot of promotions for record and film companies, and our tactics are very much like those used by the first rap music artists. We spark a hive of interest in a new concept, and we spread it city by city.
Edge: We're based in a college town, where we hire the smartest marketing people just out of college to target the audience they know best.
Insight: TV is not an effective medium to reach college kids these days, who are very jaded and already feel bombarded with advertising. To get to them, you have to prove the product's value by making the promotion irresistibly interesting.
Hot topic: Entertainment tie-ins. There are tremendous opportunities for marketers to stand out by linking with new films and rising musicians. You can create a powerful promotion at low cost by finding a relevant link between a brand and a hot new entertainment concept.
Trend: The science of viral marketing. If you can create a promotion that prompts action on a Web site or through wireless technology, consumers become the network. Today's young consumers are wired to each other, not the TV.
Fact: In many cases, we're hired for our insights into the youth market, to provide research on who this generation is and how they think. It's a huge and influential market, and few marketers know how to tap it.