👀 Anthro Newsletter #019 | 🔥 Coinbase x NYT Media Relations, Brand Love & "Karen"

Your weekly newsletter on brands, campaigns, culture and insights.

Welcome to Anthro, a weekly community newsletter featuring must read content about the best and most exciting movements by brands, with a heavy focus on culture, actionable insights and brand’s relationship to business success. Whether you’re the founder of a company, at a start-up, in an agency or in-house - this is the place for your dose of industry news. I’m trying to make this one of the most valuable emails you receive each week. If you’ve enjoyed this issue, please like it above 💗 and leave me a comment 💬

Good morning friends, and welcome to Issue 19 of the Anthro Community Newsletter.

Happy Thanksgiving to our American friends! And hope everyone is continuing to stay safe during this wave of Covid. Look after yourselves and chin up 💕

Let’s get straight into this weeks drama in the brand world!

Here’s what you’ll learn today:

  • Media relations & trust in 2020: Coinbase x New York Times saga

  • Brand love. What is it & how to get it

  • The cultural phenomenon of ‘Karen’

For those of you new to Anthro, and those who missed last week’s issue featuring Duncan Byrne’s interview, superfans & rebranding London, you can check it out here.


Media relations is being flipped on its head. Coinbase doesn’t care what the New York Times says

This week there has been an INTENSE war between cryptocurrency platform Coinbase and media outlet the New York Times 💥 The latter published a hit piece on Coinbase, but before the NYT had even published it, Coinbase publicly shared a preemptive article on the matter 🔫 TL;DR, Coinbase is being slated for discrimination and they are defending themselves. The NYT is freaking out because “How dare a company have the audacity to stand its ground?” Wild times.

We traditionally live in a world where we all revere and live by what the media has to say (although trust is the media is waning), and the rules of media relations and crisis comms say that we have to treat these relationships with utmost care and fragility. Even when journalism itself suffers from unethical behavior and a lack of diversity (hello phone hacking and hello racial issues). Coinbase is breaking the mould and doing what it thinks is best: That is adopting a single-mission-driven approach to business and standing up to the media. My actionable key takeaways on crisis communications strategy for you below 👀 Read the full Anthro Industry Analysis here

  • Crisis comms 101 usually suggests you don't draw attention to the element tarnishing your reputation, as that could be adding fuel to the fire. Upholding relations even in times like this is also seen as crucial. Coinbase allegedly burned their bridge with the NYT over the article 🔥

  • That said, using your voice to “front run” or preemptively get your message out in its purest form is incredibly powerful. Coinbase is taking control of the situation 👀 Read their preemptive blog post here

  • Front running is usually only recommended when the facts are on your side and you can 100% substantiate your point. The execution needs to be perfect 💯

Brand Love: What is it? How to get it?

Brand love is pretty important for the success of your business. But what does it mean, how do you achieve it and can you quantify it? Trick is, if you can measure and quantify something, it allows you to understand the concept in more depth, understand how to achieve it AND how to be accountable for you goals. Hint hint, brand love is a little more complex than measuring how many people say “I love brand x!”. Although that is a fun one, and I would encourage you all to track how people organically talk about your brand if you can (e.g. using social listening).

“NPS” or Net Promoter Score used to be (and still is, in parts), popular in the worlds of adland, marketing, PR and brand. Personally, and according to many colleagues I’ve worked with, it is far too reductive to be accurate or useful. There are much more efficient ways of checking whether your brand is loved, and if it’s not, these efficient ways will help you build a plan to attain that L-O-V-E. According to a succinct piece by VC Ha Nguyen, the 4 pillars of brand love are 1) organic referrals, 2) revenue growth, 3 ) pain-killing power and 4) customer retention. Below are three ways you can begin planning for, and measuring your brand love 👀 You can read Ha’s full article on this framework here.

  • Is your audience recommending your brand to others? Analyse your site traffic to see how much of your new audience is coming from organic channels (channels you’re not promoting/doing paid ads on). 70% is a good benchmark for high organic traffic 🚦

  • Checking in regularly with your core audience is key. Measure the value you add to their lives by asking “How disappointed would you be if you could no longer use the product?”. 40% feeling “extremely disappointed” indicates positive brand love & product market fit 📊

  • Month-on-month growth is an easy one for you to consistently measure. How many new people are joining your audience? And how frequently do they return to purchase something. Track these alongside the 2 points above 📈

Other interesting things:

And in case you missed it:

👀 Interview with Duncan Byrne, Involved Group (Anjuna, and Above & Beyond)
👀 Interview with Vikki Chowney, Global Head of Content & Publishing at H+K
👀 Anthro Free Guide #1: Brand Strategy 101


Thank you so much for reading this week’s issue and I can’t wait to see you here again, same time, same place, next week!

Leave me a comment or drop me a line to say “hey” on hello@anthro.global and tell me what you’d like to see in future issues.

Sanya 😊


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Written by Sanya-Jeet Thandi, a brand strategist & consultant with a love for culture, start-ups and good karma. British Indian currently in Kent & London, and soon to be US ex-pat. You can connect with me on Twitter, but not Instagram, because it’s boring so I deleted it.