Episode 99: Kelly Mooney, Resource Interactive on The OPEN Brand Framework, Your Social Profile Manager, Blizzard Rafting

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Meet Kelly Mooney, president and chief experience officer of Resource Interactive, a Columbus, Ohio-based digital agency representing big brand clients including P&G, Victoria's Secret, HP and Best Buy. Kelly's new book (her second) is about the shift in marketing to a world of consumers who are all "famous" for something and who would rather create than consume their media. "The OPEN brand: When Push Comes to Pull in a Web-Made World."

Kelly walks us through some of her recent work for Gain, Pink from Victoria's Secret and Shaw Floors. Sam Decker of Bazaarvoice and Pete Blackshaw of Nielsen Online post thorny questions about slipperiness and being "truly open" as a company.

Go on a wild ride through white water rapids in a blizzard at the end of the show and find out Kelly's key take away from the experience that pushed her edge the hardest in her life.

Kelly Mooney is a very strategic, big thinker about the ever-changing landscape of online marketing. OPEN flawlessly sums up the sea change in consumer marketing and she provides solid council to her clients and shares those insights with the rest of us through her excellent books. Get to know this VIP of the marketing world on this fun and informative episode.


Susan Bratton: Welcome to Dishy Mix. I’m your host, Susan Bratton, and on today’s show you’re going to get to meet Kelly Mooney. Kelly’s the president and chief experience officer of an agency out of Columbus, Ohio called Resource Interactive. She has an amazing client roster. We’re going to talk about some of the campaigns and projects and programs she’s been working on with those amazing clients, and we’re going to talk about her newest book. Yes, she’s a multiple title author. It’s called The Open Brand: When Push Comes to Pull in a Web Made World. Before I bring Kelly on the show I wanted to let you know that as promised I delivered; I just launched my learning system called Talk Show Tips. Talk Show Tips is a culmination of everything that I have learned in the last five years of doing these weekly interviews for Ad Tech Connect and then for Dishy Mix. It’s about helping you, if you’re doing any interviewing for you blog, your podcast, your radio show, your television show, whatever it might be, if you’re conducting interviews… I just couldn’t find any good books out there, and I spent the last five years collecting information about how to do a great job interviewing people. Everything from booking a fabulous guest like Kelly onto the show to coming up with great questions, great ideas that would be different than anyone else had ever asked. Also how to actually conduct an interview, you know, manage the interview, how, what’s the process, what’s the flow, how do you segway and bridge and transition and go to break and do intros and outros, there’s so much to learn. And then of course how to promote the show using the beauty of social media, there’s a ton of tips for that. And so I’d love for you to check it out. It’s at talkshowtips.com, it’s 72 of my secret master host techniques, and I’d love your feedback. I’ll be giving a few away in the Dishy Mix Fan Club as well, so if you’d like a free copy in exchange for blogging about it with your honest opinion, I would love to give you one. Post your interest and desires at dishymixfan.com, that’ll take you right into Face Book to my fan club, and thanks for letting me tell you about it. It was so much fun to write. I loved doing it, and I hope that you’ll love reading it. So lets get Kelly on the show because she has a new book that we’re going to talk about, as well as some of the most interesting projects she’s been working on. So welcome Kelly Mooney.

Kelly Mooney: Thanks Susan. It’s really great to catch up with you at last on Dishy Mix.

Susan Bratton: It absolutely is Kelly, and you and I have known each other more from afar, but for a number of years now. You’ve often spoken at Ad Tech, I used to call you and ask you to come, and Nita Rollins, one of your co-workers, come and speak at Ad Tech a lot, so we’ve been connected for many years now.

Kelly Mooney: Absolutely. So it’s great to finally get to catch up and interview.

Susan Bratton: Oh well I love that, you know. It’s how I catch up with half the people I know. So tell us about The Open Brand: When Push Comes to Pull in a Web Made World. First thing that I noticed is that this is not only your second book, but your donating all the proceeds to One Laptop Per Child. How is that going, and what made you make that decision?

Kelly Mooney: That’s going really fantastic, and the idea for, for donating the proceeds really came to, came about because I wanted to find a way of reinforcing the concept of the book of Open, and really in the most basic way, opening up possibilities for kids all over the world who might not otherwise be a part of the digital and interconnected world that the rest of us are living in, and so we’re trying to put laptops in every kids hands, which is exactly what this project is doing. But the idea of Open really, gosh, it really…Let me state that differently, the idea of Open was incubating in my brain for a long time because I was so interested in open source technology and how people around the world would actually work for free and didn’t know each other and contribute to a product and do all these crazy things almost creating their own subculture. And I began thinking about that many, many years ago and wondering what will the implication of that be for marketing someday. So while the book is out now and people read it and go, “Well of course, the world has changed”, when I started thinking about it five, seven, eight years ago, it wasn’t such an obvious outcome that we would actually see that we’ve seen today.

Susan Bratton: So when I read The Open, Open Brand… I always think about calling it Open too, that’s like the whole name is just Open… When I read The Open Brand one of the things that, I felt like it was a bit of preaching to the choir because everything you were saying I was in complete agreement with. The world has changed… You talk about The Open Brand framework, this idea that every, there’s notoriety that consumers are influencers now, that they love to produce content, just not get pushed content, and all of this makes sense to not only me, but every Dishy Mix listener. We, we completely get that the world’s gone social. You’re writing this because you work with ginormous brands; Procter and Gamble, Hewlett Packard, Coca-Cola, Victoria’s Secret, Best Buy, LL Bean, WalMart, you know, it’s so many of these brands. How is the book being received in these hallowed halls of these big brands?

Kelly Mooney: Interestingly enough, it’s being received really well right now, but when I first started talking about the ideas and the concepts in the book, which would’ve, which in the book would’ve been about three years ago, it really wasn’t resonating quite honestly. It wasn’t sinking in, there wasn’t a sense of urgency that this was important. It was, oh, it was continuously as tactical and potentially unnecessary. And definitely the tide has turned, and it’s not just the digital believers, but it’s really the traditional marketers that are seeing the world in a fundamentally different way and all the recipes of marketing that they’ve used in the past have, have obviously not delivered the results that they need or expect, and so their eyes have been opened to a bigger better way of thinking. I mean, imagine like three years ago, four, five years ago when we didn’t have MySpace and YouTube and FaceBook and all these, and Twitter, having the, not just the appeal, but the impact that they’re having. So my initial conversations preceded those kinds of companies, so it was much difficult then than it is now.

Susan Bratton: Sam Decker is a Dishy Mix listener. He’s a mutual friend. He’s the chief marketing officer of an amazing company called Bizarre Voice out of Austin, Texas, and he has a question for you. He says, “Many CEO’s would indicate the desire to be more open and transparent, and they would like stand on stage with you and point to a few campaigns or programs. Usually these are run by a function of marketing. It seems easier to start a company that’s open than to change one. What examples do you have of companies who have truly evolved, changed their culture and way of doing business, and how did they get there?”

Kelly Mooney: Well that’s a, that’s an awful big question, so thanks Sam. Actually it…

Susan Bratton: You can handle it Kelly.

Kelly Mooney: It’s a great question, there’s a lots of examples, and I think that the best examples are in traditional companies or companies that have been in business for quite some time, is typically starting on the fringes. And that might be with a sub brand or a smaller brand or a part of the company that might not delivering disproportionate revenue or profit to the organization because it’s not seen as sort of the mother ship so to speak. And so, you know, one example of that might be, you know, when working with the limited brands we have been fortunate to have a long relationship with Victoria’s Secret, but our most recent efforts over the last three years have been focused on helping to build the Pink brand, which is really the, the youth or the collegiate brand that has, has spun out of Victoria’s Secret and using digital media, social media to really build that brand, not relying on traditional marketing and advertising and TV and those kinds of things, and I think what’s happened is all of that success has created a new perspective for the bigger brand and the bigger organization to say, “Wow, how can we begin to learn from that?” So that really has been a terrific example of a company and a brand who, the smaller brand is actually now influencing and inspiring the bigger brand to think differently, to organize differently and to even allocate funds differently.

Susan Bratton: One of the things in The Open Brand that you wrote about with regard to Pink was the series of parties that you were doing that were part of being Open. Can you tell us the story about that offline/online intersection and how that was and Open Brand initiative?

Kelly Mooney: Sure, absolutely. I think that one of the things that Pink has discovered is that you can really integrate public relations and the web and direct marketing in new and exciting ways, and so instead of just having a party where certain customers were invited, we were actually able to use the web to make every Pink girl feel like they were invited and feel like they were at a party that maybe they didn’t have the money to go to, and so we were able to trans, take a lot of photos and video and images and share those on the internet so girls worldwide were connected. But also we got to do a competition in advance where girls could download a song from Fergie and do their best dance and be considered to get a free trip to the party. And then while they were at the party we used mobile to let the girls feel connected to not only one another, so they could find each other and get special prizes if they were to text a certain number, but they could take their own picture, and then if they sent it to us we could actually project their image up on the screen as a big backdrop right behind Fergie as she’s performing, so they felt like they were not just at the show, but that they were a part of the show, and then those images could also be shared with their friends on the internet. So it’s taking all of those elements and creating a really integrated special, yet intimate event for these girls.

Susan Bratton: That is a super neat program. I really love that you, the integrated use of technology and real world entertainment. It’s easy though, it’s kind of a gimme to have a teen brand and use social media and technology marketing. What about some of your other brands like I Love Gain with moms or Shaw Floors, you’ve got a really beautiful site for a flooring company. Are you using social media applications in some of these different markets that aren’t just teen tween?

Kelly Mooney: Sure, we definitely are. But we’re also calibrating it to make sure that it’s the, we’re not just doing it to do it because it’s the new trendy thing. We need to make sure that we’ve under, we have identified and understand their passion points, that’s really where social media can be used to connect people and to generate preference and advocacy is when you know what they’re passionate about. So with Shaw Floors, what we know they’re passionate about is not just renovating their home, but having the ability to imagine what it might look like before they spend the time and the money to paint the walls and put new flooring down, and so they know that there’s, we know that there’s this huge chasm between how peoples homes look now and how they dream them to look, how they wish they would look someday, and so we create tools that can help, that can visualize all the options and specifically envision what their own home would look like by uploading a certain photo and then being able to manipulate the elements in the photo to, to change the appearance so that they can do that before they make the investment. So really knowing what the consumer’s passionate about instead of just saying, “Lets go out and build a fan page on FaceBook”, we got to know what we’re, how we can be the most relevant to a consumer.

Susan Bratton: So the Shaw Floors Try On A Floor Project was well suited for that particular customer.

Kelly Mooney: Exactly.

Susan Bratton: Did you originally do the, didn’t LL Bean originally have the try on the clothing thing like a dozen years ago?

Kelly Mooney: You know, I think that was Land’s End…

Susan Bratton: I think it was too.

Kelly Mooney: where they actually…

Susan Bratton: It was.

Kelly Mooney: it had a van that went around and you could scan your body and get the images and upload them and get clothing recommended to your body type, yeah.

Susan Bratton: Yeah, yeah. Their clothes still never fit very well. So I have another question for you from someone we both love dearly. Pete Blackshaw, he’s the CMO of Nielsen Online. And here’s his question: “In a recent Ad Age Conference Panel I moderated with Best Buy, Delta and Pizza Hut, the VP of marketing with Pizza Hut suggested that the secret sauce of effective web transactions is slipperiness, not engagement. He was suggesting that for things like online ordering of pizza you want to get folks in and out as quickly as possible. As an interface and usability expert Kelly, how do you balance engagingness and slipperiness? When is one needed versus the other? Is e-commerce the dividing line or is that too simple?”

Kelly Mooney: That’s a good question, and interestingly enough I was at that conference at Ad Age in New York and I saw Pete in the panel discuss these various issues, and I was intrigued. I actually wrote down the word ‘slipperiness’, it’s kind of hard to say. But I wrote it down and I was intrigued by it, and I actually agree with it in part and it’s, it is also reflective in my framework in The Open Brand where O is for on demand and E is for engaging. And what I believe is consumers actually want both of those things, but not necessarily at the same time, or if they do want them at the same time it’s really what specifically their needs are so that a consumer can have a very quick and efficient experience, or they can have an experience that is diverting and immersive and really bringing the consumer into the brand. Often times a consumer does not want those same things simultaneously, and I think advertisers are so focused on engagement that they miss the need for something to be super efficient and slippery, to use the term. So I think both are important, but knowing when to use one over the other is critical.

Susan Bratton: Say what O P E and N stand for in your book, ‘cause that’s an important part of the model for you.

Kelly Mooney: So O is for on demand, and that’s helping consumers get the most efficient experience, whether it’s real time, spontaneous, it’s removing all the really basic barriers that get in the way of a transaction. So speed is definitely the bias, where P is for personal, and this is the idea of making the consumer feel important, to feel recognized, acknowledged that information that’s been given in the past is actually being used in the future to create a better experience, and perhaps even some notoriety based on their loyalty or their participation in the brand. And E is for engagement, which is really about immersive experiences, about letting the consumer be entertained and inspired and potentially educated. And N is for network, and this has really only come to be in the forefront of most brands over the last, I would say, 12 to 24 months, unless they’ve been in a really adopter of technology, which is really understanding the importance of the connectedness of the consumer and a consumer co-creating the product or the message. I’m seeing a meaningful change based on the input or the feedback that they’ve given a company, not just feeling like their inputs gone into a black hole. And so on demand, personal, engaging and network is an acronym for what I call an experience framework that helps companies really prioritize what’s most important to their consumer.

Susan Bratton: I really like it, because anyone of us can lay our business construct and the way we’re currently doing marketing into that experience framework, so thank you for explaining that further. I want to ask you about Skittles. I read it on your blog, which is mooneythinks, m-o-o-n-e-y, thinks, t-h-i-n-k-s, dot com (mooneythinks.com). I noticed that you did a posting about it and I went to that Skittles website. Is that your brand?

Kelly Mooney: Is that my brand…

Susan Bratton: Is that your client? Is Skittles…

Kelly Mooney: No, no, absolutely not.

Susan Bratton: Okay. Alright, good because what I’m about to say isn’t so nice. I loved the idea of what Skittles was doing, and lets both kind of describe it. My experience of it was that there was no Skittles website per se, there was this kind of pop-up overlay that had a bit of a dashboard…

Kelly Mooney: Correct.

Susan Bratton: but what you ultimately went to, you were delivered to the Twitter search results about anything that anybody wrote about Skittles, and that was kind of the landing page with this overlay on top of it, is that what you got out of it too?

Kelly Mooney: Absolutely.

Susan Bratton: What a disaster. Holy crap! I looked on that this morning… Kelly, I mean, there were the most prurient, obnoxious, nasty, low down Twitter posts about Skittles. Not that people were saying anything negative about Skittles, but they were incorporating their love of Skittles into their nasty Twitter language. It was bad, and I thought, this is like youth brand. Kids eat those by the truck load, and if…

Kelly Mooney: And that’s what bothers me the most actually…

Susan Bratton: Oh, it’s totally inappropriate.

Kelly Mooney: because I have two kids that love Skittles…

Susan Bratton: Yeah.

Kelly Mooney: and it makes me crazy that there’s the F bomb and all kinds of other words that have showed up there. Some of it’s better monitored and sheltered from that regard, but from a strategic marketing standpoint, I think it was going for the one hit, “Lets do it before anybody else does it and lets get a bunch of attention for doing something crazy”, as opposed to being the right strategic marketing initiative that has any kind of legs long-term.

Susan Bratton: If that’s still up…

Kelly Mooney: I think it was gutsy, but I don’t think it was well thought out…

Susan Bratton: I don’t think it was a smart idea. You can’t take a children’s brand… Clearly you understand how to deal with youth brands, like VS Pink… You can’t take a children’s brand and give it a free-for-all Twitter feed. I guarantee you, lets bet, don’t you think that’ll be down by the time this show airs?

Kelly Mooney: Well I wish it would be, but its been up for quite some time…

Susan Bratton: Has it?

Kelly Mooney: and so I’m surprised that it actually is still running…

Susan Bratton: Wow!

Kelly Mooney: I guess what, the thing that somebody might say to me about this, they’d say, “Well Kelly, isn’t that open? It’s transparent, they’re letting consumers have a say”, and I think it’s important to say that being open doesn’t just mean leaving your front door, it’d be like leaving your front door of your home unlocked while you’re sleeping at night. Like nobody’s going to do that, and so it’s knowing when to open the door and welcome people in and offer them a cozy chair and iced tea and warm conversation, and then knowing when it’s time to close the door and lock it and go to bed, and so I feel like the notion of open is, should not be interpreted as, “Hey, we just have to completely and utterly transparent and unmonitored”, because I think that’s a recipe for disaster.

Susan Bratton: Obviously it’s a disaster for Skittles, if they don’t know it yet. Hey, we’re going to take a break, and when we come back I have a lot more I want to talk to you about, including some interesting things like you getting, this is your worst life experience, I won’t even tell anybody what it is, but it sounds scary and hairy, and I want to hear about that, and a couple of other things that you have, some opinions you have about social networking and the mantra by which you live. We’ve got some fun stuff coming up, so lets take a break. We’re with Kelly Mooney, president and chief experience officer of Resource Interactive, a fabulous agency out of Columbus, Ohio, and the author of the newest book The Open Brand: When Push Comes to Pull in a Web Made World. Stay tuned and we’ll be right back with Kelly Mooney.

Susan Bratton: We’re back. I’m your host, Susan Bratton. You’re getting to meet Kelly Mooney of Resource Interactive, and we were talking about her book, The Open Brand and what the experience framework “open” means, and I forgot to tell you that Kelly of course is so kind she’s offering up a couple of autographed copies of The Open Brand. So if you’d like to get a copy of Kelly’s book for yourself, for one of your clients, just go the Dishy Mix FaceBook Fan Club, it’s at dishymixfan.com. Just post your request that you’d like to have a copy of the book and tell us why you think you’re the person who gets one of these two personally autographed copies. We’ll pick two and Kelly will sign it for you and send it right to you. So go ahead and pop in and sign up for one. I’d love to send you a copy and so would Kelly. So Kelly when we were on the, just before we left for break we were talking a bit about social media and this, you know, Skittles/Twitter debacle… I asked you what you thought the future of social networking was and there were two things that you told me that were really interesting. One of them was that you had this idea of a consolidated digital self that was always available to you. And the second was that you believed in the future there would be such a job as a social profile manager, or at least someone would be, you could hire someone to handle your social profile for you. Tell us more. Put a little framework around that for us, a little experience framework.

Kelly Mooney: In thinking about the social profile manager?

Susan Bratton: Yeah.

Kelly Mooney: Well I’m thinking that right now there’s so much sharing going on that people were probably losing perspective about what’s being shared or told or passed along, and as this really grows and has momentum over time, we’re going to become more concerned than we are today about our image or who sees what, we’re going to do a better job of managing our privacy and our filters. Even though folks like, companies like FaceBook allow you to do that now, very, very few, I think it’s single digits, actually manage those kinds of details. But I think we’re going to have managers who act as a concierge to clean up our image, to project the right image, to choose the right images, to choose some of the words, to make sure we’re associated with the right networks and organizations, and, you know, like a travel agent might handle all your travel, there will be people who handle that. Many of the people that I know, and some of them might be in YPO’s for example, they have no time to do that, but their image and the success of their organization is very reliant upon what people can find out about them on the social web or on the internet in general, and so somebody will ultimately find a business in curating that on behalf of individuals.

Susan Bratton: I think that’s clever. There might just be someone who decides to do that for their living just hearing your idea. And YPO, Young Presidents Organization, that’s a fun group of people. How long have you been involved in that?

Kelly Mooney: You know, I’ve been involved, as a member I just joined last year, but my business partner has been involved in the last eight or ten years, so I’ve been exposed to a lot of the events and had the opportunity to speak at some of them and participate, so there’s been a lot of great education, not to mention entertainment.

Susan Bratton: About what do you speak when you talk to the YPO group?

Kelly Mooney: One of the last times I spoke, I actually shared with them the principles of my first book, which was The Ten Demandments, and helping them understand how to shift from being a product-centric company to a consumer-centric company.

Susan Bratton: Mm hmm, yeah. The Ten Demandments are as true today as they were back then, aren’t they?

Kelly Mooney: They really are, and I actually revisited the book and read it again, believe it or not, and found so much of it to be true ten years after I initially drafted that book. So I think if I were to re-release it I would certainly update it in a variety of ways, but the principles are evergreen in a lot of ways.

Susan Bratton: I really loved writing my, it’s not really a book, it is, it’s an e-book, but it’s a whole system of things, worksheets and checklists and form letters you can copy and all kinds of stuff, audio lessons. But when I was actually writing the book and writing everything for Talk Show Tips, I kept turning to my husband and saying, “Oh my god, I love doing this. Could I just write books for the rest of my life?” I had so much fun. It was like I was in this state of just pulling out everything that I could think of and know, and working on behalf of people, like educating and supporting people in getting themselves to the next level, so kind of like self-help for talk show hosts. I loved it…

Kelly Mooney: Well it sounds like you discovered your gifts…

Susan Bratton: I don’t know.

Kelly Mooney: I mean, your gifts are being used and you feel so full of life, and it’s all fun, not work.

Susan Bratton: It was super fun for me. Did you, did you like writing The Ten Demandments and The Open Brand?

Kelly Mooney: You know, I liked thinking about the concepts and I liked creating a framework and tweezing out the issues, and I loved doing that, more of the problem solving. The writing was, you know, challenging to me, but I also had a thought partner and a writer on each of those that I was lucky to have. What I found most difficult is I would do my day job and running the business and working with clients and mentoring staff, and then I would go home and be my, be a mom, so do my night job, and then after they went to bed I would do the book. And so…

Susan Bratton: Right.

Kelly Mooney: I found it to be exhausting. It took every bit of energy and commitment and discipline I had, but it was really worth doing.

Susan Bratton: Yeah. I had a different situation. I was working on it all day long, ‘cause I’m fresh in the mornings. I worked on it for two weeks straight, like fifteen days, for eleven hours a day straight through, pretty much. Loved it, and could’ve kept going, but I had to stop. I could’ve written five more parts to the book, and I thought, “I’ll make another book. I got to stop now and go back to work”, but I just essentially took two weeks off and wrote it. It’s a better way.

Kelly Mooney: Well that would be my advice to anybody who’s going to write a book or be a part of a book, if you can actually shift the responsibilities of your day job to somebody else or take a part-time leave from your day job, that would be the ideal way to do it because just adding it on to an already busy career is not something I would recommend to other people.

Susan Bratton: Exactly. And speaking of books, I asked you, not only what your most recent favorite book was, but you mentioned that and I’ll come back to it, but you also said that you’re reading the Twilight series…

Kelly Mooney: Uh huh.

Susan Bratton: to your, you have a little ten year old daughter, right?

Kelly Mooney: Yes.

Susan Bratton: Yeah, I  have a twelve year old daughter… And you were reading the Twilight series. Is that, I know it’s really popular. Looks like vampire stuff, is that what it is?

Kelly Mooney: It is. It’s crazy to even try to describe it to somebody. It’s about vampires and werewolves and a girl, a teenage girl that falls in love with both of these guys, and the vampire more so than the werewolf, and it sounds bizarre and strange to even say out loud, and I can’t even believe I’m reading it, but I’m working really hard to find shared interests with my children and trying to participate in the things they’re passionate about, and so my daughter was so crazy about the initial movie and the initial books, so I told her I would read it with her, and I was so surprised that I actually enjoyed it. I didn’t really expect to enjoy it, yeah.

Susan Bratton: I’m going to pick it up. I’m going to read that for Tay. I think she’ll really like that now too. And the book that you said that you like the most that you were kind of recommending to friends, this book keeps coming up… I have it on my shelf and I haven’t read it. I’m going to have to now. I had to read your book, I have so many books to read, you know. Lynda Resnick, I just read Rubies in the Orchard, that was fantastic…

Kelly Mooney: Oh yeah.

Susan Bratton: She’s terrific. But you said Predictably Irrational with Dan Ariely… Now that was one of out Ted Club book choices, ‘cause you and I both are Tedsters…

Kelly Mooney: Yes.

Susan Bratton: You liked that. Tell us what it was that really hit you about that book.

Kelly Mooney: Well I’ll tell you, there’s so many things about it, because he’s challenging the, how consumers make decisions and how context is so important for people to see choices relative to one another in order to make a buying decision for example. And what I was most inspired by was really his introduction where he was a burn victim, and, a burn victim from war, and he was covered in all kinds of bandages and the nurses would come in and literally rip the bandages off, just like the old saying goes…

Susan Bratton: Oh yeah, I heard this story.

Kelly Mooney: Yeah, and he realized that he just couldn’t understand why they were doing that, ‘cause he would have definitely preferred it to be slow and with, you know, care and attention and…

Susan Bratton: But they couldn’t stand it…

Kelly Mooney: They couldn’t stand it…

Susan Bratton: Right.

Kelly Mooney: It was their pain…

Susan Bratton: Yes.

Kelly Mooney: but the theory has always been, “Oh, the patient prefers the band-aid to be ripped off quickly”, when in fact the patient doesn’t prefer that at all. And so he became really intrigued with why people make decisions and what their biases are and that the context changes everything, and so, so it’s actually fascinating and all these different tests he’s done with how people make choices about price and when you put the word ‘free’ next to it or you don’t put the word ‘free’ or you bundle the same product together, and you charge the same amount than if you would pull them apart and price it the same way, that somehow when you bundle it together and, they feel better about that choice. And so he just had so many examples like that that’s very compelling, and it challenges how we think about consumer behavior.

Susan Bratton: Well I’m going to, I’m going to haul it out and read it. I love brain science, I love human behavior. As a matter of fact, I don’t know if you heard the Dishy Mix episode I did, it was a two-part series, I love this guy so much, with Dacher Keltner. He wrote The Science of a Meaningful Life…

Kelly Mooney: Yes.

Susan Bratton: Born To Be Good. That was so interesting to me. Everything that he talked about, human behavior, the crow magnum CEO and emotional intelligence, and I just love that. So I’m going to haul out that Predictably Irrational book and… I did read Ori Brafman’s book Sway, which is The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior…

Kelly Mooney: Uh huh.

Susan Bratton: That’s also very interesting. If you like this, you’ll like that.

Kelly Mooney: I will try it.

Susan Bratton: So we’re going to end the show, I want you to tell that story about the day or the situation that pushed your edge hardest your whole life, but before that we’re going to have a two-second girly bonding moment. You and I have something in common that’s funny. I have a vanity license plate that says “Tenacity”. I’ve had it for almost 30 years…

Kelly Mooney: No kidding.

Susan Bratton: Yes. I’ve had that license plate for almost 30 years on every car I have ever owned. I had it when I lived in Scottsdale, Arizona. When I moved to California it took me about six months to get that plate, ‘cause someone had it and then it cleared. And I have had ‘tenacity’ as my mantra, like “Just never give up”. And it’s so funny that you also said that your most marked characteristic is tenacity. So there you go…

Kelly Mooney: That’s crazy.

Susan Bratton: We’re two stubborn old babes, aren’t we?

Kelly Mooney: That’s amazing. That’s awesome.

Susan Bratton: It’s working for us, don’t you think?

Kelly Mooney: I think so, and I think it’s a good treat for women in business to have, especially in the digital world, that often has a lot of, you know, men in the mix, and so I think we have to have tenacity to be heard and to get our ideas out there and all of that.

Susan Bratton: And to just keep believing in what we want and what we believe we can make happen, ‘cause you and I are both makers, you know. We do things. We create things for people, and so, yeah, that’s, it’s just been something that’s been so dear to me for so many years, because… Well I’ll just tell you the little story really fast. I went on a job interview when I was like 21 or 22 years old for my first sales job. I kind of thought sales would be fun, I thought it would fit my personality. I was a junior purchasing clerk at a manufacturing company, and I saw the sales people come in and call on me ‘cause I was a buyer, and I thought, “Ugh, they have the good job. I need to get their job”, so I talked to a few of them and one of them said, “Hey, talk to my boss, we’re hiring.” I went in, I talked to the guy, and he said, “Yeah, you have a lot of, you’re very tenacious. I think you would do well.” And I said, “Thank you”, and I thought, “What does that mean?”, I didn’t know the word, you know. Went home and looked it up, and I said, “Yeah, I’m tenacious.” And it just kind of stuck with me. I just said, “Okay, I’m going to be tenacious.”

Kelly Mooney: Well I think for me it came from, I’m born eighth of ten children…

Susan Bratton: Oh wow.

Kelly Mooney: and so I think coming from a gigantic family, it was one of my survival strategies of being heard and not just sort of blended into the pack all the time, so it was…

Susan Bratton: And you’re tiny. You’re a tiny little thing, you little yogini. So it’s not like you’re going to go bully them or anything. That’s funny. Alright, so tell us your story, the day that your edge was pushed the hardest your whole life. We’re going to end the show on that and what you got out of it.

Kelly Mooney: Gosh, well I, you know, probably one of the toughest things I experienced, and I’m sure that many people have much more, you know, horrific experiences, so this is simply…

Susan Bratton: That’s okay. This is just yours.

Kelly Mooney: Yeah, so this is mine, and my husband and his brother and a whole bunch of other people wanted to go white water rafting in April in West Virginia, and I said, “Really?”, ‘cause that seems like it might be cold and not really ideal conditions, and they said, “No. Absolutely, it’ll be fabulous. The waters high, the rapids are great. It’s the best time to go”, and so against my desires I agreed to go, and actually it was my fiancée at the time, so I was trying to be the delightful agreeable girlfriend. And it turned out that the weather conditions just changed dramatically, 60 degrees, 50 degrees, 30 degrees, 20 degrees while we were there and it snowed like six inches in the middle of the night, and I was so relieved because I knew the trip would be cancelled, we couldn’t possibly go down a frozen river with more than six inches of snow. But, oh no, the trip actually was on. And it was an all day trip when we had not the proper gear, not the proper, no wetsuits, no gloves, no things to cover our feet, water was freezing, snow was everywhere, blizzard, wind, everything. I literally thought I was going to have frostbite over my entire body. I didn’t, I didn’t speak an entire word the whole day. My knuckles were frozen into the, onto the paddles, everybody was just, it was just the worst experience of my entire life of just being 12 hours on a freezing cold river with no gear. I don’t recommend it, and I would’ve dreamed for Patagonia to come landing on the river and saving us all with amazing gear. So that was the story and I lived to tell about it, and I have not been white water rafting since to tell you the truth. I wasn’t sure if I was going to survive that. And of course we fell out of the river, or out of the boat too, which I forgot to tell, so we’re all under water and it was terrible, so… With nothing warm to change into or anything, so that’s the story.

Susan Bratton: So how did that change your life?

Kelly Mooney: You know, it definitely made me really aware of how many good things I had in my life and how many amazing people I had in my life, and it certainly made me become more of a planner and to be more prepared for future excursions, which I feel like I have definitely done. It hasn’t made me say no to big challenges, but it has made me be more prepared for adventures than I would have been so in the past.

Susan Bratton: Yeah, being prepared for adventures. That’s good, instead of being afraid to take them. Perfect.

Kelly Mooney: Exactly.

Susan Bratton: That’s great. Well Kelly, its been so nice to catch up with you. You run such a wonderful firm, doing amazing and beautiful work. You’ve authored two books, both excellent reads, and you’re just giving so much of yourself to the industry as well with the work that you do going out and talking about your experiences and your blogging and everything. I just want to thank you so much for coming on the show today and offering up a couple of autographed copies of The Open Brand to the Dishy Mix fans, and thank you for everything.

Kelly Mooney: Well thank you Susan. I really appreciate the opportunity. I’ve really enjoyed it.

Susan Bratton: Good. I know. Well it’s always fun to talk about yourself, isn’t it? I like it too. It’s, it was great to get to know you better Kelly. Thank you. I hope you have a great day, and to all the Dishy Mix listeners, thank you so much for checking out Kelly and letting us know if we can send you a copy of her book, and I hope we’ve inspired you in some way today. I’m your host, Susan Bratton. Have a great day, and I hope you’ll tune in next week to Dishy Mix. Bye-bye.