Skip to content

An Oops, a Kick, and a Rebrand Get Noticed [The Weekly Wrap]

Welcome to the new Weekly Wrap. While the podcast is on hiatus, we’re sharing blog posts every Friday with three content marketing anecdotes that caught our eye.

And we’d love your help. Let us know what you noticed in content marketing – good, bad, surprising, or mundane. It could be an example, a lesson, or even some news. Fill out this form.

The new #WeeklyWrap #blog post features #contentmarketing #examples from the @CMIContent community. Notice something interesting in content marketing? Send it to us. Learn how > Click To Tweet

Here are three things we noticed this week.

VRBO turns gaffe into golden sunshine

WHO: VRBO, the online vacation rental property brand

WHAT: The intriguing subject line on an email that popped up at 1:05 p.m. Sept. 9 read, “Internal User Test – 6 Months.” The headline started with every designer’s default placeholder Latin phrase: “Lorem ipsum …” The button text helpfully explained, “This is a CTA Button.” Destination City, ST, was a straightforward name but a mysterious destination.

At 1:05 p.m. Sept. 10 – exactly 24 hours later – another email from VRBO popped up, this one with the subject line: “Oops! We sent you a test email by mistake.” In it, the company owned up to the mistake in a playful and on-brand way: They needed a vacation as much as everyone does. Bonus, they shared a few places they’d like to visit.


WHERE: Personal email inbox 

WHY IT MATTERS: How many times have you received an email that you know the brand didn’t intend to send? As a content marketer, your immediate reaction may be to feel bad for the person who hit that “send” button. (Haven’t your hands shook a time or two when you hit send for a mass email?) Then, you wonder if the brand will recognize its mistake and communicate that to the audience.

If you appreciate the trust your audience members have in your brand as demonstrated by sharing their email, respect them enough to acknowledge a mistake – no matter how innocuous it is. If it isn’t serious, feel free to have fun with it if that tone works with your brand voice.

HOW IT WAS DISCOVERED: Ann Gynn noticed it in her inbox.

Who cares about Toggl’s rebrand?

WHO: Toggl

 WHAT: Many use the Toggl name as a synonym for its time tracking tool. But that’s not all Toggl does. So it rebranded all its products under the Toggl umbrella. Now, that time tracking tool is Toggl Track, while its products are Toggl Plan and Toggl Hire.

That’s all great for the company, but how does it affect users of Toggl’s free time tracking service? Well, Toggl explained it clearly in a blog post.

That’s all most Toggl Track users need to know – nothing is really changing for them. But for the curious or vested, the blog post furthers the explanation about what’s changing …

… and what’s not changing: 


WHY IT MATTERS: Companies invest a ton of time in a rebrand, a new website, or other major content initiatives. So they often mistakenly think their audience cares about the change as much as they do. But audiences typically only care about one thing – how does it affect me? Toggl got that.

In its blog post, it spells out answers to the questions its audience would likely ask. The subheadings – what’s changing and what’s not changing – serve as helpful wayfinding signs. Using bullets and short sentences lets readers get to the point quickly.

Toggl also didn’t overload the blog post by explaining its other two services under its umbrella. It simply included internal links to help anyone who wanted to learn about them.

HOW IT WAS DISCOVERED: As a Toggl user, Ann got an email with the news, then went to the blog.

Keds kicks up the power of women

WHO: Keds, an American brand famous for its rubber-soled canvas shoes

WHAT: The Hand-Book for Women: The Progress Issue is the second edition of a new riff on a content marketing tool Keds first published in the 1910s. At that time, they were called Hand-Books for Girls. According to the shoe company, they “encouraged young women to get out and exert their independence – a revolutionary move in a time when society was telling women to sit pretty and ask for permission.” The content in the current version is designed to let real women tell their own stories and to “empower women to be whatever kind of women they want to be (#whateverthatmeans).”

The content features stories of women in video and text. Shoes aren’t mentioned but are featured below their stories under the header: Shop the Story.


WHY IT MATTERS: It seems weird for Keds to include this on its homepage amid its on-sale shoes, back-to-school shoes, and other e-commerce fare.

But if you click on the link from the homepage, you can learn why it makes sense for Keds to offer this type of content. Keds is the first manufacturer of sneakers for women and produced its first Hand-Book for Girls over 100 years ago.

To take away the puzzlement – and to get more people to get to the valuable content – Keds could mention its status as the first manufacturer of women’s sneakers in the block featuring Hand-Book for Women on the homepage.

This issue of the Hand-Book for Women is the second one, dated autumn/winter. Interestingly, its debut issue is labeled spring. If you’re going to date your content by season, make sure you deliver it regularly. If Keds can’t do every season, that’s OK because the content is almost evergreen. Thus, it just shouldn’t date it that way.

HOW IT WAS DISCOVERED: Ann saw an online promotion about Keds shoes on sale and clicked to the site.

Notice something interesting in content marketing? Share it with fellow Content Marketing Institute readers. When you’re intrigued, puzzled, or surprised by an example, news, or something else in content marketing, share it with us by completing this form. Your submission may be featured in an upcoming Weekly Wrap.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute