Many advertisers and marketers position their brand message to Maslow’s higher order needs (e.g. the need for belonging, esteem, self-actualization) on the pyramid. Has the message changed as a result of the recession?
Mr. John Gerzema, author of Brand Bubble argued that because of the recession we need to embrace the lower order needs (e.g. the needs for safety and physiological protection) on Maslow’s hierarchy. Fear and uncertainty are on the rise. The marketers that will have a competitive advantage from this recession will replace passion with compassion. Evidence of this includes Hyundai’s current campaign called Hyundai Assurance, which lets any Hyundai owner walk away from their lease or loan on a new Hyundai vehicle, if they lose their job within 12 months of the purchase. In the first quarter of this year, the entire automotive industry in the US was down 38.4% between March 2009 YTD versus March 2008 YTD. While Hyundai’s sales were up 0.7% during that same period.
There are a few businesses that have succeeded in the recession. Evidence is apparent with the Match.com, The Economist Magazine, LoveFilm and MTV. In these four case studies, all are able to adapt to people’s interests as a result of people cutting back in their budgets. The most compelling case study is with The Economist. Its rich content about the recession and the banking crisis certainly appeal to people, but in my opinion, it is its creativity in leveraging different media such as its podcasting, online content, magazine content and its educational guides on various subjects such as advertising that help differentiate this magazine with others.
Posted in branding, business model
Tagged advertising, adweek, brand bubble, branding, case studies, economist, gerzema, marketing, maslow, needs, recession, strategy
If you have been following this blog, I had been stressing about the importance of content on demand.
The first example, is at Heathrow Airport in London, where HSBC is promoting their Premier Card. Travelers go to a kiosk, where they are able to customize their own magazines for free by selecting their own content. These custom magazines will be branded by HSBC. The Premier card’s target demographic group are travelers. Based on the success of this campaign, this program could be a perk for HSBC Premier members.
Second example, is with Time Magazine in conjunction with Lexus are pursuing a made to order magazine. Lexus will have editorial content and exclusive ad space, while the readers get aggregated content from Time and its subsidiaries all for free. This campaign ties the customizable nature of this new aggregated magazine to the new Lexus RX sport utility vehicle and its customizable features. The magazine will be available as a hard copy to the first 31,000 respondents, and then it will be available online as well as on mobile.
I think this is definitely how content will be viewed in the future. The internet as a disruptive technology, changed how people view media. Offering customized content that appeals to what, when, where and how the customer wants to look at the media is imperative. Online advertising has not generated enough revenue to offset the decline in print. Offering this customizable content is probably the best alternative. What do you all think?
Posted in branding, business model
Tagged advertising, advertising campaigns, branding, free, heathrow, hsbc, lexus, made to order, magazines, media, on demand, time
Several weeks ago, I attended Planners United, a get-together of Toronto’s planning community. Kudos to Jason Oke for organizing this meeting. The keynote speaker was Mark Earls, author of the Herd book. His talk was quite invigorating. He turned the principles of push marketing onto its head. Much too often marketing that is done today is accomplished through push marketing, where the marketer is the king and pushes the ideas and the product or service onto people. During the talk, the old theory of pushing the ideas onto a few influencers and letting them spread the idea was an idea that was debunked by Mr. Earls.
One of the questions that was asked was: “If the idea is now pull marketing, how would we increase brand awareness and equity for our client’s product or service?”
Mr. Earls replied that through trends and herd mentality, we can influence behavior. We as a species do not act and think independently. We look at others’ and model their behavior whether it is done randomly or deliberately. Take a trend such as weight-loss, and enhance the customers’ experience and make it easier for them to reach that goal. Nike’s global 10 km run is an example of building a community, latching on a trend, and enhancing people’s end goals.
Today, on TED, there was an interesting talk by Seth Godin about Tribes. People exist in little communities, share, and learn together. In my previous post about Communities of Practice, I had touched upon this. Again, being able to locate, bring together like-minded people is very important. Go ahead and become a leader of these tribes. As a leader work in people’s interests to achieve their specific goal whether it is an individual one or as a community. Practicing the application of Communities of Practice, Herd and Tribe theories all have this commonality. Transformation Design can also be applied here too. Any thoughts?
For the last few months, I have been trying to learn as much as possible about Account Planning and anything subjects to do with advertising. For more on it read here. I have made a ten minute video summarizing and synthesizing all the materials I have been reading. Unfortunately, ten minutes is not much time to discuss everything I have learned. This is only an brief overview of the ideas I have researched. Depending on the demand, I may or may not release additional videos on what I have learned.
If you are curious, check it out:
My presentation without audio.
Here is my presentation with audio. Here is another site that my presentation with audio is on.
An interesting analogy is shown in this article that brands equate to an interface and vice-versa. The author uses an example of a big mac for McDonald’s and the iPod for Apple. It seems that most products and to an extent services have a certain interface that is unique to the brand. This is how people associate themselves and experience the brand. Successful brands therefore, possess one or a combination of the following attributes: superior user interfaces (designs), strong brand identity, and strong functionality