Had a thought while staring at the cereal options at my house this morning….
Why didn’t Lucky the Leprechaun ever take on Tony the Tiger? It would have easily rivaled the “Buy a Mac” campaign. And the carnage. Oh, the carnage. Tony’s snarling teeth reducing Lucky’s magic wand to splinters. Two cross-generational icons grappling for dominance as yellow stars, tainted milk and sugar-frosted fairy dust explode into a fiery morning mess. A carnivorous breakfast feast for the ages.
Then I grabbed my store brand cheerios and went about my morning.
Saw recently in the Daily Dog that Dockers is working on a big brand revitalization effort. It will kick off with a Super Bowl ad in February with an appeal to bargain hunters. Is this a good strategy?
On the one hand, yes. You gotta spend it to mend it. So go big. Get everybody all at once. And dockers is already getting mileage out of the Super Bowl. Think how much press and online chitty-chatter they’re going to get before the spot even airs. They’ve already shown that they can be current with a funky iPhone app (kudos to Razorfish and OMD), so hopefully we have some good creative lurking on the horizon.
…you can still stand for something bigger.
It’s amazing what a recession can do. Two years ago the venerable brand American Express was running a commercial featuring Beyonce and her “difficult” life, which included personal assistants, international travel and the disruption of turndown service in her plush hotel room suite.
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (Nov. 30, 2009)
Woodbine* announced today it has become agency of record for High Point Regional Health System, a privately held company that provides world-class inpatient and outpatient care for North Carolina’s Triad and surrounding communities at High Point Regional Hospital and other major care facilities.
Woodbine, which has amassed extensive healthcare-marketing experience over the past 24 years, was selected not only for its category experience but also for its multichannel approach to re-positioning and revitalizing brands.
In a down economy, advertising “low cost” can be a tempting way to go. While there is a place for discounts, savings and rate-based advertising, any successful attempt to revitalize a brand must keep the consumer, and how they make purchase decisions, in mind.
I was first attracted to Brandweek’s cover story (11/9/09) on the newfound vitality of Hellmann’s Mayonnaise because I helped contribute to the brand’s +12% bump in sales that seemed to come out of nowhere. I am one of those “wary boomers peering at my withered 401K statement” and started brownbagging my lunch each day. Turkey & cheddar on rye, lettuce, mayo. The math is compelling: $6.50 X 5 is $32.50/week times 48 means over $1,500 in savings a year!
But there’s a lot more to this story and its lessons for well-established brands in mature categories:
It’s hard to see selecting an optical retailer as being an emotionally-driven decision, but an affective appeal can influence even the most mundane buying behavior. With its “Love what you see. See what you love” campaign, LensCrafters was able to go beyond promoting its latest sale and add an element of love to its brand.
Another example of how advertising with emotion can strengthen a brand, even in a functional category like business communications.
Halloween was a great time for brands to break down barriers and be seen in a new light. UTZ certainly took advantage of the opportunity. Its bat-shaped pretzels provided a healthy alternative for kids without trying to teach them or their parents a lesson in holiday nutrition. It’s the parents they want to reach anyway, and UTZ did a great job of getting out in front of them, building on the trick-or-treating experience and driving trial.
I loved my Ford Fiesta. My dad bought me a used one when I was 16 after I accidentally fried my 1979 Ford Pinto by not putting oil in it. But I digress. Like I said, I loved my Fiesta. My best friend had one, too. He got his from a nun, so it was in far better shape than mine. But then he had the blessing/curse of driving around in a nun’s car, so it all evened out. Double digression. Sorry. The point is, the Fiesta is making a triumphant return to the American roadway. And I want one. Not because I think it will be the answer to my transportation woes, or even be a good car, but because I’m nostalgic. I figured the Fiesta was as far gone as my parachute pants (which to my credit did not outlast my zippy little car). Turns out the Fiesta has been rocking European roads since they disappeared from our landscape. When I heard Ford was resurrecting the Fiesta in the homeland, my heart skipped a beat, and it wasn’t just me. Emails started flying around between friends and family reminiscing about the old Fiesta, making fun of ourselves, joking about trying to pick up girls in it, and resurrecting “lawnmower with doors” jokes. But guess what? We were talking about it. And I’m sure we’re not alone. Great brands endure like that. They build loyalty because they’re honest and true, even if they’re not perfect. Good luck, Ford. And bring on the party.