Archive

Archive for the ‘advertising’ Category

#9 – Has the Internet revolutionized political campaigns today?

March 25, 2012 Leave a comment

In the past, information with regards to political campaign were distributed via the news on television or newspapers. Today, aside from these traditional mediums, timely information can be found on websites of news agencies and disseminated via social networking sites or micro blogging sites. Whenever anyone mentioned a successful political campaign using the Internet, Barack Obama’s name is almost usually included.

In the past, aside from rallies, print and television commercials were also used to garner support. The video below is taken from a television commercial for 1952 political campaign in United States of America.

Today, audio, video and pictures are still being used. Aside from being catchy, other influential figures are also lending their support to the cause. One great example is the video in support for Obama’s campaign by singers in America. As reported, the Obama campaign had no role in the video. Check the link below for more details.

From the description above, we can tell that the Internet today plays an integral part in political campaigns. The question now is how has the Internet revolutionized political campaigns today?

Firstly, advertising is no longer restricted to traditional media. Today, almost every campaign uses social advertising to get their message across. Social advertising is important because of its wider reach and specific targeting.

Next, utilizing social networking sites on the Internet help to disseminate information in a timely manner and enhance interaction. Most common social networking/micro blogging sites adopted are Facebook and Twitter. Here representatives or the individual themselves can share latest updates and also interact with the users. One great example would be taken from the local context, during the latest election in Singapore. To connect and reach out to young voters, Nicole Seah who was representing the Workers Party for a seat in the Marine Parade GRC in the 2011 Singapore General Elections, utilized Facebook to update her activities as well as views that concerned her during the elections.

Today, political campaigns also uses multimedia on the Internet to disseminate information in interesting and engaging manner. The article by NY Times below showed how multimedia on the Internet played a role in the latest elections. In a country where there are 900,000 local users on Twitter and three million Singapore members on Facebook, the Internet is the new approach to garner interest and support.

The Internet has changed the ways people do things and political campaigns is one example where Internet has made an impact on. Today, social advertising has been utilized to reach readers in a timely and engaging manner utilizing multimedia on the Internet. An issue where many youths were generally apathetic to have been given a renewed interest with a newer approach to reach these target audience. So what do you think about political campaigns today? Has the Internet changed your views on politics making you pay more attention to it?

Advertisements

#8 – Utilizing multimedia as part of campaign

March 18, 2012 Leave a comment

Today, many companies and organizations are using multimedia on the Internet as part of their campaign. Today, campaigns are all about being interactive in achieving its objectives. Two great examples are Cadbury: Olympic’s 2012 Pumped FB Parade and Kotex’s campaign known as Womens Inspiration Day by KOTEX.

The video above provided a summary of Cadbury: Olympic’s 2012 Pumped FB Parade. According to DigitalBuzzBlog, “Users can select their gender, choose an outfit and accessorise their avatar before they join the march. Everyone that joins is entered into a weekly draw to win tickets to the Olympics. Users are encouraged to invite their friends from Facebook and Twitter to help gain support for team GB, as well as posting pictures of their avatar during the parade to their Facebook wall.” Aside from using video that was uploaded on youtube for explanation, supporters go proceed straight to Cadbury UK Facebook page and explore the interactive site themselves.

Next is an example of Kotex using the latest social media tool, Pinterest, as part of the campaign. Kotex sent out 50 inspirational packages to different women based on their Pinterest Boards. These women would then take a picture and share it on Pinterest, Facebook and/or Twitter. The important thing to note is that with only 50 packages sent out, the were still able to reach a few thousand people with the same message merely using pictures and the power of social media.

Since the Cadbury campaign is currently in progress, it would be unfair to evaluate its effectiveness. However, both campaigns are interesting because it uses multimedia and also other tools found on the Internet to expand its reach to greater audience. Both campaigns focus on individualized experience. Users are able to go to the page and experience the interaction between them and the multimedia tools utilized. For Cadbury, users can create and personalize their avatar online while providing support to their team for the Olympics. Also, video was used to explain the process and garner interest to visit the Facebook page to create the avatar. For the Kotex campaign, it was more about allowing users to share the package received which was limited to only 50 women in the country.

Multimedia on the Internet is not limited to just interactivity, pictures and videos. One can use podcast, music, webcasting and more on the Internet as part of their campaign. The link here provide tips for amateur users to get started. Utilizing multimedia with social media would ensure that buzz can be generated quickly and reach can also be expanded. So what did you think about the 2 campaigns featured? What are the other campaign have you encountered that utilizes multimedia on the Internet?

#4 – The fall of pets.com

February 19, 2012 Leave a comment

Above was the advertisement for Pets.com, a company that sold accessories for pets to consumers directly though the World Wide Web from 1998 to 2000. As observed, the company had a mascot of a dog-like sock puppet holding on to a microphone. The company’s aim was to sell items your pets might need…“because pets can’t drive.”

Despite its 2 year run, the company was able to grab the public’s attention amidst the abundance of dot-com company appearing all over the web (also known as the dot-com bubble). They had a strong presence in advertising due to their memorable mascot. The puppet appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America, Nightline, Live with Regis and Kathie Lee, and even had a balloon made in its image for the 1999 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The video below will show a snippet from the parade (fast-forward to 3:37).

Just like many others, the company was in a rush to get big during the dot-com bubble. Being quick to take actions is fine, but not having a plan could lead them closer to their pitfall. So why or what factors that contributed towards the company’s flop despite all the seemingly appropriate marketing strategies?

Firstly, the company had no sustainable business model. They spent too much on marketing, specifically beyond what was earned on business. As mentioned in the video below, for every dollar earned in revenue, $20 was spent on marketing. Aside from big marketing budget, the company was selling products at low prices eventually causing them to operate at a loss.

Secondly, the company failed due to lack of appeal in terms of benefits that consumers can gain from shopping with them. The only competitive edge that pets.com had was convenience in terms of elimination of travel time to grocery store. However cons such as delivery period and shipping or product cost outweigh the main advantage.

Lastly, the company failed to plan for the long-term as they did for short-term. Specifically, they failed to improve to create better services, information that could be collected from customers. Yes, the marketing campaigns were effective in getting the word out about the company but it did nothing that is essential to sustain a business such as customer’s satisfaction, product loyalty etc.

The main lesson here is that one should not start a business merely catching on the hype. Pets.com learned it the hard way when it jumped onto the bandwagon, without strengthening its business model and having a strong product positioning to give it a competitive edge. Eventually, the company was liquidated like many other dot-coms doing that time period within 9 months of their initial IPO. Maybe if America decided to ask for bailout (pets.com bailout?), things would be different today huh?

#3 – Is it possible to run a successful campaign on Twitter?

February 12, 2012 Leave a comment

Many people use Facebook or Twiter as a way to connect with friends or family about their lives. However, that is no longer the case today. Now, large organizations and corporations are using social media to connect with the consumers and see it as a way to manage their brand. One noticeable change that can be observed is how these organizations and big brands are using social media as part of their marketing strategy aside from the traditional form of advertising.

One such company who did a great job utilizing Twitter as part of their campaign was the automobile brand Volkswagen. The Volkswagen Twitter Zoom campaign was exclusive to Sao Paolo, Brazil and was based on a real-time treasure hunt concept. To promote Volkswagen’s new car Fox to the youths, the company sponsored Planeta Terra Festival which is a major music festival in Brazil. In order to win tickets, music lovers would have to find the tickets that were hidden all over the city. For the location of the tickets to be revealed on Google maps, people would have to tweet #foxatplanetaterra hash tag. When more people tweet with the hashtag, the map of ticket would zoom further in revealing the exact location, and the first person to be on location wins.

So the public’s reaction to the campaign?

To pull-off a successful campaign on social media is not an easy feat. Many companies have failed to do so. Why then was Volkswagen successful? Here are some factors that played a part to its success.

As seen from the 4 factors, Volkswagen was able to identify their target audience well and even used the proper medium to connect with the youths. Next, the campaign embraced Twitter’s main strength as part of their campaign, using the hashtag. When this hashtag started to trend, more people would be curious about it and eventually act as a catalyst to spread the word. With the treasure hunt concept, the campaign was able to connect fun with its target audience. Lastly, with an incentive which is tickets to the event of the year in Brazil, interest was generated thus expanding the buzz.

With social media, advertising today is made fun, interesting and interactive. More creative ideas can be generated with websites such as Twitter and Facebook. However, companies should be careful when embarking on an unconventional way of advertising as the plan could backfire and ultimately affect its branding. So what did you think about Volkswagen’s campaign? Do you remember any other campaigns/advertisements that used social media? Was it a successful one?

#3 – Coca-cola advertisement

February 20, 2011 14 comments

We use non-verbal communication on a daily basis, be it to complement our verbal communication, to illustrate a point or even to replace verbal communication, such as shaking our head to disagree.

In the advertisement below released by Coca-cola, the advertisement revolves around non-verbal communication between 2 people.

source: http://adland.tv/commercials/coke-Coca-cola-Coca-cola-guards-2011-60-usa

The advertisement shows that non-verbal communication here is universal, understood by 2 different people from different cultures. The hand gestures and facial expressions were able to transcend culture and basic communication can occur, even replacing the verbal communication (use of language in this case).

In the advertisement, emotional expression and non-verbal codes are expressed clearly, working together to bring out the message. Mostly, kinesics (also known as body language) specifically emblems (similar to the idea of silent words), affect displays (body movement that convey emotional states) and oculesics (non-verbal meaning s associated with the eyes) were used to communicate.

At the start of the advertisement, various emotional expressions were displayed to show hostility between the 2 border guards. Frowning, eyes opened wide and eventually staring at each other established the air of hostility. The act of which the Coca-cola guard in blue using his sword to remove a tiny piece of paper that flew accidentally into his territory further emphasized this.

However when the guard in brown decided to open a bottle of Coca-cola, the guard in blue stopped walking when he heard the sound. This could either display curiosity to the source of sound or even familiarity to it. He then turned to face the guard in brown and seemed even more curious, as if telling the guard of his interest to drink too, all just through his facial expression.

When the guard in brown offered the other a bottle of Coca-cola, the guard in blue turned his head left and right checking if the coast is clear to accept it. Since they are enemies, accepting a drink seemed unacceptable. Therefore in order to receive the drink, the guard in brown used his sword and extended the territory line just so his enemy could accept a bottle of Coca-cola. At the brief moment where both of them seemed refreshed after drinking, they were enjoying something in common, in contrast to the hostile environment earlier. The advertisement is trying to show that despite the differences between people, Coca-cola is the one similar thing that everyone can share and understand.

I find it interesting how Coca-cola replaced verbal communication with non-verbal communication throughout the whole advertisement. When producing the advertisement, the main concern would have to be, ensuring that the non-verbal communication is universal, understood easily by anyone.

So what did you think of the advertisement? What are some of the non-verbal communication that you adopt to replace verbal communication?

#2 – Diet Pepsi ‘Skinny’ Can Controversy

February 13, 2011 14 comments

Stereotyping is defined as a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing.

Advertisements usually features stereotypes in it, to allow their target audience to be able to relate with the character. In this case, it is Pepsi’s new Diet Pepsi Skinny Can, released during Fashion Week in New York.

 

screen shot from: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/11/diet-pepsi-skinny-can-sti_n_822046.html

Why the whole controversy behind this new can design? It is using stereotype and perception to sell the product, in which fashion is related to being skinny and that being skinny is beautiful. So what do you think is the main reason for stereotyping?

Perception is defined as the process of selecting, organizing and interpreting information to give personal meaning to the communication we receive. Ultimately perception is about how make sense of the information we received.

When forming perception, we go through the process of selection – how we single out information in our environment for processing. We select information based on frequency (quantity), contrast (how a certain stimuli stands out because it is different), intensity (the magnitude of a certain stimuli) and novel stimuli (things that are new to us).

Our selection process is also influenced from various sources such as mass media, environment, individual characteristics (e.g. past experiences, cultural background etc), psychological state and social network.

In my opinion, influences of selection and the qualities of selection work hand in hand. Take for example; a girl being constantly exposed to media portrayal of beauty as being skinny mixed with the environment that stresses on outer appearance as beauty. This affects her selection of what beauty is all about. With inaccurate selection of information, it ultimately affects how she organized and interprets the information. Inevitably, it leads to the distortion of perception of beauty.

The mainstream media has the power to affect people’s perception. The media is a tool that can be used to communicate from one person to many. It is up to how a person makes sense of the information. However, with this distortion of perception being used to sell a product, it is delivering the wrong message of what beauty is, not only to the youths who are so easily influenced, but also to the mass.

I think the main problem when it comes to perception, is selection of information. We tend to avoid certain stimuli (selective exposure), filter of unwanted stimuli (selective attention) and/or we only store information we have processed (selective retention). Distortion of perception leads to the existence of stereotyping.

The best way to improve our perception is to keep an open mind when selecting information and distinguish facts from inferences. Most importantly, be prepared to change our perception.

When it all comes down to it, do you really think it is the media’s fault for projecting beauty as being skinny, or do you think it is the natural characteristic in human nature to see what is pleasing to the eyes?