Grab the Hanky - Emotion Rules

Let's say you are trying to re-brand your product or service because you've had a recent spate of bad press or sales have slumped or your brand is just "tired".  What would you do? Man Eyes Emotion

Many marketers would look to reinforce their image by creating a campaign that speaks to the cost/benefit aspect or perhaps go out of their way to become "historical" by saying they've been around a long time so..."trust us".  Or they might use the compare/contrast campaign.  Trouble is, none of them work as well as...emotional messages.

Smart marketers know the real way to re-brand is the campaign that tugs at the heart.  The campaign that makes the brand more "human" and less "corporate" will win the day.

In our marketing presentation "Five in Twenty Four" we talk about how emotional advertising trumps "fact based" campaigns and reference the study done by Hamish Pringle and Peter Field published by our friends at Advertising Age in March 2009.

This past week we've seen a couple of giants roll out emotional based campaigns.  Dove used a forensic artist to draw images of women as they said they saw themselves and then as other saw them.  It's a campaign that works...and now has nearly 30 million views on YouTube.

Now Johnson & Johnson is making an emotional appeal an an attempt to put some bad press in the rear-view mirror.  Here's a sample:


Once again it works. 

So, the message here is when you're considering a re-branding campaign spend the time and money to do something worth remembering.  Emotion...rules.

What do you think?




If you would like to leave a comment here, feel free.  You can also join us on our Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.  Thanks for coming by!

Unity Point Health...WHAT?

During the past week we've seen and heard a bunch about the new name for Iowa Health System now called Unity Point Health.  We understand this name Unity Point Iowa Health logo transition has been going on for a while.  We can't confirm but sources have told us the effort has been going on for nearly two years. Clearly, based on the large number of television ads, the marketing team has been working on this for a long time.

We "get" the name change.  After all when the company is doing business in multiple states it makes sense to brand the product using a more universal name.  However, as you can see by the logo...not much really changed.  We would have rather seen a more dramatic alteration of the old logo but, here too, we understand the emotional attachment to the old.

However we're puzzled by the scripts used in the radio ads and voice overs.  Here is an example.  Listen carefully.


Not trying to be snarky but is Iowa Health, now Unity Point, admitting that for decades they have had this health care thing all...wrong?  Just now they have decided to put patients first?  Just now they are coming to grips with coordinated health care between the physician, hospital and clinic?

It's a head shaker and the result of when scriptwriters get ahead of themselves trying to re-make a brand when, in reality, only the name has been changed.  That's our take...yours?




If you want to leave a comment here, feel free.  Or join us on our advertising agency Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our agency Facebook Page is right here.  Thanks for coming by...

Video Worth Sharing...Dove

Over the years we've produced hundreds of hours of video for television and the web.  That process is so much more complex than most business people realize.  To produce a high quality video for business it takes planning, talented staff and a firm grip on the "end result".

That's why we want to share this powerful piece with you.  Dove is an old brand and we would bet it's not on the "want list" of many young women.  However, this very classy piece may just change that.


Well written, filmed and scored it is a very touching piece that, we think, ranks among the very best pieces of marketing video...ever.  And, again, that is no accident.  This took lots of time, talent and work.  Well done!





If you have a comment, feel free to post here.  And/or follow us on Twitter @InsightAdv and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.  Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications is a full service advertising agency based in Des Moines, Iowa.

The "Welcome Brand"

Sign Dont do thisThe other day I was having a discussion with a friend whose wife works in the service world.  Think maybe YMCA, apartment leasing, laundry, or other public accommodation business.  

When she became the boss one of the first things she did was stand back and examine how the business communicates with the public with...(ready?) signage.  You know, those (usually home-grown) signs that inform the public about what they should not do?  Signs that sprang up because somebody did something and it was deemed this activity was not to be tolerated so the answer became, "Let's put up a sign!".  Usually a sign that deals with the negative aspect of an action.

  • "Do Not Use This __________!"
  • "If You Remove This _________ You Are Liable!"
  • "Use of foul language is grounds for immediate dismissal!"
  • "Failure to sign in is against company rules!"

Notice that "negative branding" also requires you to use multiple fonts and sometimes color.  Pretty huh?

That got me to thinking about what creates a welcome brand.  (Tip: It ain't  any of the above.)

So what about your brand?  Is how you communicate with consumers positive or negative?  In advertising do you highlight the benefits of your product/service or do you contrast and compare?  Are your marketing messages direct and to the point or do you tend to use "soft" & "friendly"? Do you "listen" to your customers and then distill what they have asked for and match it with helpful advice or set yourself up as an authority?

My point is if you work hard at becoming a "welcome brand" by pushing the negative to the background you'll be more successful with more consumers.  People not only buy from people...they also buy from "nice people".




Got an opinion?  Feel free to share here.  Or, let's connect on Twitter @InsightADV and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.  Thanks for coming by!

The Scary Buying Cycle

Woman FearInformation, which is ready at a mouse click, can lengthen the buying cycle. Think of it.  Twenty, even ten, years ago instant information was not at the fingertips of the vast majority of consumers.  The ability to shop, compare brands and inquire from other consumers was limited to our friends, family and the occasional Consumer Reports publication.

That's all changed and that change has resulted in a much longer buying cycle that can be scary to brands not using technology. Why, because YOU are no longer in control.

Today consumers who are interested in a product or service can find out what others are saying.  Learn what their shopping experience was like.  Compare pricing, warranty issues and availability all without ever coming into contact with a sales person.  No longer do consumers say, "I want/need that _______." They now spend time learning from friends, family and other consumers who post reviews and information on-line.

Think of it, people are talking about your brand, product, service and unless you are engaged in that have no idea how their new "word of mouth" marketing effects  your sales.

Scary huh?

Scary to think that your advertising dollars have less and less impact than what they did a decade ago.  But, it is true.

How do you...engage?  Your product/service/brand must join the social conversation or be left in the dust.  But, just how do you do that?  Here are four simple suggestions:

  • Because consumers trust other consumers it is critical that you encourage the conversation by sharing in the social media circles dominated by your demographic;
  • Expand your voice by communicating with your base.  Encourage buyers to share their experience on-line, offer them a chance to rate your sales and service.  Communicate with them long after the sale is complete;
  • On-line sharing is great but, as a brand, you can expand your voice in your brick and mortar store.  For example: QR Codes that link to product videos/testimonials and "how to" use can be valuable. Use comments from your on-line adventure as point of purchase memos from satisfied consumers.  Get mobile so that shoppers can interact with your brand while in your store. 
  • Be a responsive brand by sharing stories, images and responding in a very timely manner to people asking questions and seeking product information.  Consider live chat especially if you are selling on-line...

While technology has lengthened the buying cycle you, by your actions, can foster a great experience among your customers by using technology to help the buying cycle to become less...scary and much more FRIENDLY.




You might want to post a comment here or follow us on Twitter @InsightADV or here is our advertising agency Facebook Page.  Thanks for coming by!

What Do You Do...

when no one seems to be listening? Shout louder?  We don't know but we're finding out, quickly, how many business people don't pay attention

Three times in the past week we've met with small business owners regarding any number of things from how to do social media to web development to creating a mobile version of an existing website.  Three out of three said, "We'll think about that..." and went on doing business like nothing has changed.

We find it...amazing and a little frightening that these folks prefer to let their competition win while they...exist.

For a refresher:

Social/New Media is not going away.  Daily there are new and exciting ways to enhance your brand by sharing who you are with those millions of people who are connected.  Again, it is not always free because it takes time.  Time that many business people say they don't have.  Sometimes it's easier to spend $500 to $800 a month on Yellow Page advertising...we guess.

The 1999 website is old. What happens when a consumer goes to a website and has a lousy digital experience?  They don't come back.  We wrote about this years ago (2009) in a post about a consumer study.  What part of 97% don't folks understand?

"65% of the respondents said they had a digital experience that either enhanced or diminished their opinion of a brand. Hint:  If you have a first generation website or lacking information or something that  Good luck making that impression. Mobile graph

Of that group that had a digital brand experience, get this:  97% said their experience influenced if they would purchase the product or service.  Yep, 97%."

Mobile delivery is of your brand is critical. As this graph shows mobile searches will outpace desktop searches in the very near future.  Like this year.  Do you honestly wish to be out of touch and unavailable? 

We, frankly, don't get it.  We've considered the fact that many business people simply don't wish to grow.  They already have enough business and they are willing to stay with the status quo. 

Odd...but it may be a fact of life.

As always, we'd love to hear your thoughts.




If you would like to leave a comment here, feel free.  Or let's connect on Twitter @InsightADV and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here. Thanks for reading!

Living With Social Media

"I don't know what to write.", "I am not a "Tech" person.", "Nobody will  Woman Frustration Laptop find what I have to say interesting.", "I don't have time!", "We're going to have my daughter do the social media.  Will that work?", "Facebook? I already have a Facebook but that's just for friends and family." And on it goes...

Just a sample of what we hear each week from business people whom we attempt to get interested in building their brand using "new" or "social" media. But, in the end they fail.  At the same time we watch as hundreds of brands, large and small, work at their social media branding  What's the difference?

Dedication & Learning & A Plan

The brands that work their social media program well and expand their brand figured out that before they sit down to punch that first key-stroke they must have a plan.  "What are my branding goals and who do I want to reach?"  While we can guide a business along it ultimately becomes the companies responsibility to make sure they have a plan and it is followed.

Living with Social Media requires:

  • Thinking - What is it your brand/business wants to accomplish and who are you trying to reach;
  • Understanding - What social media platforms will work well with your key demographic and how do you know where your demographic is;
  • Commitment - The business must commit the necessary time and resources to building the plan and then working it...daily;
  • Reality - Each social media platform is different and the way in which a business engages consumers will vary with each;
  • Recognition - Social/New media is not broadcasting yet "reach" and "frequency" play an important role.

If you think you're frustrated with the process you are not alone.  However, if you commit yourself to a process and understand it as a process you'll win.

What other things much a business know to be able to better engage in New/Social Media and be effective?




If you would like to comment here, feel free. And we can also connect on our Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.


The Friday Wrap - July 6, 2012

Each Friday we offer up some advertising, marketing stories you might Friday have seen...or may have missed.  Each is laced with our comment.  We call it The Friday Wrap and give you some things to think about over the weekend.  To see these stories just click here on The Friday Wrap.  This week:

  • HyVee - They Are Smiling...Again;
  • Customer Retention - We like this idea...a bunch;
  • Andy Griffith - A vintage Post Toasties ad from the 1960's;
  • Mike Rowe - The Perfect Spokesperson;
  • Rural Hip-Hop? - Kansas farm boys do it;
  • Video on the Cheap - Not all video has to be expensive to be effective.

Thanks for coming by and have a wonderful weekend.  Wasn't it weird having a "Mini-Monday" in the middle of the week?  Here, once again, is the link to The Friday Wrap.


The Perfect Spokesperson?

Lots of companies have spokespeople.  Sometimes they fit, other times Mike Rowe Ford not so much.  When Ford Motor Company tapped Dirty Jobs star Mike Rowe as their spokesperson we knew it was a winner. Why?  Rowe is not only believable but he seems sincere, real and crosses from urban to rural with ease.

It's not often a company gets this lucky.

For years Jared Fogel showed how regular folks could lose weight by eating sandwiches from Subway.  Then he fell in love and gained thirty pounds. So much for that...

Who can forget BP CEO Tony Haward in his role as the spokesman for the Gulf Oil Crisis.  Nothing about Tony fit the occasion.  His position, temperament or ability.  Not to mention arrogance.

Back in 2006 we wrote about a Boone, Iowa furniture store who used the very attractive Lauren Bishop as their spokesperson.  It's not that she wasn't good it was just odd the company went out of its way to identify her as if she were actually living/working at the store.  She wasn't. To some it became a creditability issue.

All of this is meant to have you think...really think...about putting your brand in the hands of who/what?  And, while we're at it, we get the link between a lizard and an insurance company (Gecko/Geico) but sometimes we wonder about...the pig.


Thanks for coming by.  If you want to connect feel free to leave a comment here or join us on Twitter @InsightADV or our advertising agency Facebook Page.



Insight on Business - Friday Roundup

At the end of the Business Week we share with you the Friday Roundup from Insight on Business.  (Yes, you can click that link.) Some of the stories you might have seen and some of the stories that you may have missed.  So, before you "head out" to the Mother's Day Weekend take a gander.  This week:

Central Iowa Bloggers - Yep a video presentation of what this motley group does and does not do.

Brand Warriors - Do you have them?  Do you know?  Do you want them?  You better.

Oh Really? - Sometimes we have "social media experts" that don't know what in the hell they are talking about.  As always it's:  Buyer Beware.  A hat tip to the Nashville Business Review.

Being Responsive - You own a business.  It's your brand.  Be careful, very careful, as to how you treat it when you outsource your social media.

Email Stress -  Got it?  Why is it important?  Our friend Adam Posh shares...

For the Birds! - A video presentation of our babies...get ready to go...awwwww.

Featured at the Des Moines Register

If you want to connect, you can leave a comment here or follow us on Twitter @InsightADV (business) or MichaelLibbie (personal) and here is our advertising agency Facebook Page.  Have a great weekend!