Posts tagged Branding Strategy
Google Maps will direct you home after being lost wandering in New York City. Type the lyrics to the song you heard on the ride home and Google will send you right to the You Tube video. Need health advice? Type, “tight chest” and Google will send an ambulance right to your home…well not exactly.
But as Google continues their steady sky rocketing of brand success, they’re getting increasingly hands-on. In fact they now want the bragging rights for taking the virginity of promotional tweets.
The social networking Q&A service, Aardvark was launched in March 2009. Only one year later, it’s created such a buzz that its the latest Google acquisition. If you’re unfamiliar with the site, check out Aardvark now to test it out. You type in any questions and within minutes, the service will search through its various networks for the perfect person to answer. It’s a real life Ask Jeeves.
The company was just acquired by Google in February, and only a month later they’re filing a patent that will get them ahead in the social media world. It reads, “A user of a web service is prompted to endorse the web service to the user’s friends or other connections by submitting a status message to one or more status messaging services to which the user belongs.”
If you’ve ever visited a website and been invited to, “Tell a Friend” then you’ve taken part in this web service. With just the click of a button, you’ll be promoting a particular brand in a tweet or Facebook status. Businesses all over the web are using this quick and easy service to build up their own social networks. However, if Aardvark Google gets the patent, will businesses become unable to use, “Tell a friend,” and similar services?
I predict a service charge in the future for this convenient feature. It’s got to be all about the money, or perhaps Google is just tugging at the reigns to show us once again, that we are all owned.
Though no film is as brand happy as Logorama, almost every movie incorporates brand name products into their production. Check out this awesome article from the New York Times on branding in the filmmaking process.
Facebook has been at its www.facebook.com domain since 2005, making it 5 years in age. However, due to its vast popularity of over 400 million users and the major advancements in technology that make it easily accessible, like smart phones – to get Facebook’s real age a formula is needed.
5 years of existence X 2 many status updates to count + the 6 seconds it takes for the average smart phone user to open the Facebook application = 16 years old.
Now I know Facebook’s creator, Mark Zuckerberg, is a male, but the gender data on Facebook shows that approximately 60% of users are female. Therefore Facebook is a 16 year old girl. And what does a 16 year old girl want most? To be liked.
I’m convinced that’s why Facebook is now abandoning its, “Become a Fan” button and replacing it with the current, “Like” button that’s available for clicking oh photos, statuses, video uploads and more. The “Become a Fan” button pertains to brand pages where users are invited to connect with companies and celebrities.
A spokesperson said, “We’ve found that ‘Like’ is more global, easy to understand, and users are already comfortable and familiar with it—making the process of connecting with a Page more consistent with how they already interact with things on Facebook.”
What does it really mean? Facebook (in its most sensitive teen years) just wants to be liked more. You can be a fan of the Yankees or a fan of deep sea fishing. But Facebook doesn’t need promotional products branded with its logo or fans screaming in the stands to give it confidence. Facebook needs the little tickle of self worth – and she gets it every time a user clicks, “Like.”
I’m just a bit turned off by this change. I like my mom’s penne a la vodka, but I don’t say I’m on “Team Penne A La Vodka.” I like chipmunks. But I’m not going to make a giant poster and hold it up at a National Park. I like pickles, I do. But no, I will not “Become a Fan,” of that pickle.
I guess it’s easier to like something than to say you’re a fan. Wow, Facebook you’re now a behavioral scientist too; and all at the tender age of 16. I mean 5.
So, “Become a Fan” of Promotional Items Buzz on Facebook while you still can, because sometime this April you’ll only be able to “Like” the Buzz Blog.
When I found out that Blockbuster Video was no longer giving out late fees, I was ecstatic. Netflix’s ability to distribute videos fast and accurately through their Netflix factory threatened Blockbuster’s future in the movie rental industry. As Netflix continued to gain customers through on-line/mail-out rental programs, Blockbuster needed to act. Treating customers to no late fees was their most viable solution.
However, 6 years later the failed brand, Blockbuster is looking to reinstate late fees, charge more for new releases and do anything in its power to stay afloat. So what’s missing from their efforts? Branding.A CNN Money article quoted Blockbuster analyst, Michael Pachter saying, “Blockbuster is trying to keep itself from bleeding to death, but they’re putting on a lot of Band-Aids.”
This entire Blockbuster fail must be evaluated so that the brandability of Blockbuster can be reassessed. Before 2004, Blockbuster generated 20% of its sales from late fees. Customers, just like me were sick of the fees and found mail-out movie services like Netflix to be more convenient.
Once Blockbuster saw the competition they cut late fees, but failed to come back as masters in the movie rental business. Instead, they’ve focused on getting new releases to customers, saying that 80% of their rentals are in that category. They never took in to account that people were fed up with the late fees and unable to forgive Blockbuster for their bad business. What they really need to do is show us that they want us as customers.
How are you going green? That’s what everyone was asking at the Go Green Expo in New York City over the weekend. Many companies came decked out in eco-friendly apparel and used environmentally friendly products to bring in the customers.
What else draws in the new clients? Celebrity status.That’s what the creators of this water-less tooth brush were thinking when they got Dina Lohan, to lend her families scandalous name to the product. Named the “Aqua Freedom Green Lohan Toothbrush,” this new product promises to lessen water usage in the bathroom by 2 gallons a day with its waterless design. This toothbrush does require battery operation, but because of its dramatic no-water needed design, it ends up being very sustainable.
Gossip god, with green goals, Perez Hilton blogged, “How much did she pay to get her name slapped on that contraption?!” The question remains unanswered and the branding power of a seemingly washed up “celebrity mom” will soon be seen as the waterless toothbrush becomes available to the public.
Perhaps this product launching is really a test for Dina Lohan. Will this waterless toothbrush teach her and the estranged husband to shut their mouths? Will an oral fixation to this toothbrush help Linsday Lohan from sticking other substances up her nose? Will the Aqua Freedom Loha- seriously? I could brush my teeth and floss in the time it takes to get the name of that tooth brush out.
So let’s move on to another eco-item from the Go Green Expo that used celebrity status to gain attention. The name, “Obama Beads,” says it all. Founder, Kathe Kexel joins with a group of women in Uganda called the, “Mama Kazi,” to create beautifully handcrafted beads. But what makes them eco-friendly?
After President Obama’s massive campaign efforts, a huge donation of his promotional flyers, pamphlets and posters were shipped over to Uganda. The papers are tightly cut and rolled into beads from the papers and laminated for reduced wear and tear. Though Obama isn’t an official spokesperson for Obama Beads, the concept is smart and I’m sure he’d be happy to know that his campaign materials are being recycled!
The women in Uganda who craft each unique piece of jewelry or clothing are paid a living wage and therefore granted greater oppoutunities in their country.
So what eco-friendly item do you think used celebrity branding best?
Monday through Friday, right around 5 PM I send out a tweet inviting all you lovelies to check out the Promo Buzz Blog and get your buzz on. I imagine opened shirt business men whipping their ties in the air and chugging the latest in branding news. I see the librarian tossing off her glasses and the business woman kicking off her heels as they take my well prepared shots of promotional product buzz.
But for today’s blog, some people may be taking a puff instead of a shot, because this week Jamullah Freedom Trading Inc, released a brand new medical marijuana promotional product.
Jumullah puts hemp products online alongside their tobacco equipment and was created by 20 year old Grant Wallace. You can find hemp and peppermint oil scented t-shirts as well as Dead head products like a Grateful Dead Tribute painting and other creative cannabis promotional products. Their signature t-shirt is created with peppermint oil through durascent technology so that even after multiple washes, the peppermint scent lingers.
The Jamullah site boasts, “100% of users agreed, the scent gives you a stimulating feel while wearing the shirt. Currently, peppermint scented t-shirts come with a very large and FUN print on front. Enjoyment can be found in all sorts of forms, from the effects of peppermint therapeutically, to the reactions from friends and family!”
Subsidiary company, Freedom Gifts offers products for supporters of the legalization of marijuana as it is medically legal in 14 states. And now, just in time for the unofficial Cannabis Celebration of April 20th, the Atlanta-based cannabis product distributor has created a delightful 420 Gift Box.
Check out the medical marijuana legalization chart to see your states laws. Medical Marijuana ID Card holders in Alaska, California, Maine and New Jersey to name a few, can purchase these new cannabis promotional products on-line at Jamullah. Included in the promotional package is a hemp-scented T-shirt and a herb grinder.
If the 420 kit isn’t your thing, how about taking a hit of brand exposure over at Hit Promotional Products? There you can choose cool caps, carabiners, ceramics and bags to have specially imprinted. Promotional products are affective in gaining support and awareness for any cause, so keep your expectations high and choose an imprint today.
In textbooks, President Obama will be praised as the first African American president of the United States of America. Now I’m wondering if he’ll be praised for signing the U.S. Travel Promotional Bill in early March.
The legislation that was just signed into a law will require oversea visitors to the U.S. to pay a $10 fee every two years. The $10 will then be matched by a private sector in the U.S. President of the U.S. Travel Association, Roger Dow said, “By signing the Travel Promotion Act, President Obama has acted to support the power of travel to serve as an economic stimulant, job generator and diplomatic tool.”
This new non profit corporation will promote tourism spots in the U.S. while educating visitors on security policies while traveling here. It will create new jobs and help to brand the U.S. as the number one travel spot. Check out the awesome chart of the most popular tourist destinations below and you’ll see that the United States holds 18 of the top spots.
So how will the U.S. Travel Promotion Act further our tourist success? My guess is that many promotional products will be put into use. Perhaps airports will offer travelers entertainment while waiting and greet visitors with fun giveaways.
The terms on the law and actions that will be taken to promote tourism here have not been disclosed, but between the next 2 to 12 months, board positions will be filled and a payment plan will be formatted for foreign travelers to pay their $10 fee.I’m excited that this means big opportunities for branding in the U.S. and I hope that the board enlists innovative minds who will create a fun, informative and fresh approach towards tourist marketing here in the United States.
If you checked out the Academy Awards you know Kathryn Bigelow became the first woman to receive an Oscar for best Motion Picture, The Hurt Locker. You know that Jeff Bridges finally and rightfully won for best male actor award for his role in Crazy Heart after his fifth nomination since 1971 and you know Sandra Bullock made her first nomination count with an Oscar for best lead actress and a tear jerking acceptance speech.
But before the glitz of the big awards, the winner for Best Animated Short Film was announced. Holy moley promotional items buzz – or should I say branding buzz. The French made, Logorama took the award for their wonderful short film that can be described as nothing less than logomania.
Have you ever wondered how your favorite brand mascots would interact with one another? Have you questioned Mr. Cleans sexuality? Have you ever wondered what the Pringles man would order for lunch? Well now you can find out.
The French group, H5 presents Logorama a short film about, “…an over-marketed world built only from logos and real trademarks that are destroyed by a series of natural disasters (beginning with a hurricane, cyclone, tidal wave…”
Logorama incorporates almost 30,000 logos from around the world and works to show how over the top marketing can be. However, this film is not a knock at the work with branding we do, it just shows that too much marketing can’t be a good thing.
Creator, Nicolas Schmerkin made a point to thank the, “Over 30,000 unofficial sponsors of Logorama during his acceptance speech. When asked earlier if permission was granted to use the logos Schmerkin and his H5 team simply replied, “Of course not!”
“Enlighten us, but make it quick.”
That’s the motto of Global Ignite Week, that kicked off on Monday. Over 10,000 people will ignite the minds of others is a fast-paced and enlightening program. Geniuses of all walks of life, specifically those technologically inclined, join in unconventional venues to share their ideas. The catch? You only get 5 minutes to make your point.
Regardless of if you’re a billionaire entrepreneur, Bill Gates, or a teenage World of Warcraft enthusiast; you’ve got only 5 minutes to share your thoughts. You’re allowed to have a 20 slide presentation that will automatically advance every 15 seconds. It’s an innovative way to share knowledge and network with the other geniuses of our time.
And what were those unconventional venues I was talking about? Movie theatres, bars and the like, because nerds like beer too. Who doesn’t love a buzz…or the promo buzz blog.
The coolest thing about this event? It’s worldwide and you can watch the Ignite speakers on-line. Check them out at the Ignite website and share the information you like best! Another perk? For you forsquare lovers, a custom forsquare badge will be given out to those that check-in to events in person.
For you local New Yorkers like me, check out Thursday’s events at 16 Main Street in Brooklyn. If you need more encouragement to get your brain on, check out the awesome blog 10 Reasons You Should Attend Global Ignite Week by Mashable’s Jennifer Van Grove.
What ignites your mind?
What do you think of when I say, branding success? Are you singing along to your favorite tunes while picturing MTV’s thirty year old logo? Do you crave a burger after imagining McDonald’s golden arches? Perhaps you think of the Olympics nation-uniting eight rings- while you crunch down on that fresh snow with your skis.
These logos were designed throughout time with much consideration to the specific company and their prospective clients. You don’t find success in branding by being boring. In fact, if we think back to last Sunday, we can revisit the Super Bowl advertisements that were anything but boring. Businesses like Doritos, GoDaddy and Dodge racked up the big bucks and used creative advertising to make their logo’s stand out. Shock collars, talking babies and powerful writing helped to make certain brands stand out from the lackluster others.
Companies shook off 3 million dollars for their 30 second commercial slots during the Super Bowl this year. Three million dollars. Of course, this is all the more cost effective being that the Super Bowl is the most watched program in the United States. However, it’s got me wondering about the other guys. The businesses that don’t want to throw 3 million dollars up in the air and hope it comes back. For these businesses, more than just creative direction is needed. Thankfully, the Swedish furniture company, Ikea has shown me how to achieve branding success without a multi-million dollar time slot during the Super Bowl. We will call their latest branding idea, the Super Swap.
Today, in Amsterdam, Ikea is welcoming locals to a new age flea market, where sustainability and design meet. 250 people were invited to the store with their old, unwanted furniture. Participants in the furniture swap are asked to evaluate their furniture, making sure that it’s still in working condition. To compliment the hand-me-down furniture, Ikea’s throwing in over $15,000 of their own furniture as well. Now guests can choose from a wide selection for free, while feeling good about their decision to recycle their own furniture.
By creating a buzz worthy event, Ikea has shown us what branding success looks like. They’ve worked to excite people about their business and are making people aware of eco-friendly incentives at the same time. While a 30 second clip of Ikea’s fashionable furniture during the Super Bowl would’ve been a great intro to The Who’s light show of a performance, I think they’d rather dish out 15 grand and enjoy the birth of a new way of shopping. As the event unfolds I hope to scope out some pictures so keep your eyes peeled. And always be on the lookout for innovative branding.