Making creative 360° communications work for the brand


In the world of mature countries, advertising is a challenge: it is costly, and its results are not always measurable. They are, however, measurable at the time of the brand’s launch, at which time it quickly becomes apparent whether the public’s demand and attitudes – as well as those of the trade – have changed.

The cost factor raises questions as to the appropriateness of advertising. There are sectors where launches are unthinkable without advertising: the FMCG sector, for example. But even in this case, it all depends on the precise category. The UK’s current number one wine, Jacob’s Creek (an Australian brand) was launched in the country in 1984, and its first large advertising campaign was in 2000. The brand has since stopped advertising, and now sponsors the Friends television programme.

The brand’s success was built on an excellent, multipleaward- winning product, trade support, public relations, plenty of in-store promotions, and encouraging consumers to try it at the point of sale, to say nothing of on-site promotions. It also develops product placement, a real lever to create and maintain the ‘cool factor’ of a brand.

Top-of-the-range brands also work on winning the long-term support of opinion leaders, capitalising on word of mouth. In the world of the internet, ebay – the only start-up company to have been profitable from the start, making it the internet’s real success story – operates only through online referral and public relations.

When advertising is needed to give a boost to sales and business, the familiar old maxim springs to mind, ‘Half of my advertising budget is wasted – but I don’t know which half.’ Actually, we believe that this half can easily be identified. Wasted advertising is advertising that:

  • is not sufficiently creative, and so will not be seen;
  • misses its target, so will not be seen by the right people;
  • will be seen in places with no stores, where there is no distribution system in place.

These three points are the true causes of the waste; and the first of them is the most important. The question it raises is not so much the quality of the advertising agency as that of the client/advertiser. An advertiser can make a major contribution to the creativity of its agency – and thus to the quality of the campaign – in two ways: through the quality of its brief, and by the ability to take creative risks.

To achieve a leap of creative genius, a great creative idea, the brand proposition must be incisive, not bland. What can a creative person do with a brand proposition coming from a typical McKinsey-style brand consultancy output, such as ‘Brand X is the ultimate (whisky for instance)’.

There is a real problem with the tools and consulting companies that excel in analytics but produce no ideas. Because of the reduction in the demand for strategic consulting, most of the big consulting companies have reoriented their staff. They want now to accompany the client all through the executional process. However, analytical people, recruited for data processing skills, produce thick and exhaustive reports and a mass of matrices, but a dearth of actionable ideas.

The mistake is to think one can rely on the agency to transform as if by a miracle the bland proposition into a great creative concept. It just does not happen this way.

The second condition for a creative leap is to realise that the advertising target must be radicalised. It cannot be a simple description of those who will buy, but should provide their reflection. If advertising is to break out of the clutter, it must not present plain people.

Think of the Budweiser advertising saga ‘Wazzup’: by choosing quite radical characters in the commercials, the brand showed strong signs of modernity, of reinvention and of reinvolvement of the public. This was a challenge for this mainstream popular brand, which all Americans have known almost since they were born.

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Strategic Brand Management Related Practice Tests

Strategic Management Practice Tests
Brand Equity In Question What Is A Brand? Differentiating Between Brandassets, Strength And Value Tracking Brand Equity Goodwill: The Convergence Of Finance And Marketing How Brands Create Value For The Customer How Brands Create Value For The Company Corporate Reputation And The Corporate Brand Strategic Implications Of Branding What Does Branding Really Mean? Permanently Nurturing The Difference Brands Act As A Genetic Programme Respect The Brand ‘contract’ The Product And The Brand Each Brand Needs A Flagship Product Advertising Products Through The Brand Prism Brands And Other Signs Of Quality Obstacles To The Implications Of Branding Brand And Business Building Are Brands For All Companies? Building A Market Leader Without Advertising Brand Building: From Product To Values, And Vice Versa Are Leading Brands The Best Products Or The Best Value? Understanding The Value Curve Of The Target Breaking The Rule And Acting Fast Comparing Brand And Business Models: Cola Drinks From Private Labels To Store Brands Evolution Of The Distributor’s Brand Are They Brands Like The Others? Why Have Distributor's Brands? The Financial Equation Of The Distributor’s Brand The Three Stages Of The Distributor’s Brand The Case Of Decathlon Factors In The Success Of Distributor's Brands Optimising The Dob Marketing Mix The Real Brand Issue For Distributors Competing Against Distributor's Brands Facing The Low-cost Revolution Should Manufacturers Produce Goods For Dob's? Brand Diversity: The Types Of Brands Luxury, Brand And Griffe Service Brands Brand And Nature: Fresh Produce Pharmaceutical Brands The Business-to-business Brand The Internet Brand Country Brands Thinking Of Towns As Brands Universities And Business Schools Are Brands Thinking Of Celebrities As Brands The New Rules Of Brand Management The Limits Of A Certain Type Of Marketing About Brand Equity The New Brand Realities We Have Entered The B To B To C Phase Brand Or Business Model Power? Building The Brand In Reverse? The Power Of Passions Beginning With The Strong 360° Experience Beginning With The Shop The Company Must Be More Human, More Open Experimenting For More Efficiency The Enlarged Scope Of Brand Management Licensing: A Strategic Lever How Co-branding Grows The Business Brand Identity And Positioning Brand Identity: A Necessary Concept Identity And Positioning Why Brands Need Identity And Positioning The Six Facets Of Brand Identity Sources Of Identity: Brand Dna Brand Essence Launching The Brand Launching A Brand And Launching A Product Are Not The Same Defining The Brand’s Platform The Process Of Brand Positioning Determining The Flagship Product Brand Campaign Or Product Campaign? Brand Language And Territory Of Communication Choosing A Name For A Strong Brand Making creative 360° communications work for the brand Building Brand Foundations Through Opinion Leaders And Communities The Challenge Of Growth In Mature Markets Growth Through Existing Customers Line Extensions: Necessity And Limits Growth Through Innovation Disrupting Markets Through Value Innovation Managing Fragmented Markets Growth Through Cross-selling Between Brands Growth Through Internationalisation Sustaining A Brand Long Term Is There A Brand Life Cycle? Nurturing A Perceived Difference Investing In Communication No One Is Free From Price Comparisons Branding Is An Art At Retail Creating Entry Barriers Defending Against Brand Counterfeiting Brand Equity Versus Customer Equity: One Needs The Other Sustaining Proximity With Influencers Should All Brands Follow Their Customers? Reinventing The Brand: Salomon Adapting To The Market: Identity And Change Bigger Or Better Brands? From Reassurance To Stimulation Consistency Is Not Mere Repetition Brand And Products: Integration And Differentiation Specialist Brands And Generalist Brands Building The Brand Through Coherence Defining The Core Identity Of The Brand Confirming The Presence Of Brand Core Facets In Each Product Identifying The Role Of Each Product Line In The Construction Of The Brand Graphically Representing The Overall System Of The Brand Checking The Coherence Worldwide The Three Layers Of A Brand: Kernel, Codes And Promises Respecting The Brand Dna Managing Two Levels Of Branding Growth Through Brand Extensions What Is New About Brand Extensions? Brand Or Line Extensions? The Limits Of The Classical Conception Of A Brand Why Are Brand Extensions Necessary? Building The Brand Through Systematic Extensions: Nivea Extending The Brand To Internationalize It Identifying Potential Extensions The Economics Of Brand Extension What Research Tells Us About Brand Extensions Avoiding The Risk Of Dilution Balancing Identity And Adaptation To The Extension Market Segments Assessing What Should Not Change: The Brand Kernel Preparing The Brand For Remote Extensions Keys To Successful Brand Extensions Is The Market Really Attractive? An Extension-based Business Model: Virgin How Execution Kills A Good Idea: Easycar Brand Architecture The Key Questions Of Brand Architecture Type And Role Of Brands The Main Types Of Brand Architecture The Flexible Umbrella Brand The Aligning Umbrella Brand (masterbrand) Choosing The Appropriate Branding Strategy New Trends In Branding Strategies Internationalising The Architecture Of The Brand Some Classic Dysfunctions What Name For New Products? Group And Corporate Brands Corporate Brands And Product Brands Multi-brand Portfolios Inherited Complex Portfolios From Single To Multiple Brands: Michelin The Benefits Of Multiple Entries Linking The Portfolio To Segmentation Global Portfolio Strategy The Case Of Industrial Brand Portfolios Linking The Brand Portfolio To The Corporate Strategy Key Rules To Manage A Multibrand Portfolio The Growing Role Of Design In Portfolio Management Does The Corporate Organization Match The Brand Portfolio? Auditing The Portfolio Strategically A Local And Global Portfolio – Nestlé Handling Name Changes And Brand Transfers Brand Transfers Are More Than A Name Change Reasons For Brand Transfers The Challenge Of Brand Transfers When One Should Not Switch Analysing Best Practices Transferring A Service Brand How Soon After An Acquisition Should Transfer Take Place? Managing Resistance To Change Factors Of Successful Brand Transfers Brand Turnaround And Rejuvenation The Decay Of Brand Equity The Factors Of Decline Distribution Factors When The Brand Becomes Generic Preventing The Brand From Ageing Rejuvenating A Brand Growing Older But Not Ageing Managing Global Brands The Latest On Globalisation Patterns Of Brand Globalisation Why Globalise? The Benefits Of A Global Image Conditions Favouring Global Brands The Excess Of Globalisation Barriers To Globalisation Coping With Local Diversity Building The Brand In Emerging Countries Naming Problems Achieving The Delicate Local–global Balance Being Perceived As Local: The New Ideal Of Global Brands? Local Brands Can Strike Back The Process Of Brand Globalisation Globalising Communications: Processes And Problems Making Local Brands Converge Financial Valuation And Accounting For Brands Accounting For Brands: The Debate What Is Financial Brand Equity? Evaluating Brand Valuation Methods Brand Valuation In Practice The Evaluation Of Complex Cases What About The Brand Values Published Annually In The Press? Strategic Brand Management Interview Questions