Tag Archives: advertising

Copeland Stupor Bowl XLVI Part. II

6 Feb

Jill’s Pick:

The vampire craze is a little past due. If Audi had run this ad last year during the Trueblood, Vampire Diaries and the Twilight hype they probably could have really cashed in. Not to say this is a bad ad, I actually really enjoyed it being a vampire lover myself.

In the ad, a guy is driving an Audi to a vampire party, he let’s us know he is a vampire by flashing his fangs. There are shots of the vampires partying under the full moon, enjoying blood bags, tree climbing, playing acoustic guitars, just as all vampires do. Problems arise when the Audi driving vampire pulls up to the party with the new LCD “daylight headlights” on and all of his pals are instantly incinerated by the “daylight.”

The song “The Killing Time” by Echo & the Bunnymen was a perfect fit for this vampire themed ad. And I really liked the addition of the #solongvampires hashtag, it shows that Audi is a forward thinking company and are really “with it.”

Overall it was a good ad and Audi’s new LCD “daylight headlights” could very well be the solution to the overpopulated bloodthirsty vampires!

Christie’s Pick:

This spot had it all: a Rocky-esque montage, zippy red car, relatable hero, the American dream, and promises of summer. Oh, and our hero is a chubby dog. I was excited to explore those ideas, and then I watched it again.

As I wondered what the title “The Dog Strikes Back” was all about, it played though until the awkward commercial-in-a-commercial ending I had conveniently missed the first time around. A little research later and it appears that the chubby dog is 2012’s answer to 2011’s cute Darth Vader kid. And that barking dog YouTube video that I ignored (but everyone went nuts for on Facebook) was the teaser for it.

The story stood on its own without the self-referential Star Wars ending. If I hadn’t watched it again (and again) I would have been so much more satisfied. The teaser with dogs barking iconic music from Star Wars had some relevance to the 2011 spot, and arguably some solid pop-culture cred, but this felt as cheap as “it was all a dream…”


Copeland Stupor Bowl XLVI Part. I

6 Feb

Whether or not we think these ads lived up to the same hype as the game still remains undecided. There’s no doubt that this advertising monster has grown to William Perry* like proportions. A whopping 84% price increase over the past 10 years. And an estimated viewership of 111 million+ fans. The cost of a 30-second spot during the game was $3.5 million, the highest price in history. With arguably as many people tuning in for the advertising as the game itself.

We’ve sifted through the sex, cars, dogs and babies to find our favourites from yesterdays big event.

Andrea’s Pick:

Sure, Clint’s raspy voice is irresistible, and this we-can-do-it spot is captivating enough to stun a room of nacho wielding, face painted fans into a quiet retrospective audience. But what’s best about this ad is simply the strategic headline. “It’s Halftime in America”. It’s a simple concept that says a lot. One line captures the grit and fatigue of a tough game, the encouragement of your coach and the motivation of knowing the game’s not over. The poignant wording enhances the spot but ultimately it’s the relatable emotional experience transposed onto a new subject that makes it so great. Simple ideas with great execution will always triumph.

Danny’s Pick:

The NFL celebrates a century of football with this visually stylish look back at the evolution of the sport and player safety. It comes on the wake of some controversy surrounding a recent rash of head injuries. It’s a stark contrast to the typical garish Super Bowl advertising of the day. Starting with the games humble beginnings in 1906, the yardage on the field reflects an exciting look at the decades past. Rightfully finishing in the end zone with a TD by the games most exciting return specialist, Devon Hester. The final line says it all “Here’s to making the next century safer and more exciting than ever”. A win in my books.

* William Perry. Former Defensive Linebacker a.k.a “The Fridge”

Stop Thinking Funnel

4 Oct

Too many companies are transfixed on new customer acquisition. Like ravishing beasts all they want is more more more. After the kill, they leave meat on the bone as they stalk in the bushes for their next pray.

Seems foolish but the traditional marketing sales funnel doesn’t encourage otherwise. It’s a tiresome pit of effort that funnels new customers through the stages of awareness all the way through to purchase. More recently, a loyalty component has been added to the model with the realized necessity of repeat customers (Although I would argue that many companies still don’t have loyalty programs in place).

Photo Credit: Clickz.com

However, unless you want your profits to dwindle down like the funnel, we need to continue to evolve this marketing model. In fact, it should no longer be a funnel at all but rather a repeating hour glass that sees companies spend equal time pre and post sale in an effort to create Brand Advocacy.

Photo Credit: Marciosaito.com

@Marcio_Saito said it particularly well: 

“The role of marketing doesn’t end in Loyalty. Turning happy customers into Brand Advocates and then amplifying their voice is how marketing creates more awareness and brings new prospects to the ‘funnel’.”

How many companies do you know that have brand advocacy strategies or spend even half the effort on post sale marketing?



A definite Hat Tip to Simon Salt (@incslinger) who discussed these concepts  with me at the @yourcopeland Tweetup. 

Focus advertising on core needs

18 Jul

Advertising needs to focus more on our raw, core, human needs. Has humankind evolved to the point where we “need” the convenience of 24/7 banking? Do we “need” the variety offered by a particular restaurant? I don’t think so.

I think Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and related models are mostly hooey, but they serve as a reminder that we were once uncivilized primates struggling for survival and that raw instinct lays beneath our socialized shells. Check out Henry Murray’s psychogenic needs, if only as a reminder of what is a core need and what isn’t. Note: convenience and variety are nowhere to be found.

The more core you go, the more emotional you get. The less rational arguments apply. That’s a good thing, when you consider most products don’t have a rational benefit over the competition anymore.

Check out the raw emotions that Harley Davidson ads have tapped into through the years.

advertising core needs


advertising core needs

Autonomy, Dominance

advertising core needs


Demonstrating Great Service

28 Jun

serviceMost companies think they offer great service. Many mention it in their ads. It becomes an adjective game…“We’ve got [great / outstanding / exemplary / unbelievable / world-class] service.” Customers have heard it all before. Why should they believe you?

Guarantee it: No empty “guarantees”…real consequences. Tell customers if they don’t like your service, they get X for free. That’s a promise people will notice. (It also makes your staff more accountable for the service they provide.)

Show it outside your stores: Have staff out in the community providing the great service you claim they provide at your store.

Back it up: J.D. Power certification externally supports great-service positioning. Or you could try a rational approach. Westjet gives great service. Why? Because employees are also owners, so they personally profit from happy customers who come back. Customers understand that. (WestJet communicates this simply and wonderfully with their tagline “Because owners care.”)

Have clients say it: It’s more credible if your customers are raving about your service than if you are. Invite them to go to Yelp, Trip Advisor, and other review sites to tell their story. Share testimonials with customers. Talk to your customers in social media, not only to address service issues but to help broadcast/spread the great service stories.

Give people a reason to visit you online

30 May

In advertising, we give people a reason to buy our product. Yet we jam our website address or our Facebook and Twitter handles at the bottom of our ads and expect it will magically drive traffic. How many websites provide nothing but umpteen sales pitches? How many Twitter accounts are spammy and relentlessly self-promoting? Convince your customer that your digital presence is something of value and she just might come visit.

What are some good reasons for someone to see you online?

Shop your selection. Once your ad has sold people on your product, they can browse your selection and buy it online.

Find out more information. The general “Find out more” is a weak call to action, but if you can make a compelling statement in the ad – “We gave our product to a Polynesian tribe and videotaped them using it” – you can drive people online to pay it off.

Have a conversation. People can go online and talk to you, ask you a question, join a conversation with other customers.

Interact. People can take a quiz, play a game, or watch an interactive video.

Have a virtual experience. People can take a 360 virtual tour, upload a photo of their faces and ‘try on’ the product, or build a customized version of the product online.

Win a prize. People can follow you on Twitter or enter a code from a store receipt at your website to be eligible to win something.

This Adidas ad invites people online to download a soundtrack of a ‘mission’ representative of the style of footwear they’re promoting.


The pitfalls on the way to an effective contest

12 May

promotionCanadian companies spend over $200 million a year on contests and promotions. Some have become a part of our culture (Roll up the rim…), while many others flop their way into oblivion.

There are some reasons why I’m wary of contests:

Contests add another layer to the messaging. Now on top of the ad telling me about the new store opening and all the reasons why I need to shop there, it has to explain how I need to cut something out of the ad and get a special PIN somewhere online and drop both off at the store for chance to win such-and-such a prize. Information overload!

Contests extrinsically motivate behaviour. Many studies show that external rewards reduce motivation when the reward is removed. Do you want people using your business because they’re intrinsically motivated to do so (eg, they like your brand, or value your service), or because you’re bribing them with an enter-to-win?

Contests bring in professional contest seekers. A small portion of the population send in a much larger percentage of contest entries. Many play contests full-time. They don’t give a lick about your brand, they’re gaming the odds and as soon as the contest is over, you’ll never see them again. Do you want to be using your marketing dollars to potentially fund their paycheck?

I never win contests. I am a cynical, unlucky person, so contests do not motivate me. Contests make me think that product prices are inflated to fund the prize. There must be others like me?!

That said, when contests work, they can work wonderfully. Some tips for contest success:

Keep them simple. Make it easy to enter, and make sure contest logistics don’t detract from the campaign messaging.

Make the prize relevant. Choose a prize that makes sense for your brand and campaign theme, instead of falling back on the hot electronics item du jour (iPad2).

Bring in a media sponsor. They often offer discounted/free space to promotions they support. Great additional exposure.

Make it newsworthy. Copeland’s zombie internship contest got great publicity internationally. If the contest was “Write a 250-word blog post about why you’d make a great intern”, media wouldn’t have looked twice. So stay on brand, but be creative and different. Keep in mind what constitutes a good story in journalism.