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June 28, 2014

7th Article Published in HANS INDIA "Marketing Lessons From Kellogg's

7th Article Published in HANS INDIA titled "Marketing Lessons From Kellogg's'. It is an article about how Kellogg got its positioning wrong in India and later went on to correct its positioning!

June 20, 2014

Origins of Famous brands and Products

Many products have interesting stories of  origins, One of them has to thank the US President and the other  a mother with a very observant eye. Read on

First Teddy Bear
Teddy Bear: The Teddy Bear is named after Theodore 'Teddy' Roosevelt, the famous hunting President of the USA. In 1902 President Roosevelt, visiting Mississippi decided to go out hunting for the day. After several hours, he still hadn't got anything, when one of his aides discovered a lost bear cub wandering through the woods. Catching it, the aide tied it to a tree, and brought the President to shoot it.

Roosevelt' couldn't bring himself to shoot the defenseless cub, and ordered it to be set free. The press contingent following Roosevelt's visit heard about the story, and it inspired cartoonist Clifford Berryman to draw a cartoon of the incident, entitled 'Drawing the Line in Mississippi'.

The printed cartoon triggered inspiration for Brooklyn candy store owner Morris Michtom. Using Berryman's cartoon as a guide, he quickly worked out a pattern, and, his wife had soon put together a little jointed toy bear cub, which Morris put into his shop window with a copy of the cartoon, and a handwritten notice saying 'Teddy's Bear'. The Bears sold well  and within a year, Michtom closed his candy store, and founded the Ideal Novelty and Toy Co. - still one of the biggest toy firms in the world.

Rene Lacoste
Lacoste is a French clothing company that sells high end clothing, footwear, perfume, leather goods, watches, eyewear and the most famous Polo shirts. The company can be recognized by its famous green crocodile logo. Rene Lacoste the company's founder was nicknamed "the Crocodile" by fans because of his tenacity on the tennis court. In November 2012 Lacoste was bought by Swiss family-held group Maus Freres.

Rene Lacoste founded La Chemise Lacoste in 1933 with André Gillier, the owner and president of the largest French knitwear manufacturing firm at the time. They began to produce the revolutionary tennis shirt Lacoste had designed and worn on the tennis courts with the crocodile logo embroidered on the chest.

Barbie doll: Barbie is a fashion doll manufactured by the American toy-company Mattel Inc and launched in March 1959 by American businesswoman Ruth Handler who is credited with the creation of the doll using a German doll called Bild Lilli as inspiration.

Ruth Handler watched her daughter Barbara play with paper dolls, and noticed that she often enjoyed giving them adult roles. At the time, most children's toy dolls were representations of infants. Realizing that there could be a gap in the market, Handler suggested the idea of an adult-bodied doll to her husband Elliot a co-founder of the Mattel toy company.

During a trip to Europe in 1956 with her children Barbara and Kenneth, Ruth Handler came across a German toy doll called Bild Lili.  The adult-figured doll was exactly what Handler had in mind, so she purchased three of them.

She gave one to her daughter and took the others back to Mattel. Upon her return to the United States, Handler reworked the design of the doll and the doll was given a new name, Barbie, after her daughter Barbara. The doll made its debut at the American International Toy Fair in New York on March 9, 1959. This date is also used as Barbie's official birthday.

T shirts: The beginning of the T-shirt is credited to the US navy. While other historians say it was the "swabs" in the British Royal Navy who wore them under their uniforms in World War I, some even suggest it was the French Army. American soldiers liked the comfortable lightweight cotton undershirt compared to the wool uniforms American soldiers wore and the rest is history. 

U.S. Navy was issuing crew-necked, short-sleeved, white cotton undershirts in 1913. The newly created shirt allowed ease of movement and quick drying. By the 1920s the T-shirt had become an official tern in the American English Dictionary. By the late 1930s a couple of US retailers were marketing them, namely Hanes, Fruit of the Loom and Sears, Roebuck & Co.  

By World War II both the US Navy and army were wearing standard issue t-shirts as underwear. However, it was really in the 1940’s that the t-shirt really got going with returning US servicemen. The Smithsonian museum has ‘the oldest printed T-shirt’ on record in their collection and on display. It is a campaign shirt for New York Gov. Thomas Dewey's 1948 presidential campaign.

Jeans: Jeans are trousers  made from denim or Dungaree  cloth. Often the term "jeans" refers to a particular style of pants, called "blue jeans" and invented by Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss  in 1873. Starting in the 1950s, jeans, originally designed for cowboys and miners, became popular among teenagers. Historic brands include Levi’s, Lee and Wrangler. Jeans come in various fits, including skinny, tapered, slim, straight, boot cut, narrow bottom, low waist, anti-fit, and flare.

Jeans are now a popular article of casual clothing around the world. They come in many styles and colors; however, blue jeans are the most popular. The jeans in the picture is the first pair of riveted jeans that was ever made by Levi Strauss and his partner Jacob Davis. This is the oldest pair of Levis and is valued at $150,000.

June 19, 2014

World's best Promotional campaigns

1. Think Small campaign of Volkswagen Beetle (1959): was created by Helmut Krone with the copy written by Julian Koenig DDB agency. It was ranked as the best advertising campaign of the twentieth century by Ad age in a survey of North American advertisements. The campaign has been considered so successful that it "did much more than boost sales and built a lifetime of brand loyalty”.  The advertisement, and the work of the advertising agency behind it, changed the very nature of advertising.
The message is "less is more" message geared toward car buyers. Like the VW Beetle the advertisements were simple and uncluttered, featuring photos of the car against a plain background. Can one sell a car with a headline that reads "Lemon”?  Sure! In the advertisement, Volkswagen was pointing out that the car in the photo didn't make it off the assembly line because one of the many inspectors found a blemish. "We pluck the lemons; you get the plums," was the slogan.

2. The pause that refreshes campaign of Coca-Cola (1929):   This campaign was designed and executed by D'Arcy Advertising Co. With the advent of the great depression corporate America worried that sales would suffer. Not so with Coca-Cola whose advertisements depicted carefree people and an idealized view of American life when real life was rather dreary. During the first year of the campaign, sales actually doubled. The economy may have been depressed, but "the pause that refreshes" appeared to have been just what Americans needed to lift their spirits.

3. The Marlboro Man campaign of Marlboro cigarettes (1955):  The Marlboro Man was first conceived by Leo Burnett. In the United States, where the campaign originated, it was used from 1954 to 1999. The image involves a rugged cowboy or cowboys. The advertisements were originally conceived as a way to popularize filtered cigarettes which at the time were considered feminine.
The Marlboro advertising campaign, created by Leo Burett Worldwide is said to be one of the most brilliant advertisement campaigns of all time. It transformed a feminine campaign, with the slogan "Mild as May", into one that was masculine, in a matter of months. Although there were many Marlboro Men, the cowboy proved to be the most popular. This led to the "Marlboro Cowboy" and "Marlboro Country" campaigns.

4. Just do it campaign of Nike (1988):   The founder of Wieden Kennedy agency, Dan Wieden credits the inspiration for his "Just Do It" Nike slogan to Gary  Gillmore’s  last words.  Dan Wieden met a group of Nike employees to talk about a new advertising campaign, he told them, "You Nike guys . . . you just do it." The result was one of the most effective taglines in advertising history. During the first ten years of this award-winning campaign, Nike's percent of the sport shoe market shot up from 18 to 43 percent. Today, the Nike name is so recognizable that it doesn't even need to appear in the advertising. Only the iconic "swoosh" is needed.

5. You deserve a break today campaign of McDonald (1971) Needham, Harper & Steers advertising agency successfully pitched an upbeat, catchy slogan to McDonald but they struggled with the lyrics. Noticing that the word "break" continuously surfaced in focus groups, copywriter Keith Reinhard finally wrote the perfect lyrics for the jingle “You deserve a break today”.  Within the next few years, global sales jumped from $587 million to $1.9 billion. The song was named the top jingle of the 20th century by Advertising age.

6. A diamond is forever campaign of Debeers (1948): De Beers pioneered the iconic positioning of diamonds in the contemporary culture, as a symbol of everlasting love because just like true love, a diamond is forever.
A young copywriter working for N.W.Ayer & Sons  Frances Gerety, coined the famous advertising line "A Diamond is Forever".  Frances Gerety, was working with De Beers and was given a brief to compose a line that encompassed and expressed the physical attributes and legends surrounding the diamond. She came out with a sentence which would later be voted as the most iconic advertising slogan of the 20th century.  From then onwards the diamond became an integral part of the modern-day ceremony of love, engagement and the celebration of enduring relationships. Through De Beers the diamond has come to speak a universal language, conveying its messages of love, rarity and desire.

7. Absolut Vodka campaign by V & S Group (Pernod Ricard) (1981): Ad agency N.W. Ayer ABH International’s Mr. Broman presented a concepts that would later become a familiar pattern, "Absolute Pure Vodka." The provocatively simple bottle design, inspired by a 19th-century apothecary bottle, bore the brand name as well as a substantial block of copy, explaining the origins of the product, applied directly to the clear glass.
The basic ideas were there from the start: an uncompromising emphasis on purity in name as well as in packaging and a breakaway design that signaled a willingness to challenge the prevalent Russian vodka heritage in the quickly growing vodka market. (Vodka at the time was typically packaged in tall bottles with large crimson labels, an abundance of crests and Russian-sounding names.)

Ayer CEO Jerry Siano got the credit for being the first to recognize the full potential of the name "Absolut." Mostly for legal reasons, but encouraged by Mr. Siano, the Swedes decided to change the name, dropping the "e" from "Absolute" as well as the "Pure," which was seen as redundant. The brand thus became "Absolut (Country of Sweden) Vodka." It is, of course, known by the shorter "Absolut vodka."
8. Tastes great, less filling Campaign of Miller Lite Beer (1974): The campaign was developed by the advertising agency McCann-Erickson Worldwide. This campaign peppered with ex-jocks contained more than 200 commercials, and its lively debate entertained sports fans for nearly two decades. Is Miller Lite good because of the taste or because you can drink a ton of it and still have room for nachos (potato chip)? During the first five years of the campaign, sales of Miller Lite took off from just under 7 million barrels a year to more than 31 million barrels, breaking the all-time record for  beer makers.

9. Does she or doesn’t she: Campaign of Clairol   (1957):  FCB copywriter Shirley Polykoff wrote a simple advertisement for Miss Clairol Hair Color Bath. The headline questioned, provocatively, "Does she . . . or doesn't she?" The answer: "Only her hairdresser knows for sure." With the appearance of that advertisement, the market for hair coloring took off: 50% of American women started coloring their hair, and sales of hair coloring products jumped 413% in six years.
FCB and Ms. Polykoff followed up in 1957 with a campaign that used the slogan, "Is it true blondes have more fun?" Clairol's next hit came with Loving Care, a new hair color designed to cover gray hair. The tagline, "Makes your husband feel younger, too, just to look at you," suggested that it was all right for women to color their hair to please their partners and also that men liked being associated with newly rejuvenated wives.

10. Avis we try harder campaign by AVIS (1963):  DDB the advertising agency came up with one of the most controversial and revolutionary campaigns for Avis. The first print advertisement, designed by DDB art director Helmut Krone with copy by Paula Green, appeared in March 1963. It was headlined, "Avis is only No. 2 in rent a cars. So why go with us?" The body copy began, "We try harder. (When you're not the biggest, you have to.)"
A storm of controversy followed, with criticism heaped upon both Avis and DDB for their tacit admission that Hertz led the field. But the delayed reaction was markedly positive as a series of "We're No. 2" ads issued forth from the DDB idea factory. Avis' share of the market increased by as much as 28%, and Avis came to be considered a co-leader with Hertz in the field. "We try harder" became a pop culture mantra.






June 07, 2014

4th Article published in Hans INDIA - 'Sales Ke Liye Kuch Bhi Karega'

4th article got published in Hans India today. My article is due on Monday. Accidentally i was reading Hans India on the net and lo and behold the article gets published on Saturday itself. It is on the second page of Young Hans and the article is about Famous Indian Sales Promotion Campaigns.

June 01, 2014

FIFA world cup - 2014


Football world cup is here. Football or soccer as it is popularly called is the moist popular sport in the world. It is a much awaited carnival that comes once in four years. It has steadfast followers  throughout the world. It is watched by billions on TV. Thus it is not surprising that the world GDP takes s dip when the Football world cup in on. Many watchers do not go  to the office the next day (after a bout of football watching the night before). 

Let us examine two innovative campaigns that aim to cash in on the football craze.

Coca-Cola’s:  World Cup 2014 promotional campaign has been launched with 18 mini bottles. These bottles contain no actual soda but each of the bottles can communicate messages and avatars to another bottle in the range.

The designs of the bottles pay tribute to 18 World Cup’s host countries from the past and future—the tiny bottles feature national flags and well-recognized visual motifs of the countries like Brazil, Argentina, Japan, and others. The collectible bottles can be attached to bags or phones as bright accessories.

The bottles come as an interactive platform as well. Using Facebook or iPhone and Android apps, soccer and Coke fans can create special messages and pictures that can be sent to and displayed on other bottles. Additionally, the markers integrated into the design of the bottles can open up as augmented reality animations when scanned with smartphones.

McDonald’s:  is changing the look of their iconic red and yellow French fries packaging globally with bold, new artwork to celebrate the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2014 football. tournament in Brazil. This new package will be called  ‘Fans of the World’.
The redesigned fries boxes will be the key to ‘unlocking’ a new Augmented Reality (AR) game app that will reward customers with an engaging, virtual trick-shot football challenge. Created for McDonald’s in collaboration with Qualcomm Connected Experiences and augmented reality specialists Trigger, the new McDonald’s GOL! app will be available for most mobile Android/Apple smartphone or tablet devices on the Google Play and Apple App stores.

Customers have to download the GOL! app and begin play as soon as they have their specially-designed McDonald’s fries packaging in-hand. It’s as easy as holding the screen of their mobile device up to the front of the box. As the device automatically recognizes the artwork, a football pitch will appear in an augmented reality scene on the screen, with the fries box as the goal and other built-in objects as obstacles. The idea is to ‘kick’ the ball with the flick of a finger and divert or use obstacles to get the ball into the goal.

This is the first time in its history that McDonald is change its package design of one of its most popular menu items – the French fries. And it is apt that they have chosen the FIFA world cup 2014 to do it.

Steve Easterbrook, senior executive VP and global chief brand officer at McDonald’s says “This is about bringing fun, innovative programming to our customers and celebrating our shared love of football. We’re excited to be able to do that through an engaging, interactive mobile experience, and of course with our world famous fries.”