Archive for July, 2010

Brands Living Big

July 21, 2010

I saw a tweet about Chick-fil-A’s self-proclaimed Cow Appreciation Day a few weeks back. The tweet led to this AdAge interview with Marketing Exec David Salyers where the usual questions came up. When will you start opening on Sundays? They won’t. And what is it with those cows? They started as an off-strategy billboard idea.

What-the-what?

I have been a long-time fan of the cows and their egregious spelling for years. Created by The Richards Group in 1995, the cows are everywhere Chick-fil-a is: in their ads and TV spots, at the Chick-fil-A Bowl, on Twitter at @EatMorChikin, on their annual calendar, on cups and to-go bags. And, apparently, they almost never came to be. Interesting.

But the educationally-challenged cows have new competition in my heart from a suave, young spokesman.

Scaling the brand idol category, both bare-handed and shirtless, is the Old Spice Guy created by Weiden + Kennedy. He’s making hilarious commercials, one dissected here (especially interesting if you are “into” production). The Old Spice Guy is tweeting  personalized videos, too. Here’s one he made for Apolo Anton Ohno  and another for a guy named Kevin.

The cows and the Old Spice guy are ways big advertisers have taken their brand and brought it to life all over the place. Like on a horse.

Marketing isn’t about creating ads.

July 7, 2010

At the heart of marketing, lies the universal truth that we— as marketers— are trying to solve a problem for/with our clients. Sometimes we find paid ads and PR stories aren’t the most effective solution. As has been the case with one long-time client, QS/1, America’s leading pharmacy software provider. Their products and services span many categories of pharmacy including Long-Term Care (LTC) pharmacies. QS/1’s PrimeCare software provides numerous benefits to an LTC pharmacy and we’ve communicated this throughout the years in advertising and public relations. The LTC pharmacy industry itself doesn’t have many industry rules-of-thumb or benchmarks for pharmacies to relate to. We saw an opportunity for our client to reinforce themselves as industry experts.

We recommended the creation of a first of its kind study that would identify benchmarks in the industry relating to pharmacy operations. We approached the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP), the member association of the industry, to partner with QS/1 on the study. This would get us access to the audience we needed and give the ASCP valuable intelligence to share with its membership. The published results of the ASCP-QS/1 Report for Long-Term Care Pharmacies & Consultant Pharmacists 2009 debuted at ASCP’s 32nd Midyear Conference in May of 2010. The debut included the published study results, a presentation of the results by an ASCP official and a roundtable discussion among industry luminaries. Our client noticed conference attendees rushing to get copies of the study to see where their pharmacies compared to the benchmarks. QS/1 and the ASCP have received a large volume of positive feedback on the study. In fact, additional copies have been printed for other meetings at the request of the client and partner.

In the end, our client is perceived as the industry expert they are and our partner has provided valuable information to an appreciative membership. The proverbial win-win situation. All this without creating a single ad.


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