Another Super Bowl has come and gone, but the discussions about the advertising during the game will be here for a while.
Don’t Stray From Who You Are
The Budweiser Clydesdales are symbols of the brand. They expanded that brand outside of what beer actually offers. Now that they have created the horse/dog relationship, they are wise not to mess with it. Imagine everybody’s reactions if the horse kicked the puppy.
Why would people react? Because we have a perception of how those symbols of the brand should be that have nothing to do with beer. The company is building on a liking and trust of the Clydesdales being protectors who deliver — so we trust the company to deliver, too. Every company has an image — a brand — that identifies who they are in the mind of the public. If you have a positive image, build on that foundation carefully.
Think About Reactions
The “dead kid” shocker from Nationwide sure started a conversation, but it probably isn’t the one the company wanted to have. I wonder if they tested this ad with different groups before they decided to go with it? If the goal was to get people talking about Nationwide, that ad worked. It also sort of got people talking about child safety, but not as effectively as it could have been. If you are going to plan a shocker to start a conversation, be prepared for a backlash.
Knowing Your Audience Trumps Budget
That Doritos ad with the guy trying to keep people from sitting next to him on the plane was identifiable. Most of us know the feeling of not enjoying a plane ride because of the person next to us, and that guy pushed all the buttons. But that commercial didn’t cost very much compared to the rest of the night’s advertising and was the result of Doritos’ effort to include their fans in the process of creating ads. They turned the whole Super Bowl ad thing into a group effort and got their audience involved and committed.
Online marketing strategy is one part of what should be a carefully cohesive presentation of your business to the world. You have to know who you are as a company and know your audience well enough to gauge reactions before you can make wise investments in marketing.