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Don Draper: Marketing Guru of the ’60s, Fashion Icon of the 21st Century

28 Apr

There are two things on my mind as of recent: the ABAN project and our co-branding objective, and David Meerman Scott’s ideas in his book, The New Rules of Marketing and PR. I stumbled upon a juicy AdAge article about the Banana Republic that has applied both co-branding principles and the new rules of marketing. Crazy when the concepts you learn in class can be identified and applied in real-life, right?! Welcome to college 🙂

Here’s what I found:

Screen Shot taken by Ashley Bunting

Screen Shot taken by Ashley Bunting

Banana Republic and sibling stores Gap Inc. and Old Navy are switching gears from uneven performance to global brand management. Last month, Catherine Sadler was appointed as the Chief Marketing Officer. What’s her number one goal, you might ask?

‘To establish a singular brand voice and more-consistent brand experience around the world.’

Global brand management is a sizable initiative, no doubt about it, but Sadler is determined. She is conscious that her biggest challenge will be connecting with loyalists and first-time customers in the same way.

To add a little more spice into the equation, there has been a shift in Banana’s buyer style. This ‘new look’ is more corporate and less casual. In other words, customers want the sleek professional look. This also means that Banana can also charge higher prices for clothes incorporated in this line of products.

Mad for Mod: The ‘Don Draper’ Look

Accommodating the new shift in the buyer’s style, Banana Republic has fostered a partnership with AMC’s award winning series, Mad Men. For those of you who may not be familiar with the series, let me provide you with a little background information on why the partnership ‘clicks.’

  • Mad Men, based in the 1960s, tells the tale of the corporate and personal affairs of Don Draper. Draper is the Creative Director and a Partner at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce ad agency, otherwise known as famous marketing guru and advocator for mass marketing. During a little bit of my Don Draper investigation, I came across this blog post from REAL MEN REAL STYLE that guides men on how to capture both the classic and casual Don Draper look. According to REAL MEN REAL STYLE, “There’s one icon of the Mad Men style that stands above the rest, and it’s Don Draper.
  • Want to view more of Don’s style? Check out the Complete Don Draper Look Book Here, courtesy of GQ.
Image retrieved from collegefasion.net

Image borrowed from collegefasion.net

In this partnership, Banana Republic has been working with Mad Men’s costume designer, Janie Bryant. Together, they have been busy creating Banana’s third line of the “Mad Men” collection and launched an online content hub called “Mad for Mod.”

Only four years ago, Banana Republic was promoting Mad Men style with manikins in its store windows. The new rules of marketing are in full force. Sadler is implementing a re-focus within marketing. Web content is being re-evaluated and Banana is taking a stab at ‘thinking like a publisher.’ This means that Banana is aiming to produce a more content driven website. Sound familiar? According to David Meerman Scott, content drives action. To me, it looks like Banana is headed in the right direction. No news yet on when the third Mad Men line comes out, but I’m keeping my ears and eyes peeled. Also curious to see how Banana will continue to implement the ‘new rules of marketing’, otherwise they could fall into more than one Don Draper trap and go back to the old ways.

Source: Banana Republic’s CMO Talks New ‘Mad Men’ Collection, Unifying the Brand

Dress Like the Mad Men: the Fashion on Don Draper

The Complete Don Draper Look Book

This blog post is a part of a series for Integrated Marketing Communications at Elon University.

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Insta-Menu for the Greater Good

16 Apr

If you are an Instagram user, you and I both know that you have Instragrammed a picture of your food or drinks. The photo you uploaded was probably complemented with hashtags like: #Noms #FoodPorn #Delicious #SoHungry

Wait, why are we taking pictures of our food?…

Hey, I am not trying to single you out. I will be the first one to admit, I have uploaded an “Insta-Menu” picture. If you are not an avid Instragram user and you don’t know what I am talking about, check out my personal example. Yes, I am guilty for Instagramming a picture of Maxi B’s Fresh Strawberry Buttercream cake.

Screenshot on Ashley Bunting's iPhone

Screenshot on Ashley Bunting’s iPhone

According to this FastCompany article, sharing pictures on Instagram can now be for the greater good, thanks to FoodShareFilter. The FoodShareFilter application allows users to take/retrieve photos, edit them, and upload them to Instagram with the #FoodShareFilter hashtag. Every photo that is uploaded to Instagram through this app counts for a monetary donation to Manos Unidas.

Manos Unidas is a Salvadorian charity that works in third world countries to fight hunger and spread hunger awareness in Spanish-speaking populations.

FoodShareFilter application is offered both in English and Spanish. Although this video is in Spanish, I encourage you to still watch it!

Why Use Instagram as the Platform?

DDB Spain is the agency behind the creation of the food filters. Nerea Cierco, the digital creative director at DDB Spain, says that they chose Instagram because they wanted to attract the younger demographic. In thinking about younger online trends, “food porn” was a hot topic. Instagram is also a channel that young people are very comfortable using for photo sharing and communication. You’ve seen it on Facebook and Twitter. ‘Retweet this tweet and Company X will donate $1.00 for every retweet to Charity Y,’ or ‘Share this post and organization X will donate for every time this picture is shared.’

By using FoodShareFilter to upload pictures through Instagram, sharing pictures of your food now has a purpose. By downloading this application for a mere $0.99 and using it as the portal to upload your food pictures, you are making a charitable donation and helping fight hunger.

If we use the FoodShareFilter app, everyone can feel a whole lot less guilty about Instagramming “food porn” and positively contribute to a pressing global issue.

Source: If You’re Going To Instagram Your Food, At Least Help End Hunger In The Process

This blog post is a part of a series of assignments for Integrated Marketing Communications at Elon University.

NASCAR Novela: Coming full-speed to the Hispanic audience

31 Mar

Danica Patrick winning the 2013 Daytona 500 pole is not the only big diversity move happening in NASCAR.

In an AdAge interview (2012) with NASCAR Chief Marketing Officer Steve Phelps, Phelps outlines five goals for NASCAR to achieve in the next five years:

  1. Build the star power of individual drivers
  2. Increase engagement among children and college-age consumers
  3. Attract a multicultural fan base
  4. Craft more cohesive digital- and social-media strategies
  5. Improve the racetrack experience for fans

Phelps has been driving these efforts (NASCAR pun intended) since 2010. In this Q&A session, Phelps was asked about what NASCAR is doing to attract a multicultural fan base, specifically Hispanics.

“We’ve done some small things. At three of our race tracks we did heavy up-spending in those markets buying media. We had a virtual garage tour in Spanish. The NASCAR website can be viewed in Spanish, as well, but that’s basically just a translation. Looking ahead, we’re in discussions with a Spanish-language outlet to create digital content for us, and we hope to have meaningful content live in 2013.”

Of course, it all starts small. But NASCAR executives know that Spanish garage tour and translated website is not going to seal the deal.  To attract and engage such a large market, NASCAR needs to truly capture the Hispanic audience off the track before they can capture them on it.

Just as stated in Phelps’s response, 2013 is the year for NASCAR to produce meaningful digital content to Hispanics. NASCAR has pursued digital content in one of the most popular forms of Hispanic entertainment: novelas.

¿Qué es una novela?/ What is a novela?

According to Wikipedia, a telenovela is a limited-run serial dramatic programming popular in Latin American, Portuguese, Filipino, Spanish, and American (Spanish language network) television programming. Essentially, a novela is a Spanish soap opera.

A Virtual Racing Experience

Arranque de Pasión, La Historia de Ela,’ a drama set in a fictional NASCAR world staring Latina actress Kate Del Castillo, tells a story with equal parts romance and speed. This novela is co-produced by NASCAR and Univision and will debut on Univision’s website this month. In May, ‘Arranque de Pasión’ is scheduled to appear on Univision network television.

Screenshot of Univision.com

Screenshot of Univision.com

Sounds like a pretty good gig, right? After all, NASCAR is lacking significant exposure to Hispanics. But why did NASCAR choose a novela to reach this particular audience? Mexican actress Kate Del Castillo, who stars as Ela, knows why.

“When you think about it [NASCAR], it’s all about family, and that’s what we like. It’s about spending an entire day at the track. It’s an experience, a whole day for family, and yet it’s very dangerous. It’s very dramatic. I think it’s perfect for us.” -Del Castillo

So, this is the digital media content Phelps was talking about. Hey, I think this might be the perfect element to draw Hispanic attention. Drama, passion, romance, with a racing vibe to capture viewers and make them want to be a part of the NASCAR experience.

Univision knows what they are doing when it comes to producing novelas, and NASCAR is watching over to ensure authenticity and accuracy of the sport.

Speaking of authenticity, here’s the big question: Are there going to be guest appearances from our favorite NASCAR stars? So far, all sources have indicated ‘no.’ Although the majority of the filming was conducted at Homestead-Miami Speedway, don’t get your hopes up for any guest appearances… at least not yet, I imagine this could be an aspect still up for discussion.

An Extra 0.02 Cents

This is exactly what I have been waiting for! I knew I was a Spanish minor for a reason. This is exactly what NASCAR needs: a more diverse demographic.  For a while, I was worried that the multicultural initiative was going to be all talk and no game. I think the novela is a big move and Phelps’s goal #3 is finally coming to fruition.

Look forward to a blog post about the first episode. It will be in Spanish (of course), but I am fluent and will keep all my non-Spanish speaking readers informed!

 

Sources: NASCAR Hopes To Win Latinos With Telenovela

NASCAR Targets New Audiences, Revs Up Social-Media Strategy

 

This blog post is a part of a series for Integrated Marketing Communications at Elon University.

Nike’s New Tiger Woods Facebook Ad: Far From a Hole-In-One

27 Mar

I think Ricky Bobby said it best, “If ya ain’t first, you’re last.” This famous Talladega Nights quote just about sums up the fact that no one likes to lose. But while Ricky Bobby is a fictional character, there are professional athletes out there displaying less than mediocre sportsmanship.

Tiger Woods is back under the spotlight. Ping ponging from one scandal to another, the headlines of Tiger’s promiscuity had finally calmed down, just in time for his golf game to spring back up. This past week, Tiger Woods won the Arnold Palmer Invitational, which allowed him to return to his N0.1 ranking. Tiger held this ranking for 281 consecutive weeks before his golf game and personal life came to a crashing halt when it was released he was unfaithful (more than once) to his wife, Elin Nordegren. The ‘Tiger Woods Scandal‘ resulted in the loss of major corporate sponsors such as Accenture, AT&T, and Gatorade. Nike continued their relationship with Tiger.

How does Tiger and his loyal sponsor Nike Golf respond to the recent win? By releasing an ad on Facebook that makes a bold statement about winning. Word of mouth created a buzz of negative reviews, so I went online to check it out for myself.

Screenshot by Ashley Bunting

Screenshot by Ashley Bunting

“I’ll Never Buy Another Nike Product”

According to this article on AdAge, Crisis PR expert Mike Paul says that this ad is “brazen” for both bodies to take on when they are in the process of recovering their brands. Mr. Paul was right. The majority of fans are not pleased. Many parents have responded in the general attitude of, “This is poor sportsmanship. Is this is what we are supposed to teach our children? No.” However, some fans, such as the ones clearly noted in the screenshot above, go as far to say that because of the arrogance communicated in this ad, they will never buy another Nike product. 

Nike Golf Spokeswoman Beth Gast replies, “The statement … is a salute to his athletic performance.”

Does ‘Just Do It’ Imply You Must Win To Be Great?

Just Do It. The Nike slogan that the athletic company has built their brand on. This is the message that speaks to individuals hitting the gym for the first time in years because they have finally gained the confidence to put themselves out there. And if you ask me, most importantly, it speaks to the youth to be active. The bottom line is that the ‘Just Do It’ slogan speaks to athletes of all caliber.

photo credit: albyantoniazzi via photopin cc

photo credit: albyantoniazzi via photopin cc

Did you hear that? I think it was the sound of Nike shooting themselves in the foot. Sure, Tiger Woods might be the best golfer in the world. But what does Tiger’s new ‘Winning’ ad say to the average Joe who wears Nike apparel. The ‘Just Do It’ tagline inspires him. He now goes on morning jogs and is headed in the right direction to living a healthier life. To Nike’s dismay, he has never won a trophy in his life. Is he still winning?

What does this message say to Nike consumers? Some could perceive it as even if their personal life plummets, everything is a-okay (cue a thumbs up) as long as you are bringing home the biggest trophy.

The Tiger Woods fan club will stay the same. He has been through tough times (to stay the least) and his loyal fans have stuck by his side. They are thrilled to see him back on his golf game and securing that No. 1 spot. The Nike fan club is the one on the rocks. Nike’s customer base is much more diverse. To many, winning is not everything, as long as you are doing the best that YOU can do.

Me? What do I think? Well, Since You Asked.

In my amateur opinion, ‘Winning Takes Care Of Everything’ completely contradicts the ‘Just Do It’ message. I would even go as far to say that this Tiger ad could make some Nike product users feel bad about themselves because they are not winning.

Trust me, as a competitive athlete since I was 7 years old, I do not believe that “everyone gets a ribbon.” However, Nike’s Facebook ad comes across as arrogant and pompous, rather than tasteful and classy.

Sources: Nike’s Tiger Woods Ad: ‘Winning Takes Care of Everything’

Tiger Woods Facebook Ad Draws Mixed Reactions

Tiger Woods’ Gatorade Sponsorship OVER: Third Major Sponsor To Leave

This blog post is a part of a series of assignments for Integrated Marketing Communications at Elon University.

When Life Gives You Lemons, Check Their Transparency

25 Mar

The hottest topic in athletic apparel? Lululemon’s yoga pants. For those of you not familiar with the brand, here is a little background info.

According to Urban Dictionary, here is the most PC definition of Lululemon that I would personally agree with:

“A popular yoga and exercise brand of clothing. Mostly for yoga and dance and running, but also just worn for fashion. Extremely comfy and modified fabrics are used, like LUON for wicking properties and staying dry.”

Why all the buzz over a pair of yoga pants, you might ask? Well, turns out multiple batches of Lululemon’s popular pant were poorly manufactured, in turn, they are see-through. Customers have filed in one-by-one, back to the stores, to return these pants because of the pant’s transparency. This has resulted in a recall in the Luon Pants (and you thought only cars were recalled).

Before you read any further, take a look at this video.

Okay, okay, some of you might find this video a little bit offensive. The jokes about the “yoga pants” shortage, and “I like what it does to my curves, I have to say” quote. Let’s dig a little deeper into this.

My Professional Sales professor’s last words before he dismissed us for Spring Break: “Why do people pay $4.00 for a coffee at Starbucks, instead of paying $1.00 for a coffee at McDonald’s. It is about the experience.” And yes, there is an experience with yoga pants. Upper-middle class and upper class women will pay a Franklin ($100 bones) for  a pair of workout pants because they believe it enhances their workout experience. They want to be beautiful when they are sweating. These are not pants strictly for the gym either. Women will run errands in them or wear them around town as casual-wear because they like the way the pants look, the pants are comfortable, and the brand logo shines on the small of their back all day long.

photo credit: lululemon athletica via photopin cc

photo credit: lululemon athletica via photopin cc

Transparency In the Pants, But Is There Transparency in Lululemon’s Future?

According to Brian Davis’s AdAge article, the Lulu pants scandal may cause a lasting impact on the brand. Clearly, the product recall has raised a lot of questions. Women are now taking a closer look at their yoga pants. When customers are paying such a price, quality is expected. The pants recall is embarrassing for the brand, just as it is embarrassing for customers (pun intended).

However: “Lululemon may have an opportunity to squeeze this lemon into LuluLemonade,” says Brian Davis in his article. This leads us to the fork in the road. By taking immediate action to fix the problem and being honest with customers, customers may respect the brand even more. Everyone makes mistakes, right? Lululemon is in the spotlight now, but it will only be so long before another brand’s scandal steals consumer attention. Davis also predicts that it would not be out of the ordinary to see the misfit pants sold on eBay to yogis who practice yoga in private.

Behind the Brand: Livin’ La Vida LuLu

I do not own any Lululemon, personally I am more of a Nike girl. But I am a runner, swimmer, dancer and outdoor enthusiast, so I decided to do a little more research on the Lulu brand. After reading the FastCompany article, Lululemon’s Cult of Selling, I am a little… unsettled?

What I have gathered is this: Lulu recruits yoga instructors to endorse their brand by wearing it and offering Lulu sponsored yoga classes. Hmm seems logical to me. Almost like celebrity endorsements if the most renowned yoga instructors from Beverly Hills are wearing the brand. This is where things get interesting: Lulu employees are referred to as “educators,” and required to go through intense self-actualization training which requires posting their goals on a public wall and listening to motivational recordings. Lulu sees this as an opportunity for educators to access a “learning library” and attend Landmark Forum seminars.

However, past Lulu employees seem to feel a different way. This FastCompany article had many comments from past [angry] Lulu employees, stating that these “educator” practices are what forced them to quit their job.

Why do I bring up the internal structure of Lulu? Good question!

Interested to see if and how these employee practices will change/modify in the coming months due to the “pants scandal.” Based on what I have read on the company culture, I am predicting a whole make-over for LuLu (inside and out!).

Sources: Lululemon Recalls Luon Pants, Expects Shortage | Video – ABC News

Flipsides: Could Lululemon Come Out Ahead After See-Through Yoga Pants Recall?

Lululemon’s Cult of Selling

This blog post is a part of a series for Integrated Marketing Communications at Elon University.