Friday, January 31, 2014

Will emphasizing durability be a successful strategy for VW?

After a year of declining sales, Volkswagen is taking a variety of steps to get the brand back on the acceleration track.  Strategically, they have decided to focus on the fact that they have more cars on the road with 100,000 miles or more than any other brand. (Greenberg, 2014)

It's an interesting strategy, but will it get them on the consideration list for Gen Y?

Greenberg, K. (2014, January 29)  VW's Brand Strategy Hones In On Product.  Retrieved January 31, 2014, from

Friday, January 24, 2014

If you want to communicate with young African-Americans send them a tweet.

As Twitter evolves we are seeing a definite minority skew for the medium, with African-Americans, Latinos and Asian-Americans accounting for 41% of total users versus 34% for Facebook and 33% for total Internet users.

While the company is focusing on growing its Latino audience, its current sweet spot is young African Americans.  40% of African-American Internet users between the ages of 18-29 use Twitter compared with 28% of Whites in that age group. (Koh, 2014)

Advertisers that have taken notice and are doing something about it include AllState, Home Depot and "12 Years A Slave."  I imagine that others will soon follow.

Koh, Y. (2014, January 21)  Twitter's Racial Diversity Becomes Plum Selling Point.  Wall Street Journal. p.B1, B4

Friday, January 17, 2014

Finally, someone gets it!

Every year when I read the post game commentary about the Super Bowl ads I am appalled.  Apparently most of these so called experts have forgotten that the purpose of advertising is to sell stuff.  Instead of commenting on perceived effectiveness they stoop to the level of non-marketers and discuss which commercials they found most entertaining.  Who cares?

So a big thanks to Communicus for trying to see if any of the ads actually work.  And, guess what?  Most don't.  Based on a new study which tracked purchase intent, pre and post, four out of five Super Bowl commercials failed to deliver.  At $4 million a pop (plus production) that sure is a lot of wasted money. (Loechner, 2014)

I was not surprised to read that the Mercedes "Soul" commercial, which was at norm for likeability was a winner in terms of purchase intent.  It featured a clear message that I thought young men would find appealing.  I was actually surprised that it wasn't better liked.  Here it is so you can take a second look.

And this year, when you watch the Super Bowl ads think a bit about whether they make you want to buy something before you decide which ones you think are good.  You may be surprised at the answer.

Loechner, J. (2014, January 16)  But Will The Dogs Eat It?  Retrieved January 16, 2014, from

Friday, January 10, 2014

Do you want to buy some underwear while you watch the Super Bowl?

H&M has announced plans to run an interactive ad for David Beckham's bodywear products during the 2014 Super Bowl.  Viewers watching the commercial on a Samsung Smart TV will see a pop-up menu  offering product information and the option to buy product on the spot. (Friedman, 2014)

Wait, won't that interfere with watching the game?  Just kidding.  Everyone knows how dull Super Bowl games usually are. 

The bigger issue is the low penetration of smart TV's.  I attribute that to poor advertising and the annoying fact that a keyboard is not included with purchase and finding one that actually works with any given model requires an extensive Google search. 

But just the same I am intrigued.  With an expected audience of over 100 million people sales could be impressive.  I hope they will share the results. 

Friedman, W. (2014, January 6)  H&M Super Bowl Spot Lets Viewers Buy Beckham's Bodywear Via TV Remote.  Retrieved January 9, 2014, from