A colleague recently asked me, "Why don't more marketers use the power of music in their marketing?"
Jeez. Good question, right? Music activates another of our senses, burrows into our subconscious and, at least for me, helps me remember certain moments in time. Case in point: Summer of 1980. I spent hours and hours at our local swimming pool and I can't tell you how many times I heard Supertramp, "Logical Song" playing on the stereo. Every time I hear the song, it makes me smile and I remember those great days of being a kid.
Anyway, knowing how powerful music can be, why DON'T we hear more great music in ads these days? Is it because so much advertising is jammed packed 100% with promotional messages that there's no point in wasting the money on the rights?
Think about how many great, memorable spots have included classic tracks - and how much more you remember the brands? Here are some of my all-time faves....
VW got back on my radar a few years ago with this one.
Target won my heart when they used the Kinks..
One of Hummer's best spots ever hfeatured The Who.
What's not to like about Clapton, right?
Heck, even AC/DC got in the act a few years ago for a Cingular ad (though they've banned embedding the video just like they won't sell through iTunes. sigh......here's the link).
But my hat goes off to Diet Coke. Over the last decade or so, they've created a bunch of spots that actually got me to stop multi-tasking and pay attention to their ads on tv. Sure, the visual effects in this one were pretty cool at the time, but it was the catchy, upbeat music that - to this day - immediately makes me think of Diet Coke when I hear it.
And just last night, I actually rewound my TiVo to watch this one again:
Potty humor is universal, but the treatment of potty humor in marketing is, hum....a delicate subject. Who does a better job of being clever while selling Charmin toilet paper - the US or the UK? You be the judge...
In one corner, we have Charmin US:
And then there's the English submission:
The precipitous demise of Borders is a cautionary tale that no matter how good things are, everything can turn to crap pretty quickly.
Walking past a Border location last weekend with a huge "GOING OUT OF BUSINESS" sign, though, I was struck by my immediate reaction: "Great time to go stock up on kids books."
I have a hard time envisioning the market for children's books going away anytime soon.
For anyone's who's read a bedtime story to a kid, can you really(?!) imagine scrolling through Good Night Moon on your iPad?
I'm also struck by the irony of the storyline in that (crap) movie with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, "You've Got Mail." If you'll recall, Meg Ryan's Shop Around the Corner, a purveyor of kids' books, was unceremoniously put out of business by a Borders-esque chain. The irony? Kids bookstores may actually, in the long run, survive a lot longer than the Borders of the world.
And a disclaimer: I remember this movie and this store ONLY because the actual store location was literally across the street from our family's place for 20+ years on West 69th between Columbus and Broadway on the Upper West Side.
Marketers have rushed to try to cash in on the popularity, which sometime results in efforts that you kinda scratch your head and wonder, "What were they thinking?"
Exhibit A: Nissan's new "Model vs. Model" campaign for the Juke, featuring some of the mode's best assets like curb appeal and agility.
Pretty reminiscent of that Miller Lite campaign with Pam Anderson, isn't it?
If you can't tell, I'm on a consumer observation kick these days after an endless debate with a client recently that you can rely on quant data alone. I believe my comment to them was, "How can you see tears or laughter in an online survey?" (Yes, I was para-phrasing Bill Bernbach a little....)
Anyway, enjoy this video which chronicles the wandering eyes of men. Not sure what kind of insight it provides other than we men remain simple, predictable beasts.....
I've recently read about a couple of segmentation studies for clients with higher end, affluent clients. One of the interesting trends is that more affluent folks aren't all that active in mainstream social media (e.g. Facebook). Makes sense that those with means value their privacy a little more, doesn't it? Which is why this study/video about business class consumers really struck a chord with me.
Odds are, they're watching Netplix Instant on their computer. And not porn (according to Sextracker, 70% of all Internet porn consumption occurs between 9 am and 5 pm......who knew?!)
A colleague passed around a Wired article today showing that Netflix Instant accounts for 20% of peak U.S. bandwidth use.
I'm not sure what it costs to run pre-roll on Netflix, but I'll wager it's far less expensive than a single 30-second spot on American Idol, the most popular show in the U.S. with almost 22 million viewers.
And with the use of streaming video climbing at creak-neck pace, this is bound to have a profound impact on media planning moving forward.
Leon Phelps set the bar pretty high for offering advice on romance and around romantic holidays....
And because that bar was set so high, I guess I'm left a little flat after watching this bit of romantic advice from State Farm this Valentine's Day season. Timely? Yes. Inspiriring? Uh....no.
Contrast State Farm with K-Y.....no contest.
And although I could somehow try to rationalize including the following video because it's Valentine's Day.......I won't even try. It's just a Bob Barker moment that I always think about this time of year.