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July 23, 2009

Setting a Good Example? Marketing Campaigns to Remember...

This month Inc Magazine included an article on “Great Marketing Moves”, which features some 30 “classic examples” of ways that entrepreneurs who have little cash but lots of creativity have gotten noticed. The list of examples cites examples as far back as the early 80s.

The list is interesting and many do highlight innovation and creativity but I have to admit that I was surprised by some the examples included. Several were shock value campaigns such as the infamous Go Daddy Super Bowl ads, while others had a strong tone of aggression.

More than specifically competitive, some of the examples are clear taunts to competitors including one that actually unintentionally incited vandalism at Starbucks and another campaign rewarded customers from ripping a Dominos pizza add out of phone books.

Reading this list of example got me wondering how many of these "great marketing" examples I would actually want to use. Some, but certainly not all. I am sure that it isn't that hard to cite 30 great marketing campaigns that are all based on creativity rather than shock or competition. I wonder why some of these examples seemed so impressive?

When I was in graduate school I remember hearing about the marketing campaign of the leading depression drug who wanted to find a way to boost sales that didn’t require the medical laundry list that most commercials mandate. So the company decided to advertise about depression in general. They knew that their promotional efforts would lead to a spike in sales of their drug over other drugs, but rather it would likely lead to an increase in all depression drugs, of which they were already the leading seller. This tactic is a far cry from tearing out competitors’ ads from the phone book.

Reading this also reminded me of a post that I wrote last year on the advertising rules for public radio spots, which prohibit the use of superlatives and force companies to advertise with integrity and focus on qualitative information. Read the quidelines here.

* At the very least this serves as a very helpful exercise...What would your public radio advertisement say?

1 comment:

Jezrabelle said...

If anyone was in any doubt about why we need In Good Company, this article on maketing campaigns to remember (as well as the one you cite about "rational," i.e., "objective," i.e., "male-oriented" decision-making) will remind them!

It's still a MDW (male dominated world), and aggression, dirty tricks and destructive competitiveness--forget that these are the things that almost just tanked the global economy--are still admired by many male decision-makers and, oh yeah, editorial writers!

How about getting noticed through quality, collegiality and positive networking? And why is this still such a "radical" idea when all around us, women are making it work?

Maybe we need a national Male-Business-Magazine-Editors-Sleep-In-and-Let-Your-Female-#2-Edit-This-Month's-Issue-day!