New Julia Gillard says “I want to throw away [the] rule book, be out and about, meeting people, talking to people, makingmyself available. And, “Up to this point I’ve gone with the standard campaign model… very risk averse… [but] my style is to play my own again, to be out there taking a few risks”.
The question is how strategic this late-in-the elections move is? What strategy may lie behind the declaration that from now on she will be new: more real and less risk averse?
Welcome to the Spring semester in Strategic Communication. This is one of the best tutorials about how to set up a blog on WordPress. Enjoy!
Watching old and new IBM ads you see how advertising evolves, becomes more strategic. Starting from a list of products and product specifications it moves to a more abstract, also more complex and personal, representation of the brand. The brand appears more important than the product. The ultimate goal of strategic thinking is brand equity. Loyal customers identify themselves with the brand whatever the produce is. Brand loyalty is communication capital: it earns returns without any (further) investment. In the short term strategic branding appears a liability because it is, at least, slow; it does not have an immediate effect. Yet in the long term it could become the most precious asset. Before it kicks in you work for it. After that it starts working for you.
Abstract branding is not vague. It is direct. It is the symbolic shortcut to the lifestyle and identity of the customer. It may be a message that does not cling to a physical shape. In the Mazda 6 ad you barely see the car but feel its luxury quality. And it is a sound rather than picture that extracts the essence: “Zoom, zoom. Forever.” Or strategists could pick the product that best represents the zeitgeist of the brand. Al Ries calls it “the halo effect”. In the past companies advertised mostly the products they could not get rid of. This is tactic. Strategy is when they do the opposite. They tout the best-selling product because it lifts the value of the brand as a whole. A momentum emerges that pulls the sale of any other item up. Ries gives an example with Apple. In 2005 it solely advertised its hit, the iPod. Miraculously, sales of the Apple computers went also up. And so on: “The first brand in a new category will imprint itself in human minds as the original, the authentic, the real thing. Kleenex in tissue. Hertz in rent-a-cars. Heinz in ketchup. Starbucks in coffee shops.”
Nancy Schwartz just published it in her blog GettingAttention. I am subscribed to it because it is a goof place to exchange ideas about nonprofit marketing. I placed that article (Three Ways to Make an Impact When Your Message Is Out of Control) on vUWS (under Readings) in a more friendly format than the messed up (at least from my Mac) format of the GettingAttention archive. I knew about Technorati but did not know about Bloglines, for example.