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How to Leverage System 1 Dynamics for Advertising Success
Sep19

How to Leverage System 1 Dynamics for Advertising Success

Yes, the hype is deserved.

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Winning Over Moms with System 1 Dynamics
Jun27

Winning Over Moms with System 1 Dynamics

Work smart, not hard, to turn today’s moms into your brand’s best consumers.

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Persuading Two Consumer Segments with One Campaign: Moms and Kids Edition
May16

Persuading Two Consumer Segments with One Campaign: Moms and Kids Edition

Yes, you can win over both consumer segments with the same campaign.

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Does Your Brand Have a Story?
Jun21

Does Your Brand Have a Story?

As brands struggle to break through with their ads and commercials, many strive to tell a story. Storytelling can lure people into an ad, and a well-constructed story can result in the viewer learning something new about, or feeling differently towards the brand. Advertisers who create ad stories that engage and persuade should feel justifiably proud of their accomplishments. That said, for the brand to thrive, and for the advertising and agency to succeed on a deeper and far more powerful level, the brand should have a story that transcends individual ad content and lives across communications platforms and over the years. Brands that tell stories in their ads win at awards shows and in Super Bowl competitions. But in the real world, where the rubber hits the road and the marketing mix results tell the sales story, many commercials that tell stories lose focus on the brand. The common result is a commercial that is highly engaging but isn’t well-linked to the brand, and thus does not produce the attitudinal or behavior changes intended by the advertiser. This shortcoming can be addressed by developing a campaign in which the brand tells similar stories across ads and platforms, and over some period of time, these particular stories become connected to the brand. This is all good, and a fine set of stories that is engaging and connected to the brand can clearly enable the brand to achieve strong marketplace results. However, there’s even more benefit to be achieved if the brand – rather than just telling stories – itself has a story, and the entire body of communications is tasked with telling this story. Here’s the difference: brands that tell stories need to keep coming up with new stories. Brands that have stories speak from a particular position, and every story told about the brand validates and deepens the authenticity of that story. Brands with stories develop connections with consumers that are based on familiarity and trust, not just on the entertainment value of the current commercial or campaign pool. Often, a story about a brand will come from a particular creative concept developed by the ad agency. But once the campaign has run its course, the series of stories is over and a new story is created. It’s fresh, it’s new, and it might sell product. And if it’s consistent with what the consumer already believes about the brand, it builds the brand’s story. If not, it takes more time to build marketplace momentum (‘wear in’), and probably in the course of wearing in, destroys some of what the consumer came to believe about the brand based on...

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Taglines as Tag-Alongs
May05

Taglines as Tag-Alongs

We’ve commented in this space before about how brand marketers care more about their taglines than consumers do. Not only do consumers typically not care, they are mostly unable to link taglines with the brands to which they are attached. Sure, there some exceptions – Just do it; Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there; I’m lovin it to name a few. These are unquestionably strong, sticky lines – and they’ve had billions of advertising dollars in advertising support over the years. But most taglines never earn this kind of notice or acclaim. Taglines often serve to unite the brand team and the agency behind a what they’ve all agreed is a core brand truth. But when the team conceives of the tagline as the uniting force across ad elements that otherwise have little to nothing in common, that’s where the unfounded belief in the power of the tagline goes seriously awry. Recently released ARF research highlights two important insights that are relevant to this topic – two insights that we also have found to be true over many years of studying how advertising works. First, the best performing cross-platform campaigns contain common creative elements across platforms. We know that these common elements help consumers to link all of the different pieces of content to the same brand – an important function given the widespread problems with brand linkage in today’s advertising environment. Additionally, these common elements act as memory triggers – reminding consumers when they see an ad in one venue of the brand communications they’ve seen elsewhere – thus producing an amplification of persuasive impact. And second, using brain wave analysis, the ARF observed that consumers pay hardly any attention to the taglines that appear at the end of video ads. The story’s over, time to tune out. We’ve seen the same thing – which also by the way is true of commercial end tags, but that’s another story for another day. Our observation has been that the tagline acts like the period at the end of the sentence. ‘Okay, that’s over – what’s next?’ This helps to explain why taglines, unless they are incorporated into the story, or unless they are central to the telling of the story, are so often not remembered at all. Let’s put these two observations side by side – campaigns need common threads and taglines aren’t noticed or remembered. This tells us that campaigns that are tied together through the use of a tagline aren’t really tied together at all, and thus are not going to work as hard for a brand as the brand team hopes. The moral of...

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2016 Super Bowl Study: And the Winner Is… Persil Detergent?
Mar09

2016 Super Bowl Study: And the Winner Is… Persil Detergent?

Out of the fifty-one Super Bowl ads included in the research, the commercial that combined strong branded engagement and significant persuasive impact […]

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