Category Archives: Marketing
Here are some of my favorites:
Spirit Halloween promoted the sale of Romney and Obama Halloween masks. The company said they have successfully predicted the past few elections based on total sales of each candidate’s mask. Of course, those sales will likely never surpass the Richard Nixon mask, which according to various sources, has been a leading seller for years.
Fitz Root Beer unveiled campaign bottle Root Beer that features either President Obama or Governor Romney. They post sales results regularly on their Facebook page. Fitz president Michael Alter said, “Root Beer is an all-American beverage, so it just makes sense to use it to promote the election and use sales of Romney and Obama bottles to gauge the vote.”
Convenience store chain 7-Eleven created the “7-Election” campaign where coffee drinkers can choose between a red cup and a blue cup. In the last three elections the cup sales have closely mirrored the final results. One 7-Eleven executive said that the campaign provokes conversation about the election but at the end of the day it is really just something fun for their customers.
Want to win a free flight? JetBlue was hoping to create some hype as the company promoted a free round-trip plane ticket to 1,006 international travelers in 2013 if their candidate didn’t win. The airline drove traffic to dedicated web site for the voting (sorry, it closed yesterday if you were interested).
What have been some of your favorite election marketing campaigns?
You have a few hours left, be sure you go out and vote!
At the end of a long day in the OR, shooting for a hospital client, almost anything can happen.
For Marketers Who Want Their Commercials to Go Viral: Be coy with your logo and “out there” with joy and surprise.
Using infrared eye-trackers and technologies that analyze facial expressions, an assistant professor at Harvard Business School has predicted what’s needed in commercials to make them more apt to go viral.
The bottom line:
1. Don’t flaunt your brand logo. Show it repeatedly, but subtly.
2. Use joy and surprise, and use it early. People stay more engaged and stick with an ad when it starts with joy or surprise. Special note: surprise is good; shock is not. Funny is good; nudity keeps a lot of people from “sending it on.”
3. When creating a video ad, think roller coaster. People easily get bored, so you have to turn it on and off, creating an emotional roller coaster that pushes emotions from joyful to surprise; tension to relief. And all this in 30 or 60 seconds.
4. Only a subset of viewers will pass along an ad, no matter how joyful, surprising, mercurial or logo-subtle: primarily, people who are extroverts and/or egotistic. The extroverts are just out there sharing and having fun. As for the egotists, the author speculates that egotism is a trait of someone who shares an ad link because that kind of personality wants to be considered, “in the know,” media savvy and connected. Who knew?
The observations in the article in the Harvard Business Review aren’t that much of a surprise, but it has to be a monumental challenge to convince most company CEO’s to downplay their logo. And I can’t even imagine making a presentation of a new ad built around these pointers to “the suits” in most corporate boardrooms.
Seriously, how in the world do these agencies get this kind of risky promotion past the corporate gatekeepers?
For those of us in healthcare marketing, it’s important to study the public’s evolving and expanding online habits.
So I’m fascinated and mildly amused by the newest cyber-contagion spreading through communities: cyberchrondria. The word probably doesn’t require definition. It’s a term coined to describe people’s obsession with self-diagnosis based on reading online healthcare info.
According to American Medical News, which cites a Pew Research study, 80% of internet users search for health information online. Since about 75% of Americans go online, that’s almost 60% of the US population who are ferreting out online information about illnesses or diseases related to themselves or someone they care about. Some of that information is quite reliable; some not so much so.
Physicians are now reporting an increased number of patients who are needlessly worried about diseases they think they have as a result of internet reading. The docs say they require significantly more time and counsel or, even worse, they sometimes demand costly screenings and tests just to prove they DON’T have a certain disease.
Recently I got an unusual diagnosis which will probably have little or no impact on my life or long term health. The physician (not the best communicator, by the way) said, “And don’t go out and read about it online; it’ll just scare you.” You can imagine the first thing I did when I got back to the office. (And it did scare me to death.) Suddenly I just knew I was having a reaction to the medicine (I wasn’t) and I was diving into “chat rooms” populated by people with the same “disease.” (I’ve never heard so many old wives tales.)
At a time when government, physicians, patients, and insurers are looking for ways to reduce healthcare costs, this can’t be good. By the same token, patients are being encouraged to play a more intimate role in their own healthcare. What’s an intelligent person to do?