Category Archives: Insights

Marriott : from bad to worse

Spotted the new Marriott campaign yesterday at Hong Kong airport. I have pilloried Marriott twice before in this blog. This time it is so bad, there is no need to waste any space analyzing it.

Enjoy the brilliance of gems like :  “Habitat of the Wildly successful”,  ” Where the Driven go”,  ” Highly functional and dynamic like you”…..and the website mentioned at the bottom has no link to the campaign !!

Bad strategy, Bad execution, Bad Integration

China : Factory to Studio?

Read my assessment of China’s  prospects of moving from being a factory for cheap goods (and  code) to becoming an origin point for new products, designs and business models.

http://www.ddb.com/yellowpapers/

P&G : Getting Men ?

The action in male personal care market keeps hotting up. Dove’s  Men range : Men+care , launched 2 months back in US , Europe and Australasia. Vaseline (from Unilever) launched a Men’s range in India in March. Now P&G’s OLAY has launched Olay Men solutions in China, riding on its mega brand status in the country.

While DOVE  and VASELINE are  attempting to stretch a specific equity – Care and moisturization- across genders, OLAY is  riding on a broad equity- skin care expertise, which it can claim via its dominance of the female skin care market in China. All packs in the OLAY Men solutions range feature “Refreshing energy” as a common line, which is clearly a new thought as it hasn’t been used before in brand communication or packaging.

However the brand which should have been first off the blocks in this segment- Gillette- is still struggling to be a serious player in men’s face care. It is frankly stunning that they still don’t have a Globally consistent face care range . The UK site has pre-shave wash & scrub  and post-shave moisturizer but  I couldn’t find anything on the Gillette US website. They test marketed Gillette COMPLETE skin care range in US in 2005, and it didn’t work. Instead we saw the launch of a hair care range in 2008 which is already de-listed in UK.  Gillette’s equity is in men’s skin care not hair care. What are they thinking ?

Clearly, P&G is still trying to “get” Men !

Korea needs a positioning.

Cheil has been re-appointed as the agency for Korea Tourism. I hope they do a better job than the current campaign – Korea, Sparkling.

If ever there was a big , economically successful and visible country ( via its brands) which needed a clear positioning in the minds of the world’s tourists, it is Korea. Korea doesn’t need a generic campaign like SPARKLING KOREA (you can see the clever marketing logic yourself as interestingly the communication strategy and thinking has been put out for public consumption). It needs a unique point of difference which can give people a reason to add it to their list of destinations. It doesn’t help that the capital city, Seoul has its own campaign: “Seoul- the soul of Asia” , which is a clever play on words but lacks credibility and pull factor especially for people who haven’t been there before. It might reinforce what past visitors have experienced.

The marketing challenge as I see it, is not “repeat and loyalty” but “trial”.

C’mon Korea. Give me a reason to believe ..visit ( beyond the cheap won). We know you can do better.

Brand Growth : Insightful Communication OR Rapidfire Innovation ?

Innovation is the corporate buzz word of the decade, and the talk  cuts across all product categories/industries. Within packaged consumer goods the rate of NPD has never been higher, but the success rate of new products is still very low (less than 10% according to a WARC paper based on UK market data). Continue reading

Marriott misses the mark, again.

Marriott International’s new  brand campaign running for over a year now succeeds in at least one thing. It answers the famous question : “Which half of advertising is wasted?”. In this case it is both the halves. Continue reading

Marketing in a recession

For Marketers, recession is when the wheat gets separated from the chaff.  CMOs and Marketing directors with the strategic depth and executional flexibility to change track while staying on course, will flourish. Below are some links and thoughts on marketing in a recession. Timely reminders. Continue reading