Archive for the ‘Direct Marketing’ Category

Government initiative to cut 5 billion calories from nation’s diet – Who’s involved…?

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Government Responsibility Deal - Marketing CommunicationsMajor food brands across the UK are joining forces to fight against obesity by reducing the calorie content in their products.  Among the leading brands are food retailers Asda, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s and Tesco. Also part of the scheme are  Coca-Cola Great Britain, Mars, Nestle, and PepsiCo who have made pledges to reduce calories as part of the industry’s Responsibility Deal with the government.  Will this benefit the brands in the long run?

According to a report from the Guardian this week, Asda has pledged develop a new reduced-calorie brand that will contain at least 30% fewer calories than it’s Chosen By You brand.  This is a good opportunity to ramp up on Asda’s corporate social responsibility and even better for Asda, the launch of this new brand will entice new customers as well as redirecting current customers.

Coca-Cola have pledged to cut the calories in some of their soft drinks at least 30% by 2014 while Mars will cap the number of calories in its chocolate portions to 250 calories by the end of 2013. Do the timescales on these pledges seem somewhat optimistic…?

Government Responsibility Deal - Marketing CommunicationsAccording to the Health Secretary Andrew Lansley, it is an ambitious challenge for the nation as a whole but the Responsibility Deal has made a positive start.  Do we think that retailers who have not signed up will receive bad press? As suspected, reports this week berate the companies who have not secured the deal including McDonald’s and KFC who have perhaps realized that making false promises is not a good idea and that they should just stick to what they know!

In the end it is a question of businesses jumping on the calorie reduction band wagon – But how many will do so?


‘Chill and Charge’ creating brand awareness at festivals through digital media…

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

Festival Brand Awareness - Marketing CommunicationsReflecting on the success of brand promotions such as the Orange ‘Chill and Charge’ campaign at Glastonbury last year, Marketing Week released a report this week on how brands can get the most out of festival sponsorship.  The Orange brand had a tent that enabled festival attendees to charge their phone at festivals, ingenious idea from the phone brand.  Glastonbury will be back in 2013, enough time for the brand to create an exciting campaign for the event…

An increasing number of brands that are not associated with music including Persil, Timberland, and Dairylea are using festivals as a channel to spread their brand messages.  Organisations are taking this method of marketing seriously by preparing in advance and building this activity into their strategy in order to get deals signed with popular festivals across the country.  How are brands making the most of festivals as a method for effective brand promotion…?

Digital media is becoming more prominent in the lead-up to and aftermath of festivals and is an excellent opportunity for marketers to promote their products and create brand awareness in advance.  Cheese brand Dairylea had huge success from Camp Bestival last summer with their Twitter and Facebook campaigns.  The festival is known as the family festival of the year and Dairylea seized the opportunity to promote the brand through a family photo shoot competition on Facebook leading up to the event.

Festival Brand Awareness - Marketing CommunicationsIt is important to remember that consumers now expect more from brands; Marketing Week revealed that those brands that can add a new dimension to promotion at festivals will be more likely to see a return on their experiential investment.  We look forward to seeing more innovative activity from your favourite cheese makers at this year’s festivals.


Should marketers continue to spend despite the economy…?

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

We have recently discussed food retail brands who are focusing more on price based marketing. This relates to research that indicates over 60% of goods are now sold based on price promotion.  There is, however, a strong argument that supermarkets should still invest, and are doing so, in long term brand promotion strategies in order to wait out the fluctuations in the economy and consumer spending in the hope that consumers buying patterns will adapt to a rise in the economy not too far from now.  Is this relevant though, or should the question be whether marketers, in all industries, should keep investing in whatever channels are necessary at this time…?

Marketing Campaign Model

Marketing Campaign Model

Marketing Week reported that brands have been advised to invest in marketing as they will benefit from improved market share in the long-term.  The authors of the latest IPA Bellwether report discovered that marketing budgets were in fact set higher this quarter, however budget allocation was more geared towards direct response channels such as DM and sales promotion.  This is working and therefore marketers need to ensure that the activity is ongoing leading up to Christmas.   What would happen if companies stopped advertising and price promotion in today’s market…?- They would disappear, brands have no choice but to roll with it and by taking on the financial pressures imposed on consumers today they can only hope that it will pay off in the long term.


IPA president Nicola Mendelsohn emphasizes the importance that the advertising industry should do all it can to be as upbeat as possible to meet the challenges that we face.  So there is clearly no straight forward solution as to what investment companies make in marketing, however, the absolute certainty is that companies do need to continue to spend on marketing, the statistics speak for themselves…!


“To fly. To Serve”.”To fly. To Save”…

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Easyjet's Marketing Strategy response to BAIn response to the recent British Airways campaign, Easyjet are launching a new online and print campaign with strapline, “To fly. To Save“.  The strategy is to reinforce the brands message as Europe’s most cost effective travel company. The message portrays all that Easyjet believe in, low cost and good quality service.  It is clear in the copy lines that Easyjet are directly attacking BA’s campaign by pointing out particular promotion tactics that BA use, advertising slogans on the BA wings is one example, and then ridiculing this in an attempt to drive customers towards the Easyjet brand.

The BA Facebook campaign includes a 90-second film that further promotes the brands values and its mission “to serve” in relation to the brands aviation heritage. All of this is to attempt to recover damage and boost pride in the brand for both employees of BA and consumers after a debilitating period of strikes over the last few years.  It appears that a real effort has been made on the part of BA towards achieving employee loyalty and commitment, once again.  This has been implemented through a combination of internal communications and new incentive plans to ensure that staff are committed and that this feeds through to customers.

Easyjet, as a result of this pressure from the competition, are increasing dividend payments to shareholders.  Founder, Sir Stelios Hajo-Ioannou, is determined to gain market share for business travelers by pursuing what is clearly an aggressive marketing strategy.  Easyjet appear to be more direct in their approach to internal and external communications, and neither brand are wrong here, it will just be interesting to see who comes out on top!

Are Royal Mail encouraging or discouraging companies to use direct mail…?

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

In a bid to support businesses in their direct mail campaigns and grow the direct mail sector, the Royal Mail has launched the new ‘Advertising Mail service’, to promote the role of direct mail as a form of advertising activity (for detailed information on the new service visit,  This is positive news for the industry and as we are all well aware, the increase in support comes at a price…! ).  The question will be whether the costs incurred will impact decisions on the allocation of resources within marketing departments.

This is one of many campaigns that Royal Mail has launched in recent years and according to Mark Thompson, Royal Mail’s media director, direct mail is performing well as a result of increasing ROI compared with other forms of marketing communications such as TV, press and digital (for the full report visit,  An interesting claim from Mark Thompson, however is he not considering the fact that by increasing prices, Royal Mail will impact on ROI and therefore companies will need to evaluate whether direct mail is cost effective.  A similar concern has been voiced in a recent report from the DMA with regards to Direct Mail’s price increases.  Chris Combemale, executive director of the DMA, expresses concern that the raise in funds at the expense of businesses will have a massive impact on marketing decisions and the move to digital (for the full report visit,

The changing nature of marketing communications means that companies are exploring marketing channels such as social media, more and more to communicate with consumers.  Micael Dahlen explores the rate of change in the digital revolution and how advertising campaigns using sites like YouTube are being used more widely (for more information see chapter 16, Beyond Traditional Marketing Communications)

Will companies see this as an incentive to increase direct mail activity, or will the hike in prices drive more marketers online? Companies are tightening budgets on marketing spend, consumers are going online more and more to obtain information, and companies are investing more resources on researching online marketing communications.  We may well see a drop in direct mail after all…!


Direct Marketing, on the rise…?

Monday, April 18th, 2011

A report from the MMC demonstrates the success of direct mail marketing campaigns as more resources are being ploughed into personalised communications.  Jonathon Margulies, vice president at Winterberry Group, has been working with the DMA on a recent US marketing research project and in his statement reported that payback on marketing campaigns represented huge achievement for an industry that has recently faced crises conditions (

The increase in ROI from direct mail activity is supported by Royal Mail and their plans to increase their advertising mail offerings.  Mark Thomson, Royal Mail’s media director, declares direct marketing as the consumers’ favorite! Continuing investment from royal mail means that companies are getting the most out of their direct mail campaigns (

Marketing Communications: A brand Narrative Approach demonstrates the importance of including targeted communications in the marketing mix as a strong method to tracking campaign performance and increase profitability (see chapter 10 for a case study).

Although the costs are increasing for direct mail, companies’ profits are increasing as a result of direct mail campaigns, and therefore should companies allocate more resources to direct communications in general? –The answer is YES…where data is becoming more accurate and accessible, performance tracking is easier and more efficient, and consumers are becoming increasingly agitated as they get bombarded with irrelevant advertising campaigns!