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Do Americans run on Dunkin?

It’s my turn this time! I was freaking out what to do and present during the Monday’s WIP meeting. Then…just 2 days before the presentation, on the weekend, I got attracted to their TVC which was aired in one of their outlets in Ikano, Damansara. I think it’s cool that they did it with a super long-shot! Check it out!

Then it struck me, do Americans really run on Dunkin?? I went back and started the case studies. The agency who did this campaign was Hill Holiday in Boston. The task given to them was to transform Dunkin into a national powerhouse brand and to go against its competitor such as Starbucks and McDonalds! So, the agency did a research and they found the Americans are constantly on the go, looking to complete the next task on their to-do lists, succeed in their endeavors, and just to get through the day. This observation of consumer behavior is exactly what Boston agency Hill Holliday considered when they created the “America Runs On Dunkin’” campaign.

Rather than position the daily cup of coffee as a relaxing escape to a busy day, Hill Holliday promoted Dunkin Donuts coffee as human fuel, used to help the everyday American succeed in their hectic life. In fact, this campaign possesses all of the qualities of a simple, sticky idea that Chip and Dan Heath promote in their book, Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die. According to the Heath brothers model, a simple idea must fit a simple formula: Simple = Core + Compact.

Hill Holliday chose the core value of the product (Dunkin Donuts gets you through your busy day) and used it to create this very successful campaign.

Results? They are eclipsed Starbucks as the #1 in customer loyalty for 2 years running (Brand keys) and Voted 2007 ‘Marketer of the Year’ by Restaurant News. As of today, this campaign is still running and they are exploring the Social Media side of things with a Fan Page of Facebook and also this micro website which i’m not to sure if the mechanic worked on the consumers.

You can check out their TVC(s) and other creative collaterals here! 🙂

Tho the campaign is very sucessful in US, it might not work as strong if it were in Malaysia. Hence they only share the TVC and not it’s campaign here. 😛 Wonder if Dunkin Donuts Malaysia should do something… they used to be the ONLY donut francise in Malaysia but….other francise like Big Apple Donuts, J.Co Donuts and Krispy Kreme is here now! Yummmz….

So, you think you’re smart?

Pitch Fee or Pitch Free?

Sometimes in this business, we get asked to pitch for work against other agencies. It’s what we call a competitive pitch. Malaysia’s 4A’s have asked us to strongly request a pitch fee, and as a standard, it’s RM5000. Reasons being that as an industry, we’ll be putting in effort and resources to develop marketing communications solutions, and because it’s a competitive pitch, most of the participants (agencies) in the pitch will naturally not get the business. Sure, that makes sense to the agencies. For big clients with big business, agencies can go into pitches with work that runs into the tens of thousands (and even hundreds of thousands) in terms of resources spent. So, it caps the clients propensity to invite as many agencies as they well please, just to see if anyone hits the mark. If it’s going to cost them to invite agencies, they’ll be less inclined to waste other people’s time and resources. So, yes, that makes sense to the guild and to the industry as a whole.

Now, lets not talk about the big corporations and their multimillion dollar marketing budget. I want focus on small to mid value pitches for clients with smaller marketing and communications budgets, one off jobs that could run into say, total creative budget of less than a hundred thousand ringgit. For example, property clients, or upstart brands and products. The argument against paying a pitch fee is that with a small total marketing budget, who has the money to pay RM15,000, or 15% of creative budget (for inviting 3 agencies) for what is essentially a pitch. If agencies really want my RM100K business, then the risk is theirs. Take it or leave it. Right? Wrong.

When clients don’t pay a pitch fee, they are putting themselves under more risk than just RM5000. How? I can say, from observation, not paying a pitch fee is most likely to be the attitude of clients who also have limited value for dedicated market research. i.e: Extensive research even before the product is developed. If they’re not going to pay RM5000 for a pitch fee, it will be most unlikely (in most cases, but not in all) to pay for third party research on product development. It’s one of those things that happens in typical asian business practices. They may put in hundreds of millions of dollars into production of the product itself, but very little in finding out first what kind of product to develop – what kind of product will really resonate with customers and consumers. Sure, they may ask some friends over morning coffee, or evening beers, or what they read over the internet, but is that really enough, especially when you’re going to spend millions on the product? (and I’m not exaggerating on the RM millions bit).

So, when clients don’t pay the RM5000 pitch fee, what are they losing out on really? They lose out on the additional value an agency can bring onto the table in terms of real firsthand insights. If I’m competing against two, or three other agencies, and knowing that my chances of getting the business is 25%-30%, how much should I be putting into the work? Definitely not 100%. So, if no one is giving 100% into the pitch proposal, who really loses? The client.

Because things can go wrong with the insights that you get. The one thing you shouldn’t assume is that in a FREE pitch situation, an agency will do all it can to solve your unforeseen problem for you. They won’t. They’re doing it to win your business, in the least expensive way they can. (Note: they’re already absorbing the cost of creative development). Now, if you’re information is not entirely or reliably accurate, what makes you think theirs will be more accurate?

As a client, you can limit the risk of that by making sure you’ve done your homework in terms of extensive research before you develop the product (in which case, you should be fairly confident your product will resonate with the your target market), and just passing off all those relevant information to the agencies who want the business.

It’s all good if you’re pretty sure the product will sell. But what if you’re not entirely sure? Should you really trust the pitching agencies to give you an accurate solution when they’re really relying on you to give them accurate information to base their solutions on?

So when clients who don’t pay pitch fees, are they really saving money, or are they actually putting all their investments at risk?

Holy Mother!

In 2007, Coca-Cola Australia launched their first energy drink – Mother – in attempt to tap into the growing energy drinks market. It was a huge flop. After doing some market research to find out why, they found that the reason was simple; it tasted terrible. So it was back to the labs and coming up with a brand new formula to give V and Red Bull a run for their money. Coca-Cola Australia engaged Smart Inc. to come to the rescue of their dying brand gasping for air like an asphyxiated prostitute in the midst of a snuff movie. Ah, i digress. Back to ‘Mother’.

Smart Inc came up with this:

‘Mother’ was made-over like Ugly Betty, with brand new packaging and a totally different taste. Word on the streets is: it was a success. Any guesses as to who their target market is? The absolutely ‘brilliant’ tagline should give you a clue.

Who say volunteer works not cool?

You can’t buy a ticket. You can’t win a ticket. You have to earn a ticket. That what Rockcorps all about, inspire young people to take part in volunteer work using their interest, live concerts. Founded by Stephen Greene in 2003, Rockcorps gets young people to volunteer. The deal is ‘give 4 hours, get 1 free ticket’ to exclusive rock concerts. Rockcorps has reached 30,000 people already in USA. Orange has brought it to the UK and France. Where next? Maybe somebody needs to bring this guy to Malaysia so all young Malaysians can start cleaning up the mess in this country instead of just singing 1 Malaysia songs without doing anything.


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NIKE – unveils the secret of AIR!

post taken from ZAZI’s new blog check it out!!


NIKE – unveils the secret of AIR!

Humour in an advert is always good. I always remember the funny ones. The clever ones…. well, they’re so so … Sometimes adverts are clever but while watching them you can feel the eerie presence of 10 or 20 creative types, the ones who wear unfashionable glasses and ‘statement’ type clothing… there they are sitting in a circle, holding hands and swaying back and forth around a pile of empty coffee cups and the soft neon glow of the latest imac – chanting ‘inspiration now, inspiration now….’ ; clever adverts are nice but they’re rarely memorable. Funny adverts… now they’re in a class of their own as i suspect this new Nike advert will be. It is the perfect balance of so many things…. The brand, the notion behind the logo, the sportspeople that they sponsor… it’s all there and it’s all working. Even the choice of backing track is spot on. Intelligent Advertising, but it does fall ever so slightly short of making you want to BUY a new pair of Nikes. So as PESHybrid said, if you put on your Nikes last friday and chatted up every chick in the club I guess you got Tiger Woods air.