Whether it’s an unforgettable slogan or advert that makes something a must-buy, PR and marketing is vital to a brand’s success and overall public image. Gurus in the field offered PCR their advice on crafting a killer campaign…
"There’s app for that.” “Believe in better.” “It only does everything.”
Some slogans are made to last. They’re the outcome of precisely crafted marketing campaigns and are often the foundation on which a product’s success is built. But there’s a fine line between the gentle humming of a catchy tagline and the obnoxious nagging of an ad that earns the ire of potential customers (Just say “Go Compare” and hear the groans), and it’s the job of those in the PR and marketing industry to walk it – and if that task wasn’t difficult enough, consumers are now redrawing the line of approach they expect from businesses.
“Nowadays customers have completed 90 per cent of their information search about you and your offering before they engage with you,” explained Darren Farnden, head of marketing for Entanet.
“We need to understand how and where customers learn about us and the services or products we offer, and what’s being said about us.”
Alex MacLaverty, UK MD of Hotwire PR, told PCR that the most effective marketing campaign she has seen optimised the media presence of music streaming site We7.
“In just three months, with no advertising or marketing support, we increased their user base from one million to 2.5 million, made them the top site returned for a Google search on ‘music’ and helped them become the top-ranked site for ‘music streaming’ above much larger competitors,” she explained.
“The campaign was successful for three reasons: we had a clear brief and were able to track success against business outcomes from the start, we carefully selected and nurtured a key group of influencers in the space to become advocates for the brand and we listened to what the journalists wanted to hear about.”
Matt McDowell, marketing director for Toshiba, was behind the recent ‘Encore’ series of adverts, which were praised for their originality. He told PCR that ensuring an even spread of marketing presence across multiple channels is vital.
“The future of advertising is multi-channel, with an increasing share of spend going to digital and social media,” he said.
“However, different media platforms perform different roles. TV will remain relevant for a while yet, even if the focus moves to viewing content on demand and online.”
When asked how to best capture consumers’ attention, McDowell said creativity is key.
“A proliferation of brands are all chasing the same customer and trying to grab their share of wallet,” he commented.
“Marketing teams have to constantly review and understand their customers, identify their future customers and predict their needs and behaviours better than the competition. Their role is to create campaigns that plug directly into those needs in a way that inspires and excites the market. But don’t lose sight of your strategy and culture in the blind pursuit of standing out.”
“Invest in the time to identify and develop your core value propositions, then find an agency that can deliver that truth in a creative and innovative way that is easily accessible and relevant to your target market. Never follow, always lead.”
Farnden added that professionals should advertise themselves as well as their products.
“Be consistent in making your name known. This doesn’t mean only shouting about what you offer but demonstrating an active interest in and understanding of the needs of your preferred customers,” he said.
MacLaverty agreed with McDowell that integrity is critical in the PR and marketing industry.
“Don’t be afraid to give your opinions to clients and/or bosses,” she advised those looking to progress in the field.
“As a consultant they are paying for your advice – so don’t automatically say yes if you think there is a better approach."
“Most people appreciate good counsel and honesty.”