Brands revisiting happier times

Rape and suicide. These things are not fun or funny. The social media age is no reason for PepsiCo and Hyundai to feel ‘stifled’. These are just moronic ideas. If the ads ran 30 years ago, they would still be moronic. Going back to old work is not cowardly; a cup of tea is warm, comforting and familiar – appropriate then that the [Tetley]communication draws upon these feelings.

New ideas are coming all of the time, and the social media age provides feedback instantly; which certainly means more risk, but as Lynx demonstrates in this example – it also means a great opportunity. Instant feedback of any advert is a marketer’s opportunity to learn something.

Neil Hughston, founding partner, www.johnnyfearless.com

Social media doesn’t stifle creativity; it encourages creativity, and is now a strong driving force for brands to flex their creative muscles. The success seen from social swarms around Old Spice and Coca-Cola is testament to this. I believe that we’re seeing brands revert back to their old ads not because of fears of a social media-fuelled backlash but because consumers love a sense of nostalgia. We are now knee-deep in the era of austerity and who doesn’t want to rewind back to the happy, carefree times?

Peter Veash, CEO, The Bio Agency

I agree with Michael Magee when he talks about the power of ‘historical’ campaigns in connecting with consumers. For those in doubt about the power of nostalgia look no further than ITV2’s Big Reunion Tour this year, which is currently selling out The O2. Most consumers don’t have that much time in their lives for brands – hence we all need to fight for attention – so to borrow from Byron Sharp, if you can build on a positive brand meaning that already exists you have a head start. 

James Hayhurst, managing director, Leagas Delaney London

Building loyalty

Ben Cook makes a valid point when he says the use of plastic cards can make loyalty schemes seem like a hindrance rather than a value exchange.

As he outlined, mobile is likely to play a pivotal role in solving this problem, but to declare it as the only game changer does a disservice to other technologies. For example, cardless reward systems allow the accumulation of points seamlessly using something that consumers consistently carry with them without the complications of being ‘online’ or ‘offline’.

Systems such as this are becoming more popular and will increase the granularity of data that merchants and banks have at their disposal, as well as – crucially – allowing a frictionless consumer experience.

Gavin Dein, founder and executive director, Reward

Developing dialogue

Mindi Chahal’s article ‘Gaining trust can be a matter of survival’ laid out some interesting statistics. Today’s discerning consumers hold more of the cards than ever before, their ability and desire to make their own decisions about brands is unprecedented.  

With almost monthly industry crises, it’s not surprising that trust and consistency go hand in hand. But this provides marketers with an opportunity, and maybe in time a need, to forge real connections through real conversations. When devising a live event, we always leave room for conversations to develop. Wherever possible, we handpick brand ambassadors with first-hand experience of a brand, so they will look to create a dialogue rather than deliver a sales pitch. 

Gone are the days when brands could get away with having their own agenda, so developing friendships via social media, is now a vital part of any truly integrated campaign.

Sharon Richey, CEO, BEcause Brand Experience

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