Thursday, May 21, 2015

Is it me or is it them? Mark Ritson reckons it is them. I agree

Much of today's advertising and more generally 'branding' leaves me cold. To be honest I don't think too much about it but sometimes I muse that I am either becoming a grumpy old sod or that the output of many marketing departments is useless rubbish.

I appreciate that I (my age) is rarely the target for much of the communications so I let it fly by and have a idle mutter. Arguably, I should be the target but that is a subject for another day.

I have just read Mark Ritson in Marketing Week (you will probably have to register to read the article).

Ritson believes, and I quote, "Brands’ inane ‘visions’ have lost touch with what consumers really use them for.  Brand purpose, content marketing and the belief that millennials are looking for ‘more than just a brand’ are leading to brand managers creating brand visions that have nothing to do with their actual product or consumer." Yes, yes, yes I couldn't agree more.

Clearly the current campaigns from Barclaycard (Get more from your day) and Coca-Cola (Open happiness) campaign cause him some grief.

Probably best that I don't repeat what he has to say about McDonald’s (Reignite I’m lovin) branding.

Ritson's view is that he doesn't want to have  relationship with his cornflake supplier or a bonding experience when he buys a coffee. Again, I am nodding away.

I may be putting words in his mouth but I think what he is saying is the reason people buy and continue to buy products is much more fundamental and about things like the customer experience.

So why do I always go to Pret for my coffee. Not that the coffee is the best but I know I get served really fast, the staff are highly efficient and ultra friendly. These are all tangible, measurable things.

I fear that far too much of the Millennial and Gen Z type marketing (including social media) is wasted, or worse than that, counterproductive. Grumpy old sod or visionary? After reading Ritson I think maybe I am more likely to be the latter. Dick Stroud

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