Tag Archives: marketing

Branding the experience

7 Mar

Still on the topic of branding…

This also ties heavily into our discussion in Lec 02 about marketing an experience vs. a product.

What about places?  Places and spaces such as cities, districts, and even whole countries all have their own ‘feel’.  The prospective consumer is attracted by the experience as a whole – the ‘brand’ so to speak.

Florida is branded as the “Sunshine State” with beaches, dolphins, and palm trees.

Toronto is the capital of multiculturalism.

Paris in the spring is a lover’s lodestone.

Vegas is “Sin City”

Europe as a whole screams CULTURE.

Disney is the “Happiest Place on Earth”

What happens, then, when this branding goes amuck?  Here I’m thinking of places like the city of Walkerton who had to work very hard to build up their reputation as a quaint tourist destination after their water disaster in 2000.

As a further thought, some places also look to re-brand with a new experience.  I’ll update with some ideas on this theme.

Brand musings: pass the Kleenex!

7 Mar

Sometimes a brand is marketed so successfully that it become synonymous with the product itself.  Case in point: Kleenex.

This truth became readily apparent when Google image results for Kleenex turned up dozens of unidentified boxes of tissue, such as the one below:

Some other brands that fit this category:

Google = web search

Rice Krispies = popped rice cereal OR chewy squares made from these

Corn Flakes = flaked corn cereal

Ziplock bags = resealable bags

Vaseline = petroleum jelly

Chapstick = lip moisturizer

Speedo = fitted swim shorts

Sharpie = permanent marker

Q-tips = cotton swabs

Post-its = sticky notes

Jell-O = gelatin dessert

Play-Doh = children’s modeling clay

Band-Aids = adhesive bandages


And many, many drugs, for example:

Advil = ibuprofen

Tylenol = acetaminophen

Aspirin = acetylsalicylic acid


A bunch of these were taken from a great blog called Reflections of Pop Culture & Life’s Challenges.  Check out the post here for even more products!

This can only be a testament to amazing marketing that has earned consumer trust over time.

A Magical Book Launch

7 Mar

I was thinking about marketing and promotions outside the context of traditional ads, and trying to come up with some examples.  The idea of the successful book launch came to mind.  The Harry Potter series, for example, transcended its ‘book’ status and became a brand unto itself, generating an enormous cult following throughout the world.

  • Massive pre-ordering for the next book
  • People camped outside Chapters all night before the release
  • Camped people were dressed up like the characters

And the interesting thing is that this series touched multiple demographics: it was popular in many countries throughout the world, children and adults alike.  It brings Pixar to mind – a company that integrates all manner of things into their films to appeal to the widest possible demographic.

Jumblies Theatre – Like an Old Tale

7 Mar

Jumblies came to do a presentation today for a bunch of Arts Management students, talking about their current outreach projects and community work.

It was nice  – and gave us a good feeling for their brand – that our warm-up exercise had the flavour of the very projects they undertake in the community.

This organization is definitely audience-centered: their entire focus and reason for existence is to build community and bring people together, having them sharing stories, etc. through art.

The video below is a shows a tiny snapshot of Jumblies’ community work in 2010.


7 Mar


Like Musicworks, Bees’Knees is another arts organization that’s working to digitally position themselves in the best possible way.

I wanted to include their latest newsletter I just received in my inbox this week, but I can’t figure out how to straighten out the formatting so it appears quasi-normal here!   The important thing, though, is that this organization has an e-list and sends out regular newsletters advertising everything from upcoming classes and special events, to her other business, selling natural nut butters.

They also make use of social media to enlist last-minute dancers to balance out class gender ratios.

Tim Hortons gets SUPERSIZED

6 Mar

So what started, I imagine, as a dollars-driven shift to streamline their production turned into a much-hyped value-add for Canadian customers.

Who doesn’t like the idea of getting a tangible more for the same price?

Their approach is so much more effective than if they simply added a ‘jumbo’ size to their current lineup.  The perceived value that the customer retains goes a long way to making them feel pretty cozy about Timmy’s right now.  And to have customer goodwill bundled with their purchase is just about the holy grail of any marketing campaign.


6 Mar

This is just darling:

Sapphire Mink EMBA from Maximilian.

Appeared in Harper Bazaar’s, December 1951.

Asking Santa for this present – message to the man in her life!

Also, perhaps: men are attracted to women in mink – even Santa!

EMBA mink

6 Mar

I was going through my grandmother’s stuff after she passed away a couple weeks ago, and opened her closet to find a national park’s worth of fur coats. / wardrobe to find a Narnian supply of fur coats.  Mink seemed to be her favourite, all inscribed with the descriptor “EMBA”.  A Google search brought up

For you curious young people out there, EMBA is a brand of farmed mink that was especially prized for its quality and luxuriousness.  EMBA prides itself in the richness and variety of available colours – all of which are natural as supposed to dyed.


– funny to see this advertisement from the 70s: has many elements of advertising today
– also very different, as almost wholly text-based

Deal Sites Part 2: Travel!

6 Mar




Nose Hair, Part 2

22 Feb

Panasonic Nose Trimmer

Here’s an update I found on this one: it’s even more thought-out than I imagined!  This is advertising special technology for sensitive nose hairs.  The company chose to use electrical wire to evoke the feeling of danger when using a conventional trimmer.  The ad for this model – in all its crass attention-grabbing glory – promises to put that fear to rest.