One of the biggest brand marketing challenges for companies is to try and increase consumer recognition and recall of their brand.
The ability of a brand to capture the audiences’ attention, and quickly communicate its message is key to shaping the brand’s identity within its target market.
We talked about reducing consumer confusion to ease the purchasing decision making process. A brand that has a strong identity makes it easy for a consumer to understand where the brand fits within its market, and why they should choose it over its competitors.
Don’t Confuse Your Audience, Help Them Choose: Why Context is Important
The ‘how’ and ‘where’ of communicating with your target audience should not just be dictated by maximum reach but by selecting what would best help the consumer develop a greater understanding of your brand identity.
In other words, the channels you choose should be congruent with your brands positioning strategy. A consumer who understands the brand’s identity is far more likely to recall the brand and recognize it during the decision making process.
Context is important for the brand and consumer alike. The choice of where to place your brand should help to convince your audience to choose your brand above competitors, not confuse them. Brand familiarity is key to strong sales, increased market share and growing brand profitability.
Jumping on the Live Brand Wagon
The explosion of product placement in film and television is a testament to the difficulty of grabbing audiences’ attention through traditional advertising. With multiple channels available to an audience, as well as the ability to record and skip over advertisements, big brands have started looking elsewhere to gain brand exposure to a captive audience. Live broadcasts are the latest space being targeted in an effort to get the attention of a focused audience.
Inappropriate Exposure: Where Brands Go Wrong
Live broadcasts of sporting occasions or awards shows have typically been top of the highest TV viewing figure polls. The 2012 Superbowl attracted a staggering 111 million viewers. This year’s Oscars was viewed by 39.3 million people, and In Ireland over 2 million Irish fans tuned in to cheer on the boys in green in their clash against Spain during Euro 2012, that’s nearly half the population of the country!
While advertising around these types of events has always attracted huge brand buy-ins, a new trend is emerging which see’s brands targeting the live shows themselves. While live events offer the potential of huge exposure for brands, exposure without context begs the question are these brand attention seekers creating awareness or just annoyance?
The Tony Awards 2012
The biggest award night for the world of theatre took place last week in New York with the live broadcast of the show attracting a TV audience of over 6 million.
Not content with just a 30 second slot during the ad break, Royal Caribbean Cruise Liner also paid for a 4 minute infomercial during the ceremony, featuring singers and dancers from their cruise line entertainment, performing songs from the musical Hairspray, with explicit mentions of the brand by the award presenter.
Audiences of the show were certainly made aware of the brand, but this attempt of such an obvious sell in the middle of what is deemed a prestigious award ceremony might lead to more annoyance than awareness.
For a brand that is trying to attract an audience and strengthen brand identity, annoying audiences can lead to negative brand associations and ultimately do more harm than good.
Even more bizarre than Royal Caribbean cruise’s Tony appearance, was the use of a FIAT 500 on stage at last year’s American Music Awards during Jennifer Lopez’s performance.
Irish Brand’s Stunt Gets it Right with Relevancy at Euro 2012
It may have been cheeky but at least Irish brand Paddy Power picked a relevant event for their latest branding stunt that saw them send branded boxers to various players in Euro 2012.
The stunt paid off with millions around the world getting a glimpse of the brand when a Danish player lifted his shirt as part of his goal celebrations. While the player may be penalized for the stunt that infringed on the strict brand restrictions in place for Euro 2012, Paddy Power received valuable brand exposure with their target audience.
Use Relevant Channels to Help Your Audience Understand Your Brand
Integrating a brand into a live broadcast is not just about gaining brand exposure but should be treated as another congruent touch point in which you can reinforce the brand identity with your target audience.
The ability for a consumer to recall a brand is influenced by all their interactions with that brand. The context in which the audience sees the brand helps them to understand the brand’s message, arming them with the information they need during a purchasing decision process.
For a company, this means that you should be looking to create a synergy within your brand marketing strategy where by each brand communication strengthens and reinforces the message of the others.
Remember, your brand is looking to convince, not confuse, and build strong relationships. Strengthen your brand identity by picking the channel that best suits your brand and your audience.
• Are you picking the communication channels most relevant to your audience?
• Where are you marketing your brand?
• Is this strengthening your brand identity or just causing confusion?
What do you think of the contexts of the brand placements mentioned?